Thursday, January 20, 2011

Free Secunia PSI 2

I’ve always been curious as to why so many software vendors go to the trouble of updating their programs but do not alert their registered users that there is an update.

Unfortunately if a user is not experiencing a software problem significant enough to precipitate a Google or Bing inquiry or perhaps a call to technical support or to their personal technician, he or she will not be aware that there may be an important update and/or security patch available.

There is however a “free” program Secunia PSI that will keep most of your software programs patched and updated. I’ve mentioned Secunia before but because there’s a “Must Have” new version 2.0 I’m mentioning it again.

After you’ve installed Secunia and it has completed a scan of all your software, Secunia’s Dashboard will list your Last Scan, Auto-Updates, Secunia System Score, State of Programs to include, Insecure, End-of-Life and Patched programs.

On your first Dashboard visit I suggest you click on “Configuration and Settings” and be sure the following PSI settings are checked:
1. Start the Secunia PSI on Boot
2. Enable program monitoring
3. Enable automatic program updates
4. Show detailed program changes

By doing so, now when you arrive at Secunia’s Dashboard you can click on “Total Scan Results” or “Scan Results” in the upper left hand corner of Dashboard and view all the updates and patches Secunia has made to your programs.

Note: If you do not see anything under “Development in your Secunia System Score for the past weeks” or “Security patches for your programs during the past months”, right click on each and click Select All.

Note: Secunia will alert you when it updates a program.

Something else that periodically excites my curiosity is why I do not heed my own advice and always expeditiously investigate why after an upgrade, one of my software programs seems to be experiencing a problem.

Case in point. After my Outlook 2007 was updated and I began experiencing a significant slow down when moving from one e-mail folder to another and when accessing my Contacts and Calendars, I suffered the inconvenience for over a week before I Googled the problem and discovered to restore my Outlook’s vigor all I had to do was delete Outlook’s most recent update.

I also discovered it’s advisable to periodically execute Scanpst.exe located in drive:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office 12 or 14.

By entering you .pst in Scanpst.exe’s scan box Scanpst will locate and eliminate errors in your .pst file.

Here’s wishing you a Good Boot.

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