Cognoscape talk on the news about XP and Heartbleed security issues!

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An apparent security flaw found on most websites is allowing hackers to use the Heartbleed virus to breach private information — including your emails, passwords, and credit card numbers.

Windows 7 Backup and Restore

Here’s a good article by Microsoft on Windows Backup and Restore.   This is specific to Windows 7 and it’s features  with Windows Backup Restore capabilities.   Check it out.

Backup and Restore—improved for Windows 7—creates safety copies of your most important personal files, so you’re always prepared for the worst.

Let Windows choose what to back up, or pick individual folders, libraries, and drives yourself. Windows can back up files on whatever schedule you choose—just set it and forget it.

You can back up to another drive or a DVD. And if you’re using the Professional or Ultimate editions of Windows 7, you’ll also have the option of backing up your files to a network.

To back up your files

  1. Open Backup and Restore by clicking the Start button, clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Maintenance, and then clicking Backup and Restore.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • If you’ve never used Windows Backup before, click Set up backup, and then follow the steps in the wizard. If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
    • If you’ve created a backup before, you can wait for your regularly scheduled backup to occur, or you can manually create a new backup by clicking Back up now. If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.


  • We recommend that you don’t back up your files to the same hard disk that Windows is installed on.
  • Always store media used for backups (external hard disks, DVDs, or CDs) in a secure place to prevent unauthorized people from having access to your files—we recommend a fireproof location separate from your computer. You might also consider encrypting the data on your backup.

Windows 7 Upgrade: 4 things to consider

You may have heard that Microsoft reports that the adoption of Windows 7 is the fastest adoption of an operating system in the history of the company.  It’s not clear yet if this is because Windows 7 is that good, or because people were so frustrated with Vista that they are eager to get away from it, but the early reports on Microsoft Windows 7 are very favorable.

You may be considering an upgrade soon.  If so, here are a few things to consider before you pull the trigger:

1.  Clearly determine why you want to upgrade.  Are you looking for a specific feature or performance enhancement?  You should get clear on your goals before spending the money and make sure you get the correct version.  There are three editions – for different needs.  Tip: most small businesses will want to go with Windows 7 Professional.

2.  Backup before you upgrade.  Some upgrade paths will require a clean install of Windows 7, meaning your computer will have to have the current operating system wiped out before installation.  Make sure all of your data is backed up before you start.

3.  Consider the age of your computer before upgrading.  New computers will come with Windows 7 pre-installed, so if you are within a year of buying a new computer anyway, it probably makes sense to hold off on the upgrade so you don’t double-pay.  Your old computer may not have the horsepower for the new operating system either, which will diminish your experience and leave you frustrated.

4.  Confirm that the applications you want to use will work with Windows 7.  If you are using general office applications, you are probably safe.  But if you are using anything custom or specialized, you need to verify compatibility.

Many people are calling Windows 7 the best operating system yet.  Time will tell, but it definitely has some significant improvements over previous operating systems.  Plan your upgrade carefully and you’ll have a better chance at enjoying all of the benefits Microsoft Windows 7 has to offer.