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Leo’s Answers #63 – February 2, 2007

Leo's Answers
A Weekly Newsletter From
Ask Leo!
Leo Notenboom

Hello!

*** Contents

*** This Week's New Articles on Ask Leo!

My website is being pounded by spiders, what can I do?

The Access database in my ASP-based web site is overloaded because spiders are crawling my site all day. Do you think it is a good idea to create another source specially for the spiders and only send "real people" to my live database-based site? Or do you think this will cause problems? Do you have any suggestions?

I can imagine some readers looking at this and going "spiders? There are spiders on the internet?" Indeed there are. And they are something that many website owners need to be aware of and deal with appropriately.

You see spiders are generally a good thing.

But displaying different content for them? Well, that's a bad thing. A really bad thing.

Continue reading: "My website is being pounded by spiders, what can I do?"
http://ask-leo.com/my_website_is_being_pounded_by_spiders_what_can_i_do.html

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I've lost the password to a "zip" file. How do I open the file?

I used a password while zipping a file, but unfortunately I've since forgotten the password I used. How can I unzip the archive and retrieve the file?

In a perfect world, the answer should be "you can't". I mean, you should be able to open a password protected files ONLY if you have the password right? Otherwise what's the point?

The fact that the answer isn't "you can't" should concern you.

Continue reading: "I've lost the password to a "zip" file. How do I open the file?"
http://ask-leo.com/ive_lost_the_password_to_a_zip_file_how_do_i_open_the_file.html

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Why does my anti-spyware program keep reporting the same cookies?

Why, when I run my anti-spyware programs, do I get the same results week after week? It's always the same tracking cookies and I quarantine them but they never go away. Why bother running these programs if they only find the same junk over and over?

The short answer is because you probably visit the same web sites regularly, and they put those cookies back the next time you visit. Run your anti-spyware program again, and it sees that they've returned, and dutifully reports them.

Some cookies can be identified as "tracking" cookies - cookies that could be used to track your movement around the internet. Personally my reaction is "So?", but some people do care.

But you raise a good point. All these reports are so much noise to many people, and get in the way of real issues when they pop up.

Continue reading: "Why does my anti-spyware program keep reporting the same cookies?"
http://ask-leo.com/why_does_my_antispyware_program_keep_reporting_the_same_cookies.html

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What's NAS? How do I go about setting one up?

I have been reading about NAS devices lately. I like the idea of using one and would like to deploy one on my network. I have an external 250GB drive that I would like to convert to a NAS device. I was wondering if this was possible to do or not? Would I have to buy a NAS enclosure or something else?

NAS stands for "Network Attached Storage". Basically it's a device who's primary function is simply to provide storage in the form of disk space, often lots of disk space, to other computers on a network.

I, too, have been looking at NAS, and find the subject fairly fascinating. I was running a dedicated NAS for a short while, but then took it down. Once I understood what it really was, I decided that I didn't need another one.

Yes, another one.

Continue reading: "What's NAS? How do I go about setting one up?"
http://ask-leo.com/whats_nas_how_do_i_go_about_setting_one_up.html

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Can I delete these randomly named folders?

I found these two entries while using Windows Explorer in Local Disk C:

5b6de5225ad398e1a3d65428
5da1b70ef43f9d294a281e704

What do they mean? Can I safely delete them or transfer them to My Documents?

What they are is easy.

Whether or not you can, or should, delete them depends on where they are.

Continue reading: "Can I delete these randomly named folders?"
http://ask-leo.com/can_i_delete_these_randomly_named_folders.html

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How can I block neighboring wireless networks?

A neighbor has kindly named his unprotected wireless network after my own. I'm not sure why but it must be intentional since my network name is rather contorted. I immediately changed my network's SSID and increased the security level to WPA-TSK. However, as the neighbor's network has a strong signal and is unprotected, my laptop insisted on logging on to it until I realized what was going on and deleted it from the preferred nets list. However, I would feel safer if I could simply block the said network altogether. Is that possible?

By the way, could this be what I think it is? The neighbor setting up an unprotected network with the same name as mine in the hope that my computer would connect to his net if mine happened to be down?

This is a very interesting scenario. On the surface it certainly feels like your neighbor is up to something. Exactly what is difficult to say, but I think you're wise to be very cautious.

While I wouldn't call it "blocking" the neighbor's wireless network, here are the steps I would take...

Continue reading: "How can I block neighboring wireless networks?"
http://ask-leo.com/how_can_i_block_neighboring_wireless_networks.html

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So, what about Open Office?

Is it time to look at Open Office more seriously?

Continue reading: "So, what about Open Office?" Article Includes Audio
http://ask-leo.com/so_what_about_open_office.html

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*** Popular Articles from the Archives

Here it is, the most popular Ask Leo! article for January 2006 (one year ago), based on the number of page views. Surprisingly it's still in my top 10 a year later.

How do I change my MSN Hotmail password?

I get this question so often about Hotmail that it's clear that the process is not obvious enough or documented well enough by MSN.

Allow me....

Read more... How do I change my MSN Hotmail password?
http://ask-leo.com/how_do_i_change_my_msn_hotmail_password.html

*** Thoughts and Comments

Did someone release some new software this week? :-)

OK, in case you haven't watched any TV or read any news this week, Microsoft launched the next generation of its Windows operating system this week, named Vista. Lost in the noise, Microsoft also released Office 2007. You can run out and buy them both right now, if you're so inclined.

You'll note I haven't spent a lot of time with Vista on Ask Leo!. As I've mentioned elsewhere, I'm not getting many questions on it, so it's not yet a priority. I do have a copy on order and it should arrive any day (along with Office 2007).

The question I really expect most folks to have is "should I upgrade"? My current answers is "no" to the upgrade, but go ahead and take it pre-installed on any new machine you purchase. I know that various aspects of Vista are already fairly controversial, some are generating what can only be described as massive yawns, and the rest ... well, to be honest I've not yet seen a really compelling reason to upgrade. I know other industry watchers have expressed similar opinions.

I hope and plan to document my upgrade experience - it should be interesting, and perhaps my opinion will change. Hopefully for the better :-).

A happy Groundhog Day to everyone, and a "Happy Anniversary" to my wife of 27 years :-).

'till next time...

Leo

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