What is The WPA3 WiFi Security Standard?

Your router comes with a layer of security that keeps the network safe. To the average person, this security is the password they need to enter in order to connect to the network but it’s far more complicated than that if you look under the hood. The password is part of the security protocol that a router uses to keep your network and your connection safe and your router isn’t the only one that employs a security protocol.

Your devices, whether it’s your phone or your computer, also make use of a security protocol to protect your online activity as well as your devices from hackers. At present, all devices and routers use the WPA2 security protocol but that is going to change over the course of the next few years. The next WiFi security standard developed by the WiFi Alliance is ready for certification. Dubbed WPA3, this new security protocol is built to tackle the shortcomings of WPA2, and meet the security needs of growing IoT devices.

WPA3 WiFi Security Standard

The WPA3 WiFi security standard is the successor of WPA2. At present, it’s only in its certification stage and you can’t find a device that supports it just yet. Once it rolls out though, it will make WiFi, particularly public WiFi more secure. It will also plug security holes created by IoT devices on your network, make hacking your network much more difficult, and encrypt your data better.

Protection Against Brute Force Attacks

WPA3 offers protection against brute force attacks. At present, the WPA2 protocol allows hackers to basically bombard your network with attempt after attempt at guessing the password. In many cases, they succeed by sheer force and volume of tries but also by relying on intelligent guesswork, and poor password setting conventions followed by users. With WPA3, this method will no longer work because passwords are authenticated differently. Each password attempt forces the device to communicate with the network. The devices will authenticate differently compared to the way they did in WPA2 making a brute force attack much less effective.


WiFi Easy Connect

One of the chief things this new protocol targets is security for IoT. WPA2 never had to deal with devices that had no proper control panel for connecting to networks. At the time, not many people might have envisioned their fridge or thermostat connecting to the internet, or their WiFi network but that is how things are today. To make it easier to connect these devices to your network, WPA3 has WiFi easy connect whereby a reliable device already connected to your network such as your phone will scan a QR code on your router and the device you want to connect to. Your phone will act as an intermediary to connect the device to your network. Easy Connect is optional so while it’s a great new addition, users will need to consciously look for and buy devices that support it if they want to use it.

Data Encryption On Public WiFi

It’s no secret that public WiFi is never considered safe. Even for private WiFi networks, security experts recommend using a VPN to keep your data safe. With WPA3, you no longer have to worry about public WiFi being unsafe. If the router, and your device both support this protocol your data on the network will be encrypted.

Impact On Devices

Devices, both routers and network cards used in phones and computers, will need to be updated to this standard. In some cases, existing routers and devices will be able to switch to WPA3 with a firmware or driver update however, in most cases you’re looking at buying new hardware. This means buying a new phone, a new computer, and a new router. It might sound expensive but the new protocol will become common in the next few years and most people are likely to buy a new device. Older devices that can only support WPA2 will still be able to connect to a router that supports WPA3 so you’re not going to wake up one day with a device that cannot connect to the internet.

At present, there are no devices that comply with WPA3. Certifications for it have only been announced a few days ago and it will take a reasonable amount of time for device manufacturers to become certified. Only time will tell which existing devices can be updated, and which ones need an upgrade.

Read What is The WPA3 WiFi Security Standard? by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Move Objects In Photoshop To A Specific Position

Photoshop allows you set the canvas size to anything you like. You can set the size in pixels, or in inches and you can change it while you’re working on a file. For every canvas that you create, every pixel on it is mapped to a position that is defined in x and y coordinates. These coordinates can be used to move objects in Photoshop to a specific position , and there are angles that allow you to rotate them.

Find x/y Coordinates

First, open Photoshop’s preferences from Edit>Preferences. Go to Units & rulers, and change the units from inches to pixels.

Next, assuming you know where you want to move an object to by just looking at the canvas, you need to find its address i.e., its x/y coordinates.

Go to Window>Info to show the info window. Position your mouse cursor over the area you want to find x/y coordinates for.

The Info window will tell you the exact coordinates for your cursor’s current position. If you move your mouse around, it will update in real time. Note down the coordinates.

Move Objects

Select the layer that the object is on and tap the Ctrl+T (Windows) or Command+T (Mac) keyboard shortcut to enter free transform mode. On the top bar, you will see input fields for x/y coordinates. Enter the ones you noted down in the previous section, and the object will be moved to that position.

