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About PanicByte

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  1. 1. Unplug laptop 2. Remove Battery (while powered on) 3. Remove or short out CMOS Battery 4. Check for large CMOS capacitors that act as batteries and short those out too but, if that was a laptop like an IBM thinkpad, you're totally screwed, there is no way to reset some laptop BIOS passwords, especially hard drive passwords
  2. i was just trying out ubuntu on a desktop of mine, and i got the same error even though i had 2 internal IDE hard drives, GRUB is a pain in the ass. i recommend if you are going to have ubuntu on a USB hard drive you should just change the boot order in BIOS if you can. so when it's plugged in it boots to ubuntu, if it's not it will just use windows default boot loader.
  3. when i first saw that i said, "oh shit, this thread is going to get very interesting w/ the double meaning of MAC and Mac"
  4. I've seen alot of articles about people in the desert setting distance records for 802.11, but I want to know, what is the furthest practical stable wifi link you've ever seen in a real-world environment (AKA not in the desert) and what equipment was being used?
  5. A while back i had a screensaver called "BlankSecurity" (w/ no spaces) when it would come on, it would display a padlock for a couple seconds, and then it would completely turn off the monitor (so on my laptop the backlight would turn off, not just turn the screen black) now I can't seem to find it anywhere, does anyone know where I could find it, or find something similar that will shut off the monitor when the screen saver turns on, I know I can set it to do so in power options, but I don't like it being seperate, because if you set the power options to turn off the monitor at 2 minutes, and the screen saver is actually at 3 minutes, it won't bring up a password dialog when if i come back 2.5 minutes later. or visa versa, the screen saver is currently set to "Blank" but it doesn't turn off the monitor, it just makes the screen black, but the backlight doesn't turn off, so it's just wasting my laptop battery. I think it came preinstalled on my old laptop, but I blasted away the entire hard drive, and installed a regular copy of windows on top of it.
  6. tried virgin mobile, doesn't have service at my house
  7. Are there any prepaid cell phone services that don't suck where I can use an unlocked cell phone (i found an old cheap unlocked blackberry on TigerDirect) and I was wondering if I can get a prepaid SIM or something that will let me use SMS, E-Mail w/ pop3 using my own server, not the cell phone companys, and web browsing/data. I'm just curious for recommendations because I don't feel like having a contract with any companys, I'd rather just pay full price for the unlocked device and deal with the service seperately. also, the main reason I don't want a contract is because my cell phone usage varies from month to month, I currently have a crappy "TracFone" prepaid cell phone (yeah i know, it does suck, don't rub it in) and during the winter months, I won't even use 100 minutes a month, but during the summer I burn through minutes, plus I don't need many voice minutes and just need a simple data plan. (and once again, i would use it more in the summer than during the winter)
  8. some Amtrak trains have WiFi on them with Internet Access, I've never gotten to use it though, last time I went on a train was like 3 years ago and I didn't bring a laptop. I believe amtrak's trains use a combination of Satellite, cell network, and AP's along the track to give users internet access.
  9. I know I can get OEM XP HOME for $99, Home edition is a POS, you should under no circumstances put XP Home Edition on a laptop. first, in XP home, there is no EFS it's not the best encryption, but you can still use it to encrypt your temp folders, etc. you can't password protect file shares, and a whole bunch of stuff i'm probably forgetting to mention. and it's not that I'm having a problem with anyanything, it's just that microsoft needs to eat a dick. Uhhhh, i got the following error when I went to microsoft's website. I installed the damn plugin, and the stupid thing doesn't work, so not only did i probably just install a huge security whole in mozilla, I still am forced to use IE to download anything from microsofts site. Some OEM's are terrible at this shit, Toshiba is terrible at putting bloatware on your system. Thinkpad puts a little but it's all legitimate utilitys that are easily removed if not needed. my last dell computer i bought in 2003, and it gave me a fresh install of windows with abolutely no bloatware, probably not the case anymore. Well I was lucky that my thinkpad didn't come with too much shit. I just uninstalled what I didn't need or want, but for the most part, Thinkpad didn't put too much really bad crap (such as AOL and stuff) but they did have alot of utilitys that were written by IBM that I would never use anyway. I have a couple XP Pro CD's around my house, but it's not that I actually need to reformat at this point, it just pissed me off that I didn't get a CD w/ the laptop after paying for the damn operating system. also, I do have XP Pro CD's but I'm afraid that my key isn't gonna work if I install from a difforent CD rather than the hidden partion.
  10. backtrack is a great live linux distro, but not many people use wep anymore, i think most use WPA now
  11. Dell laptops include that feature
  12. microsoft did yet another thing to piss me off today, I was having a problem installing some software, after some google searching someone recommended downloading some utility from microsofts website, well i have to do the stupid ass WGA verfification, well I am not an IE users (who is?) and a while back i remember to do WGA verification you would download a little executable that would give you a code you could paste into your browser, well that is over with, now if you want to verify that you got raped by microsofts rediculous pricing, you need to install some stupid browser plugin, which i'm not going to even try to install because who the hell knows what would happen to firefox if I installed that thing. so now I have to start up IE every time i need to download a patch or something from microsofts website. and holy shit, how come when i buy a laptop i don't get a fucking windows CD and I have to deal with all the bloatware the OEM puts on the fucking computer. If i just paid $150 for windows to come with my laptop, not to mention the cost of the laptop itself, I THINK I DESERVE A WINDOWS INSTALL CD! now if i were to use my existing XP install CD i probably wouldn't even be able to use the license that came with the laptop that I paid for. eat a dick microsoft, seriously. oh yeah, and there are still ALOT of people pirating windows and your stupid WGA hasn't cought any of them yet, your just pissing people off like me who actually paid the rediculous sum of money for it. and BTW microsoft, we don't all work for Microsoft, lower your fucking prices you pigs your operating system isn't worth more than $100.
  13. I'm wondering what everyone recommends for keeping your laptop and it's data safe. I've got a Thinkpad w/ the Client Security Solution w/ the biometric fingerprint scanner. What i've done so far # Set BIOS Password # Set Power-On BIOS password # Set Hard Drive password (don't know how secure it is, seen a site that says it can recover the password) plus it's not encrypted, the hard drive is just locked) # Long secure windows password # set nolmhash = 1 # syskey 2 # use TrueCrypt to encrypt important files # use Windows EFS to encrypt Application data that may compromise security, (temp folder, etc.) (i know EFS is pretty crappy, but it is transparent and i haven't found a difforent method to encrypt such files) # use laptop lock # use a laptop backpack that doesn't look like a laptop bag # laptop professionaly engraved with name # apply windows updates (duhh) # set screen saver password # antivirus # software firewall (zone alarm pro) i like it because when you connect to a public wireless access point it asks you if you if it's a trusted network or not # clear page file on shutdown # updated my wifi driver because of that weird security flaw in intel wireless cards what else should i do to improve windows security on a laptop? (besides switch to linux)
  14. Yeah, but that NTFS to FAT trick only works if your logged in doesn't it???
  15. now i know if you have a weak windows password it is very easy to crack, now assuming someone has a good windows password (if Admin and Users all have strong passwords) (at least 14 char AlphaNumeric) how strong is the Windows Encrypting File System (EFS)? what would it take for it to be cracked?