FITS & Starts 2010 Newsletter


21 April 2010                                                                                                                       Volume 10, Issue 4

In This Issue

·    More Living Space

·    Adobe Reader Upgrade

·    Google’s Buzz Kill


Reduce hardware investment, Save on Power and Cooling costs and get Disaster Recovery…

Inexpensive Backup Solutions (Click Here)

Want to give customers access to your business 24 x 7? A web page is an inexpensive sales tool…

As your computer ages it can get bogged down with unnecessary applications and even malware. Contact FITS at or (416) 640-2874 to have a computer check-up done.

Want More Viewable Living Space ?

DualMonitor.jpgOne quick way to gain some valuable screen space, if you have a laptop, is to hook up a monitor to the (VGA) output included with most models.  If you have a desktop a dual monitor video card will do the trick as well.

This will allow you to use the second monitor as well as your existing monitor to display your applications.  I often use this ‘extended monitor’ method to view a spreadsheet on one screen while I look at the corresponding notes on the other or to keep a couple of reference pages open while surfing the Internet.  You can also use the setup to keep your email program open on one screen while you work on another project on the other screen.  It’s great for comparing documents or monitoring a favourite program while you work on something else.


Contact FITS (416) 640-2874 to get configured with a ‘dynamic dual’ monitor setup.


Adobe Optimizes its Software Update Process

AdobeReader.jpgThis month Adobe released more security updates for its Reader software (a program to view .PDF files) and is strongly advising us to update to version 9.3.2 or if that is not possible to update to version 8.2.2.

To check to see what version you are using – Open your Adobe Reader program – Select the ”Help” menu and then select “About Adobe Reader”.  A window should open with details on what version you have.  If the version is anything earlier than 9.3.2, you need to get the free update for the software.  Depending on your current version, you may be able to select “Help” and then select “Check for Updates” to get the job done. 

To install the latest version of Reader from scratch go to Adobe’s site - and (after possibly skipping the Google Toolbar download) select ‘download’. 

Adobe no longer supports Reader versions 7 or earlier … and having an out of date PDF reader can put you at risk…

The good news is, for those of you who hate manual updates, Adobe’s new version 9 software employs an "Automatically Install Updates" feature.  This will make the process similar to Microsoft Update or Mozilla Update whereby you automatically receive updates as they are released to keep your software (and therefore your computer and you) better protected.  Adobe has also provided options to just download but not install updates or an opt-out selection. So as to not offend any techies, your current preferences reportedly will not be overwritten so you won’t be forced to become ‘automated’ by future updates.

As PDF files are regularly being used as malware attack avenues, I suggest most of you stick with the automatic updates, unless you are willing to monitor security risks yourself. 

So long as I have you rummaging around in your PDF settings, there are a couple of options that you should check in on.  It won’t take long I promise…  From your Adobe Reader main screen select “Edit” – “Preferences” and “JavaScript” and ensure that “Enable Adobe JavaScript” is not checked.  From the same “Preferences” menu find “Trust Manager” and ensure that “Allow opening of non-PDF file attachments with external applications” is not checked. This is a precautionary measure to foil possible exploits or program crash issues with these settings turned on (at least until an appropriate patch is released).

For more information on security and backup solutions, for business or home, contact FITS.  ( or 416 640-2874)


Google Blunders into a Buzz Kill

Google’s name is not one that comes to mind for most when it comes to privacy infringement accusations however, their launch of Buzz a couple of months ago changed all that. 


GoogleBuzz.jpgIn the race to compete in the social networking community, Google forgot to ask “Mother May I” and had to take a couple of giant steps backwards after over-extending how people’s data was used without first getting their permission.  Although Google has been doing a lot of back-peddling and software refinements, (including newly introduced prompts to adjust their privacy settings) Buzz opened a few eyes (once again) as to how our information could be used.

Now maybe you trust Google because, after all, they help you find just about anything you ever wanted however, the action caught the eye of several country’s legislative groups and led to broader questions about how Google might be handling other data it possesses. In the wake of these happenings, the days of “Trust us, we’re Google” may have just ended… at least until Google convinces us all otherwise.

Consider the additional data that Google (and other search providers) hold, generated from all of our Internet inquiries… oh, yes, they know you are out there and what you are looking for… at least from a unique cookie ID, plus IP number, plus date and time aspect. Although Google has always stated "We try very hard to be upfront about the data we collect, and how we use it, as well as to build meaningful controls into our products", this ability to gather massive amounts of information and ‘mine’ through it can make us computer users feel just a bit paranoid.

For more information go to Google and type “Google And The Big Brother Nomination”… on second thought maybe you better not type that into Google. J


For more information please feel free to contact me at or (416) 640-2874.



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