Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Mark from Myrtle Beach, SC Comments

Mark is looking for an alternative to Facebook. Leo says that he's quit Facebook once and he thinks they're very manipulative in how they manage his feed. So he understands why he would want to leave. He's also noticed that the more time he spends on social media, the worse he feels. It's a time suck. For photo sharing, Flickr is a good site, as is is another. Instagram has a lot of the best of Facebook, but it's owned by Facebook. Think of it as "Facebook lite."

There's a Facebook clone called Diaspora, but Leo says he doesn't know the fate of it lately. He could also run it on his own server.

Watch Doctor Mom from Long Island, NY Comments

Doctor Mom says that Amazon turned on calling land lines with the Echo, much like Google Home can. She's tried it out and it's much like the Echo to Echo feature. You wake it up and then say "dial, [phone number]." But it will not call Google Voice numbers or 800 numbers. You can't hook up a Bluetooth headset, either.

Leo says that those are similar issues to the Google Home variant. Doctor Mom owns a lot of Echo products but she will not buy the Echo Alarm Clock because it has a camera built into it. Leo says he doesn't understand what they were thinking. It's a creepy feature to add to a bedroom alarm clock. She also says that the Echo Connect is coming, and it will allow you to make phone calls from your home number. Leo says that will probably solve the problem of being able to call 800 numbers. It will also give you 911 support. Leo doesn't like the speaker phone capability and that you can't hook up a headset to it.

Watch Don from Montana Comments

Don is having issues with his browser extensions. They had been slow, but now it's worse. Leo says that it could be due to Chrome's built-in sync option that will transfer his bookmarks and themes to another browser. You'd think that Sync would fix it. Leo says that Don should try resetting Chrome to see what happens. He'll have to reinstall his extensions afterwards. If he's going to do that, though, he should try deleting Chrome and then reinstalling. He's also running into verification issues. Leo says that the cookies aren't being retained, and Leo suspects that there's a hard drive issue. Also, if he doesn't store cookies, then the sync can't run correctly. He'll need to have cookies running, so he should turn it back on.

Leo also says that LastPass can cause delays because it has to sync the passwords.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Russell from Scranton, PA Comments

Russell has an iPhone SE and was using an app called Tether to use his cell phone as an internet hotspot. It doesn't work anymore, though. Leo says that it's been replaced by the hotspot feature in the phone, but his provider may not support it or may charge him a monthly fee to use it. Some carriers don't charge for it at all, like T-Mobile. But resellers, like Boost don't support it because the major carrier they work with doesn't. Will a VPN fix it? Leo says not for hotspotting, but a VPN will work for keeping his internet access encrypted and secure in public Wi-Fi hotspots. Leo recommends Tiny Hardware Firewall.

Watch Mike B from New Jersey Comments

Mike B says that Google Voice can call 800 numbers, and he used it to call the Tech Guy show. That's something that the Amazon Echo cannot do.

Watch Taylor from Ohio Comments

Taylor wants to stream let's play videos on multiple streaming platforms simultaneously. Leo says that TWiT does this to live stream. We use an expensive hardware box called the Elemental. The chatroom suggests, which claims you can stream to 30+ platforms at once. Another server-based solution is called Wowza.

Watch Paul from La Jolla, CA Comments

Paul is having an issue with dropped calls and limited cell reception. He's told he needs a receiver to boost the signal. Leo says that receiver is called a FemToCell that plugs into his internet access and routes his calls through the net. He should call his carrier and tell them he can't use their service in his house and ask them to provide a FemtoCell. In most cases they'll provide it for free. He may need to threaten to cancel his service to get it.

Watch Manny from Florida Comments

Manny has an LG 4K TV and Blu-ray player. But when he uses the web browser, he gets a message that it's out of date. Leo says that's not surprising and he doesn't think he can solve that issue since browsers in Blu-ray Players aren't updated all that much. Manny should try using the browser in his SmarTV. It uses WebOS and that's supposed to be update-able. At least it should be updated more often than his Blu-ray.

