Ask Leo! #320 – A Windows Explorer change you must make, DLLs versus EXEs, Sandboxes versus VMs, and more…

The Ask Leo! Newsletter

*** New Articles

One change you should make to Windows Explorer right now to stay safer.

The vast majority of Windows default settings boil down to a matter of personal preference.

Over the years, as I've installed Windows over and over again on new machines, test machines, and more, I've slowly adapted to simply accepting the default settings rather than re-applying a large number of customizations every time.

There's one setting that I and many other security-conscious folks feel that Microsoft simply got wrong. It's a setting that you should probably change right away.

You don't want Windows Explorer to "Hide extensions for known file types".

Continue reading: One change you should make to Windows Explorer right now to stay safer.
http://ask-leo.com/C5043

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What's the difference between a DLL and an EXE, and why is it important that I know?

DLL or EXE? Now, I'm beginning to get confused. I heard from one site that .dll and .exe files are two different things. But I've also heard about explorer.dll.exe. I've read from a site discussing about dll exe that dlls cannot be directly executed. So how's that work?

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The difference shouldn't matter to most WIndows users. In general, this is something that should be one of those hidden details that you never need to worry about.

Unfortunately, that's not the case.

I'll describe what DLLs and EXEs are and how they relate to each other.

And I'll also tell you why the folks who write malware make it important to know that there's a difference.

Continue reading: What's the difference between a DLL and an EXE, and why is it important that I know?
http://ask-leo.com/C5042

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What would you recommend for a small business to provide ftp to clients?

What would you recommend a small business use to provide FTP to clients? Each client should be able to have their own separate area that is protected from being viewed by other clients

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FTP or File Transfer Protocol is a common technology used to upload and download files and it can be useful to some businesses to exchange files with clients.

In this video from an Ask Leo! webinar, I'll give my recommendation, and my reasoning behind it.

Continue reading: What would you recommend for a small business to provide ftp to clients?
http://ask-leo.com/C5041

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What's the difference between a sandbox and a virtual machine?

Sandbox versus virtual machine: can you provide a brief overview on the differences, advantages, and disadvantages?

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Sandboxes and virtual machines are two different technologies that share just enough characteristics to make them easily confused.

One could even confuse matters further by referring to a virtual machine as the ultimate sandbox. That would be an accurate statement, but it really only stirs up the mud in what is already muddy water without a little background.

Let's look at the three scenarios: the default case without either, a sandbox, and a virtual machine.

Continue reading: What's the difference between a sandbox and a virtual machine?
http://ask-leo.com/C5040

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*** Last Issue's Articles

*** Word 'o the Week

SMTP

SMTP is an acronym for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol which is the protocol used to transport email messages from computer to computer until they reach their destination.

SMTP is used between email programs, which are SMTP clients, and SMTP mail servers which forward on email to its destination.

SMTP is then also used between SMTP mail servers as they forward the message on to the next server until the message reaches its final destination mail server.

Word 'o the Week features a computer term or acronym taken from the Ask Leo! Glossary. If there's a word you're not sure of and would like to see defined, click here to let me know.

*** Leo Recommends

RSS and Google Reader - Subscribe to information feeds and read it all for free

If you've not heard of RSS, or don't know exactly what it is, that's ok; you're not alone. It still suffers from a fairly high geek factor.

But I'd strongly recommend getting at least a few of the basics down because it's a very powerful technology that allows you to get the information you want delivered to your virtual doorstep.

And I recommend using Google's free Reader to view the RSS feeds you've subscribed to.

Continue reading: RSS and Google Reader - Subscribe to information feeds and read it all for free
http://ask-leo.com/C3424

Each week I recommend a specific product or resource that I've found valuable and that I think you may as well. What does my recommendation mean?

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Leo A. Notenboom & Puget Sound Software, LLC.
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