Thursday, December 15, 2011

old PC iss-CHOOOS!

Hi all, been ill lately, graphics not on my mind, I went into the dungeon here at the Linuxville Chateau. It's the realm below the knees, where stacks of stuff have lingered since the DOS days. I gathered some relics from friends to recycle parts. My sister emailed me about her MS PC and malware. I had not done malware removal since I started using Linux 10 or so years ago. Here's the lowdown.

I open an old PC crypt, was immediately attacked by ferocious dust bunnies. I already had a head cold, you could imagine the sound of sneezing fits. My wife was ready to call 911. I got the vacuum cleaner and exorcised the little demons, from the PC, not me! Dust entrails on every device, wire and fans. A through cleaning and it was test ready. I plugged in all the perifs and booted. If I had my own original XP discs I wouldn't have faced this horror but it did give me a chance to practice Malware removal so I could report to my sister.

Being an old PC all the paid for anti-virus protection was done. I had to remove them via the Add-Remove software utility in XP. Then being an Open Source guy I whipped out my Open Disc. It is a collection of Open Source software for XP type PCs. I installed ClaimAV the virus scanner and ran it (takes for ever!). It identified the files of malware, trojans, trialware, games, ads, cookies that were bad and prepared a report in a text file. Then using the report I found the offending files via the file manager and deleted them. Then I obtained a free Registry Cleaner off the net and ran that (takes just shorter than for ever). Then I deleted all the personal data of the former master and all programs I weren't going to use. Finally I did the dreaded defrag (takes forever and a day!).

Well, now it runs well for an old XP machine. I normally would have reformatted and installed Linux, but XP is still useful for many things. I installed Open Source programs on it, free of course. MS Office and Explorer are gone, LibreOffice and Firefox are installed along with GIMP, Inkscape, Corel Painter Classic. The only thing that bothers me is the screen resolution and the CRT itself. The old HP monitor has had it's day and the videocard just doesn't adjust right in lower resolutions, all fuzzy. The highest res is sharp as a tack, but it's a 15" screen and I feel the rays if I get too close to read it. Hey. I'm an old guy. Blessed are they that have newer monitor, keyboard and mouse.

Yeah, I know iPads and smart-phones are the rage, but you can't run GIMP or Photoshop on that now can you, unless its cloudware? If your touchy screen can be the peripheral replacing the monitor, keyboard and mouse for the PC, that is cool. But it needs to be BIGGER for real work. Wacom already has devices like this, but they are hooked on art production and are toooooooo pricey for common folk, hummmmmmm! get your hack on!

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