Manny can also connect his Harmony Hub to his Sonos speaker system and use it as a voice activated system. Leo says that's a great feature that he's going to have to try. Sonos has been lapped by voice control systems like Google Home, Apple's HomePod and Amazon Echo. So being able to use the Hub to clear that bottleneck is a great option. There's a Harmony Hub skill on the Echo too.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Kirk from Crestline, CA Comments

Kirk is going on vacation to the south pacific and needs an international plan for his phone. Leo says that T-Mobile started a free 2G-3G international data and texting plan and it has put pressure on other carriers to do the same. Leo always brings T-Mobile with him when he travels. Leo also recommends Google Fi because it uses various carriers. AT&T has a daily pass option, which is $10 a day. Verizon was the hardest to use overseas, but they've recently started the day pass like AT&T. Kirk should check with his carrier and see what they offer. He can also ask them to unlock his phone for the trip and use a local SIM. He should check out for information on what local carrier SIMs are good for where he's going. He should remember that he'll have a different phone number, though.
Another option is to get a MiFi wireless access point.

How does he move data to his SD card on his Samsung Galaxy 8? Leo says he just has to put the SD card in, and the phone's camera app should ask him to where to put his photos. He can also find that in his settings. Kirk can also use it to save music and other media as well. How can he transfer those things? Leo says he shouldn't do it all manually, as that's where trouble starts. Some apps will offer to do it, and that's the best way to do it. But if he has to, he should try using a file manager app like Astro.

Watch Chip from Corona Del Mar, CA Comments

Chip has over 400 apps on his Android phone, along with hundreds of contacts. He wants to know the best method for transferring all of that data to a new phone. Leo says that first of all, both Samsung and Google will backup his data. His previous phone was an HTC, and his new phone is a Samsung Galaxy Note. Leo says even if the two phones aren't from the same company, Android will still prompt him to transfer some of the data through NFC by touching the phones together. Google syncs his settings, and on Samsung phones it's under "Cloud and Accounts" in Settings. Chip can see that it will offer him a backup to both Samsung and Google. For Google, he'll just turn on "Back up my data" and then turn on "automatic restore." It doesn't backup the actual app, but it does back up a list of the apps and will re download them from the Play Store. Then when Chip sets up a new phone, it will ask if he wants to restore from a backup. If he says yes, this will get him a long way toward being set up on the new phone.

The one thing he won't have is his home screen setup. Leo's recommendation there is to use a third party launcher instead of Google's launcher. He suggests Nova Launcher or Action Launcher, which will allow him to save his complete configuration to Google Drive or Dropbox, and then he could reload it.

Watch Brian from Nashville, TN Comments

Brian wants to know how he can use tags to stay organized on his email. Leo says that tags are great for searching and it makes it really simple to stay organized. Gmail can tag messages. Mailtags has been around for years and it works great. Leo used it a long time ago and it works in Apple Mail, which can be a challenge because Apple changes Mail with just about every version of macOS. It's also great for photos. Google Photos is great for tagging as well. Brian would have to be a dedicated tagger to keep his tags up to date, especially for photos.

Watch Perry from Ocean Beach, CA Comments

Perry has a NetGear C6900 modem/router and it just drops out for several seconds from time to time. Leo says that routers and cable modems do wear out over time, and if he gets a lot of drop outs, it could be time to replace it. But Perry's router is only six months old, so that shouldn't be happening. Leo says he could try updating the firmware. PadreSJ says that the NetGear Combo units start having memory issues that cause server busy errors. Perry should go into his settings to find the logs and see if he is getting errors like that.

Another fix would be to get a cable modem approved by his cable provider and a separate router. Leo likes the ARRIS Surfboard DOCSIS III. Perry should check out the Wirecutter. Their favorite is Netgear's, which is ironic. If Perry's cable company updated the firmware of his modem, that could have caused it as well.

Watch Kyle from San Pedro, CA Comments

Kyle is having trouble updating Windows 10 to the Spring Creator's Edition on his HP PC. HP has had problems with the Spring Creator's Update and Leo has a hunch the fall update will have similar issues. Leo says not to force the update. Microsoft will only offer the update when the machine is ready to receive it. It locks up after about 35%. Leo says to get it as a stand alone update and update it that way. He should download it directly as a file and install from a thumb drive. If that doesn't work, he can try the latest update from Microsoft with the media creation tool. He should try re-partitioning the drive into a single drive first, and then install Windows 10 from the Microsoft downloaded file.

Can he shut down his Synology NAS from time to time? Leo says it's designed to always be on, and if he just needs a backup drive, it may be better to just have an external drive he can attach from time to time. He could get a Drobo and use it as a giant hard drive.