Welcome to GulfCoastNews.com

Helpful Computer Information:

Speed Checker

Want to know how good your Internet connection is? Click on the image below to find out. This is a good speed tester that will provide a clear picture of your connection speed. This is especially handy if you find your high speed connection is not working properly.

13 Reasons Your Computer is Slow - techlicious.com

Free Word Processor and more

Apache OpenOffice: The original open-source alternative to Office, OpenOffice offers a word processor (Writer), spreadsheet (Calc), presentation (Impress), database management app (Base), drawing app (Draw), and formula editor (Math). Its files can easily be read with Microsoft Office, so you needn't worry about sending your files to a spendthrift Word or Excel

19 Most Useful Computer Tips

Is your computer acting odd or running slower than it once did? Chances are, your system is plagued with spyware

What is Spyware?

Spyware is usually advertising and some other types of software that gets installed on your computer without your knowledge. Companies use it to pop up ads on your computer, track your internet usage, and gather other personal information about you. These programs are typically not written very well (which is among the reasons they cause a lot of problems). Spyware is also not typically a computer virus, so some anti-virus programs do not see or remove many types of spyware.

Spyware can find its way onto your computer by many ways, but usually it is the result of just using the Internet and visiting websites.

Besides invading your privacy, spyware programs often cause problems with  Internet Explorer and other browsers and if you have a lot of spyware on your computer, there is a very good chance that one or more of these programs has already crippled your Internet Explorer browser.

Common Symptoms of Spyware

If you think your computer might have spyware, look for the following:

  • Difficulty logging into secure websites like WebMail and WebCT
  • Random advertisements that pop up on your computer
  • Unusual slowness of your system
  • Unusual instability in your system (computer crashes or locks-up more than usual)
  • Odd behavior in Internet Explorer such as redirection to search sites that you've never seen, or your homepage has been switched to a weird page.
  • Other web pages open without any action by  you.
  • Pornographic or other images load randomly on your computer when running your browser.

Major Sources of Spyware

The following programs are either spyware themselves, or spyware is installed along with the program (note: This is not a comprehensive list).

  • KaZaa
  • Weather Bug
  • DiVx Bundle
  • Gator
  • Morpheus
  • Bearshare
  • Most web search toolbars (Except the Google toolbar)
  • Most pop-up blocking software (Except the Google toolbar)
  • Download accelerators or managers
  • Pornography web sites and related programs

There are many other sources of spyware, we recommend only installing programs from reputable companies and only if the software is necessary. If a website asks to install software on your computer, always click "no" unless you know specifically what it does.

Removing Spyware

There are two programs generally recommended by experts to remove spyware AVG and Spybot Search and Destroy. Both of these programs are free for use for most users.

AVG - Free Edition

Spybot Search and Destroy 2.1 SRT

Once you have installed AVG or Spybot Search and Destroy (or both), run them frequently to keep your computer free of spyware and running smoothly.

Welcome to GulfCoastNews.com