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Francis Barnswallow
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New Java 7 update......a virus?

Been hearing a lot about the new Java 7 update having a virus in it and even having the Homeland Security saying to disable it in web browsers? When it comes to technical stuff regarding computers, I don't know much and I don't take risks.

But today I noticed on the bottom right of my screen a Java symbol saying a update is available. Should I update it or cancel it?

btw on a more personal note, cyber criminals should be publicly executed.

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webmaster
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Most people don't need Java. Java is a technology that allows you to do things with a website. Kind of like Flash lets you play Club Penguin or view YouTube videos and Microsoft Silverlight lets you watch Netflix videos on your computer.

Unless you have some kind of online game or online software that needs Java, it's probably fine to disable it. Just right click the icon and find the menu selection that allows you turn off update notifications. Next step is to go to your browser (IE?) and navigate to the BHO (Browser Helper Object) section and disable Java.

:idea: Please note, turn off Java, but not JavaScript. Two different things. :)

To turn off Java in IE, just select Tools > Manage Add-Ons

If you should ever need Java while online, a pop-up at the top of your browser will alert you that Java is needed. You can choose to enable Java if your experience would be improved on that website. But more likely, if your experience is fine without Java, you can choose to ignore the warning and leave Java alone in it's disabled state.

It's ok to update to the latest version of Java, it's probably best to do that. But it's probably even better to do that and then turn off Java. If after a month or so your computing experience doesn't seem to have been affected, you could probably consider removing Java altogether.

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tomf
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Java is easy to hack and the one hack that effected Mac's was from Java, Java bad.

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Francis Barnswallow
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I cancelled it for now just to be safe. Thanks for the tips.

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If you're going to not update, be sure to at least turn off Java on your browser, and if you wish to be safer, remove Java altogether from your computer.

But if you're going to leave Java turned on in the browser or installed but turned off, at the very least update your Java to the very latest because it does contain important fixes that will protect your computer. While not thoroughly locked down, it is still an improvement over previous versions that leave your computer wide open to an attack. That's what the Homeland Security concern was about. It's still a good idea to update your Java if you're not going to uninstall it.



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