Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Dennis from Marina Del Rey, CA Comments

Dennis is running Windows 10 on his desktop, and now OneDrive is screwing up Adobe Lightroom. So he uninstalled it and turned off syncing. Now icons are showing up as being "owned" by Creative Cloud. Leo says that sounds like confusion in the icon cache. Leo recommends rebuilding the icon cache to clear the problem. Go into the Adobe Creative Cloud icon menu and make sure they aren't syncing everything. It could also be a registry issue. 

Leo also says that the current updates to Adobe Creative Cloud have been a nightmare for users.

Watch Phil from Arvada, CO Comments

Phil uses a VPN and he wants to know if it slows him down. Leo says that it depends on the VPN and how many worldwide servers they have. ExpressVPN has been rated as the fastest. And while Phil's 50 MB down is slower than not using a VPN, it's still fast enough to do streaming in HD, which is what Phil uses it for.

Phil also says his IT department says he's just wasting money using a VPN. Leo says it really depends on what Phil is using it for. If he's using it at a coffee shop, it protects from anyone else who sees what he's doing. At home, it prevents the ISP from selling internet activity because they won't know what he's doing. But a VPN will see it, and could sell it. But that's changing too, as more DNS addresses become encrypted. Lastly, a VPN lets users bypass geographic content restrictions, which makes it look like he's in another country. That can open up more content to view. And it's completely legal in most countries.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Eric from Hollywood, CA Comments

Eric's HP laptop is now suddenly freezing up after booting up. Leo suspects it isn't a hardware issue, but something is choking the boot up after the BIOS gets loaded. It's choking late in the process of loading Windows 7. Try rebooting into Safe Mode. Tap the f8 key repeatedly until safe mode loads up. This will load up the minimum configuration. Try Safe Mode with Networking and see if it works. If it does, that could point to a bad driver that's causing the issue. And that's an easy thing to fix. Eric will want to kit Windows Key and type "recovery." It should reinstall the drivers and fix the problem.

It's probably a corrupted video driver. 

What Leo also recommends is upgrading to Windows 10 on top of it. That'll not only solve the problem, it'll keep him protected moving forward. Right now, Eric's PC is wide open to attack since Microsoft stopped supporting Windows 7 last year.

Watch Edward from Whittier, CA Comments

Edward wants an ad blocker for his browser. Leo says that UBlock Origin is the one he recommends. While his program is advertiser supported, he supports ad blockers because online ads represent a potential security risk. The ads also can be tedious when they are popups or use too many ads on a page. But on the other hand, Leo recommends throwing the sites a few bucks a year to make up for it.

Can he get an ad blocker for YouTube Music? Leo says there is ... it's called a paid subscription. If he pays for YouTube Premium, he can enjoy YouTube content ad-free.

Watch Laurie from San Clemente, CA Comments

Laurie just needs a basic laptop for checking email, doing homework, surfing in the cloud. Leo says that if she doesn't need special software, a Chromebook is ideal. They are less expensive and more secure. But if she has to run a specific program, then she needs a Windows Machine for that. Then Leo recommends either the HP, Dell, or Lenovo. All three make solid machines and stand by them. HPs are thin and light with excellent battery life. If tough on the hardware, then the Lenovo Thinkpad is built like a tank. Dell is in the middle.

Some budget laptops can be found by Asus and Acer. So it largely depends on what she wants and how much she wants to spend. If she has to save money, then she will want to look at the consumer-grade laptops. But if she wants durable daily drivers, then Leo recommends spending a little more for a professional line laptop. 

Leo recommends the HP Spectre line. The Lenovo Thinkpad. The Dell XPS. Stick with an i5 model. A quality computer is going to cost about $1200-1400.

What size? A 14" laptop will work fine. Outside of that, she can always get a cheap external monitor to leave at home. Laptops can support that.

The Lenovo Ideapad Slim 7 is another good one. 

Will they come with Office installed? Leo says no. The office is a subscription service now, about $79 a month. Not a bad price. 

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Amy Rose from Tulare, CA Comments

Amy is a second-grade teacher and they are getting ready to head back into the classroom for doing zoom calls to her student. The problem is, her wifi hubs keep dropping the internet signals. She's told her cordless phones are causing the problem. Leo says it could be, depending on what frequency the phone is operating at. 2.4 GHz is a very congested spectrum and cordless phones operate on that, so it could be interfering. 

But Leo suspects there could be other problems as well. 

Streaming is a very demanding thing though, it and could be that newer gear could solve the problem. WiFi also interferes with other WiFi, so it could be that the network is just overloaded with all the teachers using it at once. 

Check out the web service BigBluButton.org.It's designed with distance learning in mind.

Watch Glen from California Comments

Glen wants to know if ransomware can happen if you unplug your backup from the network. Leo says not until he plugs it back in. But it's less likely with a home-based system than say, a commercial network. So clean up the infected computer before reconnecting the backup, otherwise, it could infect it. A lot of ransomware also has time-released capability. It may not infect right away. So if Glen has backup unplugged from the network, he should keep it that way until he's wiped the hard drive and removed the ransomware. 

Leo also recommends little ejector bays for the drive. Once he's done the backup, he can eject the hard drive and keep it disconnected. Just in case. 

This is also why cloud backup can come in handy. Cloud backup services like iDrive (Sponsor) will also do snapshots of a hard drive, so he can always go back in time should it happen. 

From the chatroom, he can set the computer up with a physical dongle like YubiKey that would require authentication before ransomware can escalate and bypass security. It's a physical connection. It would take some jiggering to get it right, but it would certainly make it harder.