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Solutions: Turn tracking cookies off at the source

I have MS Security Essentials, Lavasoft's Ad-Aware and Malwarebytes AntiMalware on my computer running Windows XP. The Ad-Aware is the only program that finds and deletes tracking cookies. There have been some update issues with the Ad-Aware. I'm concerned that if I remove it, Security Essentials will not handle the tracking cookies.

Having Ad-Aware on your system is overkill. You should remove it. If you're concerned about tracking cookies, turn them off at the source rather than just looking for them later. Try this: In Internet Explorer 9, Click Tools, Safety, Tracking Protection. Click "Tracking Protection" under the Add-on Types, then click "Get a Tracking Protection List online …, " which will open the Internet Explorer Gallery Tracking Protection Lists page. Read about how the tracking lists work and then select one (like Abine's Standard Tracking Protection List) or more by clicking the Add button next to the listing. These lists are updated every week with new sites added to the existing list.

I recently purchased a Windows 7 home computer, and I'm having a problem with the screen saver. If I choose the Photos or Windows Live Photo Gallery, it works okay, but when I try coming out of the screen saver to the desktop it hangs up and aborts the screen saver program. If I choose any other screen saver options like Ribbons, etc., it works okay. It's only on photos.

There are some known issues with the Windows screen saver program that may involve invalid shortcuts in the folder or in the subfolder that stores the screen saver pictures, or the power setting is set to "Low Power." I suspect the latter. The fix involves Registry changes, but Microsoft also provides an automatic script that will do it for you. Go to support.microsoft.com/kb/2425702 and click "Diagnose and fix the problem automatically" and then "Run Now" in the box with the picture of a little man with a wrench.

I purchased a laptop and a NetGear 54 MBPS wireless router in 2007. I recently purchased a different triple-play package from my ISL, and this included a new cable modem. Now my router doesn't work. Do I have to buy a new router?

Your current router is fine. It sounds like you need to reconfigure it for the new cable modem. Your new cable modem undoubtedly has new TCP/IP configuration data and your router needs to be made aware. Log in to your router at http://192.168.1.1 by providing the user name (usually "admin") and password (the default for NetGear is "password"). Set the TCP/IP parameters in accordance with your ISP requirements. They should be able to tell you what you need to know. If you've forgotten your password or can't get to the router successfully, try a hard reset by looking for a recessed button on the bottom or side. Use a pin to press it in for a few seconds until the lights blink. This will set it back to default factory settings.

Send questions to personaltech@tampabay.com or Personal Tech, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Questions are answered only in this column.

Solutions: Turn tracking cookies off at the source 12/11/11 [Last modified: Sunday, December 11, 2011 3:30am]
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