This Medieval Castle Played Many Roles in Monty Python and the Holy

first_imgThe strong stone walls that protect Doune Castle might strike onlookers with a sense of familiarity — like it’s a place they’ve been before, even if they never actually have. That’s because this Scottish stronghold is a popular filming location, making appearances in Ivanhoe, Outlander, and even Game of Thrones. Located in near the city of the Stirling in Perthshire, central Scotland, the structure is more than 600-years-old, according to Historic Environment Scotland. The exceptionally maintained castle has been heavily utilized in countless period film productions. But none have been as creative in using the location as Monty Python and the Holy Grail.Monty Python And The Holy Grail, lobbycard, rear from left: Eric Idle, Michael Palin, center from left: John Cleese, Terry Jones (helmet), Graham Chapman as King Arthur (front), 1975. (Photo by LMPC via Getty Images)Equipped with their trusty coconut shells, King Arthur and his men go on a quest in search of the Holy Grail which brings them to a number of different castles — most of which are actually just Doune Castle viewed from different angles, as reported by Movie-Locations. Needless to say, the crew’s creative prowess saved the production hundreds of thousands on costs without sacrificing the authenticity of the film.The 14th century Doune Castle near Stirling, Scotland was the filming location for several scenes in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.The beautiful medieval castle has a far more colorful history though than just being a backdrop for popular films. Built on the site of an older castle, in 1361 it came into the possession of Robert Stewart, 1st Duke of Albany — who was the ruler of Scotland from 1388 until he died in 1420.Related Video: The Black Knight from Monty Python & The Holy Grail was Based on a Real PersonAfter his end the stronghold became an official royal retreat, up until the early 1600s. It was subsequently inherited by a series of nobles, until it finally found protection under the ownership of the nation in 1984. Today, Doune Castle is looked after by Historic Environment Scotland.Doune Castle, Scotland. Many of the scenes from Monty Python and the Holy Grail were shot here.The expansive castle features spacious rooms that were dressed to look like different locations for the iconic Holy Grail. For instance, the hilarious theatrically choreographed “Camelot Song” — a song and dance routine performed by the Knights of the Round Table when they first arrive at Camelot — takes place in the Great Hall, one of the best-preserved rooms in the castle.The Great Hall in Doune Castle near Stirling, Scotland. The Camelot song and dance routine was filmed here.Cinematography necessitated quite a bit of creativity in order to make Doune look unique enough to stand in as a variety of structures. One side of the castle became the fortress of Guy de Lombard, the leader of the French soldiers. The main entrance is where the (foolishly empty) wooden Trojan Rabbit is wheeled inside.Doune CastleIn one of the rooms, Castle Anthrax is easily recognizable, according to Movie-Locations. Here, Sir Galahad is saved from the “almost certain temptation” of Zoot, Midget, Crapper and the other “young blondes and brunettes, all between sixteen and nineteen-and-a-half.” (Script quotes taken from Another Bleedin Monty Python Website)There were a few other structures used for the movie. For instance, a portion of Bodiam Castle in East Sussex was shot as the exterior of Swamp Castle. But the rest of the locations in the story are, of course, shot back at the ever-versatile Doune.Bodiam Castle in East Sussex was used as the exterior of ‘Swamp Castle’ in the movieToday, Doune Castle is a popular tourist destination for fans of Monty Python, as well as the other prominent films that were filmed on site. The groups in charge of accommodating visitors have even gone the extra mile to make it a unique, interesting, and fun experience for those who wish to witness the castle’s colorful history in film.According to Undiscovered Scotland, guests can borrow coconut shells at the castle’s reception to pay tribute to the iconic sound effect used for the low-budget Monty Python and the Holy Grail.Photo by Daily Mirror/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty ImagesThe running joke was the result of the cast having to use coconut shells to make horse-hoof sounds since they didn’t have enough budget to afford real horses, according to Mental Floss. Of course, that’s all just icing on the cake when taking the castle’s well-preserved beauty into account.Doune CastleThe stunning interiors, historical artifacts and fixtures, and period architecture inside the structure shed light on a time that is often only experienced through the magic of film and television.Read another story from us: Monty Python Tune Named Top Song to Play at FuneralsVisitors can get a sense of what real, functioning castles used to be like, and of course, achieve a feeling of oneness with the colorful stories they’ve learned to love through the screen.last_img read more

