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Best antivirus: Keep your Windows PC safe from spyware, Trojans, malware, and more
Mon, 24 Feb 2020 12:49:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Antivirus software is nearly as crucial as a PC’s operating system. Even if you’re well aware of potential threats and practice extreme caution, some threats just can’t be prevented without the extra help of an AV program—or a full antivirus suite. You could, for example, visit a website that unintentionally displays malicious ads. Or accidentally click on a phishing email (it happens!). Or get stung by a zero-day threat, where an undisclosed bug in Windows, your browser, or an installed program gives hackers entry to your system.We’re not suggesting that PC security software is fool-proof. Antivirus software often can’t do much to stop zero-day exploits, for example. But it can detect when the undisclosed vulnerability is used to install other nasty bits, like ransomware, on your machine. Anyone who actively uses email, clicks on links, and downloads programs will benefit from an antivirus suite.To read this article in full, please click here
Lenovo announces a major ThinkPad refresh, including AMD's mobile Ryzen 4000 chips
Mon, 24 Feb 2020 10:48:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Lenovo said Monday that a number of its upcoming ThinkPad laptops will use the AMD Ryzen Pro 4000 Mobile series of mobile processors, a strong endorsement for AMD’s new chips.Both Lenovo’s premium T-series, X-series and L-series line will offer Ryzen Pro 4000 models, which will be offered alongside Intel’s 10th-gen Comet Lake chips, in business-oriented vPro versions. Lenovo was originally scheduled to launch the new laptops at the MWC show in Barcelona, which was cancelled over coronavirus concerns.Lenovo said that all of the new ThinkPad models will offer Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), regardless of processor. The sliding ThinkShutter webcam shutter will be included on all of the models, too. PrivacyAlert, which uses the IR camera to determine when someone is peering at your screen, will be optional on ThinkPad devices with an IR camera, Lenovo said.To read this article in full, please click here
What the new Xbox Series X specs tell us about AMD's next-gen Radeon graphics cards
Mon, 24 Feb 2020 09:03:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Microsoft pulled back the curtain on more Xbox Series X specs this morning, and well, it looks like a beast. Clocking in at a whopping 12 teraflops, the integrated Radeon graphics inside Microsoft’s next-gen console packs more raw compute power than AMD’s current discrete graphics card champion, as the Radeon RX 5700 XT tops out just shy of 10 TFLOPS. That’s damned impressive.This ain’t ConsoleWorld though, so we aren’t going to dive that deeply into the latest tease. But there’s a juicy nugget for us PC gamers in Microsoft’s reveal, too: Xbox chief Phil Spencer confirmed that the AMD chip powering the new console will deploy AMD’s RDNA2 graphics architecture. RDNA2 is the successor to the first-gen “Navi” RDNA GPUs inside the current Radeon RX 5500 XT, Radeon RX 5600 XT, and Radeon RX 5700 XT graphics cards, and AMD CEO Lisa Su has already said that RDNA2-based GPUs will hit the streets later this year.To read this article in full, please click here
How to file your taxes for free
Mon, 24 Feb 2020 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Most of us pay to have our taxes completed, whether that means hiring an accountant to fill out the forms for us, or using one of the several online or application-based options made available by TurboTax, TaxACT, TaxSlayer, H&R Block, and the like. What you may not know is that many tax filers are eligible for a Free File program, which lets them file their taxes online for free—thanks to a public-private partnership between the IRS and online tax services that’s been available for a couple of years now.Last tax filing season, while you may have qualified for free filing, if you searched for “file my taxes for free” using your favorite search engine, the information for how to do so likely eluded you. In fact, one of my daughters, who technically qualified for free tax filing last year, ended up paying to file her return because she had 1099 income, even though that should not have disqualified her.To read this article in full, please click here
XFX Radeon RX 5600 XT Thicc II Pro review: A good graphics card in a weird place
