Google Hangouts is Ending Nov. 1, 2022

On November 1, 2022, Google Hangouts is going to start redirecting to Google Chat. Even though the capabilities are similar between the two, Google has alerted that there is a risk of data loss during this migration period. Unfortunately, this change is not one that can be opted out of. We advise that current Hangout users sift through their Hangout Conversations and locate any that should be saved. We can assist in saving these conversations if there is a concern of data loss.

When in Gmail, if the left-hand quick access menu already has this “Chat” icon, then you are all set and do not need to take any action.

As always, please contact us at if you have any questions or require assistance.

Log Off vs Disconnect

When using your cloud server or other forms of RDP (remote desktop), there are two ways in which you can leave your connection: Logging off or Disconnecting. However, these two have different results believe it or not. If you simply select the “X” at the top of your window, you are Disconnecting.

Disconnecting leaves your open applications running and continues to use the resources of the server/desktop that is being connected to. This can cause issues for you when you reconnect or for other users who are connected as well.

Logging Off, also called Signing Out, can be done by either using the “Log Off RD” icon on your Desktop, or by selecting “Start’“ in your RD window, then your account bubble, and lastly “Log Off” or “Sign Out.” If you would like for us to add this “Log Off RD” shortcut, please let us know.

What to do if Windows 11 automatically updates

How to Roll back to Windows 10

Windows 11 updates have been happening randomly on some of your devices. Systems and Software Inc has set update policies to try and prevent these updates, but sometimes the change can happen regardless. To roll your computer back to Windows 10, simply follow these steps:

-Go to “Start” and search for “reset”

-Select “Reset this PC – System Settings”

-Under “Recovery Options”, select “Go Back”.

-A new window will open, asking to select a reason. Pick one, then select “Next”

-Now you will be asked if you want to check for Windows 11 updates. Select “No, thanks”.

-Select “Next” on the next two screens and finally choose “Go back to Windows 10” on the last screen.

-This 10-30 minute process will begin a system reboot that will return your PC to Windows 10.

Why not stay on Windows 11?

We are still asking clients to wait until the end of 2022 to completely upgrade to Windows 11, but select clients can upgrade based on their applications and tolerance to this change. For those who work mostly with Microsoft applications like Word/Excel or work primarily on a cloud server, the change to Windows 11 will have minimal effect. The only issue we have experienced with upgrading to Windows 11 is the potential for Google Chrome to not function properly, as well as its interaction with some company-specific applications. We are working to find the best solution for this and can work with users on an individual basis if they experience any issues.

Please feel free to contact us at if you have any questions or require any assistance.

Log4J Vulnerabilities and AWS Outage Update

Log4J Vulnerability
You may have been hearing news and reports of a security vulnerability called ‘Log4J’. Log4J is a logging program used by big name companies like Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and Minecraft. Recently, a flaw was discovered that could give open access to these logs and/or company servers. These companies who use Log4J are working to put out updates to prevent breaches, and as customers we just need to apply these updates when they are available.
AWS Outage Update
As of 11:01 AM EST on 12/15/2021, Amazon has identified the root cause of an outage to AWS US-West-2 and has taken steps to restore connectivity. There has been some improvement in the last few minutes but they continue to work towards full recovery. While we are aware of AWS specific services affected by the outage – we are not aware of 3rd parties that rely on AWS that deliver services to you. Please report any outages to us and we can advise if they appear to be related to the AWS outage.

Please feel free to let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

2-Step Verification and Multi Factor Authentication

Google Workspace: 2-Step Verification

As Google has begun to make it’s 2-Step Verification into a default policy, we are reaching out to remind our clients about this important security setting. Your Google Workspace account is currently setup to allow 2-Step Verification, but it is not enforced. Users can add 2SV at their option or it can be a policy where users are required to enroll. We highly recommend that if you don’t already do so, get your account setup with 2SV. 2SV provides extra protection to your account and makes accessing your data more difficult for those who aren’t intended to see it.
Follow these simple steps to get started. Google 2-Step Verification
1. Click on your account bubble in the top right corner of the screen and select ‘Manage Your Google Account’ from the pop up window
2. Select ‘Security’ in the list on the left side of the screen
3. Under the ‘Signing in to Google’ section, select ‘2-Step Verification’
4. This will take you to a new page where you can set up the phone number to be used for the verification and the way you will be verified.


Office 365 users have a corresponding feature of 2SV, called Multi Factor Authentication, that is also becoming the default setting. MFA shares the same idea as 2SV, and we highly recommend that its use for your safety. Here is the link to find out more of how MFA works. To set MFA up for your organization, please reach out to us.

We have recently assisted several clients who have been subject to expensive fraud due to compromised user accounts. Please take these important steps to prevent this from happening to your team!

