hard drives

How can I speed up my computer?

Ubuntu

Episode 1232

Kinan from California

Kinan has a Gateway laptop with a broken screen and he's got it hooked up to an external monitor. It's getting slow and he wants to speed it up. If he's never reinstalled Windows on the machine, it's a good idea to backup his data, format the hard drive and reinstall Windows from a known source. The hard drive may be wearing out, too. Another option would be to try Ubuntu Linux.

How can I replace the hard drive in my iMac?

Apple iMac

Episode 1227

Martin from Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Martin wants to put a solid state drive in his 27" iMac. Leo says that adding an SSD is a great thing to do, but it's not easy with an iMac. Leo had his engineers do it, because he needed a special suction cup to lift the glass screen off to take out the hard drive and replace it. It's doable, but it's not for the faint of heart. Leo recommends going to iFixIt.com and he can find a special step by step, along with the parts and tools required.

How can I make an old hard drive unreadable?

Episode 1201

Gary from Pawtucket, RI

Gary has several old drives with data on it and wants to know the best way of destroying them so that they won't be able to be read. Leo says if he can read the drive, he can use Derek's Boot and Nuke (DBAN), which will write over the drive seven times to make it impossible to recover the data. His other choice is to take the drive apart and literally shatter the platters, if they're glass. Patrick Norton does this with a hammer. He could also drill holes into the metal platters as well.

Why am I getting error messages when recording music?

Episode 1192

Scott from Westminster, CA

Scott does music recording on his MacBook Pro, but some of his recordings are getting a "disk too slow" error. Leo says that has to do with how many tracks he's recording, and an SSD would definitely fix that. Scott should check out the Blackmagic Speed Disk Tester in the Mac App Store. It'll test the speed of his hard drive and it will tell him if his hard drive is fast enough for the recording he's doing.

How can I use my own router with FIOS?

Episode 1190

Steve from Hermosa Beach, CA

Steve has FiOS and the Wi-Fi seems to be slow. How can he speed it up? He'd like to bypass the Verizon router and use his own. Leo says that he'll have to use the Verizon device to connect to FiOS, but he can disable the router part and use his own router instead. He'll need to connect them with ethernet to make it work. The router is also built into the modem and is using network addressing. Steve should put the router part in "bridge mode" to just hand it off to the router.

Can I clone my MacBook Pro drive and install it on my Mac Pro?

Episode 1185

Brennan from Orange County, CA

Brennan has a 2012 MacBook Pro running Mountain Lion. He also has a 2010 Mac Pro. He uses both for audio engineering. He has everything set up, and he wants to know if he could clone the MacBook Pro and then put that onto his Mac Pro. Leo says he may be able to. He could try making a bootable drive from a USB key and then selecting that when booting up the Mac Pro to see if it works. OS X should be smart enough to install any missing drivers. Otherwise he can always run the OS X installer and reinstall the OS directly