Mon, 24 Feb 2020 03:02:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
The XFX Radeon RX 5600 XT Thicc II Pro is a good $300 graphics card that suffers from AMD’s disjointed launch for the Radeon RX 5600 XT.AMD pitched its $280 GPU as a rival to Nvidia’s identically priced GeForce GTX 1660 Ti. Then the company rushed out optional last-second BIOS updates that could greatly enhance memory and clock speeds (and thus performance), because Nvidia and its partners rolled out $300 GeForce RTX 2060 models rather than cutting costs on the GTX 1660 Ti. The eleventh-hour change indeed made the RX 5600 XT competitive with Nvidia’s RTX 2060, but AMD’s partners had already designed their lineup around the original specifications. That means you’ll find a wide variety of custom Radeon RX 5600 XT graphics cards available, some much faster than others, and with pricing that can sometimes seem befuddling.To read this article in full, please click here
Bethesda just pulled its games from Nvidia's GeForce Now, and that sucks
Sat, 22 Feb 2020 07:06:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Just one day after Nvidia announced that GeForce Now crossed 1 million users and teased that more than 1,500 games are sitting in its onboarding queue, the company said that all Bethesda games but one will be removed from the service. GeForce Now launched two weeks ago.“Please be advised most Bethesda Softworks titles will be removed from the GeForce NOW service today. Wolfenstein Youngblood will remain for all members. Founders members can continue to experience the game with RTX On,” the announcement stated.To read this article in full, please click here
How to preorder the Samsung Galaxy S20 without spending an arm and a leg
Fri, 21 Feb 2020 11:10:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Update 2 p.m.: Added Amazon's preorder bundle.For those of you who have been counting the days until you could preorder a Galaxy S20, the wait is finally over. Starting today, you can get in line to own Samsung’s newest high-priced premium phone when they hit shelves on Friday, March 6.But before we get into the new hotness, a quick PSA: Don’t sleep on 2019’s Galaxy S10. Samsung has slashed the price of all three models by $150 in its storeRemove non-product link, making it one of the best premium values you can find. It might not be the shiny new thing, but it’s an excellent phone with a great camera and a fantastic screen.To read this article in full, please click here
Nvidia's GeForce Now hits 1 million users after two weeks, pledges day-one Cyberpunk 2077 support
Fri, 21 Feb 2020 09:25:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Nvidia’s cloud gaming service may have spent years incubating in beta, but it seems the wait was worth it. Mere weeks after GeForce Now’s formal launch, the company announced that over one million gamers have signed up to play their PC games anywhere, in stark contrast to Google Stadia’s disappointing user numbers. Nvidia also teased plans to bring even more games to the service, including Cyberpunk 2077, one of the hottest games of 2020.To read this article in full, please click here
Samsung Galaxy S20: 10 tips and tidbits you need to know before you preorder
Fri, 21 Feb 2020 06:52:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Update 2/21: The Galaxy S20 is now available for preorder. Check out the best deals here.Samsung's new series of S20 phones go up for preorder this week, and if you plan on buying one, you already know all about the giant screens, eye-popping cameras, and gorgeous design. But with preorders set to begin tomorrow, there are a few features deep down on the list that you might not have noticed:The S20 doesn't support mmWave 5G yet Samsung is touting all of its S20 phones as 5G capable, and that’s true, with one exception. The smallest model only supports the sub-6GHz spectrum while the S20+ and S20 Ultra can switch between sub-6GHz and mmWave. That might not be an issue for T-Mobile subscribers, but Verizon buyers will basically have a 4G phone, as the carrier hasn’t yet switched on its sub-6 GHz network. Verizon says a mmWave version of the S20 will be launching in the second quarter, but we don’t know whether it will carry a higher price tag.To read this article in full, please click here
Miracle-Gro Twelve Indoor Growing System review: A nearly foolproof means to fresh herbs and lettuce year round
Fri, 21 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
This high-tech set up lets you grow delicious herbs and leafy greens indoors all year round.