Dirk Nowitzki to the Warriors rumors make zero sense

first_img Advertisement The Warriors are licking their wounds and now have to decide whether to make any significant additions in the off season. Today, rumors surfaced in the San Jose Mercury News that Golden State has interest in speaking with Dirk Nowitzki, who opted out of his contract with the Mavericks today.One big name free-agent who probably will get a call from the Warriors in July: Dirk Nowitzki.— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) June 21, 2016Nowitzki seems like an odd fit for the Warriors because they need another shooter who can’t defend like a hoarder needs another ceramic animal figurine. Their Finals loss to the Cavs was largely due to a lack of interior depth, which the Cavs exploited once Andrew Bogut went down for the series with a knee injury after Game 4. Today on Speak for Yourself, Colin and Jason played “Good Read or Bad Read?” about whether Nowitzki makes any sense for the Warriors.Colin sees the Warriors adding Nowitzki as a massive overreaction and a bad read.“Bad Read. They missed out on back to back titles by a jumper. It was 89 all for about 4 minutes, and Kyrie hit a jumper, and Klay or Steph didn’t. Tweak. This is the constant overreaction. Oklahoma City. No big moves, had them down 3 – 1. Tweak. Everybody wants to blow stuff up.”Whitlock thinks the Warriors are better off standing pat, or addressing more glaring needs.“You stand pat. You don’t make a splashy move. You make a move for substance. And the substantive move to make is some toughness and some rebounding  and some defense.”Both guys agreed that an ideal addition that would address Golden State’s defense and rebounding needs is free agent Joakim Noah. He can contribute as a defender, passer, and a rebounder without needing designed plays or heavy ball possession.Substance > Splash. @ColinCowherd and @WhitlockJason discuss the type of off-season moves the Warriors should make.— Speak For Yourself (@SFY) June 22, 2016last_img read more

VIDEO John Daly pounded a drive off a beer can then pounded

first_imgCritics say that golf’s problem is a lack of personality. That’s never been a problem for John Daly. Neither has partying a like a rockstar.Daly is a traveling sideshow nowadays, but it’s a damn entertaining one.After singing ‘Knockin on Heaven’s Door‘ at an Augusta Hooters before The Masters last week, The Daly Show was down in Myrtle Beach for a some boozin’ and a little golf.Daly pulled a 21-and-over trick shot for the some curious onlookers when he teed up a drive on a Bud Light can he was drinking. He crushed the drive while barefoot and smoking a heater. After the shot, he picked up the beer and chugged it, because of course he did. Life is John Daly’s 19th hole.WATCH @PGA_JohnDaly smash a ball off a beer can and then chug it. All while barefoot. #MAM2017 #myrtlebeachgolf #bossstatus— Myrtle Beach Golf (@MB_GolfHoliday) April 10, 2017 Advertisementlast_img read more

