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PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2004 11:04 pm 
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Pop-up ads that come up while you are browsing means that you are either not protected from them or you have something on your computer (or both).

Ways to protect yourself and make browsing the internet better.

Browser
A great (and free) web browser to use is called FireFox. If you use Microsoft Explorer (IE), you are leaving yourself open to A LOT of crazy stuff.
Firefox: http://www.mozilla.org/products/firefox/

Problems with IE
If you have been experiencing problems with (a) your homepage keeps changing or (b) your searches don't work and you are using IE, you need to download a program called "hijackthis". If is free. You just run it once to get rid of the problem.
http://www.spychecker.com/program/hijackthis.html
When you use the program it will bring up a list of items for your review. The general rule of thumb is to select the items that all have the same number in front (i.e. you have 5 lines that all are numbered 04).

Clean your computer from pop-ups and worse
Now, you also need to download and run some programs (which are free) that will clean up your computer. I run BOTH of the programs below.

Ad-Aware can be located here: http://www.lavasoftusa.com/support/download/

Another program is called Spybot Search & Destroy:
http://www.safer-networking.org/en/download/index.html

Because the programs are FREE, they don't run in the background all the time. You will need to manually run the programs (once a week for example) to clean your computer. The first time you run the Ad-Aware program make sure to select "Perform Full System Scan" (run smart scan for future scans). This will take a lot longer, but it gets a lot!

Firewall Software
And, of course, another way to protect yourself is via a Firewall. By using a router you are protecting yourself pretty well to start with, but this doesn't help you with programs on your computer that are communicating out. Score card for some fire wall programs: http://grc.com/lt/scoreboard.htm

A firewall alerts you to someone/a computer/a program that is trying to communicate via your internet connection either IN to your computer or OUT. You are able to set which programs get 100% access to the internet (ie your web browser needs 100% access)

Some firewalls that are free and recommended:
Sygate Personal FW ( http://smb.sygate.com/products/spf/spf_ov.htm )
ZoneAlarm ( http://www.zonelabs.com/store/content/c ... ist_za.jsp )

Virus Protection
It is VERY important to have virus protection. AVG makes a great program to protect you from the bugs of the world. It is free, but fully functional. Updates are free, etc.

http://free.grisoft.com/freeweb.php/doc/2/

I hope this helps.

Steve


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