Monday, December 22, 2014

MVPS HOSTS File (with WHYS & HOWS) for January 2015 Available Now

If you are serious about keeping your computer secure, you need a HOSTS file. The one that comes pre-loaded on any Windows system is empty and does us absolutely no good. Fortunately there is a man who updates and makes available at no charge, a monthly updates loaded HOSTS file. (He does accept contributions!)

Over the course of the life of this blog I have spoken of it very often. Once I created a series of 5 blog posts containing everything one needs to know about what a HOSTS file is, how to get it, and how to install it.

The author of the MVPS HOSTS file has kept everything in place so that his file can be loaded and used in every Windows operating system. I have it loaded, and I download and install the monthly updated file, on my XP, W7, and W8 systems.

You can download the current file here:

If you feel uncomfortable doing this, you can follow my older series of 5 blog posts to give you much more detail. Since I recently deleted Spybot from my security baseline, and if you do the same, you can ignore anything contained in these 5 steps that has to do with Spybot.

Here is a link to the first of the 5 posts. After reading the first one you can use the search box at the top of this page to find #2, and then #3, and so on.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Security Baseline Updated

This is an update to my security baseline. The biggest change is that I have dropped good old Spybot from the list. I never got to like their newer versions and they stopped providing updates to the older version. If you still have version 1.6 be aware that you have not been given updated information in many months, and running the old is probably not doing any good.

Also, and this is very new news, I have upgraded my copy of Malwarebytes to the Premium version. At a price of $24.95 which covers 3 machine installations, I felt the realtime option, available only in Premium, was worth the small expense. Will I upgrade in a year to the newer version as it becomes available? That remains to be seen.

Our home hardware profile has also changed. We now have 2 Windows 8.1 Dell laptops and one Windows 7 desktop. These are the 3 machines we run the Premium Malwarebytes on. Although we still have 2 Windows XP machines, these still run but are not used as regular "production" machines. On these I still run MSE and the free version of Malwarebytes.

1. My anti-virus program of choice is the free Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) aka Windows Defender in Windows 8 & 8.1. This is a very impressive anti-virus program and can replace any you have now. DOWNLOAD HERE

2. Windows Firewall (Standard part of your operating system. Check the Security Center to be sure it is on.)

3. MVPS HOSTS File - download the current month's version and update monthly DOWNLOAD HERE

4. CCleaner - free version - check for newer version than you may already have. Run weekly. DOWNLOAD HERE by clicking on Download Latest Version in the upper right hand corner of the page.

5. Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware - run bi-weekly. DOWNLOAD HERE As noted above I run the Premium version, but the free version is still excellent.

6. SuperAntiSpyware Free Edition - run bi-weekly in the off week after #5. DOWNLOAD HERE

I will be happy to assist you with any or all of the above installations. This can be done remotely.

Questions?  Comment below or write me, pcdoc at brpcdoc dot com