Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Claudia from California Comments

Claudia is finding that half of her photos have disappeared in Apple Photos. She's taken her computer into the Apple store and talked to a genius but they have no answer, except that she has a second library. But the photos aren't there either. Leo says that the second library is the old iPhotos library. But that doesn't answer why her photos have vanished. They've also disappeared from her backup. Apple wants to wipe her drive and start over. Leo says it's common for tech support to want to wipe and go back to the original install. But the problem is, she'll lose her data. It certainly doesn't help Claudia and it doesn't address the fundamental issue that her photos are disappearing.

Leo says that it could be one of three things. It could be user error, a random software glitch, or hard drive issues. Leo says hard drives can and do fail, and will fail more often the older they get. If her hard drive is slowing down, that's a sign the hard drive is getting ready to give up the ghost. Spontaneous random deletion and spontaneous errors are indicative of a failing hard drive.

Another possibility is Apple's cloud services are the culprit. Claudia is relying on iCloud to back up her photos. Leo advises logging into iCloud from her desktop to see if the photos are still there. She should also check in the recently deleted album. Apple really isn't as good at cloud services as Google, Amazon or others. It could also likely be the most obvious culprit here. That's why Leo advises backing up to Google Photos, Flickr, or some other third party photo backup site. Claudia should also periodically backup her photo library to an external hard drive. Adopt a 3-2-1 backup strategy. Three different copies, on two different media, one being off site. Redundancy is key.

Watch Mike from Yucaipa, CA Comments

Mike is trying to upgrade to Windows 10 and nothing is working. He's had to restore several times and go back to Windows 7. He finally was able to install Windows 10 and get it to work properly, but now he's getting an error message trying to download apps from the Windows app store. Leo says that this is a known problem with some users of Windows 10 who have upgraded. Leo says the fix came with the November Threshold 2 Update. So if he hasn't updated to that yet, he should.

Mike isn't sure if he has the latest update, though. Leo says to find out, he can press the Windows key and type "WinVer," and then return. This should tell Mike if he's updated. Another issue is being in the 30 day roll back window. According to the chatroom, the Threshold 2 update won't come until he's out of that 30 day window. So he should be patient. It'll be fixed eventually, and likely with Threshold 2.

The chatroom also suggests this article from WindowsCentral.com, which outlines logging out of his store account and then logging back in as part of a five step process. For some, that solved it.

Watch Don from Hacienda Heights, CA Comments

Don has to use the US Air Force Website to address issues with his pay, but it says that someone else is using his email address so he can't log in. Leo says that it's likely that somebody else in the database has put in the wrong email address that was strangely similar to Don's. So it has associated his address with the other account and there's really no way to reach the other guy. Leo suggests that Don get in touch with the Air Force tech support and solve it, or ask if he can set up his account with a new email address.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Kate from Ann Arbor, MI Comments

Kate uses Ancestry.com to search her genealogy, but they've changed their website and she's having issues. Their tech support really isn't helpful, either. Leo says that for the price people are paying to have access to Ancestry.com, they should have decent tech support. Leo says that the issues Kate is having could be due to upgrading to Windows 10 and Chrome. So if compatibility issues are happening, she should try using a different browser like Internet Explorer.

Watch Jeff from North Carolina Comments

Jeff bought a 1TB SSD and he wants to install it with a fresh install of Windows. Leo says that makes it a lot easier. Jeff can just install the drive and then install WIndows on it. Jeff may have activation issues with it, though. Jeff could also clone the other hard drive by imaging it to the new one. It won't be a clean install, but he can then do a recovery.

But here's a better option: Upgrade to Windows 10 before he installs the new hard drive. It'll tie the OS to the computer. Then he can download the media creation tool and he'll have a recovery. Put that on a USB key and then restore from the USB key and he'll be good to go. He can then use the old drive as a backup. For more information, check out thurrott.com for clean install notes.