3 Hidden Security Risks for WordPress Users

first_img Register Now » WordPress is arguably the web’s most popular content management system and blogging platform, and for good reason. The system is free, easy to use and provides a wealth of features that would otherwise cost business owners thousands of dollars in development expenses.But if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. While the WordPress platform still represents a useful web development option for small businesses, it’s critical that you familiarize yourself with some of the system’s weaknesses to avoid its hidden security dangers.WordPress updates its platform frequently to respond to known threats but isn’t able to police every possible one. Here’s a look at the platform’s three biggest security weaknesses that you should be aware of:1. WordPress is susceptible to attacks and URL hacking.The WordPress platform executes server-side scripts in the PHP web development language, using commands sent via what are called URL parameters to control the behavior of the MySQL databases that store your site’s data.If that all sounds pretty technical, don’t worry. You don’t need to understand web coding to protect your site. What you do need to know is that this type of website structure is vulnerable to a certain type of attack. Hackers can use malicious URL parameters to reveal sensitive database content, a process known as “SQL injection attacks.” Once hackers have this information, they can hijack your site and replace your content with spam or malware.Related: 3 Tips for Beefing Up Password Security (Infographic)To protect your WordPress site from such an attack, consider modifying your site’s .htaccess file, which is a configuration file that enables you to control the way your hosting server behaves. You can prevent hackers’ URL parameter requests from succeeding by including the code found here.Note that this code is intended for WordPress owners who are using Apache-based web hosting. If you aren’t sure what type of hosting you use or if you need assistance in modifying your site’s .htaccess file, contact your web hosting provider’s support team or a private web developer.2. Free WordPress themes frequently contain security exploits.One of the biggest benefits of WordPress is that you can install it for free, use free plugins to add functions and download free theme files to give your site an appealing look. Unfortunately, unscrupulous developers have laced downloadable theme files with everything from undetectable spam links to malware files that infect a site once the theme is installed.Related: What ‘DDoS’ Attacks Are and How to Survive ThemTo keep your website safe, download files only from sources you know and trust. Paid themes represent less of a security risk than free themes. But if you want free themes, you can scan them for malware before uploading them to detect any attacks that may have already occurred using the anti-virus program installed on your computer.3. WordPress’s default login process can be easily hacked.All WordPress dashboard logins are located at the same address across URLs, meaning that nearly every WordPress login page can be found here. Also, WordPress’s default settings don’t allow for secure logins. This means a site running on the WordPress platform may be susceptible to “brute force” attacks, in which bot programs try various login combinations in the hope that one lucky combination will allow access to the site.To get a feel for how prevalent these attacks can be, consider that the sites hosted by popular blogging site Copyblogger experience between 50,000 and 180,000 unauthorized login attempts each day.To protect your website, install the Limit Login Attempts plugin. In addition, you can work with your web hosting provider to block IP addresses that make multiple unsuccessful login attempts.While it might sound like a lot of work to take these precautions, you can expend much more time and effort trying to fix your site if you wind up the victim of a successful hacking attempt.Related: Why You Might Need to Rethink Your Internet Security — Now October 10, 2012 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 4 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.last_img read more

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West Sue YouTube CoFounder Over Leaked Video

first_img Register Now » 2 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Globalcenter_img November 1, 2013 Oft-exposed Kim Kardashian and Kanye West have slapped YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley with a lawsuit for exposing a bit more of their private lives than they wanted.West and Kardashian — who, one recalls, had her own career launched because of her, um, performance on an amateur video — are suing Hurley for allegedly leaking a video of their marriage proposal online through his new video-app project called MixBit.The duo claim techie Hurley wasn’t even invited to the Oct. 21 event, though in attendance were Alison Pincus, owner of shopping website One Kings Lane  and wife of Mark Pincus, in addition to Rap Genius co-founder Mahbod Moghadam and VC Ben Horowitz. But Hurley gained access after signing a non-disclosure agreement forbidding him from posting videos or images of the extravaganza. The court filing even shows a picture of Hurley holding up the signed agreement.Apparently, Hurley took his chances.Related: YouTube Co-founder Announces New Video Service The two-and-a-half-minute video titled “PLEEESE MARRY MEEE!!! Congrats Kim and Kanye!” shows West proposing to his baby momma at AT&T Park in San Francisco, as a 50-piece orchestra plays Lana Del Rey’s “Young and Beautiful.” (It was reported Del Ray flat our rejected West’s request to perform at that event).  Hurley tweeted out the clip to his more than 500,000 followers, which has managed to rack up more than 1.6 million views.So this happened last night. Congrats Kim & Kanye!— Chad Hurley (@Chad_Hurley) October 23, 2013Kimye’s lawyer claims Hurley did this out of desperation, to save Mixbit.”Following a lackluster launch and unsuccessful ensuing debut, Hurley sought to salvage MixBit from its dour beginning,” the lawsuit states. “An opportunity to do so appeared to Hurley when he learned of the October 21, 2013, event featuring West and Kardashian,” it continues.Related: YouTube Founders Launch MixBit Video App to Rival Vine and Instagram It seems unlikely that the lawsuit stemmed from privacy concerns but rather they, not Hurley, wanted to cash in on the event, as The Keeping Up with the Kardashians crew was there filming every precious moment.Kardashian and West are seeking unspecified damages. last_img read more

