SiteVision April News & Tips

Windows 10 Summer Release & Free To All

Win10This issue we’re focusing in on Windows, because lately the news is pretty much all about, you guessed it: Windows 10, and for good reason. While newer form factors munch away on traditional MS marketshare, Windows OS PC shipments worldwide still accounted for some 400 million new units in 2014 (Gartner), while billions of units are in use from XP through current.

Plus, as you may have noticed, Microsoft has been busy recharging not only its software, but its entire outlook. And the good news is that the old “head in the sand,” mental now has Microsoft aggressively presenting a totally fresh perspective. MS is dedicated to universal apps that work across iOS, Android, and, of course, Windows OS – whether in the cloud, or on PC, Tablet, Hybrid or Mobile form factors.

The Best Features of Win 10

As we discussed recently, Windows 10 appears to be what Windows 8 should have been – one reason they skipped Win 9 and went straight into Win10. You can review a quick take of the best of Win 10 features at SiteVision News. And there’s a lot of good news.

Update: Free Now Includes Pirated Versions

The company now plans to deliver Win 10 to all customers, even those running pirated versions of Windows.

Speaking to Reuters from the WinHEC conference in China, Microsoft’s operating system chief Terry Myerson said, “We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10. This means that everyone running Windows 7 or 8.1, irrespective of whether you pirated the operating system or not, will be allowed to upgrade to Windows 10.”

The announcement not only acknowledges the 70-80 plus percent of Chinese pirated copies, but confirms that its new universal Windows approach requires a common operating system fed, updated and maintained through the cloud.

Update: Upgrade Matrix

While free, there are some restrictions as noted in this update matrix provided by Microsoft.

Win10 Upgrade Path

Biometric Authentication. Show Your Face or Finger.

With hacking intrusions becoming ever more frequent and sophisticated, FMicrosoft has decided to include biometric authentication in its upcoming Win 10. MS will offer a login option called “Hello,” and “Passport” for web applications and services. Users may opt in or out. While mobile has developed biometric applications, Most PC users still login using passwords. You can read more at Microsoft and ComputerWorld. A video is here.

Microsoft HoloLensBaked in AR with HoloLens

While many are also actively engaged in 3d augmented reality applications and devices, Microsoft has elected to bake it right into the Windows 10 OS and has developed HoloLens headgear as the visualization device. You can see the Video here.

It’s pretty exciting conceptually, as is the entire spectrum of the technology. The HoloLens is said to be lightweight, untethered, adjustable and moves dimensionally with you as you walk. Spatial sound, and the ability to print are other touted features.

Internet Explorer Out. Spartan Browser In.

The predicted demise of the bloated IE browser comes none too soon. While Project Spartan hasn’t received an approved name, it is expected to mostly replace IE with a leaner, universal application that can run on mobile or PC, etc.
Touted features include:

  • Direct webpage annotation, sync, save and share
  • Cortina – Microsoft’s answer to Siri and Google Now
  • A new reading mode that strips away extraneous material on a webpage

You can see a Microsoft video here

Quick Takes

BiometricwingBirds’ Foldable Wings Could Inspire Nimble Drones

Android flaw puts personal data at risk for millions, but only affects apps Installed from a 3rd Party App Store

More than half of all IE users face patch axe in 10 months

Mouse Connoisseur? Treat Yourself to the Logitech MX Master

Canary_DeviceCanary, the DIY home-security system, goes from crowd-funding sensation to mainstream retail product

March 2015 Newsletter

Net Neutrality:
New Rules of the Road

Net NeutralityLove it or hate it, the die is cast. The FCC has ordered that broadband providers are a telecommunication service and therefore a public utility with certain rules of the road to ensure consumers fast, fair and open access to the content of their choice.

According to the FCC, because large broadband providers have innate economic incentives to “prioritize their interests above the interest of their users,” the new new rules prohibit certain behaviors:

Users should understand that the new rules don’t mean that all customers will receive the same level of service. You already pay for different speed levels. The ruling essentially says that gatekeepers (the major broadband providers) as a public provider of services may not unfairly abuse that position to interfere with user access to unfettered content of their choice.

Hugely controversial, the new rules will likely remain a contentious issue and will be challenged on both sides of the fence. You can read more at FCC, PCWorld, USAToday


outlook mobileMicrosoft’s Outlook For Mobile
Gets A Thumbs Up

According to most reviews, the new Outlook apps for iOS and Android are both welcome and quite robust.

They feature integration of mail and calendar functions from multiple accounts including Gmail, iCloud and Yahoo, and can save files to – and email from – Google Drive, Dropbox and Box.