Objects are position by their center i.e., the center that appears when the object is in free transform mode is the point that is positioned where you specify it in the x/y coordinates fields. The object is not positioned from its left-top edge.

What this means is that the entire layer’s center will be used. To make sure the object is moved accurately, you should make sure there isn’t so much as an extra pixel worth of a dot on a layer. Only the object you intend to use should be present on the layer.

It might help to also use guides and grids while you try to figure out where to move an object. Drag them out and create intersection points if you need to snap an object to a particular position and the x/y coordinates aren’t working for you. Use linked layers if you need to keep two or more layers at relative positions to each other, and lock them down once you’ve positioned them correctly. It is possible to position items off-canvas if you enter the wrong coordinates so if your object disappears you can hit undo, or just drag the mouse cursor to find its outline. Zoom out and it will be easier to find it.

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How To Block Graphics Driver Updates On Windows 10

Windows 10 updates often cause bugs but this is a problem that’s usually reserved for large, feature updates. That said, as part of its regular updates, Windows 10 downloads and installs driver updates as well. Often, the graphics driver will be updated and the new version may not work well. These are mostly generic drivers and if you know for a fact that the newer one isn’t going to work for you, you need to block graphics driver updates on Windows 10.

Block Graphics Driver Updates

We should warn you that driver updates, or updates of any kind, should only be blocked if they make your system unstable.

In order to block graphics driver updates, you can turn to third-party apps built for blocking updates on Windows 10 however, a better, safer option is to use this troubleshooting tool from Microsoft. It is built specifically for blocking updates.

The first thing you need to do is uninstall the problematic graphics driver. To uninstall the driver, open the Device Manager and expand Display Adapters. Right-click the graphics card that was updated and select Properties from the context menu. In the Properties window, go to the Driver tab, and select the roll back option.

Once you’ve done that, Windows 10 will try and install the driver again. This is when you run the troubleshooting tool.

Click the Next button on the start screen, and select the ‘Hide Updates’ option. The tool will search for and list all the available updates. Select the ones you want to hide, and click Next.

Hiding updates will prevent Windows 10 from downloading, and subsequently installing them. If you ever need to unhide the updates, run this same tool again, but click the Show hidden updates option. From the list of hidden updates, you can choose which updates to unhide.

Since this is your graphics driver that we’re talking about, it might be a good idea to check if your system has an app from your GPU manufacturer installed on it. Both Nvidia and AMD have dedicated apps that can download and install drivers. It’s possible that these apps are updating the driver and not Windows 10. If the troubleshooting utility fails to find any graphics drivers after you roll one back, check the permissions your GPU’s application has. If auto-updates are enabled, disable them.

Lastly, if your GPU has begun to cause problems after a major Windows 10 update, check forums and other online help portals, particularly any forums hosted by the manufacturer of your GPU for known bugs, and available solutions.

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What Is The Difference Between A VPN And A Proxy

When it comes to protecting your online privacy, you’ve probably heard the terms proxy and VPN being used. These tools are meant to mask what you’re doing and keep your online activity private. To the average user, a VPN and a Proxy seem to be synonymous. They both essentially do the same thing i.e., keep you safe and hidden online. Some users might just think that a Proxy is another name for a VPN however, that is not the case. There is a distinct difference between a VPN and a Proxy.

Proxy Service

A Proxy service redirects traffic from your computer to an intermediary computer/server, and then routes it to where you intended to go. For example, if you’re trying to visit Google.com, and you’re using a proxy service, your request will first be sent to a different computer, and that computer will forward the request to access Google.com. The data that returns will likewise be routed through that same computer.

Think of it like this; you have two countries that cannot trade with each other due to legal restrictions but both want to import and export products from the other country. In order to do this, the countries will export their goods to a third, neutral country and import items from the other country from this third one. It’s complicated but it gets the job done. A proxy does this but for online activity, it gives users the benefit of hiding their IP address.

VPN Service

A VPN service is far more complex than a Proxy service. It does what a Proxy service does, and more. VPNs add a layer of encryption and security to the data that is sent. They are a collection of servers that work via a client installed on your device (desktop or mobile) and the second you connect to a VPN, all data sent from your device is encrypted.

