HelpWithWindows Newsletter Volume 11, Number 1
January 12, 2008
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In this issue:

Microsoft Announces Windows Home Server Power Pack 1

by Arie Slob

Hello Windows users,

Windows Home Server Last Monday, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Microsoft announced details of the upcoming release of Windows Home Server (WHS) Power Pack 1 (PP1), a major update to the recently released Windows Home Server. Power Pack 1 provides several new features, including an update to the connector software that adds support for x64-based Windows Vista clients.

The biggest change to WHS in this Power Pack update concerns server backup: after installing PP1 you will be able to back up your home server to an external hard drive, adding an additional layer of protection to your data that was previously missing from WHS. Another option was added to the new connector software which now allows you to specify if you want the specific computer to be woken up for a scheduled backup when it is in sleep or hibernation mode. PP1 also adds new remote access functionality such as a simple way to upload multiple files, new photo thumbnail views, and more control of remote user access where you can choose to give remote users access to the shared folders and/or attached computers.

When downloading multiple files from the WHS server, PP1 adds the option to package the files in a self extracting executable (.exe) file in addition to being able to store them in a ZIP file.

Microsoft says that WHS PP1 will ship in spring 2008 via Windows Update and will be a free update for all WHS users.

You can read my Windows Home Server review on the HelpWithWindows.com Web site.

Microsoft Security

Microsoft Windows Security Bulletin Summary for January, 2008

The security update for January 2008 includes two updates for Microsoft Windows.

Severity Rating: Critical

Severity Rating: Important

Windows Updates

Microsoft issued a number of updates for Windows Vista & Windows XP in the past weeks:

Windows Vista:

  • KB943411 - Update to improve protection in Windows Sidebar. This update enables Windows Sidebar to block certain gadgets from running.
  • KB935509 - Update to enable future updates to install successfully on Windows Vista Ultimate and Windows Vista Enterprise.

Windows XP:

  • KB946627 - Update to resolve an issue on a computer that is running Windows XP SP2; Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 crashes when you try to a visit a Web site. This problem occurs after you install security update 942615.

Internet Explorer 8 Beta Due in First Half of 2008

In a posting on the Internet Explorer (IEBlog) MSDN site, Microsoft General Manager Dean Hachamovitch provided some information about Internet Explorer 8 (IE8), Microsoft's next Web browser.

"For IE 8, we want to communicate facts, not aspirations," Hachamovitch says. "We're posting this information now because we have real working code checked in and we're confident about delivering it in the final product. We're listening to the feedback about IE, and at the same time, we are committed to responsible disclosure and setting expectations properly."

These comments were written by Hachamovitch in an announcement that an internal build of IE8 recently passed the so-called Acid2 Face rendering test, considered a key milestone for those concerned with standards compliance. But Hachamovitch also noted that IE8 must not break the existing web while targeting standard compliance.

In his posting Hachamovitch also announced that a beta of IE8 will be released in the first half of 2008.



500GB Laptop Hard Drive

Hitachi Global Storage Technologies is claiming the largest capacity mobile 2.5in hard disk after unveiling the 500GB Travelstar 5K500 which will be available next month for an estimated $400. A 400GB model will be available shortly after for an estimated $350.

Recommended Book:

SOHO Networking: A Guide to Installing a Small-Office/Home-Office Network

Windows XP Service Pack 3 Release Candidate

Standalone Update Package for Windows XP Service Pack 3 Release Candidate. Please be aware that you are downloading a beta version (a "Release Candidate" is still a beta), so only do this if you know the implications of running beta software!

Latest Microsoft & Windows News from around the Internet

Freeware: My Lockbox

My Lockbox allows you to password protect any file you want protected on your computer. The protected folder (lockbox) is hidden from any user and application of your system. It is impossible to access the lockbox without credentials not only from the local computer, but also from the Internet.

Wi-Fi virus outbreak is possible, researchers say

If criminals were to target unsecured wireless routers, they could create an attack that could piggyback across thousands of Wi-Fi networks in urban areas like Chicago or New York City, according to researchers at Indiana University.

"The issue is that most of these routers are installed out of the box very insecurely," said Steven Myers, an assistant professor at Indiana University, who published the paper in November, along with researchers from the Institute for Scientific Interchange in Torino, Italy.

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