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Episode 1472 March 18, 2018

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Nathan from Canada Comments

Nathan gets a lot of "sketchy emails," and he wants to know how he can avoid that. Leo says he really can't avoid it, but most email programs can render any malware written into an HTML formatted email neutral. If he's using his mobile device, there's really no exploits that can hijack the phone. It's possible, but not at all likely. Malware emails are more dangerous in a browser rather than an email client. He can turn off HTML in the settings if that worries him, though.

Watch Frank from Fontana, CA Comments

Frank wants to timestamp PDF blueprints that he prints up, and he wants to be able to print them in order by group number and file name. He's created a database in excel to do this and then created a batch file. Leo says this is how programmers are born, by creating scripts and macros to streamline the workflow. Leo also says that a database program would be easier and can be done automatically. It would also allow him to create the PDF from the database and when he makes changes, the PDFs will be updated automatically. FileMaker Pro is ideal for this. He can also get a free trial to test it out.

If he has Microsoft Office, Access is a bit more complicated to use but it can do the same thing.

The chatroom found an article on batch printing PDF files at smallbusiness.chron.com.

Watch Taylor from Cincinnati, OH Comments

Taylor is talking about using LastPass and its 2-factor authentication. How does that work? Leo says that 2-factor can be a biometric thing, like his thumbprint, or it can be an authenticator which will text him a code to his phone that he would input into the prompt. It's secret and only good for about 30 seconds before he would have to input a new code. It's a great way to protect online data.

Leo uses LastPass, but he doesn't use their authenticator codes because they use a system that has a single point of failure. He uses Authy. That way a hacker would have to break into LastPass and Authy in order to get his data, which is very unlikely.

Watch Tom from South Carolina Comments

Tom got rid of his landline in favor of a TracFone. Now he wants to use Google Voice and port his number over, but it won't work. Leo says Google voice can't port a landline, and that's what it originally was. It's better to let Google Voice generate a phone number for him and then have Google Voice forward the calls to his TracFone number. It will continue to work, and he'll avoid the hassle.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Kathy from Santa Ana, CA Comments

Kathy says she bought a new computer with McAfee antivirus, and it wants her to activate it. Should she? Leo says no way. McAfee is commonly referred to as bloatware and it's essentially advertising on her PC. Kathy will want to go into Control Panel > Apps and Features, and uninstall any program she doesn't want. The problem, though, is that many AVS programs like McAfee are difficult to uninstall completely. She may need to get an uninstaller from McAfee to get rid of it all. There already is an antivirus program built into Windows called Defender, and it's a solid program. But once she gets rid of it, she'll want to make sure she turns on Windows Defender and keeps it updated.

Watch David from Hollywood, CA Comments

David got some iZotope software from the LAPostProduction Users group for restoring audio and he needs to upgrade it. Is there an alternative that isn't so expensive? Leo says that iZotope is the standard and it comes with free plugins, but the freebies are usually very limited. VST is the standard for the plugins they use, so if he can find some VST plugins, and there are thousands of them, he can use those. If he does a Google search for VST plugins he'll find thousands, and many are free. But he'll have to wade through them all.

The chatroom suggests SoundSoap. It's $75 and they have a try before you buy version.

Watch Robert from La Crescenta, CA Comments

Robert built his own computer with a nice Gigabyte motherboard, but his USB 3 video card isn't working with it. Leo says that's likely because his third-party card doesn't want to use the USB 3 chip on the motherboard. It has it's own. When he plugs the card into his PCI-Express slot, he should make sure it's properly seated and is a 4 lane slot. If Windows doesn't recognize it, then he should make sure the PCI-Express slot is enabled. He can refer to his motherboard manual on how. Also, he should check in the Windows 10 device manager to see if there's an "X" on the USB hub. That means there's a missing driver. Unfortunately, this is the downside of building his own computer. Everyone wants to pass the buck.

The chatroom says to go into the BIOS/EFI Setup and disable the motherboard's USB 3 chip. There could be a conflict.

