Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jane from Manhattan Beach, CA Comments

Jane wants to know if there's a website where she can input what she wants in a computer for gaming and get a recommendation. Leo says that kind of exists, and she can find it at The Wirecutter. She can find out what they say is the best for her needs.

Leo says that since Jane is going to be doing bio feedback applications, any laptop will work. She should run Windows 10 Pro. Leo likes the Dell XPS. Leo also recommends getting a touch screen. Another option is the Microsoft Surface Pro Laptop or Tablet. Leo just got a Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga, a 2-in-1 convertible laptop, which is great. Leo recommends going with the Intel i5, but she can splurge and go with the i7. It has 16GB RAM and an SSD drive.

Watch David from Simi Valley, CA Comments

David wants to know if he can use a VPN on his tablet. Leo says that TunnelBear is a good one to look at. Leo uses Hotspot VPN with a hardware dongle called the Tiny Hardware Firewall that he can plug into the tablet and it creates a Wi-Fi access point that he surfs through. It's secure and easy to use.

Will Apple be announcing a new iPad or laptop soon? Leo says the rumor is a week from Monday, during Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference. So he shouldn't buy anything just yet. Traditionally, iPads are in October, iPhones are in September, and laptops is anyone's guess.

Watch Rich from Orange County, CA Comments

Rich has a 27" Dell XPS All-In-One PC and he wants to turn off the touch screen. He tried deleting the driver, but the next time he reboots the computer, it just reloads it. He also tried disabling it, but that didn't work either. Classic Shell and StarDock's Object Desktop is designed to turn things off and replace stuff that's been taken out, so he could try those. It could also be that Dell has an underlying utility that keeps turning it back on.

Watch Don from San Clemente, CA Comments

Don's has a large, 1,000 square foot lot and he installed Google's On Hub Wi-Fi Mesh router. Leo says that Google's On Hub isn't his favorite at all. He prefers the NetGear Orbi because it's the most powerful. It comes with a base unit and a satellite unit and it'll easily cover a few hundred feet.

How can he determine the amount of buffer bloat in his router? Leo says that Netalyzer is what he'll want, or he can run the speed test at DSLReports.com. Leo says it's really an overblown thing that he doesn't need to worry about. Netalyzer requires Java to run, so he should be aware.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Harold from North Carolina Comments

Harold installed Ubuntu onto his computer and he likes it. Leo prefers Debian because it's community supported, while Ubuntu is now a commercial product. The Arch Linux distro is the best. It has great Wiki and community support, but it's more for hardcore Linux users. Harold should use the Antergos installer, it does it all. But Ubuntu has great hardware support as well.

Watch Howard from Tarzana, CA Comments

Leo says that a bootable backup is a good idea and almost every hard drive comes with disk cloning software in order to make an exact copy of the hard drive he would have. It'll even be bootable. The Chatroom recommends NeoSmart's EasyBCD. Seagate has one called DiscWizard. It's a free download that will clone his Seagate hard drive. Acronis TrueImage is another good option.

On the Mac side, Howard should look at Super Duper. He'll want to make sure the BIOS is set to let him boot from an external drive, though. It also has to be UEFI and he may have to turn off secure boot and boot into Legacy Mode. The chatroom says that Windows won't load from an external drive, but Leo doesn't think that's true. If he turns off secure boot, then it will.

Other imaging options include:

Watch Charles from Sugarland, TX Comments

Charles and his family are going on a cruise and want to know if his devices need to run through a VPN. Leo says there are some risks, but not as much on an iPad. Google has been pushing for https everywhere, meaning that his search activity is encrypted. But that's not stopping someone from using a Wi-Fi sniffer called a Pineapple or Wireshark to figure out what his access point name is. A wise thing to do would be to forget his home network before he goes. Another option is the Tiny Hardware Firewall. But he should remember, a VPN will slow him down.

Watch Joslyn from Elizabeth, NJ Comments

Joslyn is getting ready to move and she wants to know how she can determine how strong a Wi-Fi signal is where she may live. Leo says DSL Reports will give her reviews on how good her internet is in any given area. But that won't tell her how good it is inside where she's going to live. If the building was built with a lot of metal, she'll have a hard time.

She can always bring her Wi-Fi access point (router) and plug it in. Then she can use a program called Wi-Fi Analyzer on Android, walk around, and see how good the signal is. A mesh router will fix this, though. Leo likes Plume, which would allow her to put one in every room. They're $49 each.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Becky from Panama City, CA Comments

Becky's daughter wants to be a professional photographer and wants to know what to get her that is affordable. She currently uses a Canon Rebel XT with interchangeable lenses. Leo says that getting her a prime lens like an EF 50mm F1.8 is great because it's fast and sees roughly what the eye sees. It will also train her to shoot and compose images professionally. It's great for portraits and street photography. It's also very good in low light. The faster the lens, the blurrier the background while the subject is super sharp. Another option for landscapes is a wide angle lens.

Watch David from San Bernadino, CA Comments

David got a new laptop and now he's having trouble inserting videos into power point presentations that he's built. Leo says David probably needs to have the right codec for those videos. It keeps looking for them.

He should download and install VLC Media Client. That will install all the codecs David is missing. KLite Codec Pack from Codec Guide is another option, but he should try VLC first.

Watch Jim from Malden, MA Comments

Jim is looking at getting a cheap action camera because GoPros are too expensive. Leo says he likes the Yi Action Camera. The reviews on the Akaso Action Cameras are remarkable. At half the price, it could be a great bargain. No wonder GoPro is struggling. There's plenty of competitors doing the same thing for less.

Watch Rom from Culver City, CA Comments

Tom hears that Yahoo Mail is getting shut down and he's worried because he has over ten years of emails he could lose. What should he do? Leo suggests getting a Gmail account and then going into the settings and enabling the mail forwarding option, which will grab all the Yahoo Mail and save it to his new Gmail account. That way he can transfer all the mail and start using Gmail. Leo uses it every day. Tom should also register a domain name for himself and use it with Gmail, it will forward all the mail, and he can change it whenever he wants.

Watch Bob from Leonia, NJ Comments

Bob was a Time Warner Cable client, but now he's with Spectrum and his "enhanced DVR" box is starting to fail. Leo says that chances are, it's the hard drive that's starting to fail. How can he get the shows off before he returns them? They say there's no way to do it since the data is encrypted. Leo says that the cable won't help him get those off because they are afraid of piracy. If it's a cloud based DVR, then he'd be OK. If not, he's out of luck. He could take advantage of the "analog hole." He could do that by putting a recorder in between the DVR and the TV, but he'll need it to be HDCP compliant.

By Jared C. Benedict (Own work) [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY-SA 2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons