Windows-Help.NET Newsletter 30 Oct. 2004, Vol 7 No. 37

In this issue:

w   Microsoft Releases FREE Photo Story 3
w   Microsoft Partner Pack for Windows XP
w   Recent Support BBS Postings
w   Administrivia

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Microsoft Releases FREE Photo Story 3

by Arie Slob

Hello Windows users,

Photo Story 3 Photo Story 3 for Windows is Microsoft's digital slideshow utility that was originally scheduled to be released with Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005.

Microsoft has decided to make Photo Story 3 available for FREE to all genuine users of Windows XP.

Photo Story 3 is a new version of Plus! Photo Story and Plus! Photo Story 2 that shipped in successive versions of Plus! Digital Media Edition, a popular add-on pack for Windows XP. New features include built in music, picture effects, black border removal, lots more profile sizes and others. Photo Story 3 now supports up to 300 photos per story.

System Requirements for Photo Story 3

Processor Minimum Intel P3 700 MHz or equivalent (P4 1.7 GHz recommended)
Operating System Microsoft Windows XP, Windows XP Media Center Edition, or Windows XP Tablet PC Edition.

Note Requires Windows Genuine Advantage validation.
Memory 256 MB RAM (512 MB RAM recommended)
Other software Microsoft Windows Media Player 10*
DirectX 9 or later graphics support

*) To play photo stories created with Photo Story 3 for Windows, you will need Windows Media Player 7 or later.

More information on Photo Story 3 is available on the Microsoft Windows XP Web site

To download Photo Story 3 [5.04 MB], go to the Windows Genuine Advantage Offers Web site.

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Microsoft Partner Pack for Windows XP

Microsoft Partner Pack for Windows XP Microsoft last week silently released a software dubbed the "Partner Pack for Windows XP". The free add-on pack includes new Microsoft and 3rd party software items.

The most useful items contained in the Partner Pack are:

  • Microsoft USB Flash Drive Manager. Will help you backup and restore presentation, pictures, songs and applications from and to USB Flash Drive devices and take them with you. The application can also help you to classify and name USB Flash Drives images (for instance "My network configuration" or "The pictures for my grandma") and lets you see this name whenever the USB Flash Drive is plugged into the computer.
  • Post-it® Software Notes. This digital version of 3M's famous canary yellow® note is perfect for quick reminders on your computer desktop so you never miss a meeting, event or thought.
  • Google Deskbar. Google Deskbar™ lets you search using Google right from your desktop, even when your browser isn't running. Search from the Google Deskbar search box located within your Windows taskbar. Or type the Ctrl+Alt+G keyboard shortcut to jump to the Google Deskbar instantly. Search results appear in a "mini-viewer" window that closes automatically when you're done.
  • eTrust™ EZ Antivirus 2005. Award winning antivirus protection software for your home and home office PC developed by a world leader in internet security software. It protects email and other files by automatically removing viruses, worms, and Trojan horses. eTrust EZ Antivirus automatically downloads new virus protection updates on a daily schedule to keep the program up to date against the latest virus threats. This subscription includes 12 months of virus protection updates, plus FREE 24 X 7 internet support.

Other software included:

  • Super Slyder (Game). Help maneuver a lovable superhero named Slyder through challenging mazes. Slyder will slide until he hits a wall, so it is up to you to keep him from sliding off the map, down a pit, or into unfriendly characters. Max out your puzzle skills to keep Slyder alive and send him home.
  • Serpentine (Game). You are the guardian of ancient Chinese serpents intent on eating anything in their path, even if this leads them off cliffs or into pits. Instead of controlling the serpent, use the mouse to manipulate the walls that guide your creatures to yummy "bao" or Chinese steamed buns. Eat enough bao and a pagoda will open to magically transport you to the next level.
  • PhotoSite. Share your photos on your own personal photo website! PhotoSite is the free photo-sharing service that lets you quickly and easily display your digital photos in customized albums and photoblogs.
  • Microsoft Time Zone. Use this simple utility to keep track of the time in other part of the world. Microsoft Time Zone installs as a small tray icon that allows you to specify as many as five cities to watch the time on while you are working on your computer.
  • Desktop Media Gallery. The Desktop Media Gallery™ delivers desktop access to a library of premium PixelMill™ FrontPage Templates, PowerPoint Templates and Corbis® images. This innovative application allows users to search, browse, and preview PixelMill Templates and Corbis images right from the desktop. No need to waste hours searching through numerous web sites.
  • Onfolio Express. A PC application that makes it easy to manage and organize your internet research. Opening as a panel in Microsoft Internet Explorer, Onfolio Express lets you quickly save and organize links (bookmarks) to content you find on the Web. Every link you save is conveniently stored in a research collection where it can be renamed, flagged, annotated with comments, organized into folders, sorted and searched.
  • PayPal Payment Request Wizard. Using the Payment Request Wizard for Outlook and Outlook Express, you can add PayPal payment buttons to your email messages. When your customers click the button, it takes them to the PayPal website to complete the transaction. You don't even need a website!

Before downloading the application package you have to make sure your computer operating system has all the necessary components, including DirectX 9.0c and the Microsoft .NET Framework 1.1. Microsoft has a download to check the Prerequisites [506 KB]. After checking the prerequisites, you can download the Partner Pack Installer [654 KB], which will let you choose to download the full package or individual applications of the Partner Pack.

The Partner Pack should also be available on CD (just for Shipping and Handling using PayPal), the order page is here.

Recent Support BBS Postings

Password managers necessary? Safe? - Other Software
XP SP2 slows network printing 5-10X - Service Pack 2 Questions
Confused about AV and security suites - Security/Virus/Spyware
Can a bad monitor be fixed with a magnet? - Hardware
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Microsoft Expands "Windows Genuine Advantage" Program

Last month Microsoft launched a pilot program called the "Windows Genuine Advantage" Program. This week Microsoft announced it is expanding the opt-in program to more languages, and to include free software offerings for genuine Windows users.

Read Full Article

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Microsoft Skills Assessment

Get ready for the latest Microsoft products and technologies. Register today and receive a free analysis of your current skills and a personalized learning plan that recommends Official Microsoft Learning Products, Microsoft Press books, and Microsoft TechNet resources.

Microsoft Skills Assessment

The Security Risk Management Guide

The Security Risk Management Guide helps customers of all types plan, build, and maintain a successful security risk management program. The guide explains how to conduct each phase of a four-phase risk management program and how to build an ongoing process to measure and drive security risks to an acceptable level.

Supported Operating Systems: Macintosh, Unix, Windows XP

Download [2.1 MB] (requires registration)

Why you shouldn't be using passwords of any kind on your Windows networks...

Interesting WebLog by Robert Hensing, a senior member of the Microsoft's PSS Security Incident Response team, in which he advocates considering pass-phrases instead of passwords.

Read WebLog

Arbitrary Code-Execution Vulnerability in RealPlayer

eEye Digital Security discovered that a vulnerability in RealPlayer could result in the remote execution of arbitrary code on the vulnerable system.

RealNetworks has released a patch to address this vulnerability. The patch can be downloaded via the Check for Update menu item under Tools on the RealPlayer menu bar.

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