Microsoft will cease support for Windows 7 on January 14, 2020, so PC users should really upgrade to Windows 10 soon. The most important point will be the loss of security patches for the operating system, which will make it increasingly risky to take online. Eventually, browsers and other constantly-updating software will stop working comfortably with Windows 7 and might be frustrating to use. The same issues plagued users of Windows XP after its time was up. Although Windows 10 looks a bit different, you can configure the interface to more closely resemble what you liked about Windows 7.
Chip is looking to build a new computer and is looking for current guides to building medium/high-end PCs. Leo recommends PCper.com and their hardware leaderboard. The leaderboard will help recommend all the right components and is a great place to start one's research. AnandTech and certain subreddits can also help with additional note-taking.
Sarah accidentally spilled wine in her computer, so she's ordered a new one. She's borrowing a computer from a friend in the interim. She has a variety of email accounts though, and she wants to access those, but she doesn't want to leave her account information saved on that computer. Sarah should create her own account on that PC. Then, before she gives back the computer, she can just delete that account. Sarah can just go into Users section of Control Panel and make a new account with administrative privileges. Then log out of her friend's account, and log into that account.
Steve is a HAM Radio operator who wants to use a Windows tablet to decode radio signals. He uses WSJT-X software. Leo says that Intel created a 2-in-1 laptop/tablet hybrid for lower power usage. There's also something called an Intel Compute stick that can turn a TV into a computer. There's also the Kangaroo PC by InFocus. It costs $99, is battery powered, and runs Windows 10. It would be a great choice for this.
Derek just got out of the military, is going to flight school, and wants to know if he should buy a Mac or Windows PC. Leo says it largely depends on what he'll be using it for. If it's gaming or simulators, then Leo says Windows is best. Here are some good Windows PCs to consider:
Ian is 11 and wants to know if he should buy a MacBook or build his own gaming computer. Leo says that building a computer is a fun project, and a great learning experience. But if something goes wrong, he'll have to be his own support. If he buys a computer, then he'll have a company to support him. Leo also says that running Steam means that many games are ported to the Mac, but most gamers are on PC, and that means Windows. But if he's planning on doing other things like getting into video editing, then Leo would recommend the Mac.
Operating systems can sometimes be very vague when it comes to identifying used and free space on a computer. If you've ever seen the "other" category taking up a large percentage of space on your hard drive, then this should help clear that up.
Bob says he's noticed that Leo has been getting more calls from people having problems with Apple than ever before. It used to be that everyone called about Windows. Leo says no technology "just works," and they all have problems. Leo uses Macs though, and he thinks that people call him because he's more Mac friendly than his competitors might be. Macs tend to be more virus free, but that could just be the fact that virus makers use Windows more. Apple's desktop computers are still not the dominant platform, though.
Charlotte needs to find laptops for each of her twin granddaughters to use in high school. She uses Macs, but they can't afford that. She's doing a ton of research, but she's having trouble figuring out what to do. Leo recommends a Google Chromebook for school work. They're very inexpensive, and they don't get viruses. And if one gets lost or damaged, it won't be the end of the world.
If you're experiencing a dramatic slowdown on your Mac or PC, you may be able to track down the culprit by using a process monitor. This will show you all of the programs and processes currently running on the computer, and how much of your system resources those processes are taking up. If you close out of all programs and still see a process taking up nearly 100% of the system resources, you'll know what's causing the issue. Then you can Google the name of that process and find out how to get it under control.