Note that the Android version is a preview, with some attendant glitches, while the iOS version was called “butter smooth.” You can read more at Re/Code and PC World


Chrome 40 WarningGoogle To Warn Of Malicious Sites:

Google’s Chrome browser will now warn you before you enter a site that encourages you to download nefarious programs. The new warnings also extend to Google search and ads. You can read more at Computer World and PC Mag


Show-Me-The-Money Thermostat

ThermoneystatThermoneystat promises to let you control the money you spend on heating and cooling, help the planet, and alert you about a failure. Still in the Kickstarter phase, the developers claim it uses load leveling algorithms to manage your heating and cooling, and by so doing eliminates big surprises in your energy bill. Whether it works out or not for the developer, time will tell, but it’s at least an idea you could warm up to, eh? More at TechHive and Kickstarter


Eero: Seamless Home Networking
Here, There, Everywhere.

eero+three-fourths+viewEero promises to bring state-of-the-art wireless (think no dead spots) to your home in one pretty little package. It’s not only a router, but a range extender and a repeater in a single device. While one Eero works just fine, the beauty is that by adding another Eero or two, you have an instant mesh network with no mess or fuss, because it’s all self configuring.

eero mesh networkingJust plug the additional Eeros into any wall outlet, and the Master Eero auto configures the added units. With its cloud component, Eero constantly optimizes connections and monitors speed, updates and security issues. Though a startup, Eero developers and advisors have some sterling credentials. You can read more at Eero, and reviews at Engadget and The Verge.


Quick Takes

Android Smartphones Dominate Worldwide,
But Apple Profits

Pepple Time Smartwatch Kickstarter Campaign Grabs Nearly 15 Million So Far.

Security News Weekly Update

Freak – Another Big SSL Security Hole

18 Nifty Google Map Tricks


New SiteVision Data Center Upgrades Give Customers a Powerful Speed, Security and Environment Boost.

Fiber-Optic BackboneROANOKE, VA January 20, 2015:  A powerful new SiteVision data center is now in place – good news for customers. The infrastructure upgrades and enhancements improve overall stability, power, internet speeds, environment and security – a win-win situation for all SiteVision customers. The infrastructure enhancements create a new primary facility with a separate optional backup and disaster recovery operation and services.

The new data center features fiber-optic reliability and scalable speeds to provide existing and new customers with state-of-the-art bandwidth whether their need is minimal or bandwidth-intensive. It also features a cutting edge, national fiber-optic backbone for exceptional connectivity and minimal downtime. Advanced backup battery and generator power translate into exceptionalpower conditioning and longevity during power outages. Content Delivery Network (CDN) users can also expect outstanding performance with the enhanced network connections

Overall, existing customers will experience a new level of high performance, consistent throughput, speed and availability. Additional power, battery and generator infrastructures have been designed to provide fail-safe power with maximum multi-level redundancy features.   An 8-line, in-out national internet backbone provides additional security and access. New internal and external network components feature high performance network throughput to address any potential for bandwidth or network bottlenecks. 

New Backup & Failover Solutions

With the new data center in place, SiteVision can offer a wide variety of specialized backup and fail-over solutions based on specific customer needs and requirements. If customer website, server and applications call for 100 percent uptime and are user-critical – SiteVision can provide a custom solution as simple or complex as is required. Among offerings are full systems-site backups and fail-over to SQL mirroring, code replication, DNS monitoring with Round-Robin DNS, and disaster recovery options such as offsite tape or disk backup.

Virtualization SolutionsNew Virtualization Solutions

SiteVision has also been busy upgrading and implementing new and improved virtual server solutions built on the power and stability of the Citrix XenServer Virtual Server Solution. These upgrades provide many features to minimize downtime while offering new enhancements and scalability.

Among features are:

  • Live Migration – Allows us to migrate the virtual server to one of many host servers without shutting down the server. If there is a problem with the current host server, Citrix will automatically move a virtual server to a host without the need to reboot.
  • Load Balancing – This allows us to utilize multiple host servers to spread out the load of the individual Virtual servers and dynamically allocate resources as needed.
  • Network Security – Allows us to assign multiple addresses and VLANS to specific virtual servers for added security
  • Scalability – We can upgrade and add resources to any virtual server as needed at any given time based on usage such as CPU, memory and hard drive Space.

All virtualization services are integrated with a new Dell PowerVault Storage San that includes redundant modules including: logic boards, network Interfaces, RAID hard drives and power supplies.

Combined – customers can anticipate stellar uptime for all web applications and services hosted by SiteVision. Consultations are always free of charge.

