Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Gordon from Long Island, California Comments

Gordon is in the hospital, and wants to know if their public wifi is safe or should he use a VPN? Leo says that if it's using a wide-open network, then anyone can log in. It's a shared, public network. There are some risks, but your banking is safe because it's encrypted. The one thing to worry about is a "man in the middle" attack. Hospitals with public wifis could give the hospital the ability to watch what you do. That's when a VPN can come in handy. It will encrypt all traffic, by burrowing an encrypted tunnel to the internet. 

Watch Michael from Grand Rapids, MI Comments

Michael is having issues installing Windows on his Linux machine. Leo says that to remove the Linux partition, go into Windows Install, go into the partition manager during the install and delete the Linux partition. Then you'll have enough room. You'll also want to make sure it's formatting in NTFS. 

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Nolan from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Nolan has a portable hard drive that can't be seen with his Mac anymore. How can he get the data off it? Leo says this is a perfect example of why you need more than one backup of your data. You can't back up your data onto a hard drive and then delete it from your computer and think you have a backup. You don't.  The best backup strategy is a 3-2-1 backup strategy. Three backups, on two different media, one off-site. That's the only way to be safe.

Leo thinks that Nolan's hard drive isn't bad, it's just the enclosure that has probably been damaged. If you can get a new enclosure and remove the drive, then you can get your data off the easy way. Leo recommends getting the NewerTek USB Universal Drive Adapter. It'll attach to your hard drive, power it, and then connect it to your computer. Then you can get the data off.  Hopefully, the drive has "soft" errors, which you can get off with software. A good utility for that is called SPINRITE by GRC

But if it's a hard failure, then there's a problem with the hard drive and you'll likely have to have someplace like DriveSavers get the data from you, and that can be expensive: like thousands of dollars. 

Watch Sam from Costa Mesa, CA Comments

Sam has a Pixel 3 mobile phone that constantly keeps the screen on when he puts it in its holster. How can he stop that? Leo says that you can configure the Pixel in the settings to mitigate. You can create a lock gesture, for instance, or press the on/off button briefly to put it to sleep. Scooter X in the chatroom points to this forum post -

Watch Ted from El Paso, TX Comments

Ted has some art and photos on a SCUZZI drive. How can he get the data off? Leo says you can get the data off with a SCUZZI to IDE interface. 

He also has a Motorola Moto G4. But recently he's been getting Duck Duck Go in incognito mode when he's using Chrome. Is incognito mode really secure? Leo says that Duck Duck Go is an alternative to Google, but it doesn't save your search activity. If you want to be anonymous, that's a good way to go. But even in incognito mode, cookies are saved, and your data is saved until you exit the browser. But even then, the website or your ISP knows where you are going because they save it.

Watch Mark from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina Comments

Mark called a customer service line at Guitar Center and then afterward, got an email asking to take a survey. But he never gave them his email. Leo says that the computer system had caller ID turned on and then used that phone number to data mine and find your email. It's quite easy.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jerry from Mission Viejo, CA Comments

Jerry has an Android mobile phone and after an update, he lost the use of both his cameras. Can he roll it back? Leo says that the upgrade probably didn't go well and failed, so try upgrading it again. You don't really want to go backwards because of security. Leo recommends doing a factory reset to wipe the phone and reinstall the OS. Be warned though that this will wipe the phone of all data apps and photos, so back it up to Google. But in most cases, that fixes the problem. If that doesn't work, the only way to go backwards is to root the phone. Check out XDA Developers for how to do so.

Watch Norm from Simi Valley, CA Comments

Norm is a contractor and likes to GeoTag photos for his clients. But Google killed Picasa, which is what he uses. What can he do to add the GPS coordinates to it? Leo says that in the EXIF data of your phone's photos will be the GPS coordinates. Upload them to an album of Google Photos and you should be able to have it show photos on a map. It's called Google MyMaps. Create a new album, then new layer, then import. 

Watch John Paul from Carlsbad, CA Comments

John Paul is having a hard time recovering his Gmail account. What can he do? Leo says it's very difficult to recover your Gmail because there's really no one to talk to. Gmail is a free service and doesn't offer support. If you had the paid version, GSuite, you'd have support. But since this is free, you're really at the mercy of the support documents. One way to prevent this is to turn on 2-factor authentication. That way you get a text message with a code that you input, or you use an authenticator. Also, set up a second email address for recovery so you can set a recovery email to reset it.  Without those, they may ask a series of questions you may not know or remember the answer to. 

But you can try the steps outlined here -

Watch Marie from Massachusetts Comments

Marie has a cellphone that has an upside down question mark on the keyboard, what gives? Leo says it sounds like the keyboard was changed to a Spanish language keyboard. If your phone also has an upside-down exclamation mark, then that's the case. Go into the settings and reset your keyboard.