Sunday, May 31, 2009

Ed (Honeymooners), not Peter, Norton should handle Internet security.

Is there worse version control than that done by Symantec with Norton Internet Security?

I am convinced that the slow performance of my PCs is because of Norton Internet Security taking over and running who knows what in the background.  A friend suggested that the 2009 version was better.  Better than the previous versions for which I had paid?

OK, so I decided to check my version.  I tried by logging in to my account.  Nothing explicit there.

I stared at the non-Windows interface of the Windows Norton Internet Security software.  Finally I tried clicking "Help & Support", then About.  I have version  Is that version 2009?  Beats me.  The copyright is 1997-2008.

I stumbled onto the download area in the Symantec web site and it wanted to know what version I had.  Doesn't Symantec know what version its registered users have?  Symantec presented a drop down list with options for Norton Internet Security of 2009, 2008, 2007, etc.  No mention of  Other than the copyright, nothing on, in or near the software indicates a year.

I clicked 2009, figuring that there might be some small improvements on its most recent version and that maybe I had it since my renewal was in mid November 2008.

Symantec presented me with a file to download to update my Windows Norton Internet Security software.  I did it.  First it wanted to delete the old version.  I said OK.  That was it.  It never tried to install a new version.  I did that myself.  When it finally finished I checked the version.  Still  Still copyright 1997-2008.

You can't make up stuff like this.

Aside from my natural suspicion of companies that make money by selling you protection (against them?), it bugs me that Symantec makes money with such lousy version control.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Verizon Mobile Broadband MiFi

I have been using the MiFi2200 wireless modem/WiFi router for about a week.  Very nice.  It's really small.  So far the only negative is that it gets warm to the touch.

Speed is about the same as Verizon FIOS, which never impressed me.  I have been packing the MiFi2200 into a fanny pack along with my Skype WiFi phone and five year old Palm TX, which has WiFi and provides connectivity to the web.  That's more than I want to lug, especially since I still need to carry my three year old Palm Treo 700P for Verizon Wireless voice service.

The ideal would be to have one phone/web device plus the MiFi2200 for use with my 2.2 pound Acer netbook.  However, I do not yet have enough confidence in Skype that I am willing to cancel my main voice service, which includes call waiting and easy access to voice mail.  When Apple introduces the third iPhone maybe I'll consider buying a used iPhone two since it runs a Skype app that only works with WiFi and not with the ATT Wireless network, which is inferior to the Verizon Wireless network.

The real rub is price.  I could save $5 per month if I cancelled my Verizon FIOS Internet service at home and also cancel Verizon Wireless voice service, replacing them with the 5 gig $60 ($75 including tax and tip) but I'm relectant to rely on Skype and to rely on that little MiFi2200 for ALL connectivity, including voice.

I will probably keep the Verizon Mobile Broadband MiFi service at the new 250 meg rate for $40 ($50 including tax and tip) and add it to my other services for an increase of $50 per month.  Simply cancelling Verizon FIOS Internet ($45, NO tax) does not make sense because I would lose $15 off the Verizon flex bundle for Verizon FIOS video ($40, plus $8 tax), Internet ($45) and Verizon Wireless voice service ($40, plus $10 tax).  

If I replace FIOS Internet with Verizon Mobile Broadband:

Save $45 FIOS Internet
Lose $15 flex bundle discount
Pay $75 Verizon Mobile Broadband MiFi

Net increase of $45.  If I also cancelled Verizon Wireless voice service ($50) I'd save $5 per month, lose some voice functionality but increase Internet mobility.

Since getting Verizon Mobile Broadband MiFi May 18 I have mentioned to multiple Verizon people that Verizon needs to bundle its three Internet services (FIOS, Mobile Broadband, data on smart phones) and offer discounts.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Personal mobile hot spot - this may be the one for me!

Apparently Verizon Wireless Mobile Broadband service will have the MiFi 2200 made for Verizon by Novatel,  a mobile modem and WiFi router all in one device.  Cool.  I will definitely try it when it is available.

I read about in David Pogue's article in The New York Times.  See my e-mail to David below.  David mistakenly wrote this, which I corrected in the e-mail:

Cellular wireless routers, as they’re called, have been available for years...  the real deal-killer is that they have to be plugged into a power outlet.


date Thu, May 7, 2009 at 9:21 AM
subject Wi-Fi to Go, No Cafe Needed
hide details 9:21 AM (2 minutes ago)


Interesting.  I will check it out.  However, I wrote about this concept months ago in my blog (OK, nobody reads it but it exists).

Please note:


Personal mobile Internet connection

special router (Cradlepoint Personal Hot Spot - PHS300 Battery Powered EVDO Router ...

The modem plugs into the router. That provides the router with a connection to the Internet from wherever it is. The router also has Wi-Fi. That means that I have my own hot spot wherever I am. I can connect a PC but I could have done that by simply plugging the modem into the PC. I can connect multiple PCs. I can connect a PC and a Wi-Fi enabled device such as a non-Verizon smartphone, Palm, iPod Touch, iPhone, Skype Wi-Fi phone, which I have, etc. Ah, now you get it.


google's gmail wins.

I now use gmail, not Yahoo, for my web based e-mail.  I was trying both in parallel, forwarding e-mail sent to my domain e-mail ID to both.  I still forward to both, figuring that if gmail is down I can get my messages at Yahoo.

I just drifted to gmail.  Not sure why, other than I use lots of other google freebies and Yahoo is generally in decline.  Gmail threads can still be confusing but I think that I have even become comfortable with that.  Once syncing between my trusty old Palm Treo and Yahoo finally ceased, Yahoo lost its one big advantage.

My main use of Yahoo now is its groups.  I "own" multiple Yahoo groups.  I still do not understand the advantages, if any, of newer flashier group functions such as facebook.  I have an ... account, membership, whatever ... in facebook but do not use it other than to respond to an occasional message from someone who found me.