Drone Accidents Not Your Fault

first_imgAugust 25, 2016 2 min read Register Now » Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. This story originally appeared on PCMag Did you buzz your neighbor’s shrubs or crash into your garage with a drone? Good news: it might not be your fault!Researchers at Australia’s RMIT University’s School of Engineering and Edith Cowan University found that many drone accidents are due to the gadgets themselves rather than human error. Dr. Graham Wild and Dr. Glenn Baxter from RMIT and John Murray of ECU studied 150 civil incidents involving drones and found that 64 percent occurred due to technical problems. The study, published in the journal Aerospace, pointed to “broken communications links” between the operator and the drone. As a result, the researchers think commercial aircraft-type regulations should be applied to the communications systems of drones.”Large transport category aircraft, such as those from a Boeing or Airbus, are required to have triple redundant systems for their communications,” Dr. Wild said in a statement. “But drones don’t and some of the improvements that have reduced the risks in those aircraft could also be used to improve the safety of drones.”Exceptions can be made for drones under 55 pounds, he said, though pilots should have licenses. “It’s essential that our safety regulations keep up with this rapidly growing industry,” Dr. Wild argued.The team started its research after reports of a drone collision at Heathrow Airport, though authorities later said it was “not a drone incident.” Still, collisions do occur (see the video below), hitting everything from ferris wheels and the Empire State Building to the White House lawn (and there are certainly some dumbasses flying drones who should not be).last_img read more

