Monday, September 17, 2007

Tweak Tool for Win9x through Windows XP

Those of you who are real Windows XP tweakers and tuners are always looking for something to help you take total control over your computer. If you've tried programs like TweakUI then you're ready to move up to the next level. Try out TweakAll if you want to control hundreds of settings that would otherwise require you to enter the Registry and suffer the risk of making a typo! I've been playing with it on my Windows XP Pro computer and it's the good stuff. Download it free at:

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Configuring IMAP over SSL with SBS 2003 Standard

In this author’s opinion, providing access to e-mail via IMAP is better than POP3. The approach of IMAP more closely emulates how Exchange provides e-mail services in that messages are maintained on the server, and the IMAP client only pulls down what is needed. There are still security issues with IMAP, however, in that the default protocol still transmits the username and password information across the internet in clear text, and even though fewer sniffers are trained on IMAP ports to try and discover account credentials, the risk is still there.

To help protect account credentials, as well as e-mail contents, IMAP can be set up over SSL, which encrypts the entire transaction process, not just username and password. The iPhone and other devices can be easily set up to use IMAP over SSL, but you have to first set up the Exchange server on SBS to provide the secure mail transport. This document covers this implementation with SBS 2003 Standard and no ISA. You will need to configure your firewall to forward the appropriate ports to the SBS server, which is beyond the scope of this document.

Configuring IMAP over SSL with SBS 2003 Standard

Configuring IMAP over SSL with SBS 2003 Premium and ISA 2004:

Monday, September 10, 2007

Windows Vista Computer losing time

Your Windows Vista computer is able to synchronize its clock with a time server on the Internet. But if you find that your computer time isn't right, maybe you need to change your time server. Here's how you do it:

  • Click Start and then click Control Panel
  • In the Control Panel, click the Classic View link on the left side of the Window
  • In the Classic View Control Panel Window, double click the Date and Time icon.
  • In the Date and Time dialog box, click the Internet Time tab.
  • On the Internet Time tab, click the Change Settings button.
  • Click Continue in the User Account Control dialog box.
  • In the Internet Time Settings dialog box, click the Server down arrow and select another time server. The default is Try using first and see how that works for you.
  • Click OK in the Internet Time Settings dialog box.
  • Click OK in the Data and Time dialog box.

How to use the Cipher command to wipe data from your disk

As you probably know, when you delete files off your Windows XP or Windows Vista computer, those files aren't actually gone. The only thing that happens is that the "pointer" to the deleted files is removed and the space on the hard disk is marked as available to put new data. But until new data is put in the same location as the deleted data, the deleted data remains on the hard disk and can be recovered by hackers and other malicious users.

What you need to do is "wipe" the data off the hard disk. You can do this by using the cipher command that comes free with Windows XP and Windows Vista. Here are the instructions, compliments of Tom Shinder:

  • Close all programs.
  • Click Start, click Run, type cmd, and then press ENTER.
  • Type cipher /w:driveletter:\foldername, and then press ENTER. Specify the drive and the folder that identifies the volume that contains the deleted data that you want to overwrite. Data that is not allocated to files or folders will be overwritten. This permanently removes the data. This can take a long time if you are overwriting a large space. For example, if you have a deleted files in folder c:\SECRET, you would enter cipher /W:C:\SECRET

The wiping process can take a long time, so be patient. Once the files are wiped by the cipher utility, no one will be able to recover your deleted information from your hard disk.