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Ensure your kids are safe on the Internet

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 1-Oct-2008 16:29

Today I had my weekly lunch with Microsoft's Darryl Burling and we talked about kids' computing. He tells me his oldest daughter just got a laptop - and her own e-mail account as well as a Live Messenger account.

We then moved the conversation to the dangers of having kids on-line without proper supervision.

TelstraClear provides an interesting website with information about cybverbulying and tips on how to prevent your kids being victims on-line.

One of the tips is to have a family computer, in a shared location so you can be aware of what's going on. But since you can't be there all the time, and most of these new computers are highly mobile, what can you do?

Enters Windows Live OneCare Family Safety. Add this to the Windows Vista Parental Controls and you have a solution to manage your kids' activities on-line.

It is actually really cool. You can filter the web sites they visit, provide safer e-mail, IM, and blogging with contact management - including built-in contact approval so you know who your kids are talking to on IM, e-mail, or their blogs. You can even approve or reject each new contact for their Windows Live Messenger,

The best thing? Windows Live OneCare Family Safety is free and works on Windows XP SP2 and Windows Vista.

And yes, this came up today, and soon after I found out the Apple New Zealand newsletter touches exactly this subject. It looks like Mac OS X implements some Parental Control, but it's not as extensive as the OneCare Family Safety package.

XBOX Live planned downtime

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 27-Sep-2008 16:18

I just got this in my Inbox, and decided it was interesting to spread:

The Xbox team is hard at work getting ready for the launch of the New Xbox Experience, coming to Xbox 360s around the world later this Spring. In order to prepare to bring you new features, games and experiences the team is going to need to take Xbox LIVE offline for a short time. On September 29 Xbox LIVE will be unavailable from 8.01 PM and will restart at 7:59 PM on September 30.

These are New Zealand times, please adjust accordingly...

A new Geekzone server

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 23-Sep-2008 12:38

Last Friday we got delivery of a new HP server for Geekzone. The new server is a HP DL360, based on an Intel 5400 quad-core 3GHz with 10 GB RAM, four 146GB HDD, and remote management.

To power this new box we will be installing Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008.

Because our hosting provider is just finishing up a new datacentre it will be a couple of weeks before we have it up and running. The current box, a three year old machine based on an Intel Xeon dual-core with 3 GB RAM and two 70 GB HDD will stay in service, as a development/staging server.

I can't wait to have the new server up and running...

Everything you wanted to ask Freeview...

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 19-Sep-2008 15:55

I've just opened a discussion in our Freeview forum on Geekzone where you can post your questions about the Freeview broadcast service.

Freeview will be answering your questions and we will post the replies to start a discussion on that.

With time, if people show interest we could even schedule a live on-line chat. It all depends of your participation.

If you have been living under a rock, Freeview will become the standard open to air TV broadcast standard with satellite (standard definition) and and terrestrial (high definition)  services.

SQL DB? No firewall? Weak admin password? That is a trojan coming your way alright

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 18-Sep-2008 08:06

According to the Symantec Security Response Blog, a new trojan called Trojan.Eskiuel is going around infiltrating SQL servers and causing havoc:

This time we have found a new SQL threat: Trojan.Eskiuel. The main functionality of this threat is to scan the Internet to find machines with poorly configured SQL servers (i.e. with weak or non-existing passwords), gain access to them, and use their stored procedures in order to download new malware from a remote host.

Check your servers...

Tech and autographed gear for auction on Trade Me - help the Auckland Under 15 Boys Basketball team

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 17-Sep-2008 16:41

Last night I've go an e-mail from Steve Graham, GM at Fronde AKL, also the coach of the Auckland Under 15 regonal basketball team.

In short Steve managed to get the support of some companies (Google, Microsoft, HP, Vodafone, Samsung, Kodak) and people (Hamish Carter, Dilon Boucher, All Whites) to a special "tech gear auction" to raise funds and help the Auckland's Under 15 Boys' Basketball Team to attend the National Championship in Rotorua.

There is a 60 GB Google Flip, 30 GB Microsoft Zune, HP iPAQ, autogaphed items, Family pass to Rainbows End and much more. 

So if you are looking for tech and sport memorabilia, check the tech gear auction or search for "under15bball" on Trade Me.


New Zealand broadband according to Akamai

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 16-Sep-2008 16:47

I have just noticed the Akamai State of the Internet report Q2 2008 is out now. Interesting stats from around the world - worth reading it.

From a New Zealand perspective here is the only data provided:

- more than 962,000 uniqye IP addresses, a 3.78% increase from Q1 2008, about 0.23 per capita (or about 1 for almost four people here);
- only 2% connected to Akamai servers at 5 Mbps or more - 0.01 "high broadband" per capita;
- 52% connected to Akamai servers at 2 Mbps or more;
- 10% connected at 256 Kbps or less.

My Zero G flight experience: the pictures

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 16-Sep-2008 14:42

In my previous post you can see a short video with my Zero G flight experience. I have now uploaded some of the pictures to my Flickr Zero G set:

My Zero G flight experience: the short version

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 16-Sep-2008 09:50

Thanks to Symantec I had the opportunity to experience a Zero G flight experience, departing from Las Vegas.

This was an event for bloggers and journalists attending a special briefing with Rowan Trollope, Sr VP of Consumer Products and Solutions.

Rowan talked to us about the Norton 2009 products, including the Norton Antivirus and Norton Internet Security - more on this later.

Below is the short, edited version of the video Symantec produced for us to use on-line. I will post pictures and another video later. For now enjoy:

Going Zero G - and please update your Geekzone profile

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 8-Sep-2008 13:29

Later this week I am off to Las Vegas to participate in a Zero G flight.

I will have some videos and photos from the flight - but in the meantime I recommend people update their Geekzone profile...

freitasm's profile

Mauricio Freitas
New Zealand

I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

I'm the Geekzone admin. On Geekzone we publish news, reviews and articles on technology topics. The site also has some busy forums.

Subscribe now to my blog RSS feed or the Geekzone RSS feed.

If you want to contact me, please use this page or email me Note this email is not for technical support. I don't give technical support. You can use our Geekzone Forums for community discussions on technical issues.

Here's is my full disclosure post.

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