Some media and storage devices can cause crashes of computers running the latest iteration of the Windows client, Microsoft informed.

The Redmond company did not offer a specific list of hardware products that have problems playing nice with Windows 7, but the software giant did deliver a few details.

Not only Windows 7 computers are impacted by this issue, but also Windows Server 2008 R2 machines.

According to reports from users, the crashes are associated with freshly installed third-party applications designed to be used in concert with devices relying on multiple transport Media Transfer Protocol (MTP) or on the Windows Portable Device (WPD).

Microsoft explained that Windows 7 PCs will crash when MTP or WPD devices are connected for the first time. More »

Customers that have upgraded their Windows Vista Service Pack 1 computers to Service Pack 2 only to subsequently be plagued by frequent crashes can access a solution from Microsoft. The Redmond company notes that it is well aware of the issue. According to the software giant, some customers that made the jump from Vista SP1 to Vista SP2 have experienced repetitive crashes and have also come across the following stop error message “Stop 0x000000FE BUGCODE_USB_DRIVER”. Microsoft also mentions that the same problems affect customers that upgraded from Windows Server 2008 to Windows Server 2008 SP2.

“After you upgrade from Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) to Windows Vista SP2 or from Windows Server 2008 to Windows Server 2008 SP2, your computer crashes frequently and you receive the following stop error message: Stop 0x000000FE (parameter1, parameter2, parameter3, parameter4) BUGCODE_USB_DRIVER,” the company stated.

While an update is not available from Microsoft, nor likely, except with the release of Vista SP3, a hotfix can be grabbed from Microsoft Support. The software giant notes that the hotfix is the same as a resolve designed to take care of another problem impacting Vista and Windows Server 2008. However, in the specific case of Vista SP1 to SP2 upgrades, the issue “usually occurs on computers that have NVIDIA chipsets. More »

The revised Vesik method involves typing nonsense characters into a password input box when using a public PC and then rearranging some of the letters to form your actual password with the mouse. If the PC contains a hardware keylogger or is infected with a software keylogger, rearranging a password in this way will usually suffice to obscure your credentials. Most hackers will concentrate on the 99% of users who type in their passwords at Internet cafés in the usual way.

One proposal sent in by many, many, many readers was a variation on a single theme. Namely, keep your sign-in information on a USB flash drive or memory stick, then copy and paste the info into the appropriate fields when you’re required to use a public PC or other unsecured computer.

Unfortunately, many keyloggers capture any information you place into the Windows Clipboard. I tested the copy-and-paste technique using the All In One Keylogger from RelyTec. (For more info, see the vendor’s site.) The program easily captured the sign-in IDs and passwords entered, whether I used the standard menu options (Edit, Copy and Edit, Paste) or the keyboard shortcuts Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V.
More »