Thursday, February 4, 2016

Windows 10 Spying Concerns: Are They Still Viable?

When Windows 10 first launched many users quick to flock to the new operating system as they were in a hurry to get away from Windows 8. However, a lot of those users became unsure of Windows 10 when reports started coming in that the operating system was practically spying on everything you did. Some of the reports were completely false while others held some truth but were completely blown out of proportion. With the operating system now available for over 8 months, it's time to take a look at all the concerns people had and whether or not those worries are still relevant today.

Read more about this topic on the ComputerServiceNow Blog!

Friday, January 29, 2016

Ransomware Is The Newest Virus Wreaking Havoc On PC Users

Let's face facts. If you own a computer, whether it be a laptop, desktop, or tablet, you run the risk of getting some type of virus. Computer viruses come in all types of variations and can wreak total havoc on your technology. It seems that a new type of virus or malware is popping up every day and the most recent one is a real piece of work.

The newest computer virus to plague is known as Ransomware. Ransomware is a malware that is used by underground criminals to get cash quickly from the pockets of innocent computer users. Ransomware is a virus that takes control of your entire computer, locking it down, and demanding a "ransom" from you, the user, in order to get control of your PC back. While users were quick to shell out the money when Ransomware first arrived on the scene, we now have better ways to combat it. To learn more about Ransomware and how to combat it, go here!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Technology Rentals 101: How To Save Your Business Time And Money!

Technology rentals are a great way to save you and your business a lot of time and money. Temporary, short-term technology rentals are the perfect solutions for your short-term needs. A lot of event professionals and business professionals are constantly going to trade shows, conventions, conferences, and seminars or hosting things like corporate training events or business meetings and all of these situations have a need for short-term technology rentals. But in order to know exactly what it means to rent technology, you need to hear about it from a professional.

Rentacomputer has been in the business of computer, technology, and AV rentals for over 25 years. However, even after all those years, there are still people who don't quite understand how renting technology works and how it can save you and your business time and money. Rentacomputer provides temporary business-to-business technology, such as computer rentals, office equipment rentals, and AV rentals for business events all over the United States, Western Europe, and Australia.

If that sounds interesting, and it should, you can read more about what Rentacomputer does and how it can benefit you and your business here!

Monday, December 7, 2015

These Free Chrome Extensions Are Exactly What You Need

Chrome is one of the most widely used internet browsers and users are always looking for ways to make their experience on Chrome better. One of the best things about Chrome is that it is very flexible as it allows third-party extensions to be used with ease. However, finding good extensions isn't always easy. Below you will find some Chrome hacks that will completely change the way you use Chrome. The best part about all of these extensions is that they're completely free!

Sunrise Calendar

Google Calendar is free and very powerful, but it's a little dull in the aesthetics department and is also missing some pretty important features. The Sunrise Calendar extension fixes both of these problems. In addition to that, it also comes with a mobile companion app for iOS and Android that could be better than the actual extension.


Some Chrome extensions are complicated, but the best ones don't have to be. Calculator for Chrome is probably one of the most useful Chrome extensions out there. No longer will you have to use the calculator on your smartphone or open a separate calculator app on your desktop every single time you need to add up some numbers.


Netflix is the most popular video streaming service around today. You use it all the time, your mom uses it all the time, practically every single person you know uses it all the time, but there are ways to make the service even better, especially on Chrome. NEhancer is a free Chrome extension that adds a lot of key information onto Netflix's website for TV shows and movies. This information includes things like trailers, Rotten Tomato ratings, IMDb info and a lot more.


WorkFlowy is the ultimate list extension for Chrome. WorkFlowy is, according to its creator, "simple enough for a shopping list, and powerful enough to run a company." The key features include infinitely nested lists, tag and filter list items, full offline functionality, collaboration with others with live syncing, click to edit, mark items as complete, zoom in on any sub-list, works on phones and tablets with live syncing between devices, automatic syncing between your phone, tablet and computer, add notes to any list item, quick expand and collapse lists, and instant full text search.

Criptext for Gmail

Criptext is a very comprehensive Gmail enhancement that adds a lot of important features to your Gmail experience. Almost everyone uses Gmail these days so extensions like Criptext are pretty handy. Criptext allows users to un-send emails before or after they've been read with the click of a button. In addition to that, they can also send self-destructing emails and attachments Mission Impossible style. Moreover, Criptext allows you to attach secure files up to 100MB in size and know exactly when emails are opened and when attachments are downloaded.

These are just a few of the Google Chrome hacks that are available for your internet browser. These extensions help make things easier and more manageable and add a lot of benefits to using Chrome. If you want to make what is arguably the best internet browser out there even better then take a look at some of these awesome extensions.

Content originally published here
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Wednesday, December 2, 2015

HGST Debuts Ultrastar He10 10TB Helium-Filled Hard Drive

I bet you never thought you would live to see the day we had 10TB hard drives did you? Well, helium-filled hard drives have finally reached this point by creating the first 10TB hard drives that use conventional recording methods.

Western Digital subsidiary HGST has created the Ultrastar He10 which, interestingly enough, is not the first 10B helium drive. HGST created the first real 10TB hard drive back in the summer. However, this new drive is the only helium drive that has 10TB and uses perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR), the standard recording technology for hard drives over the last 10 years.

The first 10TB drive from HGST used shingled magnetic recording (SMR). SMR uses magnetic tracks that overlap to increase capacity. The downside here is that there is very little guard space between the tracks, which makes rewriting data much more difficult and longer as adjacent tracks may need to be rewritten as well. That is why SMR is better-suited for cold storage as opposed to routine recording.