5 Ways Artificial Intelligence Is Already Transforming the Banking Industry

first_img Artificial Intelligence (AI) — and its growing impact on and applicability for individuals and businesses alike — is one of today’s most widely discussed topics. From virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa, to chatbots created by Facebook and Drift, AI is having a significant impact on the lives of consumers.Related: #Five Technology Trends That Will Disrupt Your Banking StyleA study from Statista showed that the number of consumers using virtual assistants worldwide is expected to exceed one billion in 2018. Additionally, a 2018 survey by Accenture projected that 37 percent of U.S. consumers will own a digital voice assistant (DVA) device by the end of 2018.It is readily apparent how AI-powered technology is making inroads into everyday life through DVAs and other consumer products, but AI is also having a transformative effect on an industry that impacts virtually all consumers and businesses: banking. Here are five ways that AI is already transforming the banking industry.Customer service automationAs natural language processing technology evolves, consumers find it increasingly difficult to distinguish between a voice bot and a human customer service representative. This stems from improved abilities on the part of voice and chatbots to resolve customer issues without human intervention.The benefits to banks of customer service automation are obvious: AI could lead to significant cost reductions. A recent study by Autonomous predicted that AI could lead to 1.2 million jobs being cut in the banking and lending industry, resulting in up to $450 billion in industrysavings by 2030.Despite the potential rewards customer service automation promises, banks and other businesses need to proceed with caution in relying too heavily on voice and chatbots. The popularity of GetHuman illustrates this: It’s a website that connects consumers with human CSRs to resolve their issue. In fact, voice and chatbots often work best when augmenting rather than replacing humans. At a minimum, the option to speak to a human, if necessary, should be readily available. Related: This Banker Explains Why Confluence of Fintech and Banks is Unavoidable Want an example of how banks are creatively employing AI to serve customers? The Swiss bank UBS, ranked number 35 globally for its volume of assets, according to Accuity’s August 2018 global bank rankings — has partnered with Amazon to incorporate its “Ask UBS” service into Alexa-powered Echo speaker devices.Ask UBS, which is aimed at UBS’s European wealth management clients, enables users to receive wide-ranging advice and analysis on global financial markets just by “asking” Alexa. “Ask UBS” also acts as a teaching resource, offering definitions and examples of acronyms and jargon related to the financial industry.While Ask UBS can make a call from a UBS financial advisor to a customer’s phone upon request, it is not yet able to access individual portfolios, execute trades or perform other transactions; it can’t offer personalized advice based on a client’s holdings and goals. According to the Wall Street Journal, the reason is primarily security and privacy concerns. More in-depth and personalized service through a DVA may not be far off, though. In the article, a UBS spokesman stated that the company’s aim is to make “Ask UBS” and similar tools “secure, compliant, and trustable for clients.”PersonalizationBanks have access to a wealth of customer data, including detailed demographics, website analytics and records of online and offline transactions. By utilizing machine learning to integrate and analyze information from multiple, discrete databases to form a 360-degree customer view, banks are better positioned to personalize products, services and interactions based on the behavior of individual clients.According to James Eardley, global director of industry marketing for enterprise software giant SAP, “The next step within the digital service model is for banks to price for the individual, and to negotiate that price in real time, taking personalization to the ultimate level.”While personalized pricing of this kind may only become prevalent in the future, banks are already utilizing AI-processed behavioral data to advise individual clients on appropriate credit and savings products, based on their goals and habits. Santander, the world’s 14th largest bank, measured by its current assets, even hosted a competition, with a prize of $60,000, on the machine learning crowdsourcing site Kaggle, encouraging data scientists to write code that better “pairs products with people.”SecurityIn the banking and payments industry, personalization extends far beyond marketing and product customization, into security. A growing number of banks are utilizing biometric data, like fingerprints, to replace or augment passwords and other forms of client verification.A report by Goode Intelligence forecast that 1.9 billion bank customers will be using some form of biometric identification by 2021. The Guardian reported that U.K. bank Halifax even experimented with Bluetooth wristbands that identified a client’s unique heartbeat to authenticate account access.In a widely discussed innovation to its popular iPhone, Apple has evolved its Face ID so that it now uses AI-powered facial-recognition technology to unlock the device as well as validate purchases using Apple Pay, its digital wallet service. As facial recognition and other biometric authentication techniques become more sophisticated and secure, they are poised to become increasingly commonplace.Process OptimizationOne of the most promising applications of AI in banking comes from automating high-volume, low-value processes. In one example, reported by McKinsey, JPMorgan began using bots to process internal IT requests, including employees’ attempts to reset their work passwords. Up to 1.7 million requests were expected to be handled by the bots in 2017, doing the work of 40 full-time employees.Pattern recognition and fraud preventionThe ability of AI to sift through massive amounts of data and identify patterns that might elude human observers is one of its greatest strengths. One area where this capacity is particularly relevant is in fraud prevention.According to McAfee, cybercrime costs the global economy $600 billion. AI and machine learning solutions are being deployed by many financial service providers to detect fraud in real time. An additional benefit of improved fraud prevention technology is that legitimate activity is flagged as fraudulent less often.According to Tech2, Mastercard was able to reduce “false declines” for its customers by 80 percent using AI technology.Final thoughtsThe fintech revolution is still in its infancy, but alongside AI, it has already had a substantial impact on the way traditional banks do business. This presents digital entrepreneurs and investors with myriad opportunities for improvement.Related: #5 Vital Points for Creating a Banking ChatbotAccording to CB Insights, the first quarter of 2018 alone saw a global record $5.4 billion in funds raised by VC-backed fintech companies. Having a high-level understanding of the goals big banks are looking to achieve with AI — including customer-service automation, personalization, improved security, process optimization and pattern recognition — hopefully provides food for thought and inspiration for digital entrepreneurs attracted to the fintech space. September 12, 2018 Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Register Now » Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. 6 min readlast_img read more

