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Episode 1096 June 29, 2014

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Mackenzie from Grand Rapids, MI Comments

Mackenzie needs to buy a computer and 3D printer for a business. He needs a touch screen on the laptop. Leo says that no matter what computer Mac gets, a Wacomb tablet/monitor will make it touch. But with Windows 8.1, getting a Lenovo Carbon X1 Touch is a great option.

The Thinkpad W540 is larger, has a ton of power, and is considered a "mobile workstation."

What about the Lenovo Yoga? Leo says he'd really need to want a tablet for that. The Chatroom says WinMate makes industrial grade production computers.

Watch Brian from Santa Ana, CA Comments

Brian built his own gaming PC a few years back, but now the power button won't work when he turns it back on right away. Leo says that indicates that the computer isn't shutting down fully, and it's a very common issue. Leo says he should try powering down the PC the proper way, wait a minute, and then unplug it. Then plug it back in and turn it on. If it comes on right away, then he'll know that the software isn't fully shutting his PC down. If he still can't turn it back on after doing that, then it's a hardware issue.

Odds are, its an issue with the Windows shut down procedure. The chatroom says to turn off fast boot and other services which may be keeping the computer from going down. Hardware wise, it could be a flakey power supply. Hibernation could also be a culprit. It never works well, and as such, can cause the computer not to power down. So he should make sure he turns that off.

Watch Dave from Los Banos, CA Comments

Dave is concerned with Net Neutrality and the deadline looming to comment about the new rules the FCC is trying to put in place. He thinks the government should regulate the big three providers so the little guy won't get lost or swallowed up. Leo says they can't do that because of equal protection laws. The issue is that ISPs shouldn't be able to block content until that content pays for access to the customer. But the courts have thrown out the FCC rules anyway and have come up with new rules, which Leo says has some good and bad aspects. Edge providers like Netflix, and other content providers including Leo, can be charged for "fast lane" access to customers, which is wrong. The best way to fix this is with real competition, which doesn't exist in the US.

If you want to read more, John Oliver has a great piece here. You can also check out the Electronic Frontier Foundation and SavetheInternet.com. You can email your thoughts at openinternet@fcc.gov.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch JR from Hewitt, TX Comments

JR has a Lenovo computer, and has been getting error messages that his recovery partition is nearly full. Leo says that installing programs on Windows is almost always done to the C drive by default. He can choose otherwise, but it works best keeping all the programs on same drive as Windows. Leo says he shouldn't be able to put anything on the recovery drive, as it shouldn't even be visible from the operating system. The recovery partition is designed to only be slightly bigger than what is needed to hold the Windows recovery software. It may just be an overactive warning that JR is seeing, and he might be able to turn that off in Lenovo's software.

JR can check out this relevant thread on Lenovo's community forums. There's also a tech note from HP about a similar issue.

What does Leo think of the Samsung Mega? Leo says it's very big. It's essentially a Samsung Galaxy S4 with a 6" screen.

Watch MJ from Burbank, CA Comments

MJ is thinking about buying a refurbished Mac. Leo says that if he's going to go refurb, don't ever buy it from anyone other than the manufacturer. He should buy it from Apple. What about Mac Enthusiast in Santa Monica? Leo says he knows those guys and he'd consider that the exception to the rule. But remember that a warranty for a refurbished computer won't be from Apple.

Watch Glenda from Orange County, CA Comments

Glenda is a dog walker and she wants a GPS tracker that her clients can access so they can see where their dogs are. Leo says that's a nice idea. Most smartphones can do it, and there's a great app called Glympse she can use. It's on Android and iOS she can share her location in real time on Google Maps. Waze also has GPS tracking.

Garmin also has GPS trackers for dogs that she can place on dog collars.

Would she be able to stream video also? Leo says she can stream video live with uStream.tv. Justin.TV has SocialCam. But that'll burn through her bandwidth pretty quick.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Howard from Mission Viejo, CA Comments

Howard wants to record what's happening on his computer screen and play it back. What software should he use? Leo says that the best is Camtasia, but that's rather expensive. Applian has a program called Replay that will capture audio and video from any website. VLC VideolanClient can do it as well, if he knows what the video URL is.

Howard ultimately wants to know the best way to download a YouTube video. Here are some of the best sites and apps for doing this:

Howard should understand that recording videos off YouTube violates their terms of service.

Watch Dave from Riverside, CA Comments

Dave says that Riverside is ending their free Wi-Fi service tomorrow after complaints that some people couldn't use it. AT&T, who set it up, pulled out a few years ago and Riverside may have decided it was too costly to operate on their own. Leo says that's a shame because Riverside was one of the first communities to give it a try. It's not likely that more communities will be able to join in, as most ISPs have lobbied legislatures to outlaw free Wi-Fi service so ISPs can charge more.

Are there any free alternatives? Leo says his local coffee shop or McDonalds is an option, but he really should buy something to honor that. At the end of the day, it's probably cheaper just to pay for it.

Watch Alan from San Diego, CA Comments

Alan would like to delete all the emails at once on his iPhone. Leo says if that email is on an IMAP server, then the messages are on the server and not on his phone.

Watch John from San Diego, CA Comments

John's friend uses Outlook and when he moved, Outlook can't find his email server. Leo says that it's likely that Comcast altered settings that prevents him from seeing it. Outlook doesn't support the standard port 25 SMTP port. So he'll have to use the secure SSL ports. He can enable that in settings, and then he should select port 465 or 993. Comcast blocks port 25. Here's a technote on how to use his email client from Comcast.

Watch Noah from Orange County, CA Comments

Noah got a mobile phone as a gift and now he's broken it. It's the Souq XTouch X1 from overseas and nobody can fix it. Leo says Souq is just starting to sell it here in the US. The problem with sending it overseas for repair is that it'll take forever and he'll have to pay customs fees. And that's if he gets it back. It's probably going to be cheaper to buy a new phone.

Watch Libby from Claremont, CA Comments

Libby has some miniDV tapes that she wants to make digital copies of. She wants to know the best method for doing this, and what format she should use. Leo says that miniDVs are already digital. So that saves a step. Since the service Libby took them to made DVDs, she can rip them and get MPEG2 files. Leo uses HandBrake and VLC Media Client, which work together to rip DVDs. Leo says to just rip it. Don't reencode it. Keep the highest quality and then when she wants to put them on an iPad or iPhone, she can reencode it for that particular device.

Watch Libby from Claremont, CA Comments

Leo suggests talking to Verizon and requesting a FemToCell. If they don't offer it to her, then she should threaten to leave the service. The FemtoCell will route her calls through the internet so she can at least have service in her home.

Watch Adam from Agusta GA Comments

Adam wants to know how he can record his guitar riffs on the Microsoft Surface RT and convert it into synthesizer. Leo says since Adam has a digital interface, that's half the battle. But the issue is whether or not he could find an app that would do this on Windows RT. If this was an iPad, there would be tons of options.