July 2022

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Windows 11 is ready for business.

It is an optional download. Be sure to have a full backup and check compatibility of your hardware and software before trying to upgrade.

WhyNotWin11 is a third-party program that enables you to find out if your Windows device is compatible with Microsoft’s Windows 11 operating system.

Rufus allows you to bypass several of the restrictions or annoyances that Microsoft put in place when installing Windows 11, including the requirement for a personal Microsoft account.

Another way to get around the personal account requirement during setup.

Microsoft adds MS Office subscriptions to Windows 11 account settings.

Reminder: Support for Internet Explorer 11 ended on June 15, 2022.

You may see this message:

message informing IE users they are being redirected to Microsoft Edge

Out of scope at the time of this announcement (unaffected):

If you have a custom or third-party app that relies on the MSHTML platform, you can expect it to continue to work.

IE 11 retirement: What this means for Microsoft Access apps.

QuickBooks recently released a new custom internal browser that replaces the Internet Explorer (IE) 11 browser. All QBDT-supported versions (2020, 2021, and 2022) have already been using it since June 10, 2022. Be sure to update to the latest patch.

Users report some problems with this fix:

The browser opens too big inside the QB window, and the title bar is gone. You can go to the left edge of the window and resize – this brings back the title bar.

The release notes for QuickBooks 22 say that they’ve removed the dependency on Internet Explorer in R5… however, this is not the case.

Technical details on IE11 dependencies.

Office 365 price increases have taken effect. You will see notifications of price changes as products renew. We are a Microsoft reseller and can get you these same products at about a 5% discount – provided you contact us before it renews. Over time this can add up.

The planned price increases, as previously announced by Microsoft:

Microsoft 365 Business Basic: going from $5 to $6 per user per month.

Microsoft 365 Business Premium: going from $20 to $22 per user per month.

Office 365 E1: going from $8 to $10 per user per month.

Office 365 E3: going from $20 to $23 per user per month.

Office 365 E5: going from $35 to $38 per user per month.

Microsoft 365 E3: going from $32 to $36 per user per month.

The Visio web app is now part of Office 365. The Visio tile is under ‘All apps’ on www.office.com.

Compare Visio versions and features.

Gmail has removed the option for “less secure app” and requires an app password for all programs connecting now. Copiers and software using @gmail account to forward email may stop working.

One-terabyte SSD drives are now affordable. HDD-to-SSD upgrades breathe new life into older PCs by speeding them up. Don’t buy new PCs with (older) HDDs for the boot drive. It’s not worth the savings.

Back up your SSD’s contents to cloud storage. When a hard drive develops data corruption, recovery services may be able to recover your data, but SSDs can lose data irretrievably.

NEXTGEN TV available from five new local stations.

What is NextGen TV?

AI chatbot company Replika, which offers customers avatars that talk and listen to them, says it receives messages almost every day from users who believe their online friend is sentient.

A new FCC ruling will allow SpaceX (Starlink) Internet service on moving vehicles.

ECONOMY

The Crypto-currency market continues to spiral downward.

Crypto hedge fund Three Arrows files for chapter 15 bankruptcy.

MicroStrategy’s Bitcoin Holdings takes $3.4 Billion Hit.

US Court ruling may take some truckers off the road, adding to supply chain problems.

70,000 owner-operators have seven days to cease long-standing independent businesses.

More details on AB5.

State budget provides direct tax refunds for 23 million Californians to help address rising costs.

Included is a provision to reduce the cost of Diesel fuel.

Power supplies for server racks are scarce as data centers grow quickly.

Microsoft Azure data centers are operating “with limited server capacity” amid the cloud boom and supply shortage.

TSMC, the world’s largest contract chipmaker, has seen its major clients cut computer chip orders for the rest of 2022.

Gartner is projecting the semiconductor supply chain will “step into the normal zone by 3Q22, with normal inventory across major chip categories expected by 2Q23.”

Another wave of layoffs in tech.

SECURITY

Malware Is Attacking Routers made by Cisco, Netgear, Asus, and DrayTek. Be sure to update firmware if your router is one of these brands. Always disable management access from the Internet on routers.

State unemployment, and jobs services are down around the country after cyberattack.

The labor departments and related agencies have been affected in at least nine states (including California). A cyberattack has hit a company that handles unemployment claims and job placement for state governments, disrupting online services across the country.

EDD statement (PDF). 

Cyber-insurance companies are cracking down on cyber-security prerequisites when paying claims, such as requiring a third-party attestation form to be filled out or asserting that Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is used everywhere. Be sure you actually meet the requirements you are attesting to when getting insurance.

Malicious CCleaner search results spread information-stealing malware.

MaliBot Android malware steals passwords, bank details, and cryptocurrency wallets from users – and it does so by bypassing multi-factor authentication protections.

Names, addresses of every CCW (concealed carry gun) holder in California exposed, Sheriff’s Office confirms.

Experts warn against storing passwords in Chrome after hackers target remote workers.

When you use Chrome passwords, or store passwords in any browser, getting access to your accounts is as simple as gaining access to the device you use.

HUMOR

 

By Tim Torian

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The Torian Group Times Newsletter is a service to our clients, and anyone who finds it useful. Topics include security updates; known problems with recent patches; new and upcoming software and hardware that might affect your business; and information about technology in the Visalia area.  It is free to anyone who wishes to subscribe by providing their name and email address. We will not do anything with this information other than sending the newsletter – no unsolicited marketing of any kind.

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