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Monday, December 19, 2005

A lil tutorial for IE users... And a Bonus for Win NT/2K/XP users

Knoppix Hacks : 100 Industrial-Strength Tips and Tools

I had a chuckle when I ran across this:

"...People who visit my page using the Internet Explorer browser are automatically being redirected to a page which explains the fact that the US government has recommended that people stop using IE. After seeing Microsoft's "answer" to this (the new security "features" built into Windows XP SP2) I can only agree with this recommendation- IE is indeed a dangerous browser..."

Go ahead. If you're using Internet Exploder, do click on the link above. I set Opera to identify itself as IE just to check. Yep. Lotsa good info for die-hard Internet Exploder users there. You don't leave your front door unlocked 24/7/365, do you? Park your new car in a shady neighborhood and leave the keys in it? Well, then why are you still using "Internet Exploder: the World's Crappiest Browser"?

Over at Jo's Cafe, I ran into her post about password woes on a Win2K computer. She feared she'd have to reformat and reinstall everything. Sadly, I didn't get to her in time, it seems. *sigh*

Actually, this happens a lot. Folks with NT, Win2K or WinXP computers forget or lose their admin passwords, the SAM file gets corrupted or a malicious user who's in an admin-priviledged session changes a password as a prank or to cause harm.

There are several ways around this, but the easiest is to boot into a Linux "live" session with a Linux boot CD and use any number of freely available utilities to delete the old password and assign a new one.

Here's one well-thought-out system: Offline NT Password and Registry Editor. The site has links to two different versions, a floppy-based version and a CD iso you can simply burn using Nero or whatever. Do yourself a favor: download the boot disks/utilites and print out the FAQ. Save it in a safe place. It may save your data, or at least an expensive service call from a techie.

Several "rescue disks" are built around Knoppix (and see this Wiki), probably the first of the "Linux live" CDs. Neat thing: just boot from the CD and you're running Linux-from the CD itself. Been around a while, and most Linux distros are imitating this. Knoppix is still PDG, though, and getting better all the time. This might help, too, if you have a techie bent:

Anyone who's a Windows NT, 2K or XP user really ought to have a Linux "live" boot CD for emergencies, IMO. And one with additional "rescue" tools is even better.