stormerider: (Misc - Tux Penguin)

If you’re like me, you probably have dozens of accounts on various different websites. Hopefully that also means you have dozens of passwords, right? Using one password is one of the quickest ways to have your entire digital life go up in flames, because most sites will track your account by your email address (which is often used as your username, or can be used to find your username), and this can quickly become a series of cascading failures. Attackers will leapfrog from one system to another, and if they get access to your email account itself, then it’s usually game over with how most password reset forms work. For a very scary account of how bad things like this can be, check out this article here covering what happened to a Wired reporter.

But who can keep track of multiple passwords in their head in a truly secure fashion? I know I can’t. For a long time, I used a three-tier system: one quick and dirty password for sites I didn’t care about, another for sites that I used a lot, and then a few specific passwords for individual sites (like my email) that I wanted to keep ultra-secure. But as time wore on, I realized that some of the sites that I considered disposable became anything but, and human nature (read: laziness :) ) meant that I wasn’t “reclassifying” them with a newer tier of password security.

Enter: KeePass )

stormerider: (Misc - Tux Penguin)
Question for folks... what do you recommend for a laptop cooling pad? I need to replace the one I have and I want to get a decent one, since I spend a lot of time on my laptop these days. I know to avoid Targus like the plague (since they die quickly for a LOT of people), but I'm not sure what to look for. Thoughts?

Edit: I should add that I have the Antec notebook cooler pad currently, and the problem is that the cord is removable so you can put it away inside this little compartment. However, it doesn't have a good connection so unless you wiggle it around it doesn't get power. This has gotten worse over time and I pretty much have to hold it in a certain (uncomfortable) position to get the fans running. The aluminum pad itself helps, but nowhere near as much as when the fans were running regularly.

I know I haven't been posting much on DW/LJ lately, but I've been really busy. Between the MUD, working on the Plex app for the Roku, the occasional item for Romance Divas, the occasional thing for my WoW guild, and work for Livemocha, I've been pretty busy. I'm trying to get a bit more organized, and I picked up a Pro membership to Remember the Milk to help out with that. I like it, but it seems like the sharing feature is kind of weak... when I share things with [personal profile] paul_zap it seems like he doesn't get an email notification that there's a task shared with him. And while it's great for me to manage my own tasks, it would really be better if it helped with managing tasks across the entire household as well.

I have more to post about, specifically with the MUD, but that will be a separate post under filter.
stormerider: (Misc - Tux Penguin)
So, I've had my current monitor for 2 years. It's already had to be RMA'd once, and is in the process of being RMA'd again. It's a great monitor when it works, but I want a monitor that works reliably. 2 failures in 2 years is about 2 too many in my book.

The one I have right now is a Hannspree HF257H. It's a 25" monitor with 2 HDMI ports and 1 VGA port. It also has built-in speakers, but I never bother to use those. I lose the subwoofer if I do that ;)

I'm not looking to get this anytime soon; the warranty runs out in a year so I want to spend some time doing research and saving up before I make the jump.

Thanks for any recommendations.
stormerider: (Misc - Tux Penguin)
So one of the things that we found out about my system, thanks to Nonny's research and her comparing benchmarks (both mine vs. hers and mine vs. stated specs), is that I have this card in it:

The "E-Green" model is meant for low power consumption systems, not gaming/high performance systems. It's underclocked by default, which is why Nonny's 9800GTX was blowing me out of the water on GPU score. This displeases me greatly; when I was configuring my system on I was told that it would be a "major brand" card. I've never heard of Palit before, and I certainly wasn't aware that I was getting an underclocked card for my gaming model rig. I'll be contacting IBuyPower to see if I can get something out of them... hopefully an apology at the very least.

That said, if there's any one component in my system that I would have to pick to underperform, it'd be the GPU. It's the easiest component to replace and it's also the component that I replace most regularly in the regular course of upgrades anyways.

After spending some time with VTune, I got it properly clocked back up and adjusted to this score:

That's a lot more reasonable. For reference, my first pass was this:
stormerider: (Misc - Tux Penguin)
So, this is a long shot, but I thought I'd toss this out here. I have a pretty decent computer... 2.66GHz Core2 Quad CPU, ~4GB of RAM, Nvidia GT 250 w/ 2GB RAM. It runs really nicely for the most part, but every so often things just... stall. I've seen it happening in WoW, in my browser, and in DA2.

If I run the CPU performance monitor while it's happening, I don't see all 4 cores maxxed out; usually 2 will be between 50-75% and 2 will be fairly idle. There's still plenty of memory free as well.

I have not seen this occur when booted under Linux but I don't run the system as heavily loaded under Linux as I do under Windows (I hardly ever game under Linux because my mouse isn't fully supported, so it's mainly browser, IM client, and terminal windows) so I'm not sure if it's stress-related or OS-related. I'm currently running Vista 32-bit; I do want to go to Win7 64-bit (so I can use all 4GB RAM), but I just haven't gotten my hands on a copy yet.

The system in general does not perform reliably as well as Nonny's computer which has inferior specs. It almost feels like the hard drive isn't performing up to speed, and when it has to go to disk sometimes it lags. But the HD performance tester I ran ran clean, and I confirmed it's not something stupid like the drive being a 5400 RPM instead of 7200 RPM.

Any software that I can run in the background to help isolate what's going on, or diagnostic tests I can perform in advance, would be appreciated. Thanks!

EDIT: One thing I did find is that apparently when you create a share in Win Vista, it automatically adds that folder to the list to index. I had turned off indexing of all folders except the start menu, but creating shares for root folders of multiple drives added those drives back to the index list. Gyargh. I removed them and disabled the Windows Search service completely, which should help some. Onward to running PCMark 7 and 3DMark 11.


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Morgan Nametbd

June 2015

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