Ask Leo: Is it safe to let my browser remember passwords?

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By Leo Notenboom

If I consider my computer to be physically secure, am I reasonably safe
letting Firefox remember my passwords (without using a master password), or am
I being incredibly stupid to do that? What if I do use a master password?

I certainly wouldn’t say incredibly stupid at all. But it’s definitely an
additional risk, and one that needs to be understood.

But you’re correct in considering physical security first. The problem is
that people often assume they have more physical security than they actually
do.

And master passwords? Well, they’re nice, but they too have their
limitations.

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Browser Wars 2009 Produces Big Losers

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How long before Google dominates the browser market? Is it poised to replace Microsoft as the Dominant force in computing?

Changes seen this year are substantial, but the rate of change doesn’t seem to be the story here. It’s the fact that two major players allowed for substantial gains by Chrome, Firefox, and even Opera. Safari’s failure to supply a browser that works as well on Windows as it does on Mac, along with Google’s release of Chrome for Mac OS X, put Chrome in the number 3 position over Safari but well behind FireFox.
Internet Explorer and Safari had combined losses of 7.48% while Chrome, Firefox and Opera had combined gains of 7.35%.

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Black Screen of Death or Boatload of Advertising?

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“Black Screen woes could affect millions on Windows 7, Vista and XP”, is the title used for a post to Prevx’s website describing what they feel is a very troublesome problem. Prevx offered a download to fix the bug, and within a day fear was blogged far and wide blaming the problem on Microsoft, of course, and their darned security patches. Prevx has since backed off a little from their initial claim but you can get a taste here.

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Best Secondary Web Browser?

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By now most of us are familiar with Mozilla Firefox, and a lot of us prefer it over the pre-installed Internet Explorer, and the ancient Netscape, but there are several other browsers out there definitely worth a mention, and could possibly have you guys wanting to make a switch. Here are the top ten web browsers for 2009 according to several PC magazines ranked by features set, speed, security, ease of use, and help & support.

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BrowserWars II

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According to Wikipedia, “The term “browser wars” refers to the competition for dominance in the web browser marketplace. The term is used to denote two specific periods of time: the competition between market-dominating Netscape Navigator and its eventual defeat by Microsoft Internet Explorer during the late 1990s, and the competition from 2003 onwards between the dominating Internet Explorer and several other emerging browsers including Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Opera and, since mid-2008, Google Chrome.” I couldn’t agree more, so now it’s time to look again at browsers and their respective performance. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed putting it together.

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Some Whine With Your Beta?

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IE8 Beta is gone and hopefully replaced by an improved RC1. A browser capable of remembering passwords doesn’t seem like too much to ask. With any luck at all the tabbed browsing and other improvements will be worth while because the browser will be able to render pages and do the small things that so far have escaped recent Internet Explorer releases.

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Windows 7 Wish List

I am very excited about Windows 7. In fact, I can’t wait. It can’t happen soon enough. Without flat out admitting it, Microsoft is finally realizing what we, as users, have known all along. Vista delivered far less than expectation after a five year wait from the smartest, wealthiest, largest, and savviest software company in the world.

But let’s not look backwards, now is the time to look forwards to a bright future for Windows and its suffering users. Having purchased Vista in March 2007, and one of its first guinea pigs, here is my wish list for Windows 7 and why.

Windows Movie Maker. As I reported almost two years ago, there still is a major problem with Windows Movie Maker. In the middle of editing (sometimes at the end), a horrible error message “Windows Movie Maker has stopped working.” appears. If you Google the above error message, it is easy to imagine millions of people getting the same error message.

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