SSAE SOCAs a SOC 1 SAE 16 Type II compliant firm, new and existing customers with sensitive requirements can look to the firm for compliance standards that meet required security, trust, service and processing protocols.

About SiteVision: SiteVision, Inc. ( is an Internet application development, consulting, design and hosting firm providing solutions for a broad spectrum of markets and industries, as well as for state, federal and international entities. Expertise includes custom, back-end dynamic applications, consulting to achieve unique goals, geographic information systems (GIS), content management systems, hosting services including, map and GIS application hosting, as well as custom and dedicated hosting solutions.

SiteVision, Inc. participates in, or is available through, the following state and federal contracting vehicles:

  • Virginia VITA CAI Supplier, Managed Staff Augmentation Services Contract (VA-051123-CAI)
  • Virginia VITA Supplier, Hosting Services Contract
  • Virginia eVa Procurement as a sub-contractor to various state and federal private contractor entities
  • State and Federal Sole-source Contracting

The firm has its home office in Roanoke, VA, with sales offices in Charlottesville, VA and Miami, FL.


December 2014 News & Tips: Holiday Tech

Holiday Tech From Fantasy To Nearly Free!

geek-santaEach December we try to lighten up and find tech gifts to smile about – or buy depending on your budget.

This year we won’t even talk about Smartphones. The November issue highlighted the most popular, but there’s a plethora of great phones out there at all price points. Much will depend on your cell provider, unless you buy one outright.

A nice overview of all kinds of tech goodies, by the way, can be found at Tech Radar’s Holiday Gift Guide


ferrariThe Ferrari LaFerrari

For starters, how about the new Ferrari? Car and Driver gives it a thumbs up (why not). Men’s Gear loves the car – hates the name.

It’s the new Ferrari LaFerrari with a heart pumping top speed of 225 mph, a 789hp, 6.3L V12 , 160hp electric motor and a 7-speed DCT gearbox for a total of 949hp, a 0-62 time of under three seconds, and a 0-124 time of under seven seconds.

You’re going to have to marry money, feel exceptionally flush or exceedingly generous. It retails for about $1,350,000.


Meet The QuadSki: By Land Or By Sea

quadskiJet ski meets ATV in this Vilebrequin Quadski exclusive to Neiman Marcus and offered in the famous NM Christmas Book. Hailed as the world’s best high-speed amphibians, they convert from water cruisers to land lovers in just under five seconds. According to NM, It quickly accelerates up to 45 mph on land or water via a 1300cc BMW engine.

Price includes a trip to the test facility for training and your very own GoPro camera. Too bad NM’s idea of a custom version was to cover it in turtles. Really? Psst: it comes in other colors by Gibbs. From NM: $50,000 each.


Echo from Amazon: Your New BFF?

Here’s a neat little surprise from Amazon (especially after the disastrous Fire Phone timing). It gets a preliminary 10 out of 10 from several reviewers.

So what is it? Think of it as your personal Siri, or Google Now sitting in your living room (or wherever). Information, music, news, weather, lists and more are instantly controlled by your voice.

Voice recognition hears you from across the room; supposedly in normal tones up to 30 feet or so. It’s always listening, so you simply say, “Alexa,” and it awaits your command. It’s connected to the cloud so it’s always getting smarter, according to Amazon.

The Echo is currently by invitation, so only a few have been able to test it out thoroughly. And, whether or not it will be shipping in time for the holidays is unknown. $199 or $99 to Prime members. A review by ZDNet is here. And a video from Amazon is here.


Streaming Media Devices

roku_3_w_180If you haven’t yet chopped cable and its onslaught of commercial interruptions and price plays, think streaming. Or maybe you’re not that annoyed, but just want to up your viewing pleasures. It matters not!
These handy, inexpensive devices are the beans – a great holiday gift for all kinds of folks at near stocking stuffer prices for the USB versions!

A compact review of the most popular can be found at Tom’s Hardware. chromecast_w_180For the uninitiated you can select from ROKU, ChromeCast, Roku Streaming Stick and Google Nexus Player. Priced modestly from about $30 (USB versions) to $100.


Top Tablets

tabletsLike Smartphones, there are a ton of tablets out there in a variety of sizes as the market tries to sift out the keepers in form factors and features. For Christmas, keep in mind there are inexpensive choices for the little ones, not covered here.

Pretty much by consensus, the top three or four tablets right now are the Amazon Fire HDX 8.9, Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 and iPad Air 2 and mini. Some would include the new Nexus 9. All are super for media consumption, as well as everyday needs depending on your size requirement.

