Throwback Sunday: Dial-Up is Obsolte, DSL Rocks

limited-edition-american-mountain-dew-throwback-soda-single-can-dated-26.03.12-11186-pThrowback Sunday! In reality, I got so excited when I found this that I couldn’t wait until Thursday to share. This is an article I wrote back in high school. I don’t recall if it was ever published or not, but if I didn’t here it is. The date was February 17, 2006 (according to the Microsoft Word Document Properties), and it was just a typical February day…

For about 15 years, the general public has had access to the Internet. First, it was the 28K modem then came the 56K. If you still were using 28K modem in the 56K Age, you were behind technology. Today, it is the same thing except we are now in the Broadband Age, the age of high speed.

As new speeds were being released to public hands, the Internet soon was being designed for those with that speed. In 1995, you’d hardly ever see a file over 2 megabytes (MB). Today, with broadband, that same 2MB file will only take 20 seconds than the 20 minutes on dial-up.

The [omitted] site is no different. We’ve got two kinds of people to support: 56Kers and Broadband-ers. Over the summer, we enlarged the images from 770 pixels wide to 900 pixels. This took our images from 90-100KB (kilobytes) all the way up to 200KB. What is 200KB like on a broadband connection? About a 1-2 second wait per photo instead of a 30 second wait on dial-up. Pretty soon, dial-up will be unsupported and will only be found in history books and technology museums.

Price Sum Up: If you’re using AOL, you will spend $1.05 more for Alltel’s cheapest DSL package.  For $10 bucks more ($34.95), you can enjoy really fast speeds of the highest speed available for private residence.

Mixed decisions? Lets lay down the facts:

  • Faster download speed. No longer will you have to wait for small 2MB files to download! Plus, when you update Windows or your anti-virus software, you won’t have to leave your computer on overnight.
  • Phone calls when online. “Whoa! You mean I don’t have to get offline to make a phone call or if I’m expecting a phone call?” Yep! In my house, there was always “Get offline! I need to make a phone call!” argument always going on. No longer will this be a problem!
  • More than one user! Your entire family can be on their own computer doing their own thing without problem (and can also be talking on the phone too) all without problems.
  • Dial-up companies will file Chaper 11 within the next 10-15 years. With the Internet being more and more broadband based, AOL, NetZero, PeoplePC, and other dial-up ISPs WILL go bankrupt. Get off now before you’re really in a pickle.
  • “Speed Accelerators” don’t exist. If you think you can get away with a “speed accelerator” for your dial-up connection, think again. It is all a big scam for your ISP to stick their hands deeper into your pocket. On what planet does 56K equal 320K?
  • Homework assignments get done faster. When I still had AOL, I couldn’t do a biology homework assignment due to the fact that the website was all Flash and was several megabytes in size. With broadband, homework will get done a lot quicker!

If you still aren’t convinced, find someone on your street who has a broadband connection and ask them if you can “test” it out to get a feel for it. I have Alltel DSL Ultra, which is faster than a Tier-1 line but sized down for private residence and I don’t know why we waited so long.

If you happen to live in an area where AT&T is your provider, you can get AT&T Yahoo DSL starting at $12.99/month. NetZero’s “high-speed” dial-up service (no such thing) costs $14.95/month. If you have AOL, you can really save by switching to AT&T Yahoo DSL. Make the switch. You’ll really be glad you did! 🙂

Mass Removal of Microsoft Security Essentials

DANGER, WILL ROBINSON! DANGER! THIS ARTICLE IS OVER A YEAR OLD AND IS POSSIBLY OUT OF DATE! THE INFORMATION CONTAINED WITHIN MAY NOT BE ACCURATE ANYMORE! PROCEED WITH CAUTION!

Microsoft_Security_Essentials_icon

At work, we have finally grown up. By that, I mean we finally have a centralized antivirus product that is actually up to date and doesn’t suck as bad as the old Symantec antivirus we were using. As a replacement, we used Security Essentials and the only thing that moved us to a new platform was the fact that we were technically out of compliance with the MSE license. In a business environment, Microsoft allows you to have only 10 copies installed on computers. We were past that. By like a lot.

One of the challenges of moving to our new AV solution was removing this program from our computers en masse. With several sites and many versions of MSE, you can bet that this was no easy task. Well, since I’m your typical lazy network administrator, I don’t have the time to sit there and manually remove every installation… so I automated it with a shut down script!

This script is a batch file that runs on shut down (or you could run it on start up if you really wanted). Originally, I found a VBS script that caused the computers to hang for about 10 minutes or so on shutdown every time. I’m not a VBS person at all… I love batch files and Powershell, and since I couldn’t Powershell this, I batched it!

The code to use:

@echo off

if exist "%ProgramFiles%/Microsoft Security Essentials" (
START /wait "Uninstalling MSE" "%ProgramFiles%/Microsoft Security Essentials/setup.exe" /x 

/s
) else (
if exist "%ProgramFiles%/Microsoft Security Client" (
START /wait "Uninstalling MSE" "%ProgramFiles%/Microsoft Security Client/setup.exe" /x /s
) else (
exit
)
)
)

Save this as a batch file and create a shutdown (or startup) GPO and have it run this batch file.

Here’s what it does:

  1. Does the path %ProgramFiles%/Microsoft Security Essentials exist? Yes? Run Setup.exe with silent parameters and uninstall parameters. No? Go on to the next line.
  2. Does the path %ProgramFiles%/Microsoft Security Client exist? Yes? Run Setup.exe with silent parameters and uninstall parameters. No? Go on to the next line.
  3. Exit.

This way there is an escape clause and there is no hang up and if there’s an older version of MSE installed, it’s removed as well.