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Windows-Help.NET Newsletter27 Mar. 1999, Vol 2 No. 13

 Privacy Issues III

by Arie Slob

Dear Windows-Help.NET Subscriber,

Well, it really seems that the Net has found another popular topic: Privacy & Security. Out of several new reports released last week, one of the worst IMHO was a report on C|Net about a security hole in one of Excite's personalisation features. My Excite, which let users store all kinds of personal information such as birthdays, stocks and others, has a security hole, which lets others see this information. This fact was reported to Excite last May, but still isn't fixed. Excite's comments when confronted with the facts? According to an Excite spokeswoman, a patch has not been applied, because the company has been "focused on migrating My Excite users to" The oversight will be addressed "soon," she said. Makes you wonder how much some companies care about your privacy.

Hotmail, the free e-mail service from Microsoft, acted more swiftly when an internal security audit showed that I.P. identification can easily been misused. In the past, Hotmail users could choose between I.P. identification and cookies. Now, however, the use of cookies will become mandatory.

In the latest twist, Lotus confirmed a bug in their Notes messaging software, which can expose encrypted email messages. Affected are Notes 4.5 and 4.6. More information can be found in this article from C|Net.

Microsoft has made available the following patch and removal tool to allow customers to remove the unique identifier number from existing Microsoft Word and Excel (version 97 in combination with Windows 98) documents, and prevent the insertion of a unique identifier in any new documents. You can read more on this in our Newsletter of 13 March 1999. Here are the Microsoft "fixes":

  • Microsoft Office 97 Unique Identifier Patch

    This patch, once applied, will prevent the insertion of a unique identifier number in all new Office documents.

    More information | Download [89KB]   Requires Office Service Release 2

  • Microsoft Office 97 Unique Identifier Removal Tool

    This is a utility that can be used to remove the unique identifier from previously created Office 97 documents. You can run the utility against one or several documents at a time

    More information | Download [141KB]

    There has been an alarming increase in the number of things you know nothing about.


Microsoft Internet Explorer 5 Web Accessories
Microsoft has done it again, and made available a small "Pack" of Accessories for Internet Explorer 5, which include: Open Frame in New Window, Quick Search, Zoom In/Zoom Out, Image Toggler, Text Highlighter, Web Search, Links List and Image List. More information about these features can be found on this page. You can download the Web Accessories from the Windows Update Web site, or directly [131KB].

There are even more Accessoires avalable: Explorer Bars, IE 5 Toolbar Wallpaper, IE 5 Power Tweaks Web Accessories and Microsoft Web Developer Accessories. For more information on these, see Microsoft's Web Accessories Page.

Microsoft Y2K Product Guide Updates
You can check this page for a list of updates to the Microsoft Year 2000 Product Guide pages, updated on March 2, 1999.

Windows 98 Tip
Change Color Depth without restarting
To be able to change your color depth without having to restart:


Windows 95 Tip
Reinstalling Windows 95 when Internet Explorer 4 is installed
Before you reinstall any version of Windows 95, you should uninstall Internet Explorer 4.


Customize your Windows 95/98 with Tweaking Toolbox for Windows.

Recommend this Newsletter to a Friend!

Ask your Windows 95 / 98 / NT questions here!

  Visual Studio 6.0 and Internet Explorer 5 Information

If you are a developer, and use Visual Studio 6.0, review the following information about the known issues with Visual Studio 6.0 and how it interacts with Internet Explorer 5, before installing Microsoft's latest browser.

According to Microsoft, these are minor issues and will be addressed by an upcoming Visual Studio 6.0 Service Pack to be available later this spring. Microsoft is providing this information in order to help developers through the interim period between the release of Internet Explorer 5 and the upcoming Visual Studio 6.0 Service Pack.

More information can be found on Microsoft's Developers Network.

  Web site updates

These pages were added/updated in the past week. Information on previously updated/added pages is available on the What's New? page for 1 month.
Updated: The Cleaner (database)
Updated: Internet Humor page
Added: Translation window
Updated: JukeBox music selections
Updated: DU Meter v2.2

Windows 95
Updated: Invalid Page Fault in Kernel32.dll Errors

Windows 98
Added: "Hard Disk Is Low on Disk Space" Message
Updated: Invalid Page Fault in Kernel32.dll Errors
Added: Windows Update Not Working after Internet Explorer 5 Upgrade
Updated: Problems Accessing Windows Update
Updated: How to Disable Microsoft's Registry Wizard

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