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Episode 1377 April 2, 2017

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Brian from Fairview, TN Comments

Brian has tried several password vaults and he finds them all inconvenient. His frustration is that using his mobile device doesn't always work so well. He ended up on LastPass. Is that a good choice? Leo says yes. It's the one he uses. 1Password is another one, and it has the advantage of being able to save the vault somewhere else. Brian could also look into DashLane, RoboForm, and the open source KeePass. There's a lot of them.

Recently, a serious flaw was found in the LastPass autofill function. LastPass suggests turning off the autofill function until they fix it. They suggest logging into LastPass and signing into your sites from there. Even with that, Leo says he still trusts LastPass and it'll get buttoned up again soon. Otherwise, he recommends 1Password. Lastly, don't use the password manager in the browser. It's unsafe and unlocked.

Watch Paul from Columbus, OH Comments

Paul's daughter has a really old router and it's starting to flake out, so it's time to get a new one. Leo says she should get a dual band router that supports not only 2.4 Ghz, but also 5Ghz. She'll want one that supports 802.11ac. The reason to get a dual band router is that everyone is on 2.4 these days, and while 5 GHz is limited and won't go through walls, it is barely used.

Leo advises getting the Archer C7. It's about $80. If money is no object, then Leo would recommend the new Mesh routers, which are smarter and solve a lot of congestion problems automatically.

Leo suggests checking out this article on "Why Wi-Fi Kind of Sucks."

Watch Robert from Laguna Hills, CA Comments

Robert signed up for Google Fi and bought a new Google Pixel phone, but Google is having issues activating his account. Leo says that's disappointing, especially when they don't know what the problem is. Leo says it's a good system and Robert shouldn't give up on it yet.

Can he use it on Verizon until it does? Leo says yes. He should just ask them for a SIM and he'll be able to use it. It shouldn't add any software overlays, but it may download some apps. He'll be able to uninstall them, though.

Leo thinks the issue may be porting his original Verizon phone number. Robert also says that they are having issues with the payment method. So there's clearly some handshaking issues going on.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Peter from Brooklyn, NY Comments

Peter is looking for a huge monitor for his Mac. He wants one that's as close to 4K as possible, and he wants accurate color. Leo says Dell monitors, Samsung's Curve, and the Acer Predator all have a great form factor.

SRGB 125 is a broad color gamut, but a 27" monitor may be a better option for computing. If he's into gaming, it may be good, but the aspect ratio may throw it off.

Watch Shane from Indiana Comments

Shane isn't a big iOS fan, but he finds that the iPhone handles music and streaming much better than Android. Leo agrees, but says that Android has claimed they have finally solved their music latency problems. Even if they have, it's hard to beat how Apple handles their music. From higher resolution audio, to streaming from the cloud, to iTunes, it really is the top.

Watch Bob from Pasadena, CA Comments

Bob wants to buy a Synology NAS and discovered that it doesn't come with hard drives. Leo says that's correct. That way he can put in the right hard drive for his needs. If he's going to stream a lot of video, he'll want a faster hard drive. It isn't a cheap NAS.

To help with costs, he could try a two drive enclosure, rather than a four or five drive model. The software is the same, and now it costs half as much. Leo recommends the Western Digital RED drives. He'll also want to use a good media server. He should keep in mind that he'll want to use redundancy, which could take up a third or half of his hard drives. Can he then get a larger drive later? Leo says yes, it'll rebuild automatically. But he could easily get it for under $500 to start out.

Watch Gary from Buffalo, NY Comments

Gary has been looking for an alternative for desktop search. Leo says that X1 is his favorite, but you have to pay for it. It starts searching as you type, which makes it really fast. It searches into emails, documents, and everything using keywords. Copernic is still around as well, but it's dated. X1 is modern and up to date. It's the king of the hill.

The chatroom recommends Everything Search Engine by VoidTools, and it's free. It doesn't look into documents like X1 does, though. Jam software's UltraSearch and Mythic Software's Agent Ransack are other options.