Corsair K95 Platinum XT review: A lot of keyboard for a lot of money
Fri, 21 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
In 2017 Corsair put out the most ostentatious keyboard I’d ever seen, the K95 RGB Platinum. I dubbed it “the luxury sedan of keyboards,” a nod to its desk-dominating size and captivating lighting—and its eye-watering $200 price tag. Three years later, it’s still the bar by which I measure other premium keyboards.And yet Corsair’s raising the bar anyway. At CES 2020 we got our first glimpse of the K95 RGB Platinum XT, Corsair’s attempt to better its own best-in-class keyboard. Now after spending time with one at home I can say they succeeded, even if only slightly. It’s hard to build on near-perfection.To read this article in full, please click here
Cooler Master's newest ARGB case is straightforward and affordable
Fri, 21 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Among the cases we saw at CES, Cooler Master’s MB311L was one of several that particularly caught our attention. The compact micro-ATX tower sports an airflow-oriented design, a tempered glass panel, and two 120mm ARGB fans for a surprising price of $60.Cooler Master sent us a MB311L for a more thorough look, and as you’ll see in the video above, the company neatly balances the RGB aesthetics and affordable price with a practical layout. This case has a straightforward design that provides easy access to the back of the motherboard; plentiful mounting spots for drives, fans, and radiators; and flexibility for where you can install those parts. It even comes with a 3-way ARGB fan splitter and a controller—an unexpected bonus for a budget case.To read this article in full, please click here
Best VPN services: Reviews and buying advice
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 12:04:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Choosing the right virtual private network (VPN) service is no simple task. A VPN should keep your internet usage private and secure, but not every service handles your data in the same way. Just look at the critiques of notable computer security experts and online pundits to understand the challenge.Even supposed experts in the field can turn out to be frauds, as was recently reported about site TheBestVPN.com. The site’s creator appears to not actually be a cypber-security expert, as he once claimed, but might not actually be a real person, casting serious doubt on any of the site’s VPN reviews and research.To read this article in full, please click here
Microsoft tasks its Defender antimalware with securing corporate Android and iOS phones
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 10:33:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
While malware writers have attacked PCs because of their popularity and large attack surfaces, Android and iOS phones aren’t immune—and Microsoft, recognizing this, plans to offer Microsoft Defender for both platforms.Though Microsoft apparently plans to release more details at the RSA Security conference next week, company executives revealed their plans to CNBC last week in an interview published today. Microsoft also announced Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection for Linux on Thursday, in a public preview announced via a blog post.To read this article in full, please click here
How to use (and steady) 100X Space Zoom on Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
You don't need to look too far to see the Galaxy S20 Ultra's most incredible new feature. It's literally printed on the back: 100X Space Zoom.If you've decided to buy one for $1,400, you already know the drill. The Galaxy S20 Ultra can zoom up to 100 times (digitally, obviously) what you're seeing, which is 20 times further than the iPhone 11 Pro and more than twice as much as the S20+. It's quite a claim, so naturally, it's the first thing I wanted to try.Using it is as easy as using the zoom feature on any other phone: Just pinch out. If you do it quickly enough, you'll get to 100X in about a half-second. Controlling it at that distance isn't so easy, so you'll want to pinch slowly to keep your target in range.Keeping your eye on the mini viewfinder helps immensely, but it's still tricky to keep something so far away centered in the window.To read this article in full, please click here
Apple might finally let you pick Chrome over Safari in iOS 14
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 07:27:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
A new report from Bloomberg suggests that Apple may allow users to use third-party apps as defaults on iOS devices.