Watch Steve from Woodland Hills, CA Comments

Steve bought a Lenovo Windows 7 PC a few years back. He recently wound up getting the Taplika virus with non stop pop up ads in his browser. Leo says he'll need to install "VPlay" from Add/Remove programs and then remove Taplika from his browser. Technically it's not a virus, but a browser hijack and that should get rid of it. VPlay is a Windows service, and that is very insideous. It's going to make it harder to get rid of. He can find more information at malwaretips.com

At the end of the day, the best way to get rid of it will be to back up his data, format his hard drive, and reinstall Windows from a known good source. Because there's no way to know what else it's doing and there could be other malware there. Or, at the very least, if he tries to remove it with MalwareBytes, it could cause the system to become unreliable. So Leo suggests nuking it from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Bob from Santa Barbara, CA Comments

Bob wants to buy a Chromebit for his TV and turn it into a computer. Is it legit? Leo says it is, but he'll need a keyboard and mouse to use it, and after buying that, it's almost as much as buying a dedicated Chromebook. Leo recommends checking out Anker for inexpensive peripherals. They have one for $20 that includes keyboard and mouse. Any Bluetooth keyboard will work, though. But he should understand that the Chromebit won't be very powerful and TVs don't have as high of a resolution screen as typical computer monitors do.

Watch Doug from Santa Barbara, CA Comments

Doug wants a 12v TV for his RV that's about 24" in size. Leo says he could get an inverter that can convert the DC to AC. It'll drain the RV battery though, so he should be aware that. Dish has special RV packages too that aren't too costly. But as long as he's near a metro area, he can just get an antenna and get the best resolution since it's uncompressed.

Doug should check out my12voltstore.com to look for a TV.

Watch Doug from Santa Barbara, CA Comments

Doug has heard there's a $35 to $50 tablet that would allow him to just surf the net. Leo says for $50, the best option is the Amazon Fire Tablet. It's just a 7" tablet, so it isn't very big, but that's the only one Leo would get for under $100. Amazon is essentially subsidizing the price of the tablet because it's an entry into the Amazon store to buy more content and products.

Watch Chuck from Tennessee Comments

Chuck bought a new computer, and it runs Windows 7, but it has a Windows 10 DVD. Is he good to install it? Leo says that as long as it is ready for Windows 10, it should be. Does he have to install it right away? Leo says no. In fact, he doesn't have to at all. Windows 7 will be supported until at least 2020. It's confusing that they wouldn't put Windows 10 on the machine. Leo advises contacting Dell and finding out just what Chuck got. Just remember, after July 29th, the free upgrade to Windows 10 will expire. So after that, Chuck may have to buy Windows 10 to get it.

Watch Richard from West LA, CA Comments

Richard has a Barnes and Noble Nook reader and he wants to know how many full recharges he gets. Leo says that he'll get about 500 full recharges as any given lithium ion battery will. But Richard hasn't ever run down his phone, keeping it plugged in most of the time. Now he can't recharge it. Leo says that a battery is always going down/up and it could just be worn out.

Watch Don from Temecula, CA Comments

Don sees 4K TVs at Costco. Are they really 4K? Leo says yes, they are, but the content he's getting isn't, and as such, the content gets "upscaled" from 1080p to 4K. How well a TV does it varies from maker to maker. And there really isn't a widely adapted standard yet. So it's a mixed bag. If he needs a new TV now, he should get one. But it's really not the best time for it yet.

Watch Don from Temecula, CA Comments

Leo says that David Pogue's OS X El Capitan: The Missing Manual is probably the best, but he should check out the website iMore.com. It's a great online resource.

Watch Don from Temecula, CA Comments

Leo says it's not likely. Backup programs mostly just backup data files. There are some viruses that can be attached to a sound or image file, but it can only bite him if there's a flaw in whatever he's using to play or read it. As long as he keeps the software and OS up to date, he'll be protected. Backing up a virus rarely happens, if ever, anymore.

Watch Larry from Manhattan Beach, CA Comments

Larry has a Windows 10 gaming machine that he built, but after updating to Windows 10, it won't boot up. It always crashes. But when he put his Linux disk in it and it runs fine. Leo says that it's likely a driver issue. It's not uncommon for Windows to crash after being updated as there may be additional features that the hardware won't support. Microsoft may have put in a driver that isn't supported by Larry's hardware set. There's a good chance there's nothing wrong with the hardware and that in time, Microsoft will release a fix.

The problem is, by building his own machine, there's different drivers, sometimes more than one. And Microsoft thinks it's fixed the issue or made things better when they've actually broken it. And they may not fix it. It could also be a hard drive error. Larry should try putting in another hard drive to see if it works. But there are also known processor compatibility issues with many processors. So he may want to look that up as well. And since the computer is 7 years old, that's probably the issue. One way to fix it is to just go back to Windows 7.