Watch Kip from Colorado Comments

Kip bought a Dell XPS 15 laptop and the screen is gorgeous, but he has a burned out pixel on it and it's very annoying. Is that something covered under the Dell warranty? Leo says it depends. Sometimes it takes more than just one, and they need to be connected. There's no standard, so he'll just need to talk to Dell and ask. Rattle some cages and see if they'll replace it. Kip shouldn't hesitate to write Michael Dell for satisfaction as well.

Watch Marla from La Crescenta, CA Comments

Marla wants to know which free government phone has the best reception. The idea behind the so-called "Obama phone" is that everyone needs a mobile phone and the government subsidizes phones for those who can't afford it. But unfortunately, nobody really tests for reception anymore because there's so much congestion out there.

Verizon is the ideal choice for cell coverage in Los Angeles. It will give Marla the best coverage. And Verizon offers Universal LifeLine service here.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jim from Simi Valley, CA Comments

Jim says that every time he does a Windows update, something goes wrong. It always deletes the restore point after updating, too. Leo says that Windows is deleting the restore point because he doesn't have room for a second one. Freeing up space on the drive could help. Leo doesn't trust restore points though, anyway. They don't work very well.

The bigger issue is that Jim has something that breaks during every update. Leo suggests that he back up his data and start over with a fresh install by pressing Windows Key and typing Reset. He can then reset without deleting data or reset and start over with a clean install. Leo suggests starting over with a clean install. This will not only get it back to running like the day he first bought it, but it will free up a ton of space from unused programs and temp files that he doesn't really know he has in his cache.

Watch Peter from San Gabriel, CA Comments

Peter wants to know why his printed color pages have lines in them. Leo says that if he doesn't print a lot with an inkjet printer, lines will occur because the ink simply dries up in the print head. He'll need to run the ink check/self cleaning utility on the printer to clean the printer head. The downside is that will use up a lot of ink. That's why Leo says that inkjet printers really aren't a good idea for people who print seldomly. A laser printer is better because it uses a dry toner. The downside is that laser printers aren't good for printing pictures, so he'll have to go to a photo store for that.

Watch Joe from Tampa, FL Comments

Joe wants to know more about the iRULU smartphone. Leo says it's a cheap, $169 phone and he's wary on cheaper gadgets because he'd get what he pays for and it's usually underpowered, easy to break, and limited in the apps he can use. Chances are, it won't be regularly updated. If he needs a good budget phone, Leo recommends the Motorola Moto G5 Plus.

But it's true that smartphones are too expensive these days.

Watch Karen from Lake Elsinor, CA Comments

Karen gets a warning that she isn't connected to the internet on her Roku, when she is. Leo says he has the problem as well, and he believes it's because the internet will experience momentary drop outs from time to time and the Roku software doesn't handle drop outs very well. He doesn't know what the fix is, though. Karen could restart the Roku by unplugging it and letting it reboot. But that's frustrating to do when the show is still playing. Getting a newer model should fix it. Leo has the Roku Ultra and it doesn't do that. It's possible that if she contacts Roku and tells them the problem, they may replace it.

Watch Kevin from Malibu, CA Comments

Kevin is having issues with his files and folders disappearing in Windows 10. Leo says that obviously that's not supposed to happen. It's easy to accidentally drag a file or folder somewhere without knowing it. He should use the search feature to try and find it again. He should also look in the trash can. If he can't find it there, then it could be a failing hard drive or malware. Some malware will do this. He can run a scan on his computer by pressing Windows Key + CMD and type "MRT" for the malicious software removal tool. Then he should run a full scan. That will look for malware.

Watch Mike from California Comments

Mike bought a Logitech Harmony universal remote control but it won't work with his Comcast box. Leo suspects it's because his latest box doesn't use IR, only RF (radio). Leo says that Harmony does make an IR to RF extender that would convert it.

Watch Jeff from Montgomery, AL Comments

Jeff is about to close down an old email account and he wants to be able to delete all the old email at once. Leo says that if the email system is POP, he can set the email client to delete from the server once it has downloaded to it. If it's IMAP, that email is kept on the server after downloading. So he'll have to do it the hard way. If he can turn on POP3, he can then just download it and it will delete all at once afterwards. If not, he'll need a third party app, and there are plenty. Google makes one.