(Updated) Asus blames AMD guidelines for high ROG Strix Radeon RX 5700 temperatures
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 06:07:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
The Asus ROG Strix Radeon RX 5700 XT is one of the most premium custom RX 5700 XT models around, pairing a top-end PCB with the company’s beastly bespoke cooler and a hefty overclock. But it’s been plagued by a worrisome issue: overheating. Numerous buyers have reported that the card runs hot, and after BIOS updates failed to fix the concern, Asus is now blaming AMD’s design guidelines for the issue. Fortunately, though, there’s (finally) a fix. Update: Six days after it published its findings and pointed the finger at AMD, Asus has quietly updated its post, tweaking the verbiage in some crucial ways. We’ve weaved the changes into the article below, with additional context as needed. It also deleted the PSI range graph originally published in the post. You can still see it in our coverage below.To read this article in full, please click here
Zvox AV50 wireless noise-cancelling headphone review: There's a lot to like about this headphone
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
The sound quality is rich and clear, and the active noise cancelling is quite effective, although the vocal enhancer is very subtle.
OVPN 2020 review: An excellent VPN with a focus on privacy
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
OVPN in brief: P2P allowed: Yes Business location: Stockholm, Sweden Number of servers: 83 Number of country locations: 14 Cost: $84 per year VPN protocol: OpenVPN Data encryption: AES-256-GCM (OpenVPN 2.4 and up) Data authentication: DHE using RSA with 4096-bit key Handshake: TLSv1.3 The first time we reviewed OVPN, it was a bit disappointing. The service got so many things right but performance just wasn’t up to snuff. More than a year and a half later we can report that OVPN is vastly improved.To read this article in full, please click here
Best headphones: Our top picks for personal listening
Thu, 20 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Whether you're looking for an over-the-ear, on-ear, or in-ear model, we'll help you find the perfect pair.
The best graphics cards for PC gaming
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 11:56:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
“What graphics card within my budget gives me the best bang for my buck?”That simple question cuts to the core of what people hunting for a new graphics card look for: the most oomph they can afford. Sure, the technological leaps behind each new GPU can be interesting on their own, but most everyone just wants to crank up the detail settings on Battlefield and get right to playing. Gaming GPU cheat sheet Our quick-hit recommendations: Best budget GPU: GeForce GTX 1650 Super [amazon.com] Best 1080p GPU: GeForce GTX 1660 Super [newegg.com] Best 1440p GPU: Radeon RX 5700 [amazon.com] Best 4K/60Hz GPU: GeForce RTX 2080 Super [GeForce.com] Best 4K/144Hz GPU: GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders EditionRemove non-product link [BestBuy.com] Updated February 19, 2020 to update the news section with the latest graphics card information.To read this article in full, please click here
This insightful Intel video explains how CPUs are made, in words you can actually understand
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 11:29:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Yes, computer processors work. But have you ever wondered how they work? Today, Intel published a fascinating animated video outlining “key concepts and their roles in chip manufacturing.” The chatty “Chip” spokesprocessor that walks you through the video brings up memories of the cringeworthy Clippy introduced by Microsoft in Office 97 (and killed in 2014), nevertheless, it’s well worth spending five minutes to watch it if you’ve ever been interested in how the brain of your computer comes to life.To read this article in full, please click here
Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 screens are cracking, some users say
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 11:10:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
An unknown number of Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 notebooks have developed cracks in their screens that the owners say spontaneously occurred.A collection of links compiled to enthusiast Barb Bowman point to complaints across social media and other online forums, including Microsoft’s own support sites. In it, users report cracks spontaneously appearing, although Microsoft representatives were initially skeptical. In her post Bowman adds, “it appears that these devices are all the non Alcantara variety and are Aluminum only.” A quick scan of the posts she references, however, suggests that at least one or two might be different models. To read this article in full, please click here
First Alert Onelink Safe & Sound review: Alexa in a smoke detector? It's an inspired, if expensive, idea
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 09:19:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Here's a clever way to get a smart speaker into every room without cluttering up every room with a smart speaker.
The Full Nerd ep. 126: Nvidia's unbuyable Cyberpunk GPU, Asus blames AMD, why eGPU?
