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October 18, 2017

E-mail Protocol Comparison: POP3 vs IMAP vs Exchange

So you’re setting up your brand new desktop, laptop or smartphone and you come across the option to choose the type of account or protocol to use and you have zero idea what any of it actually does. Don’t worry. We’ve been there before which is why today we’ll be comparing three of the most common e-mail protocols in use today.

 

POP3

POP3, or Post Office Protocol Version 3, is one of the e-mail protocols quickly losing popularity today thanks to the rise of broadband and mobile broadband internet.

The way POP3 works is once it’s setup on an e-mail client (Windows Mail, Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, etc.), [...]

 
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September 8, 2017

Why You Need a VPN If You Use the Internet

Internet security has become one of the most prevalent issues in the past few years and while not as popular as it should be, one of the best ways to stay safe online is to use a VPN service. In this article, we’ll discuss what a VPN is, why you need a VPN service, and how to choose a good VPN provider.

 

What is a VPN

A VPN is an acronym for Virtual Private Network. As its name implies, VPNs were originally designed primarily to allow users to connect computers in different locations onto the same “virtual” private network. At first, corporations adopted VPN technology to allow its employees to use a shared drive or an intranet [...]

 
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September 6, 2017

The Best PC Benchmarking Tools (System, CPU, GPU, RAM and Storage)

If you recently purchased or built a new PC, or upgraded an older PC, the most important thing to do aside from stress testing is to benchmark. Whereas stress testing helps ensure the PC is completely stable not only during idle but also during heavy load, benchmarking will help ensure that the PC is operating at the appropriate level of performance for the components installed. As simple issues such as an outdated driver or an improperly configured component may significantly degrade performance, benchmark testing will allow you to quickly catch any issues and to fix them immediately so you can take full advantage of the new hardware that you’ve spent your hard [...]

 
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August 21, 2017

Top 5 Uses for a Home Server or NAS

As prices of last generation servers continue to decrease, internet speeds continue to increase, and NAS systems become much more feature rich, many people are now opting to setup their own home servers or NAS systems.

If you don’t own your own home server or NAS system, here are five top uses for a home server or NAS.

 

Network Storage

The most common use for a home server or NAS is using it as a network storage. After all, the acronym NAS itself stands for Network Attached Storage.

Typically referred to as a “shared drive”, network storage typically employs the NFS (Network File System) or SMB (Server Message Block) [...]

 
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August 27, 2017

The Best Torrent Clients of 2017

Torrents have gotten a bad rap over the years as a platform for sharing illegal movies, music, TV shows, and software, but they have quite a few legitimate uses as well. For example individual developers, content creators and non-profit organizations can simply set up a Torrent, share it with a couple people and let it self propagate, significantly reducing the cost overhead of purchasing file hosting or content delivery.

However, unlike traditional file delivery methods such as through HTTP/HTTPS or through FTP, in order to download a Torrent file, a Torrent client is needed and of course not all Torrent clients are created equal. As such, today we’ll be [...]

 
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September 25, 2017

The Best Torrent Sites of 2017

Due to the fact that Torrent sites operate in a legal grey area as many sites host Torrents for copyrighted content alongside Torrents for legal content, finding a quality, reliable Torrent site with that doesn’t get shut down is difficult.

As such today we’ll be sharing several of what we consider to be the best Torrent sites on the internet which offer a wide variety of Torrents, a huge community of seeders and regular updates.

Please note that Custom PC Review and its content contributors absolutely do NOT condone the download of copyrighted content which may appear on some of these Torrent sites. Please refer to the [...]

 
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August 9, 2017

8 Best CPU Benchmark Tools

So you just purchased a new PC at Best Buy and the salesman assured you that it’s without a doubt the top of the line, fastest, best of the best PC money could buy. Naturally you buy it because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t want a top of the line best of the best PC? Now that you’ve taken the system home however, how do you actually know if it’s top of the line or not? The answer? Benchmarks.

While there are benchmarks that cover practically every since PC component along with the system as a whole, today we’ll be showing you the best CPU benchmarks we use here at Custom PC Review to specifically evaluate CPU [...]

 
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July 21, 2017

What’s the Difference Between Modems, Routers and Switches?

In the computer networking world, the three most ubiquitous pieces of equipment are modems, routers, and switches. These are used everywhere from the datacenter hosting Google to the internet connection in your own home. However, despite how important these three pieces of equipment are, many people are completely oblivious as to what each piece of equipment does, so in this article, we’ll attempt to explain the difference between each piece of equipment and how it all fits in your home network.

 

What is a Modem?

A modem is the short way of saying “modulator, demodulator”. The primary purpose of a modem when used in a home [...]

 
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July 12, 2017

Five Best Free Encrypted Text Messaging Apps for Android and iOS

Back in 2013, privacy and encryption was thrust into the forefront of mainstream news when NSA whistleblower, Edward Snowden, leaked a huge repository of classified materials to the press, revealing a lot of very unnerving information about the NSA’s global surveillance programs. Among what was revealed included the NSA’s capability to monitor the online activities of US citizens which include everything from browsing activity to phone calls to e-mails to text messages and much, much more.

While government spying may be worrisome, what should be even more worrisome is the fact that unencrypted transmissions can literally be deciphered by anyone [...]

 
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July 6, 2017

Is Incognito or Private Browsing Mode Actually Private?

Chances are if you’ve used a modern internet browser in the past few years, you probably know that each browser has some sort of private mode. In Google Chrome, it’s called Incognito, in Microsoft Edge, it’s called InPrivate, and in Mozilla FireFox, it’s called  Private Browsing.

While many have used this type of private browsing functionality, one of the biggest questions that I get is, “Is private browsing actually private?” and the simple answer to this is no.

In fact, each of the browsers specifically warn you before surfing the internet in their respective private browsing modes that while private browsing will keep [...]

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