Watch William from Costa Mesa, CA Comments

William bought a Motorola G5 Plus and all his windows have vanished. Leo says that in the new version of Android, they got rid of the app drawer button. If he looks in the app dock at the bottom, he'll see a series of ellipses. If he touches that, it'll bring up his app drawer with all of his installed apps in it. The launcher also has pages and he can have as many pages as he wants. He should go into the launcher settings. Or he can squeeze the screen and add pages to the right there. To put an app on the desktop, he can just long press on an app from the app drawer and drag it out onto the screen.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Caleb from San Diego, CA Comments

Caleb wants to know if it's safe to use the same password across different web accounts. Leo says no, because once one site gets hacked, they can use that password information to guess the passwords for other sites. Many do this, and it's how the Turkish Crime Family was able to hack over a million iCloud accounts. Password vaults make different passwords for every site and you have only one password to open the vault. But that's not on the internet anywhere, he'd just remember that. It's much safer that way.

Watch George from Maine Comments

George bought a laptop from someone online and there's a problem with it, and he can't set it up. He bought it on eBay. Leo says it's likely that George doesn't have much recourse here. He simply can't trust that the laptop is safe.

Leo recommends immediately wiping the hard drive and reinstalling Windows. He can't even trust the recovery partition, either. Chances are, reinstalling from the recovery partition will be fine, but he'll never really know for sure. He should completely wipe the drive. eBay should protect him though, and Leo would advise returning it.

Watch Deborah from California Comments

Deborah knows that when you log into website, it gets logged somewhere. Leo says it's in the browser history. Deborah is wondering if her daughter could use that information to prove that she attended a class that her professor is claiming she was not there for. Leo says the browser history would only prove that she was on that specific site, which she could have been on from home. Deborah says that if it keeps track of when the site was refreshed, the timing of that refresh could prove that she was there. Leo recommends looking at the browser history, but she should do this sooner rather than later because it usually only keeps the data going back a few months.

Deborah says that if they can't prove her daughter attended this class, it would ultimately keep her out of med school for two years. Leo thinks this is a flimsy policy by the professor, and they should be able to appeal to a higher authority on this.

Another way to try and prove that she was in class would be to use her phone's location data.

Watch Rob from Santa Monica, CA Comments

Rob wants to know who best provider is for the iPhone in Los Angeles? Leo says that in a huge metropolitan area like LA, he'll have his pick of the litter. He shouldn't trust the carrier coverage maps, as they are too optimistic. There are third party sites like OpenSignal.com that will give an independent assessment. T-Mobile and Sprint are also good, but they have dead pockets in the suburbs. AT&T and Verizon are best in LA.

Image By User:Cacophony [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

Watch Lisa from Bellflower, CA Comments

Lisa's phone is dead and she wants to know if she can get the data off of it and transfer it to her new phone. Leo says if the phone is bricked, then unfortunately that data is unreachable. But her phone is probably backed up to the cloud by default, or her computer. So she should look into her iCloud account or on her computer to see if that data is there. Chances are, a lot of that data will automatically sync to the new phone once she logs into her iCloud account. This is why cloud backup is so important.

Watch Sak from East Point, FL Comments

Sak is using an old Acer computer as a backup drive for his data. Will there be a point where it will die? Leo says yes. It always will sooner or later with age. The older the computer is, the more likely it will fail. He really won't want to rely on a single backup source. He needs two, preferably three. He should grab an external hard drive and copy all that data onto it. Then bring that off site.

Image By m lobo (Acer Aspire One D250) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Watch Nathan from Utah Comments

Nathan is wondering where he can get AirPods. Leo says that AirPods were delayed for a few months, and even now, they are hard to find because Apple isn't up to speed in making them as fast as they need to. The challenge is the new W1 chip. He can get a pair of Beats, though, which uses similar technology.

Nathan should go to an Apple Store and ask them when they'll get a shipment. Then he can go and buy them. It's all about timing. There's a site called IsInstock.com that will notify him that they're in. But by then, it's often too late. He can also go to another location like Target or Best Buy and ask them. There's a subReddit that would keep him up to date as well at /r/airpods.

Watch Lucille from Chicago, IL Comments

Lucille is worried that the government will be able to look into our search history. Leo says that ISPs will be able to sell our history, but they will hold onto it, not the federal government. But let's face it, if they want it, they can get it.

Your ISP knows all of your data. But Google is responding to this by encrypting everyone's search history, so no one can see it. The data could be sold off, but it wouldn't be usable then. What isn't encrypted, they'll be able to not only read, but sell.