Mar 29, 2011
Most of you might be aware of the fact that it is possible to use Windows 7 and Vista for 120 days without activation. This is actually possible using the slmgr -rearm command which will extend the grace period from 30 days to 120 days. However in this post I will show you a small trick using which it is possible to use Windows 7 without activation for approximately an year! Here is a way to do that.
1. Goto “Start Menu -> All Programs -> Accessories” . Right click on “Command Prompt” and select “Run as Administrator“. If you are not the administrator then you are prompted to enter the password, or else you can proceed to step-2.
2. Now type the following command and hit enter
3. You will be prompted to restart the computer. Once restarted the trial period will be once again reset to 30 days. You can use the above command for up to 3 times by which you can extend the trial period to 120 days without activation.
4. Now comes the actual trick by which you can extend the trial period for another 240 days. Open Registry Editor (type regedit in “Run” and hit Enter) and navigate to the following location
5. In right-side pane, change value of SkipRearm to 1.
6. Now you will be able to use the slmgr -rearm command for another 8 times so that you can skip activation process for another 240 days. So you will get 120 + 240 = 360 days of free Windows 7 usage.
120 days using “slmgr -rearm” command before registry edit +
240 days using “slmgr -rearm” command after registry edit
= 360 Days
240 days using “slmgr -rearm” command after registry edit
= 360 Days
Mar 27, 2011
As the fraudsters are now becoming more sophisticated in bypassing the Geo-location controls by using proxies (Anonymous IPs) to spoof their IP address, it has become very much necessary to come up with a means for detecting the proxies so that the authenticity of the users can be verified. Using a proxy (web proxy) is the simplest and easiest way to conceal the IP address of an Internet user and maintain the online privacy. However proxies are more widely used by online fraudsters to engage in cyber crimes since it is the easiest way to hide their actual Geo-location such as city/country through a spoofed IP address. Following are some of the examples where fraudsters use the proxies to hide their actual IP.
1. Credit Card Frauds
For example, say a Nigerian fraudster tries to purchase goods online with a stolen credit card for which the billing address is associated with New York. Most credit card merchants use Geo-location to block orders from countries like Nigeria and other high risk countries. So in order to bypass this restriction the credit card fraudster uses a proxy to spoof his IP address so that it appears to have come from New York. The IP address location appears to be legitimate since it is in the same city as the billing address. A proxy check would be needed to flag this order.
2. Bypass Website Country Restrictions
Some website services are restricted to users form only a selected list of countries. For example, a paid survey may be restricted only to countries like United States and Canada. So a user from say China may use a proxy so as to make his IP appear to have come from U.S. so that he can earn from participating in the paid survey.
Proxy Detection Services
So in order to stop such online frauds, Proxy Detection has become a critical component. Today most companies, credit card merchants and websites that deal with e-commerce transactions make use of Proxy Detection Services like MaxMind and FraudLabs to detect the usage of proxy or spoofed IP from users participating online.
Proxy Detection web services allow instant detection of anonymous IP addresses. Even though the use of proxy address by users is not a direct indication of fraudulent behaviour, it can often indicate the intention of the user to hide his or her real IP. In fact, some of the most used ISPs like AOL and MSN are forms of proxies and are used by both good and bad consumers.
How Proxy Detection Works?
Proxy detection services often rely on IP addresses to determine whether or not the IP is a proxy. Merchants can obtain the IP address of the users from the HTTP header on the order that comes into their website. This IP address is sent to the proxy detecting service in real time to confirm it’s authenticity.
The proxy detection services on the other hand compare this IP against a known list of flagged IPs that belong to proxy services. If the IP is not on the list then it is authenticated and the confirmation is sent back to the merchant. Otherwise it is reported to be a suspected proxy. These proxy detection services work continuously to grab a list or range of IPs that are commonly used for proxy services. With this it is possible to tell whether or not a given IP address is a proxy or spoofed IP.
How to Tell Whether a given IP is Real or a Proxy?
There are a few free sites that help you determine whether or not a given IP is a proxy. You can use free services like WhatisMyIPAddress to detect proxy IPs. Just enter the suspected IP in the field and click on “Lookup IP Address” button to check the IP address. If it is a suspected proxy then you will see the results something as follows.