Your VPN will most likely reroute traffic but it will also encrypt it so that no one knows what you’re sending or receiving. Continuing with the same example of the two countries that cannot trade directly from the previous section, a VPN in that example would be if the two countries were to export goods to a third country. The third country would then rebrand them so that there is no evidence as to where they were originally manufactured from. The goods would then be exported.

Difference Between VPN and Proxy

The major difference between a VPN and a Proxy is encryption. Some proxies claim to hide your IP address, and some do but not all of them are successful against services that do not allow anonymous web traffic. A proxy is a watered down, basic privacy tool that will work in some cases but not all. A VPN is far more robust; it has multiple servers that traffic is routed through and if one server goes down or is blocked, there is always a second server to take its place.

The traffic sent through a VPN is always encrypted and you’re given a second IP address to mask your actual IP address.

A proxy works mostly with web traffic sent from your browser whereas a VPN will encrypt every single request sent from your computer. All background services that need to access the internet such as update requests will also be encrypted. The encryption will extend to all desktop apps and services instead of being limited to just your browser.

VPNs are often faster than proxy services. A good, fast proxy service that promises data encryption and a hidden IP address is a basic VPN service. Proxy services mainly reroute traffic so they have few servers to route them through and thus your requests take longer to complete. VPNs on the other hand have a much larger network of computers that can handle more requests simultaneously thus making them faster.

Because a VPN is a much more robust service, you’re less prone to seeing errors or failed requests whereas a proxy service might not work well or at all if it has too many users.

Picking A Service

By now, you should know that there is a small but distinct difference between a VPN and a Proxy and that should help you decide what you want to use.

A proxy service is best used for low level privacy needs, or when you need to fake your location for something minor like watching a regionally restricted YouTube video. If you’re trying to watch regionally restricted content on Netflix, a VPN is going to do the trick.

This is because YouTube doesn’t go to great lengths to block users who try and fake their location. Netflix on the other hand actively thwarts them and VPNs, the good ones like NordVPN or ExpressVPN, will constantly update their servers and available IP addresses to get around whatever Netflix is doing to keep you out. Similarly, for services like Hulu, Spotify, Pandora, you need a reliable VPN and a proxy simply won’t do.

With respect to privacy, a VPN is always the superior option. Proxies don’t encrypt data and those that do aren’t worth it. It’s better to opt for a VPN that will do all that and more in more or less the same price.

Read What Is The Difference Between A VPN And A Proxy by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Create A Text On Solid Color Wallpaper

Wallpaper aren’t always beautiful landscapes, cool graphics, or movie posters. Text on solid color can often make for a good wallpaper. A nice inspirational quote, or a witty one-liner looks just as good. You can make a simple text on solid color wallpaper with Paint but Paint isn’t exactly the best tool for the job. For one, once you exit a text box, you can’t go back and edit it again. If you need something simple, give Text Wallpaper a try. It’s a simple app that is built solely for creating a text on solid color wallpaper.

Text On Solid Color Wallpaper

Text Wallpaper gives you limited color options to work with for your wallpaper. Visit the app and select a background color. Click inside the default text and type whatever inspirational quote or witty one-liner you want to see on your desktop.

Open the color box next to the text size tool, and select a contrasting color for the text. The text tool allows you to increase the text size but unfortunately, you cannot change the font size.

Once you’ve got it looking the way you want it, click the download button and save the image to your desktop. Right-click it and select the Set as desktop background option, or use the Settings app and set the image as the wallpaper from the Personalization group of settings.

This tool is limited in a few ways; it’s only for desktops, you have limited colors available, and there are no options for the font. It is still simple to use and if you like to update your wallpaper often with the same type of wallpaper i.e., text on solid color, this app is the most convenient way to do it.

If you’re looking for more color options or fonts, you might have to use a different image editing app. We recommend using Paint or Paint.net. Paint.net is actually a better option because it has support for layers and it makes editing the image much easier. Additionally, it’s easier to center text, or align it in Paint.net.

If you want, you can use an image as the background and add text to it in Paint.net. You will of course need to find the right color for the text so that it’s readable on the busier background. As a rule, white text with a black border is normally visible on any background regardless how busy it is.

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