Please reach out to us if you wish to REQUIRE your users to employ 2SV or MFA – or if you are in need of any other assistance. Thanks!

McAfee Phishing Email

We have many of our clients reporting that they have received the following email or one that looks similar. They should ignore and delete it immediately:

McAfeeThanks for being our existing valued customer.

We hope you’ve been enjoying our premium services- 5 devices subscription.
We wanted to give you a heads up that we will be charging you for the next period of your subscription today.
Your account is debited with $429.98 which will be shown on your statement shortly.

Your Subscription Details :

Product Name : Mcafee All-Round Secure Net 5 Devices Protection
Plan Details : One Year
Product Price : $429.98

Billing Support #+1 888-560-XXXX

If you have any problems with the VPN, your account or any other technical issue, please raise a ticket on “Help Section Page”.

If you have any problem with your payment reach out to us on our billing support number.


This is a phishing email. 

The purpose of this attack is that the sender wants a recipient to click the link and put in valuable information such as passwords, usernames, credit cards, etc. Filters do their best to try and block this kind of phishing attempt, but every so often, one gets through. The best thing to do is simply ignore and delete this email. 
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns with any suspicious emails that you may be receiving. 

Slow Browser Speed after Windows Update?

Recently, there has been a Windows update that has caused some slow speeds when using your internet browser. We have found out the cause of this issue is rather simple. Find your browser below and follow the steps provided:

Google Chrome/Microsoft Edge

1. Click on the Vertical 3 dots in the top right corner of your browser 

​2. Select ‘Settings’ from the drop down menu

3. Look at the menu on the left of the screen and select ‘Advanced’

4. Select ‘System’ under the ‘Advanced’ menu

5. Uncheck the option ‘Use Hardware Acceleration When Available’

6. Restart your browser


1. Click on the Vertical 3 lines in the top right corner of your browser

2. Select ‘Settings’ from the drop down menu

3. Scroll down to ‘Performance’
4. Uncheck ‘Use Recommended performance settings’

5. Uncheck ‘Use Hardware Acceleration when available’

6. Restart your browser


This should resolve any slow browser speeds that are occurring since the Windows update. Please feel free to contact us with any further questions or concerns at
Thank you.

Google Resource Key Update

On September 13, 2021, Google will be applying ‘resource keys’ to existing shared files as a security measure for Google Drive data.  This security add-on will change the behavior of Drive data only when links are requested by NEW viewers — anyone who already has access to an existing shared file won’t need to do anything. This ‘resource key’ will be embedded in the new shared link that the sender provides. A New viewer who receives a link with this embedded key will be able to access the shared document via the link. We appreciate your bringing us your concern over this security change and hope you will not hesitate to contact us with any other questions.

Google Drive for Desktop Update

As you may have been seeing, Google will be unifying their ‘Backup and Sync’ and ‘File Stream’ features into one program called ‘Google Drive for Desktop’. This new ‘Drive’ program will work in a similar way to both of the previous features; users can backup selected folders or photos, access their files from other devices, and save directly to their online G Drive from their desktop. 
If you are already a ‘Drive’ user then you should be able to continue working as you are. However, those who are currently using ‘Backup and Sync’ or ‘File Stream’ please feel free to contact us with any concerns about this update as it rolls out over the next few months. For those who currently aren’t using a cloud storage system, we highly recommend using this ‘Drive on Desktop’ program. 

IMPORTANT If you are a current ‘Backup and Sync’ user and/or have the pictured icon in the lower right corner of your screen next to your clock, we highly recommend you set up a time with us to discuss your options for backing up your information and important files.

Google’s changes will affect current users of ‘Backup and Sync’ and will replace the way that users backup storage for their files. If you wish to further discuss these changes, any concerns, your options, and/or how to use them, please feel free to contact us to set up a time so that we can help.

No One Likes Waiting for Their Computer to Startup

Why is my startup So Slow? – it’s often slow and sometimes slower still!  One reason that startups can become slow is due to updates and patches that Microsoft has pushed to our computers in response to a security concern.  Everyone is concerned with security these days — and Microsoft is updating our computers almost daily.

We can ensure the fastest boot times with a few simple steps:

  1. Leave your computer on at all times – your computer is receiving updates from Microsoft regularly and we should be ready to receive them at any time
  2. Before you leave for lunch, the end of the day, or for the weekend, reboot your computer.   We often have to reboot our computers when first sitting at our desks in the morning, however, our reboot may actually be triggering our computers to apply the Windows update it just received!  Rebooting when we are ready to leave our desk, however, will allow updates to be applied/downloaded or applied automatically without other open programs that interfere with an automatic reboot.
  3. Leaving our computers on does not consume much power and is not less secure if we are password protecting Windows.

Please let us know if you have any questions about the above!