So for all those who think that they can escape by using a spoofed IP, this post is the answer. I hope this information helps. Pass your comments.
Mar 26, 2011
To stop receiving reminders for invitation requests recieved, click Brijj.com.
Mar 25, 2011
Due to ever increasing threat from virus and other malicious programs, almost every computer today comes with a pre-installed antivirus software on it. In fact, an antivirus has become one of the most essential software package for every computer. Even though every one of us have an antivirus software installed on our computers, only a few really bother to understand how it actually works! Well if you are one among those few who would really bother to understand how an antivirus works, then this article is for you.
How Antivirus Works
An antivirus software typically uses a variety of strategies in detecting and removing viruses, worms and other malware programs. The following are the two most widely employed identification methods:
1. Signature-based dectection (Dictionary approach)
This is the most commonly employed method which involves searching for known patterns of virus within a given file. Every antivirus software will have a dictionary of sample malware codes called signatures in it’s database. Whenever a file is examined, the antivirus refers to the dictionary of sample codes present within it’s database and compares the same with the current file. If the piece of code within the file matches with the one in it’s dictionary then it is flagged and proper action is taken immediately so as to stop the virus from further replicating. The antivirus may choose to repair the file, quarantine or delete it permanently based on it’s potential risk.
As new viruses and malwares are created and released every day, this method of detection cannot defend against new malwares unless their samples are collected and signatures are released by the antivirus software company. Some companies may also encourage the users to upload new viruses or variants, so that the virus can be analyzed and the signature can be added to the dictionary.
Signature based detection can be very effective, but requires frequent updates of the virus signature dictionary. Hence the users must update their antivirus software on a regular basis so as to defend against new threats that are released daily.
2. Heuristic-based detection (Suspicious behaviour approach)
Heuristic-based detection involves identifying suspicious behaviour from any given program which might indicate a potential risk. This approach is used by some of the sophisticated antivirus softwares to identify new malware and variants of known malware. Unlike the signature based approach, here the antivirus doesn’t attempt to identify known viruses, but instead monitors the behavior of all programs.
For example, malicious behaviours like a program trying to write data to an executable program is flagged and the user is alerted about this action. This method of detection gives an additional level of security from unidentified threats.
File emulation: This is another type of heuristic-based approach where a given program is executed in a virtual environment and the actions performed by it are logged. Based on the actions logged, the antivirus software can determine if the program is malicious or not and carry out necessary actions in order to clean the infection.
Most commercial antivirus softwares use a combination of both signature-based and heuristic-based approaches to combat malware.
Issues of concern
Zero-day threats: A zero-day (zero-hour ) threat or attack is where a malware tries to exploit computer application vulnerabilities that are yet unidentified by the antivirus software companies. These attacks are used to cause damage to the computer even before they are identified. Since patches are not yet released for these kind of new threats, they can easily manage to bypass the antivirus software and carry out malicious actions. However most of the threats are identified after a day or two of it’s release, but damage caused by them before identification is quite inevitable.
Daily Updates: Since new viruses and threats are released everyday, it is most essential to update the antivirus software so as to keep the virus definitions up-to-date. Most softwares will have an auto-update feature so that the virus definitions are updated whenever the computer is connected to the Internet.
Effectiveness: Even though an antivirus software can catch almost every malware, it is still not 100% foolproof against all kinds of threats. As explained earlier, a zero-day threat can easily bypass the protective shield of the antivirus software. Also virus authors have tried to stay a step ahead by writing “oligomorphic“, “polymorphic” and, more recently, “metamorphic” virus codes, which will encrypt parts of themselves or otherwise modify themselves as a method of disguise, so as to not match virus signatures in the dictionary.
Thus user education is as important as antivirus software; users must be trained to practice safe surfing habits such as downloading files only from trusted websites and not blindly executing a program that is unknown or obtained from an untrusted source. I hope this article will help you understand the working of an antivirus software.
Mar 20, 2011
How to Write-Protect USB Flash Drive
Many a time, it becomes necessary for us to write protect our USB flash drive so as to protect it from viruses and other malware programs. Because flash drives are so popular and most widely used to move data between computers, they are the prime target for attackers as a means to get infections spread around the computer world. Also, since USB drive is not a Read-Only Memory (ROM), the data inside it can easily be modified or deleted by malware programs.
