Campus Alive

June 23, 2007

INTEC’s Anatomy Part 3: Computer Lab

Filed under: INTEC — campusalive @ 12:53 pm
Another INTEC-related post!

Computer Labs

Location:
ADFP/ Music Block (behind the library)
1 on ground floor
3 on first floor

ALM
None

AUSMAT
1 beside AUSMAT Cafe (between the gym and the AUSMAT cafe)
3 or 4 on first floor on top of the science labs

This is by far the most disappointing facility that INTEC has to offer to students. The computers in the labs are strictly controlled by some administration people behind the thick wall. The internet connection in the computer labs is undeniably fast compare to the wireless in Akasia/Cemara. However, it only comes with one browser, that is Internet Explorer. Internet Explorer lacks speed and usability compare to Mozilla Firefox, but somehow INTEC administration only allows Internet Explorer. Because the students only have minimal control over the computers, they cannot install Mozilla Firefox (or any other applications) on the computers. That ultimately means that all the favorite programs such as iTunes, MSN Messenger, Skype, WinRAR, WinZip, and others will be UNAVAILABLE.

Not only that students are restricted to a few programs only, the administrator also imposes bans on several popular websites among students. Some of the crucial websites are blatantly blocked for no concrete reasons. Victims of imbecile administrator include:

http://en.wikipedia.org (ADFP lab – first floor)
http://www.hotmail.com (ADFP lab – first floor)
http://www.gmail.com (ADFP lab – ground floor)
http://www.friendster.com(almost all computer labs)

If you think that it is bad enough, think again. Almost all the computers in INTEC is infected by worms, viruses, spyware, and every other malicious software on the net. And because students have no authority over installing any applications, students can never install any powerful Anti-Virus applications (like Nod32, Avast! and Kaspersky) on the computers to remove the unwanted virus. The consequences of these infected computers are disastrous. Every thumb drive that is plugged into the USB port is prone to infection. More often than not, students’ thumb drives are infected by viruses they get from school. Those who are ignorant toward the danger of virus will then plug the same thumb drive into their own laptop in hostel (or friend’s laptop). After a while, all the laptops in Akasia/Cemara also get infected by some annoying worms. Those who equip their laptops well with neat Anti-virus program are safe, but a lot of these worms get undetected by AVG Anti-Virus and Norton Anti-Virus – two most popular anti-virus program on students’ laptop.

Some of the most common infection that students’ laptops and thumb drive contact through the thumb drives that are plugged into the computer labs in INTEC include:

Surat untuk Edelin(a worm which can be detected easily using Norton)
Reshmon (goes undetected by Norton and AVG)
Fucker (a trojan that will display an error message of “V:/vbs.fucker.script…………”)
Pokemon (will display “Hacked by Pokemon” when you operate your browser)
Malaysian Hackers (will display “Hacked by Malaysian Hackers” when you operate your browser)
Trojans (too many of them)

In order to combat these malicious worms and viruses, I strongly recommend that every student equips his or her laptop with powerful anti virus. Always scan for virus every time a thumb drive is plugged into the USB port. Another way to reduce the possibility of contacting the virus will be to install a portable anti virus program in the thumb drive. You can find a neat portable anti-virus program here. Else, do get a U3 thumb drive and install Avast! U3 Edition into the thumb drive. As I mention before, AVG and Norton are not the best anti virus program available to combat these viruses. I strongly recommend Avast! Home Edition, Kaspersky Internet Security, Nod32, and Bit Defender. AntiVir is not my preferred choice because I once detected over 80 viruses using Avast! which go undetected using AntiVir.

One last thing about the virus, once your thumb drive get infected, please delete all the virus, then reformat the thumb drive. For instance, if your thumb drive is infected by a certain virus, it will stop you from double-clicking on the thumb drive icon. Instead, it will prompt you to choose a program to open the file. When that happens, you can only right-click and “explore” to open the files inside the thumb drive. You will also see a “AUTOPLAY” option when you right-click on your thumb drive icon. The first symptom of a thumb drive getting infected by virus is the “AUTOPLAY” option when you right-click on the thumb drive icon. Thus, the only way to solve this problem is to reformat the whole thumb drive.

The last glitch that you might have in a computer lab in INTEC is the printing process. In certain computer labs, you will have to put in special password in order to print. Saying so, you will have to face the fierce and rude technician and beg for the password. Without the password, you won’t be able to print anything. Even though printing is free, you will have to provide your own A4 papers. Normally, if the printer gets jammed, I’ll just perform a little “operation” on the printer, pull out all the papers stuck inside the printer, and continue printing. Of course, I only do so when no one is looking. Yes, it can be pretty troublesome if the papers get jammed inside the printer and the technician is not around to fix the problem.

Leen’s take on the computer labs:
Up : Free printing, fast connection, lots of computers around
Down: Too many virus, limited applications, troublesome printing process, some sites are blocked, rude technicians, Internet Explorer

In short, INTEC does provide computers with fast connections to the students. It is just that they do not put little to zero to maintain the integrity of the computers available in INTEC. Proceed with caution every time you plug in your thumb drive and you should be fine. Otherwise, just enjoy the speed and be responsible. Don’t infect any computer with virus and don’t keep the computer to yourself too long once you are done because others might need to use the computer too. ^_____^

Combating virus,
Leen


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6 Comments »

  1. *seriously* a rude technician, a rude librarian, rude guards… *patrified*

    Comment by not a scholar — June 24, 2007 @ 4:27 am

  2. ya… everyone tat intec hired are quite rude… gosh, i really hate meeting them again when sch reopens in july… i don wan to go back so soon!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Pat — June 24, 2007 @ 11:38 pm

  3. hmm… is the ClamWin Portable effective enough to protect our thumb drive??and how bout FireFox Portable?? Can be considered as the alternative?Plz reply it ASAP here or send a email to me.. thx a lot for sharing this..

    Comment by Maxx — June 25, 2007 @ 12:05 am

  4. My email : keanhong[at]gmail[dot]com

    Comment by Maxx — June 25, 2007 @ 12:06 am

  5. you got to be kidding me if you think ANY admin wil allow his users to install anything they liked into the computers. The privileges are disabled for security reasons. Though securitywise, the intec admins are some of the worst that i had encountered. If you want peace of mind, go down portable firefox from http://www.portableapps.com

    Comment by Casper — June 25, 2007 @ 9:58 am

  6. I haven’t tried the portable anti virus on my thumb drive because I am currently using Avast! U3 Edition on my thumb drive. A lot of students also use firefox portable as an alternative to the slow IE. Currently, my friend and I are planning to write a letter to INTEC administration hoping that they will at least install 2 browsers and also other things. If we can get through this, we might have 2 browsers. Even though it is perfectly understandable why the administrator limits the students’ access to a certain degree, there are times too when students can bring more solutions than troubles to the computers.For instance, I once scanned a computer in the lab using my antivirus and managed to kill 18 of them.

    Comment by Leen — June 26, 2007 @ 3:16 pm


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