Major Chromebook Update Adds Android Pie and Google Assistant Report

first_img Henry T. Casey, by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeKelley Blue Book5 Mid-engine Corvettes That Weren’tKelley Blue BookUndoGrepolis – Free Online GameGamers Around the World Have Been Waiting for this GameGrepolis – Free Online GameUndoTODAYPolice Identify Girl Licking Ice Cream Tub In Viral VideoTODAYUndoForbes.com100 Powerful Women Americans Can Look Up toForbes.comUndoMy Food and FamilyHealthy, Homemade Drunken Thai Noodles In Just 20 MinutesMy Food and FamilyUndoVerizon WirelessThis new phone will blow your mind.Verizon WirelessUndoAdvertisement A huge new update — Chrome OS 72 — is taking flagship Google features to more Chromebooks. Specifically, that’s version 72.0.3626.97 of Chrome OS, which according to one report, brings Google Assistant and Android 9 Pie to select devices. Oddly, this news isn’t being promoted by Google itself, as the release notes don’t pack that tidbit. Instead, we’re learning it from, which notes that Android 9 Pie is a surprise perk of this new update, which also bakes in Google Assistant, which will not be limited to just Google’s own Pixelbook and Pixel Slate.MacBook Air vs MacBook Pro: Which 13-inch MacBook Is Right For You?Apple’s entry-level MacBook Air and Pro look pretty similar, but our testing proved they differ in crucial ways.Your Recommended PlaylistVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9接下来播放Which Cheap Tablet Is Best? Amazon Fire 7 vs Walmart Onn02:45关闭选项Automated Captions – en-USAutomated Captions – en-USAutomated Captions – en-US facebook twitter 发邮件 reddit 链接已复制直播00:0003:4603:46 MORE: Should I Buy a Chromebook? Buying Guide and AdviceInstead, it appears that these Chrome 72 perks are rolling out to select devices, and you can learn about how it effects your machine by opening About Device.Another important feature that arrives with Chrome 72 is external drive support for Android apps. That means you can access files from your accessories in apps emulated via the Google Play store. Even the Pixel Slate, during my testing, was missing this capability.The release notes also state that “Chrome browser has been optimized for touchscreen devices in tablet mode.” We hope this translates to reduced stutter, which Google was reportedly working on.Best Chromebook: Reviews and Comparisons  Author Biocenter_img Henry is a senior writer at Laptop Mag, covering security, Apple and operating systems. Prior to joining Laptop Mag — where he’s the self-described Rare Oreo Expert — he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. You can find him at your local pro wrestling events, and wondering why Apple decided to ditch its MagSafe power adapters. Henry T. Casey, onlast_img read more

How to chain VPN servers

first_imgHow to chain VPN servers by Martin Brinkmann on May 19, 2016 in Security – 23 commentsVPN Chaining is a technique in which multiple virtual private network (VPN) servers are chained to improve online privacy while on the Internet.Basically, what it means is that you are not connecting to a single VPN but to multiple ones in a layered system that looks like Your PC > 1st VPN > 2nd VPN > Internet.Before we take a look at the how, we should discuss why you would want to do that. One argument is that you cannot trust any of the VPN providers out there.While most claim these days that they don’t log, there is virtually no way to prove that this is indeed the case.And even if they don’t log user activity, they may still be forced to cooperate and log activity of certain users connecting to the system, for instance when forced to do so by a court of law or when coerced.VPN Chaining improves privacy by connecting to multiple VPN servers operated by different companies who — preferably — operate in different jurisdictions.The advantage is that it becomes increasingly difficult to track users when they chain VPN servers.There are disadvantages however, for instance that the setup is complicated, that maintaining multiple VPN accounts is more expensive than just one, and that there is still a possibility of being tracked.AdvantagesDisadvantagesImproved privacycomplicated setupmore expensive (unless free services are used)slower speeds, higher latencyPossibility of being tracked is still thereHow to chain VPN serversUnless you operate all VPN servers that you want to chain, you cannot simply connect to the first VPN in the chain and be done with it.Connecting to multiple VPNs simultaneously on the same device does not work as well which that leaves virtual machines as the best solution to get the ball rolling.Basically, you connect to one VPN on the device you are using, and to others that you want as part of the chain in virtual machines.A simple chain would look like this: PC > 1st VPN > Virtual Machine > 2nd VPN > InternetYou would have to perform all activity using the Virtual Machine to take advantage of the chaining.How it works:Download VirtualBox from the official website and install the virtualization software.Download and install an operating system, Linux Mint for instance, in VirtualBox.Get accounts at two or more VPN services. You get big discounts at Ghacks Deals currently for select VPN providers.Connect to the first VPN on the device you are using.Connect to the second VPN in the Virtual Machine. If you have followed the suggestion above, connect to the VPN using Linux Mint.You can verify that the VPNs are chained by checking IP addresses. You will notice that the host device returns a different public IP than the virtual device.Crazy chaining: you can add as many VPN services to the chain as you like, but you need to install a virtual machine inside the virtual machine for each of them.Installation of VirtualBox and the host operating system should not pose problems to most users. The installation of the VPN service on the other hand may, but most VPN providers offer instructions on their web pages that detail the installation process on various operating systems including Linux.Closing WordsVPN Chaining improves online privacy and while it does not offer 100% protection, it offers far better protection than a single VPN (which in turn offers better protection than connecting directly to the Internet).Now You: Do you use a VPN?SummaryArticle NameHow to chain VPN serversDescriptionFind out how to chain VPN servers using two or more VPN providers and virtual machines on devices you operate to improve online privacy.Author Martin BrinkmannPublisher Ghacks Technology NewsLogo Advertisementlast_img read more