PMR has some negatives too. The problem with PMR is that is is coming to the limits of its potential capacity. Regardless, HGST has pulled off something quite amazing by stuffing seven platters into a standard 1-inch drive. Helium drives from other companies, like Seagate, top out at 8TB. Both Seagate and HGST have been putting money into new technology known as heat-assisted magnetic recording, which allows for a much higher capacity and is better suited for everyday use though these hard drives won't start showing up until next year at the earliest.

Just like with the earlier helium drives from HGST, the Ultrastar He10 is being marketed at enterprise and server use and will have a price tag of around $800. Compared to air, helium isn't as dense which means that there will be less of a drag on the moving parts of the drive. This decreased friction when combined with hermetic seals that keep out contaminants and humidity allow these drives to run at cooler temperatures than a standard HDD. This will also reduce your energy costs. This makes them perfect for use in servers though the direct impact on consumers will be minimal. Regardless, the larger capacity could benefit the cloud services that we are relying on more and more.

Content originally published here

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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Fastest Desktop PC Ever

In the words of LT Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, "I feel the need....the need for speed!" Well, at least that's what Intel is feeling as it just announced that it will be putting its absurd 72-core Knight's Landing supercomputer chip into production. However, that isn't even the most exciting part. The most exciting part is that the Knight's Landing, which is Intel's fastest chip to date, will be going into desktop workstations that will contain enough computational power to make Doc Brown's overloaded speakers look like a kids karaoke machine.

PC World recently reported that the company is planning on shipping a "limited number of workstations" that will come equipped with the super-fast supercomputer chip in the first half of 2016. As a result PC makers will have the ability to adopt Intel's supercomputer silicon in desktop models on a greater scale, according to Intel's Charles Wuischpard. I don't know about you, but I'm not sure I can handle a chip like this being in something that is sitting in my room or my office. But then again the power is very alluring.

The main question that is going to be on everyone's mind is, of course, what kind of specs we can expect from the Knight's Landing chip. This chip differs from the ones currently in your desktop in the fact that this supercomputer processor puts all of its cores onto a single piece of silicon. Then, all of these processors are bundled up with 16GB of on-package MCDRAM memory into a PCI-E add-in card. This is very similar to the ridiculous Nvidia GPUs that are currently being installed on supercomputers around the world.

Once you have all of this packed together and installed inside your computer you are left with a piece of hardware that is capable of computing single-precision calculations at a rate of 8 teraflops, or double-precision calculations at over 3 teraflops. PC World also noted that this chip will be used by the United States Department of Energy inside of its 9,300-core Cori supercomputer and, in addition to that, Intel has also claimed that 50 different manufacturers will ship systems that use this chip in time.

In the meantime the desktop workstations, which are essentially jacked up versions of the CAD, graphics and film editing computers that are used in offices where money is as abundant as air, will be made available to researchers who are interested in using a supercomputer but are otherwise unable to gain access to one. The idea is that these individuals will be able to develop and test code on the workstation before shipping it out, error-free, to a supercomputer somewhere in the future. I highly doubt that you will be getting something like this in your iMac anytime soon, though Intel is, at the very least, attempting to put this chip into the hands of people that would otherwise have no access to such a device.

Content originally published here
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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Microsoft Reveals End-Of-Sales Date For Windows 7 And Windows 8.1 Devices

By now most Windows users have upgraded to Windows 10. However, some people are still using Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 while others are looking to buy a new laptop, desktop or tablet with Windows 8.1 or 7 pre-installed. If you are one of these people then you have less than a year to do so as Microsoft has just announced that it will be discontinuing both Windows 8.1 and Windows 7.

According to the Microsoft Windows Lifecycle Fact Sheet, October 31st, 2016 is marked as the "end of sales for PCs with Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 pre-installed. After October 31st, 2016 the only option for customers will be to purchase new computers with Windows 10 installed. The only exception to this will be businesses with license agreements that entitle them to choose which version of Windows they wish to have pre-installed.

This deadline will be putting a lot of pressure on consumers who have become quite attached to Windows 7 and may be very apprehensive to upgrading to Windows 10 if they buy a new computer. However, this is a logical and necessary step for Microsoft in its goal of having more than 1 billion Windows 10 devices powered up. This also goes along with the company's message that Windows 10 is capable of bringing together desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones with apps that can run across every platform.

What Windows 7 users don't really realize is that this is actually really good for them. Microsoft usually sets the end-of-date for each version of Windows two years after the release of a new operating system. This means that the cutoff date for Windows 7 should have been October of 2014, which was two years after the launch of Windows 8. However, the severe lack of consumer demand for Windows 8 insisted that Microsoft keep the operating system around a while longer. Windows 8, if you remember, was Microsoft's attempt at making a touch-friendly operating system, though it transitioned horribly onto non-touch devices and was highly panned by users.

If you want to continue using Windows 7 on your existing PC or laptop then you don't have to worry. Microsoft has announced that extended technical support will be available until January 14, 2020, meaning that you will be able to continue receiving patches, bug fixes, and other updates. This support is also offered to Windows 8.1 users, though it is extended to January 23rd, 2023.

Despite these deadlines, Microsoft is still heavily pushing Windows 10 to users. The new operating system, which came to users at the end of July of this year, is available as a free upgrade to users of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 for the first year of its existence. Microsoft keeps sneaking in pop-ups on the regular to remind users that Windows 10 is available. Microsoft also classified Windows 10 as an "optional update" and, as early as next year, expects to change that to a "recommended update" according to Windows and Devices Group Executive Vice President terry Myerson.

I have been using Windows 10 since it launched and it's really good. It takes the best things from Windows 7 and puts them in a modern format with new features and apps that really do bring all of your devices together. In addition to that, non-touchscreen users don't feel like they've been given second billing to touchscreen users, something that Windows 8 seemed to do. If you are looking for a Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 computer or laptop, you better move quick because this time next year that won't be an option.

Content originally published here
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