Amazon’s tablet is a custom offering, so Google email and other favorites are not available, but it’s highly touted in most reviews. The new iPad Tabs are fast and slick; evolutionary rather than revolutionary.

Full size tabs obviously give you a better streaming experience, while the smaller tabs with high res screens are far more handy to tuck in a pocket or purse. In short, it appears any of these would make a great choice in a size that accommodates your daily use.


Holiday Travel?

TripItTripIt (Android & iOS) keep you organized, on-time and happy, happy.

Review by CNet: TripIt, gathers all the dates, confirmation numbers and other vital information from your upcoming reservations and turns them into an organized travel itinerary. All you have to do is forward your travel-related emails to TripIt and the service does the rest.

SiteVision News & Tips November 2014

Windows OS: A Long, Slow Slog To Perfection?

win10previewIt’s really hard to get excited about an OS that has failed consumers and business in so many ways. But maybe there’s hope. Windows 8.1 got a boost in adoption from 6.7 percent in September to nearly eleven percent in October. And, yes, soon there’s to be a leap – not to Windows 9 – but to Windows 10.

As should be expected, however, most consumers are holding on to their version of Windows until the dust settles or the cows come home (whatever happens first). Windows 7, for instance, still has a whopping 53 percent share, followed by XP at 17 percent – down from nearly 24 percent in September – when Microsoft cut off support for that version.

Shutting Down The XP, VISTA Win 7 Lifeline:

A look at the numbers might suggest that the Win 8.1 increased market share had more to do with a Microsoft power play. MS is virtually forcing XP, VISTA, and Win 7, 8 users to adopt Win 8.1 as they begin to cut off consumer retail sales and mainstream support for Pre-8.1 OS versions. With the earlier lifelines shutting down, there’s really little choice for desktop Window users, other than to hold on, or move to 8.1 (aka Windows 10).

So It’s On To Win 10:

The Win 10 Technical Preview (9841) tells us a bit about what the expected 2015 release will sport, with substantial tweaks and additions, no doubt. In fact there’s already an update build called 9860 promising some 7,000 changes and additions. While the Technical Preview is exactly what it says – it’s geared to technical users, both techies and regular users can view a Microsoft video that illustrates expected features and tweaks for Windows 10.

Since the Microsoft OS commands a whopping 91 percent (plus) desktop market share, it’s likely you, too, will soon be running Windows 10. Enterprise users, however, will probably continue to resist embracing an operating system with a pretty dismal record to date. You can read more at Microsoft (lifecycle), Forbes, CNET, TechRadar, and Computerworld

SiteVision Certified As SOC-1 SSAE 16 Type II Compliant.

Alt text hereWe’re proud to have achieved this certification! It follows a robust, independent third party audit that performed a rigorous assessment of SiteVision company controls that included administration, human resources, management, development, hosting, security policies, procedures and practices, as well as training and contracting. The compliance standards are those developed by AICPA (American Institute of Certified PUblic Accountants).

Regular customers, as well as those with sensitive security and document requirements, can outsource multiple needs knowing that SiteVision is compliant. You can read more here.

iphone6-smThe Best Smartphones Right Now

If you’re looking ahead to the holidays and to treating yourself or a significant other to a new Smartphone, there are a few that consistently rise to the top.

It probably comes as no surprise that the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are hands down winners with almost every reviewer we checked out. Others that were consistently found in the top tier were Samsung Galaxy 5, the new Moto X, The LG G3, the Sony Xperia Z3, and the HTC One M8. You can check them out at: CNET, TechRadar, ZDNET, Business Insider.

Just Introduced: The Nexus 6

N6-smThe hot, new Nexus 6, gets a good first take from reviewers who also note that this phone is a top tier offering with a price to match. Great specs, a 13-megapixel phone, “buttery smooth operation,” and the new Lollipop operating system make it an intriguing contender late in the year according to CNET’s first take. It is slated to be available off or on contract as preferred. Last we heard it was already backordered, or as Google prefers to call it available for “preorder”! Expected shipping mid-November?

Nexus9_smAnother Newbie From Google: The Nexus 9 Tablet.

Just out, the new Nexus 8.9” tablet gets a positive take over at TechRadar. Strong specs, the new Lollipop operating system, great speakers for a device of this type, a 2,048 x 1,536-pixel-resolution with a decent, but not cheap price point, make it a contender to be considered. Pricing starts at $399 for a 32GB model. Current Competitors include the Samsung Tab S (in 10.5” and 8.4”), the iPad Air 2, and Sony’s Z3.

