April Nightlife segment was a crowded hour. The release of the first Vista
Service Pack, the latest Apple Safari browser and a new breed of mini-portables
meant we covered a lot of ground.
Callers problems included disputing domain names, setting up a home
network and the Windows XP service pack.
NZ Hacker pleads guilty
An eighteen year old self taught hacker pleaded
guilty to six charges of unauthorised use of a computer in a New
Security experts estimate he infected 1.3 million machines with the
Trojan AK Bot and police claim he received $40,000NZ for his trouble.
Once again this illustrates how virus writing has gone from a game for
enthusiastic amateurs to being a profitable part of organised crime.
It's important to protect yourself against these threats and we have
instructions on how to tighten your computer security in our
Internet Protection Kit.
Grab your domain name
The Australain Domain Administrator, Auda,
has announced they will allow Australian domain names to be traded sometime
this year. When this change comes into effect we can expect to see a
mini "land boom" with squatters and parkers grabbing names.
So if you have a good business name and you haven't yet registered
the domain to go with it, get your skates on. This is such an important
issue for small businesses we've made it problem
of the week.
Ultra portable laptops
Ultra portable laptops have been around for a long time but until recently
they were the preserve of "road warriors" with deep pockets. The new
breed of ultra portables makes these devices accessible to the home
and small business user.
Setting this market alight was the Asus
EeePC which broke the $500 barrier. For that price you are making
compromises such as the Linux operating system and a tiny 4Gb solid
state hard drive. This is a useful computer if you have a main computer
back at the office to deal with storage.
Air also assumes you have somewhere to take it back to. It's a beautiful
machine full of innovations, but like the EeePC it doesn't have a CD
drive and it goes further down the portability route by not even bothering
with a wired network connection.
It's still possible to spend big bucks on an ultra portable and the
X300 is where you can spend it. This is only slightly bigger than
the MacBook Air while being a full featured laptop. Expect to pay around
$4,000 for this little beast.
Apple's new browser upgrade
Apple have released Safari
3.1, their answer to Internet Explorer and Firefox. So far it appears
to be fast improvement on previous versions which were slow and a little
If you are a regular Safari user, or you want to try something different,
then this upgrade is worthwhile.
The release of Safari has bought a lot of controversy Apple's way.
In their wisdom, they decided to bundle the new programs with maintenance
upgrades to iTunes and QuickTime.
This was not a good idea and Apple received a lot of well deserved
criticism for doing this. If you don't want the Safari browser, just
take the tick off any Apple update requests that appear on your computer.
Windows Vista service pack
The Windows Vista service pack finally started appearing over the last
month. If you are using Windows Vista then it's a worthwhile download.
Before installing it though, check your equipment doesn't appear on
Sharing a home Internet connection
George wanted to know how he could set up a home network to share his
Internet. The simple way is to go to your local computer store and buy
There are a couple of different types of router depending upon how
you connect to the Internet. In George's case he was using cable so
he'd need one that supports cable connections.
The common alternative to cable Internet is ADSL and you'll need your
connection's username and password to set the connection up which will
have to be entered into the setup of the router.
Then you'll need to connect the computers. If they are close together,
they can be connected with Cat5 or Cat6 communication cable. This is
available in common lengths of up to 25m at most computer and office
If you want to connect without cables, then you can buy a wireless
router. There is some
additional work involved to secure the network and it doesn't always
work as well as advertised.
Like everything in computers, the theory is simple but the practice
often turns out to be a headache. It may be a good investment to get
a computer technician to set it up for you.
Windows XP service pack
On the topics of service packs, Colin called in to ask if Windows XP
Service pack 3 is vapourware. The answer is no, but SP3 is waaaaaay
overdue. The official line is that it is due in the "second quarter
of 2008", which is now, but nothing much has been heard.
Microsoft have a
description of what's in Service Pack 3 on their website. Like the
Vista Service Pack, most of the changes are under the bonnet.
Disputing a business domain name
As the Internet gets more critical to businesses, having the right
domain name becomes even more important. Lyall asked about getting back
his business domain name.
There are a number of ways of doing this. You can go the trademark
route. which involves hiring trademark attorneys and lawyers and can
be expensive and slow way. However a polite but firm solicitor's letter
may quickly put a stop to some accidental breaches.
A quicker and more effective way of dealing with domain name arguments
is to lodge a complaint within the dispute resolution guidelines. For
Australian .au sites the process is described at the Australian
Domain Administrator's website.
The system varies with the different types of domain; .com, .com.au,
.net, .co.nz, etc. So you have to follow the procedures for the specific
The next Nightlife spot is scheduled for 10pm on May 9. We hope you
can join us then. If you'd like to be kept up to date with our ABC schedules
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