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 08:50:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
In this episode of The Full Nerd, Brad Chacos, Alaina Yee, and Adam Patrick Murray dive deep into the latest graphics cards news.First, we dig into Nvidia’s just-revealed Cyberpunk 2077­-themed GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, which you can win, but can’t buy. Under 200 of this ultra-rare graphics card were produced in total. Then we dig into AMD’s rough week for Navi. It started with several reports about lingering Radeon Software bugs and ended with Asus saying its ROG Strix RX 5700 suffers from higher temperatures because it followed AMD design guidelines. (Curiously, no other custom graphics cards were affected.) Finally, Adam’s on the hunt for a solid external graphics card setup for his new apartment, which sparks a fun conversation about eGPUs in general.To read this article in full, please click here
Hands on: Microsoft's Office app for Android is tuned for the smartphone generation
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Microsoft’s mobile version of Office for Android and iOS is distinctly unlike the company’s Office app for Windows 10. While the latter seems little more than a gateway to your recently-used documents, our hands-on time with the mobile app shows an intelligent use of the smartphone’s capabilities. Its roadmap of upcoming features is even more promising.Microsoft’s Office app was announced last November at its Ignite conference, and has lived in public preview since then. Google accidentally published the Office app early over the President’s Day holiday. It’s now live for both Android and iOS.To read this article in full, please click here
We build a capable $300 gaming PC. Believe it!
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 07:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
The glamour in PC gaming surrounds headliners like AMD’s 3950X, Intel’s 9900K, and Nvidia’s RTX 2080 Ti, but many people live on the opposite end of the spectrum when it comes to their budgets. So if you don’t have much to spend on a PC, AMD’s $50 Athlon 3000G can be just as exciting. The 2-core, 4-thread 3000G APU launched in mid November 2019 and comes with Vega 3 graphics—so when paired with a budget motherboard, RAM, and storage, you can roll a modest gaming PC for just $300. (It’s possible to do it for even less, if you really need to cut your budget closer to the bone.) And now that GeForce Now has launched, you can combine the game streaming service with a low-end PC to play today’s biggest games (a few of them with ray-tracing!), something that previously required the highest-end hardware. To read this article in full, please click here
HP Envy 13 review: A slim, light, and inexpensive workhorse with discrete graphics
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
There’s a lot to like about the HP Envy 13, starting with its super-slim design, its bright 4K display, its comfy keypad and impressive quad-core performance. The Envy 13 also manages to pack in a discrete GPU and respectable battery life, all for a very reasonable price tag. That said, we did encounter some issues with the laptop's overly sensitive trackpad (which HP says it's investigating), resulting in a jittery cursor that regularly jumped around the screen and even highlighted and deleted our words by accident.Configuration For as little as $750 with discounts, you can snap up an HP Envy 13 with a 13-inch full-HD display, an 8th-generation Intel Core i7-8565U processor, 8GB of RAM, and an integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620 core. On the other end of the spectrum is a 13-inch HP Envy with a 4K display, a 1TB SSD, a 10th-gen Intel Core i7-10510U CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a discrete Nvidia GeForce MX250 graphics card, all for a discounted $1,350 sticker price. You can explore all these configurations directly on HP's Envy 13 shopping page.To read this article in full, please click here
The best free antivirus for 2020: Keep your PC safe without spending a dime
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 03:02:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
We spend a lot of time looking at the best paid antivirus suites on this site, but we don’t spend a lot of time talking about free antivirus solutions. Part of the reason is that the free versions are based on their paid counterparts.If you see a paid version you like that offers a free version, you can safely assume the antivirus protection level is similar, save for any specific malware types the free version doesn’t cover.To create this list of the top free AV programs we looked at the top mainstream antivirus suites for Windows 10  and selected the ones that offer a free version, as not all of them do. After that, we looked at how well these suites performed in third-party detection tests. We also made sure they weren’t resource hogs, because the last thing you want is a piece of free software slowing down your PC while running in the background.To read this article in full, please click here
Populife Smart Deadbolt review: Ultra-cheap and attractive, but lacking in the operations department
Wed, 19 Feb 2020 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Steer clear of this bare-bones smart lock.
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