Drupal Warns Users: Apply Latest Security Patch Now.

drupal logoFor users who have not deployed the latest patch released on October 15, Drupals says consider yourself compromised, and restore from a backup now!

“Automated attacks began compromising Drupal 7 websites that were not patched or updated to Drupal 7.32 within hours of the announcement of SA-CORE-2014-005 – Drupal core – SQL injection,” the Drupal security team said.

“You should proceed under the assumption that every Drupal 7 website was compromised unless updated or patched before Oct 15th, 11pm UTC, that is 7 hours after the announcement.”

This is a biggie for Drupal users. Intrusion is very hard to detect, and the compromise is massive. Drupal considers the patch highly critical.
Read More Here

October 2014 News & Tips

Windows 7: October 31
Cut-Off Date

Win 7 LogoAs of October 31, 2014, Microsoft will no longer supply PC partners and system builders with copies of Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium and/or Ultimate to preinstall on new PCs.

Both consumer and business users may have concerns over the lifecycle cutoff date posted at Microsoft. Business users in particular have not embraced Windows 8 or iterations thereof for numerous reasons – all well publicized.

According to ZDNet’s overview, this means that OEM’s may continue to sell existing stocks of Windows 7, but may not replenish their supply. The deadline, however, does not apply to PCs preinstalled with Windows 7 Professional.

Microsoft will give a one-year warning before it demands that OEMs stop selling PCs with Windows 7 Professional. Under this rule, Microsoft will allow computer makers such as Lenovo, HP and Dell to continue selling PCs with Windows 7 Professional until at least February 2015. You can read more at ZDNet or at Microsoft.

iPhone 6 vs Galaxy Note 3iPhone 6 Plus vs. Samsung Galaxy Note 3?

So what’s it going to be? An iPhone 6 Plus or the Samsung Galaxy Note 3? For diehard Apple lovers, there’s probably no choice to be made.

But wait! Is the Galaxy a worthy competitor? Ah, perhaps.CNET’s Tim Stevens took the plunge. We won’t spoil it. It’s a quick day-to-day comparison, and you can find it here. If you simply want to compare specs, here’s a side-by-side.

ShellShock:  Millions of Computers at Risk

ShellShockYou’ve heard about HeartBleed. Now there’s ShellShock. And it’s a biggie! Shellshock is the name given to a pair of vulnerabilities in Bash, a shell program distributed on Linux, UNIX, OS X systems, and some Windows installations.

As the default shell for millions of systems the vulnerability means that an attacker could run commands on any machine using it with the potential to wreak havoc. According to Mashable, Shellshock has the potential to affect anyone visiting a website hosted on a vulnerable server. If the server has been compromised via Shellshock, it could deliver other malware. And unlike HeartBleed, ShellShock is easy to hack and code.

There have been numerous patches issued quickly. Bottom line? If you have at-risk servers, patch now! As a consumer, beware (See Trend Micro). You can read more as follows:
ZDNet, ShellShocker.Net, RedHat, Mashable

A Bendable Phablet
For Your Arm?

portal1Really? Yep, the “Portal” by Arubixs is being crowdfunded as a Smartphone you can wear. Part of you says wow, something I can actually use. It has a bendable screen! It’s waterproof. Shatterproof. Flexible.

So what’s not to love? Well, er, we guess it’s that it sort looks of like a medical device you wear on your arm, or some sort of weird digital cast that coaxes your broken wrist to the perfection it once was. At six inches, it’s a bit weighty, perhaps, and if you are a GQ man, can you really wear all that portal2coolness with one sleeve unbuttoned and dangling to accommodate your “Portal”?
But, seriously, maybe it’s an idea worth having. The specs are nothing to sneeze at, and the overall concept (albeit, one a bit more compact, perhaps) is something we’ve been hoping for. Check it out for yourself. The Arubixs website is here and the promotional video here.

NCDevCon 2014NCDevCon.  It’s A Wrap.

Our developers are back from the conference and looking forward to next year! The folks at DevCon have posted many of the slide and video presentations. So if you missed an important session check out the links at NCDevCon.

SiteVision’s Lead Technical Architect, Daria Norris, was a presenter, and her sessions (and others) may be found as follows:
Daria Norris – Better Living Through Version Control
Daria Norris – Simplify Your Workload But Not Your Delivery
All Currently Posted
Simplify Your Workload
Better Living Through Version Control

Sitevision News & Tips June 2014

Massive eBay Hack. States Investigating

eBay LogoMost people at some point in their digital life have shopped Ebay, set up a password, credit card, username and the like. A week or so ago, eBay announced an enormous hack: some 145 million accounts, and urged users to change their usernames and passwords. Hint: even if you have an old account and rarely or never use the service anymore, go ahead and take care of it now. Many users create the same credentials for the other sites they use, and are thus comprised yet again.