Test hard drives for bad sectors with Hard Disk Validator

first_imgTest hard drives for bad sectors with Hard Disk Validator by Martin Brinkmann on July 30, 2018 in Software – 24 commentsHard Disk Validator is a free portable program for Microsoft Windows devices to test any connected hard drive for bad sectors and related issues.Failing hard drives are quite the problem. While it is possible to mitigate data loss with the creation of regular backups, it is also necessary to find a suitable replacement for the drive, connect it to the PC and migrate data to it.Hard drives are made up of sectors that data gets written to and checksums that should match the data of a sector. The checksum data does not match the data of the sector in bad sectors; this can be caused by power outages, unexpected restarts, failing hard drives, and other issues, for instance the one that throws “The memory could not be written” error messages.Hard Disk Validator may be used to run a series of checks on hard drives to find out of they have bad sectors or are becoming less reliable in other areas.You can run Hard Disk Validator directly after you have downloaded the archive to the local system and extracted it. Note that it requires an older version of the .Net Framework, and that it may be installed during setup on newer versions of the Windows operating system.We have reviewed comparable programs in the best. Check out HDDScan, Disk Scanner, or HDD Guardian to name just a few.Hard Disk ValidatorThe program interface is straightforward. Select one of the connected drives at the top, and then one of the available test scenarios on the right. Note that the developer suggests to run only read tests on the operating system drive. He suggests to either connect the drive to a secondary PC to run the test, or boot into a recovery environment to run it from there.As always, it is recommended to create a backup of the entire hard drive before you use Hard Disk Validator.You may run the following four operations:Read — tests read capabilities. Will test all sectors of the hard drive to find bad sectors.Read – Wipe Damaged – Read — Same as above. Only difference is that the program attempts to overwrite bad sectors to read again from them to verify if they are okay.Read – Write – Verify – Restore — Writes test patterns to disk to verify them to make sure sectors are okay. Restores the original data afterward.Write – Verify — Same as above but without the restoration of the original data.Tests take different execution times with read being the fastest. The program displays all sectors of the hard drive and uses color codes to indicate the status of the sector. Green means everything is okay and red that the sector is damaged.Closing WordsHard Disk Validator is a program that you run when you suspect that a hard drive may be failing, or for verification on a regular schedule. There is no option to schedule scans so that you have to run the program manually whenever you want to verify hard drives.The program reveals bad sectors of hard drives to you and may be used to fix them if the issue has not been caused by hardware failures.Now You: Do you check your drives regularly?Summary12345 Author Rating3.5 based on 3 votes Software Name Hard Disk ValidatorOperating System WindowsSoftware Category AdministrationLanding Page Advertisementlast_img read more