But unfortunately, most of the new flash drives do not come with a write-protect feature as the manufacturers wish to cut down the cost of production. Hence, the only way to write-protect your USB flash drives is to enable this feature on your own computer.
This can be done by adding a small entry to the Windows registry which acts as a switch that can be enabled to make use of the write protection or disabled to allow write access. Just follow these steps:
1. Open the Registry Editor (Open the “Run” dialog box, type regedit and hit “Enter”).
2. Navigate to the following Registry key:
3. Create a New Key named as StorageDevicePolicies. To do this right-click on Control, and click on New->Key and name it as StorageDevicePolicies.
4. Now right-click on StorageDevicePolicies and create a New->DWORD (32-bit) Value and name it as WriteProtect.
5. Double-click on WriteProtect and set the Value data to 1.
Now the right-protection for USB drives is enabled on your computer (no restart required) and thus it would not be possible for anyone or any program to add/delete the contents from your USB flash drive. Any attempt to copy or download the files onto the USB drive will result in the following error message being displayed.
To revert and remove the write-protection, all you need to do is just change the Value data for WriteProtect (Step-5) from 1 back to 0. Now write access to all the USB devices is re-enabled.
Sometimes it may seem difficult to remember and follow the above mentioned steps each time you want to enable/disable the write protection. Hence as an alternative way, there are many tools available to automatically enable/disable the write-protection feature. One of my favorite tool is USB Write Protect by Naresh Manadhar. Using this tool you can limit write access to your USB drives with just a click of a button. You can download this tool from the following link:
You’ve got to be blind to not want to look beyond what you see on Roadies 8, and if you’re not curious, then Nagesh P. Mithun aka Suraj will make you so senti awwwwww. Okay to start with. Snapshot of the real Suraj from MTV Roadies 8.
Suraj aka Nagesh of MTV Roadies 8 has been a student of the Indian Institute of Bartending. If this listing of Nagesh from MTV Roadies 8 in the students profile isn’t enough, then nothing will be. We’ve just resized the image but please feel free to check http://www.iibtindia.com/placement.html
Suraj from MTV Roadies 8 boasts of the 9th student profile that’s featured on the institute website. If you look closely, Nagesh from MTV Roadies 8 has his eyebrow pierced and is quite a happening dude from Jalna, and quite hep for being broke.
That’s not all. Appears Suraj of MTV Roadies 8 is successful at bartending. Suraj of MTV Roadies 8. successfully enthralled students at the Bartending Seminar & Workshop held on Tuesday 27th July, 2010 for students of Merit Swiss Asian School of Hotel Management.
Common sense in the Suraj aka Nagesh P. Mithun from MTV Roadies 8 scenario: In 2010, Suraj from MTV Roadies 8 should have been working in Mumbai as claimed by him. It was the time Suraj aka Nagesh took a train from Jalna to Mumbai and worked as a sweeper. His student profile at http://www.iibtindia.com/placement.html clearly mentions Suraj was working at a call center in Mumbai.
The workshop details we have attained reveal the workshop was held in July 2010. As such, Nagesh obviously did the course before that or during that period, so, Suraj was in Mumbai working at some call center even before 2010. Here’s the actual pdf supporting workshop details.
The most elaborate IIBT course lasts a year and costs Rs. 55, 000 and the shortest one lasts 6 weeks and costs Rs. 9,000. Obviously he wouldn’t be heading a workshop after just 6 weeks, so, we assume Suraj aka Nagesh P. Mithun from MTV Roadies 8. was at IIBT for a year.
Roadies 8 is going to do brilliantly because this guy is so smart. What I would really like to know is whether the bald Raghu and Rajiv, and now seemingly silly Ranvijay, sit together and practice such a dumb script. MTV Roadies must do some homework because your show credibility suffers a blow if contestants are going t fool you so easily, or, I’m guessing all reality shows are scripted. This is your winning card this year but we have unearthed the truth about Suraj aka Nagesh P. Mithun from MTV Roadies 8. For everyone who was taken aback by Suraj’s heart wrenching truth, don’t always believe reality tv, it’s reality tv for a certain reason.
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