What Took So Long To Notify Users?

This breach apparently happened as early as February. eBay announced the Hack May 21st, and then neglected to email users for several days more. Users are angry. States are investigating. Among states looking into the matter are Florida, Ilinois, California and Connecticut.

To date eBay has yet to explain the delay nor present a clear picture of exactly what happened. You can read more at Forbes, Yahoo Tech, eBay Announcement


What’s New At SiteVision

Cloud ComputingWhew! It’s been busy! We’ve added several members to our Development Team and performed some major hosting upgrades.We’ve also just completed a major upgrade to your IceWarp email software – pretty slick! Plus, we hope you’ve noticed our convenient new mobile friendly version of the newsletter.

As always, we have significant offerings in Software As A Service (SAAS), Global Information System (GIS) and Facilities Management (FM) development with ESRI ArcGIS Hosting; custom and back-end application and web development; and content management systems – all for a wide variety of industries. We are now a VITA hosting and SAAS service provider, as well. Many of our customers have specialized hosting and application requirements, so don’t hesitate to ask!

If you haven’t visited us lately, come see us and our offerings! We’re always here to help with your questions!


Spotify LogoSpotify Also Breached

Spotify is the latest to notifiy users of a breach and will be asking some users to re-enter passwords and usernames. The intrusion was apparently limited to one account, but the company is taking the matter seriously.

The company also said they would ask android users to upgrade their application.

You can read more at Zdnet


The Buzz: Apple Worldwide Developer Conference

WWDC14The WWDC is being held in San Francisco, CA, June 2-6. The big excitement? Apple is expected to announce a significant entrance into the connected smart home space we discussed last month in “the internet of things” – that is, connecting more of our stuff to our other stuff in a unified way. Apple’s view is that it will build control of things like appliances, lights, security systems right into your iOs device instead of relying on 3rd party apps. Also expected are new versions of iOs and OS X.

But at least a few wonder if the excitement has gone (perish the thought). Will the conference bite, or will there be some tasty tidbits? What about iPhone 6. Will there be something developers can really get excited about?

It will all be clear soon enough. By the way, Apple will be steaming the keynote presentation, and will be posting videos online.

You can read more at TechCrunch, WWDC, Digital Trends.


LG G3Meet the LG G3: A Monster Mobile

Taking a run at Samsung’s Galaxy, the LG G3 turns up the heat with a 5.5” screen with 2560 x 1440 pixel resolution, laser-guided photography, a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor with a clock speed of up to 2.5GHz, and a removable 3,000mAh power block.

It supposedly hits the UK in July, but you can take a closer look at LG, Cnet or TechRadar.


Apple LogoiPhones Hacked & Locked.  Ransoms Demands

Australian users are reporting that their iPhones are being hacked, locked and ransomed.
Now, some are reporting the same issue on Apple forums.

In a helpful article from KETR out of Texas A&M, you can find a ste-by-step guide to regaining control over your phone.  The author discusses both a preventive step and a step-by-step cure.  You can read more here.



February 2014 News & Tip

Securing Your Content Management Website

CMS GreenImportant Tips & A SiteVision Option

Websites are generally built to display information in the form of content, and in the last decade managing that content has become much easier due to the widespread use of a Content Management System often abbreviated as “CMS”.
The most popular CMS by far is WordPress with an impressive 60.1% of the CMS market share. With widespread popularity comes vulnerability, and many WordPress  sites are susceptible to attack due to running outdated, unsupported versions of the WordPress software. It’s also worth noting the 50 most downloaded plugins for WordPress in 2013 were also vulnerable to attacks such as SQL injections and Cross-site scripting (XSS).
These issues are not unique to WordPress.  All CMSs are susceptible to security risks, and it’s equally important to maintain updates no matter what your platform.  We’ve prepared an article for you about this important topic.  Read More Here.

When Something Good Gets Better, We Call It Great.

Red HatRed Hat And CentOS Join Forces

We’re happy to say that is the case with the announcement of Red Hat adopting The CentOS Project. Here at SiteVision, CentOS is our Linux distribution of choice, and we’ve relied on its stability and security to provide the excellent hosting solutions you’ve become accustomed to. Now with CentOS having access to all of resources Red Hat has to offer, we can anticipate an Operating System that offers unparalleled results.

So who benefits from this added value?  You, our customers, and we’re happy to say that’s just great! Read more at Red Hat. 


