Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Why can't I block spam calls?

Episode 1437

Omar from La Mirada, CA
Man Yelling at Phone

Omar keeps getting spam calls and he can't block them because they keep spoofing the number. Leo says it's called Neighbor Spoofing because they use a number that sounds like it comes from his neighborhood. It's illegal, but good luck trying to catch them. The problem is that spoofing a phone number is very easy. The caller ID is useless. And there's no real way to block them. He can at least complain to YouTube and they will pull his channel down since he's breaking the law by posting recordings of the calls.

Can I clone my hard drive to an SSD?

Episode 1437

Larry from Petaluma, CA
SSD

Larry's desktop runs Windows 10 and he's planning on putting an SSD in. How does he clone his spinning drive? Leo says that most hard drives have cloning software included that he can download and run. He'll want to make sure it's a sector-by-sector copy. Then Leo recommends keeping the spinning drive as his data drive. Disc 0 will be his "C" drive. Disc 1 is the second partition. He can clone both partitions at once. Then he'll have the partitions kept in place as well.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1436

Dick DeBartolo

ShadeCraft is a robotics and technology startup based in Los Angeles, California. Their flagship product, SUNFLOWER, is billed as the world’s first robotic shading system that tracks the sun. But that's not all! It has a full set of high tech features that include GPS, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, a high definition camera, voice activation and controls, speakers to stream audio, controlled lighting, and the ability to charge external devices! And – it's all powered through solar energy. Now this was a preview look and the more formal introduction will take place at CES 2018.

My Sony radio went through the wash and it still works!

Episode 1435

George from Santa Monica, CA
Sony - AM/FM Pocket Radio

George accidentally washed and dried his Sony radio, and it still worked afterwards! He says that good products that are made well need to be recognized. Leo points out that it isn't recommended use for that radio and Sony doesn't guarantee that it will work after a wash cycle. It's good that George dried the device before he used it. Water in a device isn't necessarily going to harm it, unless it gets powered and then short circuits. So it's key to fully dry the device out before turning it back on.

Should I get an i7 laptop?

Episode 1435

Qingnan from Los Angeles, CA
Microsoft Surface Book

Qingnan is looking to get a Windows Surface Book. Leo had one and he thought it was an interesting design, but it fell short on performance. The second version is about to drop and it's supposed to be better, though. Qingnan is confused though with the processor designation — it has two different processors claiming it's the 8th generation. Leo says that's marketing and often times that can be confusing.

How can I image a hard drive to a large thumb drive?

Episode 1435

Mike from Norwich, CT
DriveImage XML

Mike has a 1 TB thumb drive that shows up as a 2 TB drive. Leo says it could have been mislabeled. He should look in his disk management console. He can get there by right clicking on the Start menu, and selecting disk management. It will give him a more accurate indication of the size. If it's 2TB, then it was mislabeled. Also, since Mike bought it off eBay, it's something to be careful with. Can he use it to copy another hard drive? Leo says sure. He should try DriveImage XML to do it.

Why won't my internet connected door lock work?

Episode 1435

Brian from Nashville, TN
August Smart Lock

Brian says that he's having issues with his internet connected door lock. It's connected to a ZigBee hub, and it's only 11 feet away from the door lock and the hub is hardwired to the router. The company's support told him he'll need to get a repeater. Leo says there are routers coming out now that have Zigbee built-in, which could be one solution to these problems. Ultimately the real solution is that these things won't be using ZigBee or Z-Wave, the devices will be talking to the Google Hub or Apple HomeKit.