CryptoLocker – Finally some good news

  CryptoLocker has been causing havoc with computer users across the globe.  It infects your computer, encrypts your files and then demands money to unlock them. Paying the ransom is never recommended, but many paid because they had no way to restore their irreplaceable files. Of course, the best defense is a good backup.  Have to say it again - you should have a good offline, offsite backup. (See the next article for an easy-to-implement backup strategy.) It is the best defense for all types of disasters. But if you didn't have a backup you either paid the ransom or suffered without your files. Today, there is hope.  The incredibly smart and dedicated folks at FireEye and FoxIT have a decryption tool. The tool runs at the DOS prompt, so you have to have some understanding of syntax to execute.  We downloaded the tool and successfully unencrypted an entire filesystem that … [Read more...]

Best Places to Work LAN Systems named #3

2014 Best Places to Work No. 3 Small employer in Atlanta is LAN Systems in the Atlanta Business Chronicle's  Sep 12, 2014   Allison Shirreffs, Contributing Writer, Atlanta Business Chronicle Every two weeks, LAN Systems CEO Mary Hester hands out payroll checks to her employees, even though almost everybody has direct deposit. The reason? It’s a chance to say, “Thank you,” she said. Prior to this year, Hester had considered entering Atlanta Business Chronicle’s Best Places To Work contest, but hadn’t pulled the trigger. This year she did, and doing so paid off: LAN Systems finished third in the small employer category. LAN Systems provides information technology services for small to midsized businesses, and helps them choose the best services to fuel growth — including setting up cloud-based systems for ... Read full article.   … [Read more...]

Cloud Solutions to Save Money and Add Efficiency

"A penny saved is a penny earned," but how do you know you have really saved a penny? Often saving money initially means more work or a higher total cost of ownership, offsetting any benefit. A common example of hardware that can cost more is that inexpensive printer. When you buy an inexpensive printer that has expensive toner/ink cartridges and a low yield, you can pay double or triple per sheet.  Also, purchasing a low-end laptop, desktop, tablet can seem like a bargain, but then adding RAM or hard drive can wipe-out any savings.  For some electronics, you may not be able to upgrade and will be left having to buy a new device. For software and applications, sometimes a low or free entry cost means that you have a great deal of customization that cannot be saved when upgrading to a new version or migrating to a new platform.  In many cases, it is hard to know that you have chosen … [Read more...]

What is an Operating System?

With Windows XP being retired, many users upgraded to a new computer and/or a new operating system prompting the question: What is an operating system? The operating system (OS) interacts with the system hardware like the keyboard, mouse, disk, display and memory.  It also interacts with all the applications and passes requests to and from the hardware and the application. This is how the user experience is created. The OS controls all interactions and keeps the computer instructions running in sequence. Some familiar OS examples are Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, Chrome and maybe you have even heard of Unix. Everyone has experienced a slow computer.  The slowness is most often because the computer is trying hard to complete all the requested tasks. The central processing unit (CPU) is the computer's brain. It has to process requests in order, completing one request before it can … [Read more...]