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Episode 1411 August 6, 2017

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

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

Serj wants to know what he'll miss out on with the next generation iPhone if he makes the switch to Android. Leo says that a lot of what Serj is feeling is due to the Apple hype machine. Since he's concerned with how much more fragile the iPhone has become over the years, Leo points out that Android phones have become just as fragile.

Serj will miss out on the two camera portrait mode options in the iPhone now, but the Android devices have cameras that are just as capable. One thing he'll miss out on is getting Apple Messages. If he's a part of a group text messages, he may miss the message because Messages is a closed system. He can also text from the desktop without a third party option like Whats App or Facebook Messenger.

Head to head, they're basically the same. Android does have the benefit of better customization. So if he's living in the Apple ecosystem with other devices, he'll be better off sticking with the iPhone. If he wants an Android device, Leo's current favorite is the Google Pixel.

Watch Carrie from Hermosa Beach, CA Comments

Carrie turned on her laptop and a few of her keys don't work anymore, so she can't log in. Leo says that may indicate that her keyboard is dead or that those keys have broken. The good news is that she can plug in a USB keyboard and use it that way. She could also pry up the key caps on her laptop keyboard and see if there's some dirt or lint in them. That can easily cause a lack of connection between the keys above and below. Canned air will get rid of all that.

Watch Carrie from Hermosa Beach, CA Comments

Carrie has a Lenovo Yoga 2 convertible and it won't connect to the internet. It's asking for an adapter. Leo says that the Yoga is wireless, so it shouldn't need an adapter. Leo advises going into the Device Manager by pressing Windows Key and typing "device," then pressing Return. This will show her a list of all her hardware. That will show her if there's a problem with the networking device. She can delete it and then restart the machine. Windows will then reinstall the device driver. There's also a WiFi on/off switch. She may have hit the wrong function key which turned off her WiFi.

Carrie should check out this page at support.lenovo.com for more help.

Watch Jerry from Torrance, CA Comments

When Jerry turns on his Windows PC, all that comes up is a folder that says "Windows." Leo says it sounds like the hard drive has become corrupt and has failed. It can happen at any time, and the older the hard drive gets, the more likely it will fail. Can he get his data back? Leo says he can use recovery software to do so. He can get an external USB hard drive enclosure, or a temporary connection kit like the NewerTech USB 3.0 Universal Drive Adapter, and connect it to another computer and run recovery software to get the data back. He can probably even just drag and drop the data over.

He can also use SpinRite to examine it sector by sector looking for bad sectors. When it finds one, it will move the data off the bad sector and then mark it as bad. This will make the drive useful again. Another possibility is that the file catalog has been corrupted. That's a file system issue. Piriform's Recuva can fix that.

Watch Brian from Huntsville, CA Comments

Brian's gear needs ethernet, but the ethernet connections in his home aren't near the router. What are his alternatives? Leo says that TPLink's Powerline Networking is a solid option. It will use his home's electrical grid to create a wired network. Another option is to use mesh routers like Plume.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Dave from Crystal Lake, IL Comments

Dave has a Samsung Galaxy Tab and he's worried it may have malware. He's getting strange popups. Leo says it's possible, since Android is more porous to malware than iOS is. If he hasn't updated it lately, that could be part of the problem. Leo suggests backing up the data on the tablet and doing a factory reset. He'll have to reinstall all of his apps, but Leo suspects that a rogue app is the problem. Then he can reinstall them one at a time until the culprit reveals itself. There's also a tab for "my apps" in the Play Store, and apps he's installed previously, so he can install them from there.

If he doesn't want to be that radical, he can go in and remove any recent apps. It's likely something he downloaded recently.

Watch Keith from Coachella, CA Comments

Brian wants to know if he can connect the Amazon Echo to anything and control it by voice. Leo says not everything. It requires a "skill" to be downloaded to attach to a device and control it. But there are more skills being added every day.

Watch Joe from Covina, CA Comments

Joe needs a high end chromebook with 16GM RAM. Leo says the challenge will be 16GB of RAM. The highest end Chromebooks have about 8GB of RAM. He really wouldn't need 16GB of RAM with a Chromebook because it doesn't have to deal with the requirements of a full Windows system. ChromeOS is very light. Leo recommends taking a look at ASUS.

Watch Corey from San Pedro, CA Comments

Corey wants to know if Waze can be used on her Hyundai's Android Auto screen. Leo says Waze just got out of beta for Android Auto. But Corey has an iPhone, which uses CarPlay. He knows that Waze is in beta for CarPlay, but it's a bit tricky to install it. Check out Carplaylife.com for tips on how. Currently, it won't display on CarPlay, and Google has no plans to do so.

Tony in the chatroom says there's a hack at redmondpie.com, which includes a video showing how to do it. He'd have to jailbreak the phone, though, and Leo doesn't advise it.

Leo recommends getting a cheap, data only Nexus device that can run Google Fi, and then run Android Auto on it exclusively.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Keith from Phoenix, AZ Comments

Keith wants to know how strong his WiFi network is. Leo recommends WiFi Analyzer. For the Mac, there's WiFi Explorer. It will give him a line graph with signal strength according to channel. It's $20.

He can find other WiFi analyzer apps at netspotapp.com. It may be that all he needs to do is reset his WiFi settings.

Watch Keith from Phoenix, AZ Comments

Keith wants to restore his iPhone back to factory settings without losing his health data. Leo says there are layers of resetting in the iPhone, and it's hard to erase it entirely. But he's had issues with his Apple Watch and getting text messages and wants to try starting over. Leo says to go into settings and start with the lowest level of resetting. He should start with "Reset Network Settings." If that doesn't fix it, he can try the "Reset All Settings." Only the "Erase All Content and Settings" will delete his health data.

Watch Mark from Vienna, VA Comments

Mike is using Terminal on his Mac and he's noticing a strange name at his command prompt. A day later it disappeared. Leo says that the public name of his computer may have been changed. He can learn how at osxdaily.com.

It could have also been a host name that the computer was logged into, and that could indicate malware at work. Leo recommends installing Little Snitch. It will monitor any outbound connections that are occurring and show him which apps are phoning home. That could give him an idea who's messing with his Mac.

Watch Kevin from Malibu, CA Comments

Kevin has a Toshiba laptop and his network adapter went belly up. Can he use a third party adapter? Leo says that Kevin should be able to. Reliance on proprietary adapters went by the wayside thanks to pressure from the EU.

Watch G. Scott from Minnesota Comments

G. Scott wants to organize his computer backups. He's got duplicates everywhere and multiple files and versions. Leo says he used to worry about organization, but he decided it doesn't matter. He can just let go of it. He'll have multiple copies and that's a good thing. What he really wants is a definitive copy (known as the ground truth) that is off site, and the rest will be extras.

There are DeDupe apps that he can get that will analyze his files, especially music, and then delete duplicates. But he'll want to make sure they look at the contents, and not just the metadata. Leo recommends Media Monkey. It'll not only organize and separate duplicates, it will also load album art, metadata, and more. It's great for organizing music.

Watch Tom from Warren, OH Comments

Polarr is a great Chrome extension for doing photography on a Chromebook, but it's still a challenge. If his Chromebook has access to Android apps, that will give him even more options. But at the end of the day, he's better off using a Mac or Windows machine and something like Adobe Lightroom. If Google Photo's basic tools work for him, then he's all set.