Apple LogoTwo Birthdays Worth Celebrating

30 Years ago Steve Jobs introduced the Macintosh 128K to the Chariots of Fire theme song.  The computing world has never been quite the same since.  And now Time has published that groundbreaking video.  Check out Steve’s blazer.


TED logo30 Years ago TED was formed – an innovative nonprofit  think tank devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading in the worlds of Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED)  –  Apple included.  Today, TED conferences bring together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers, who are challenged to give the talk of their lives, which TED then publishes for free, everywhere.


Microsoft’s SkyDrive Becomes OneDrive

One Drive LogoAfter losing a trademark battle, Microsoft is relaunching its cloud drive from SkyDrive to OneDrive. For any anxious users, everything is the same except for the name, according to Microsoft.  They do, however, promise more at a preview page here, where you can sign up for the news when it arrives.


svsn003The Internet Of Things Can Be A Very Scary Place!

When your embedded software in a new PC (or other computing device) is crawling with  vulnerabilities before you ever boot it up, it’s time to sit up and take notice.

So says Wired online in a thought-provoking article about embedded  software and operating systems that – when added to the Internet of things –  might just present a future security disaster.


January, 2014 News & Tips

News & Views

CES LogoAs the biggest, splashiest,  electronic show on earth gets underway (CES), “whatup,” as the saying goes.  We think it’s safe to say – smart everything.  Just about everything you use will get smarter, well, at the very least, get a chipset to do stuff you really need,  or stuff you don’t, but think you do.

From the kitchen to your car, to your home heating and lighting, not to mention your health – it’s all up for streaming, talking, doing, thinking, suggesting, monitoring – well, you get the idea.  Our “stuff” may soon be smarter than we are, so we’ll undoubtedly need a smart device sooner, rather than later, to decode all the smart stuff around us.

What’s not up – is likely to be devices we have forever taken for granted:

  • Hard disk drives  vs. solid state drives.  Think 200 MBps per second vs. 550 MBps or better.
  • Traditional keyboards and mice vs. voice, hand, and touch technologies
  • DVD, CD Formats –  Think Netflix, Amazon and other streaming protocols
  • Pocket Cameras  vs. your smartphoneSony UHD 4K TV

So What is up? This is one, big, fun show, and according to most we’ll see:

  • 4K TV’s  at 60 fps  Big.  Beautiful.  Expensive.  Even curved.  Shown, Sony’s 84″ UHD TV.
  • Wearables.  Anything you can imagine.
  • 3D Printers vs. 3D printers.  A huge potential for manufacturing, but will consumers buy into the concept?
  • 2-in-1, All-in-One computing devices.  As the traditional desktop morphs into various iterations, we’ll probably see refinements to the current  tablet-laptop iterations,  as well as all in one’s that can go from room-to- room un-tethered.  These devices don’t seem so much “new,” as innovative attempts to define what future computing will or should be.

And lot’s More! In fact everything you can fit in about two million square feet and show to about 150K people!


win8.1_logoMicrosoft Says Upgrade – Or Else!

Microsoft warns customers to update their 8.1 preview to Windows 8.1 final or face ruin.

“Thank you for using Windows 8.1 Preview. The preview is no longer available for download, and the license for it expires January 15, 2014. If you have not yet installed the final version of Windows 8.1 or Windows RT 8.1, you should do so now. If you are still running Windows 8.1 Preview, you’ll see the following notification every time you sign in. After January 15, 2014, your PC will also restart every 2 hours and you will lose any unsaved data.”

Gee, thanks, Microsoft.

InfoWorld also informs that while neither Windows Vista nor XP are designed to be upgraded to Windows 8.1, users can instead take a circuitous path — first to Windows 8, from which they can update to 8.1 via the Windows Store — or follow the steps outlined on this Microsoft support page.

Even those who formerly relied on Windows 8 and experimented with the 8.1 Preview have work to do after an update to the final. “Note that you will have to reinstall all of your applications (desktop or modern) after doing this,” Microsoft said.

More information on updating from the beta to the final of Windows 8.1 can be found on Microsoft’s website. A Windows 8.1 update FAQ is also available.



Mask Me:  Ninja Protection for Online Sharing

We touched on this offering recently, but in view of “gi-normous” online data breaches lately – we think it’s an application worth revisiting.

So what does MaskMe do?  According to Abine, and put simply, it prevents you from sharing your personal information while letting you browse and shop online without having to give out your real email address, phone number, or credit card number.

According to a thorough review at Cnet, Abine’s new MaskMe browser add-on and mobile app, promises that you can use the Web while avoiding the data stalkers and  by preventing you from giving out your contact info in the first place.

The author of the review, Seth Rosenthal, calls it “one of the most vigorous attempts so far to protect people’s identities, and in a week of testing, it appears to be nearly flawless.”
At it’s heart,  MaskMe is an add-on for Firefox (Win & Mac) and Chrome (Win & Mac) that creates and manages dummy accounts for your e-mail address, phone number, credit card, and Web site log-ins. For Cnet’s full review go here, or visit Abine’s website


turtleQuick Tips For Slow-Running Computers

From, some classic, but oft forgotten tips to get your computer running faster.  See complete how-to details here


  • Uninstall unused programs
  • Delete Temporary Files
  • Get a Solid State Drive!
  • Get More Ram
  • Defragment and Clean-up
  • Stop Unnecessary Start-Up Programs


December 2013 News & Tips

Gifts & gizmos for the holidays.  IT looks ahead to 2014.  Google Voice for Your Chrome Browser . . .

News & Views

google voice extensionGoogle Adds Voice To Chrome Browser

If you thought that using Google Now voice commands was a smarty-pants way to talk to your smartphone only, Google just changed that. A new voice extension for Chrome browser lets you plug in a microphone and say “OK Google” or use the browser microphone button and ask away! It’s Hands-free with no typing. Simply say “Ok Google” and then ask your question. Here’s a fun you tube video that shows the way! GigaOM also has a good overview


black-serversIT Looks Ahead To 2014

As IT moves into the new year, it becomes increasingly clear that IT must continue to upgrade its business management profile. More than ever IT decisions affect not just the back room, but the up front profitability and cohesiveness of the corporate structure. Two interesting articles? Twelve Challenges Facing IT Professionals in 2014 by IT Business Edge and Four Ways IT Can Embrace Business Management by Information Week.


maskme_logoMaskMe by Abine Safeguards Your Online Identity.

During the holidays (and always), Abine promises you can browse and shop online without having to give out your real email address, phone number, or credit card number. Using AES-256 Encryption, when you enter private information like your phone number or email, it appears something like this {2cb-005-83cdk} and {80s-d8si-3jsld}. Cnet give it a big thumbs up. There’s a comprehensive overview here. The basic version is free, but you can choose to upgrade for $5 per month, which includes Masked Phones, Masked Credit Cards, and the mobile app for iPhone or Android.


Holiday Quick Picks:


A Great gift at a bargain price. Clever little dongle that controls streaming to your TV via your Android or iOS device, or through the Chrome Browser. Now with HBO GO. It connects through your TV HDMI port and you pull it up with the input button on your television remote, the same as you would a DVD player. A totally innovative little gizmo at $35.


Nifty little streaming box in 3 versions, with Roku 3 for hidef being the one to beat. Tons of watching pleasure in a tiny box with speed to spare. Enjoy a wealth of channels from Netflix to Amazon, Smithsonian, National Geographic, PBS, and many,many more!

nexus7The New Nexus 7

Touted as a smoking little tablet with great features at a very affordable price. 1,920 x 1,200 IPS display, 2GB of RAM, a rear camera, a quad-core processor, wireless charging. Cost is a modest $229 for 16G. $269 for 32G. Unlocked!


Praised as “an affordable phone, done right,” by Engadget, it’s priced at $179 unlocked! The MotoG comes with a 4.5-inch 720p display, and a comfortable curved back. Specs include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 quad-core 1.2GHz processor, 1GB RAM,a 2,070mAh battery, a front-facing cam and a 5mp camera. You can choose from a range of shell or flip covers. See the Engadget review here

appleiPadmini with retinaiPad Mini With Retina.

You get a gorgeous screen, the Apple ecosystem, and a great design; albeit at a price point that’s a little hard to take when compared to others with the same specs. Apple lovers, however, will probably go ahead and take the bite at close to $400 for a 16G model. PC Mag calls it “Beautifully built, fast . . . with a super sharp retina display that packs all of the power of the iPad Air into a more portable package.” See their review here.

xboxoneXbox One

Touted as a command center for your living-family-gaming pleasure, it’s selling like hotcakes, with Kinect built in. Some say TV integration is frustrating and confusing. It’s also slightly pricier than PS4, but offers a ton of popular titles. Here is TechRadar’s take on the beast!

Sony PS4Sony PS4

Great graphics, controller and speed – lacking somewhat in available titles. Despite its smaller size than the Xbox One, Cnet says the PS4 “serves up dazzling graphics, runs on a simplified and logical interface, and boasts a fantastic controller. It’s also $100 cheaper than rival Xbox One and has the upper hand on indie and day one digital-only offerings.”


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