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Episode 1743 November 7, 2020

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Ed from Ontario, California Comments

Ed wants to be able to take a snapshot of his Mac hard drive and use it as a backup, but still have a backup on the same drive. Will SuperDuper do that? Leo says it's called an Image, or Ghost. Some may be able to do that, but SuperDuper isn't one because it takes up the entire drive so he can use the image as a bootable drive. Leo recommends Carbon Copy Cloner or ChronoSync. Both will match folders, but not the entire drive. He can also image the hard drive using macOS disk utility onto a backup drive. 

Watch Wayne from San Diego, California Comments

Wayne notices that Time Machine is taking a ton of space on his external hard drive. How can he minimize that? Time Machine says it's full. Leo says that he can adjust the amount of space Time Machine uses, but it can get a bit finicky when he messes with what Time Machine thinks it needs. Go into the System Preferences pane and there he can go into options and delete or disable the local backups on the main hard drive. That'll clear out some space. Time Machine should do that. It also keeps a local backup image and should delete the older ones as it does. The safest way to do it is to go into the Time Machine app itself and manually delete the backups. Go into the gear (settings) and he can do that there.

He can also start over on the external drive, but he would only be backed up from today going forward. One thing he can do is make sure it's not backing up movie and music files, since Apple should already be backing those up online. 

Watch Michael from Knoxville, TN Comments

Michael's apartment WiFi network security is wide open, with logins based on the apartment numbers and the office phone number as the password. And they won't allow him to change his password. The best solution is to lobby the apartment management to allow him to change the login password.

If they won't do that, he can always attach a "travel router" to the network. Leo uses them at hotels that offer WiFi. Use that router to log into the access. It'll act as a firewall against others doing the same. That'll make Michael private. DLink makes a really good one. TPLink also makes them.

The other way to go is a travel VPN, but that requires an additional subscription.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Bob from San Diego, CA Comments

Bob is having trouble with Google Voice. It won't let him log in. It just "beach balls." Leo says to try clearing out the cache of the browser. Or try a different browser. See if he can log in from a different browser. That's the easiest solution. Download Firefox. Bob can't do that. His computer is too old. Leo says that there comes a point where a computer can be so old that other applications can't support it. 

From the chatroom - Firefox has a version for old computers. It's called Firefox ESR. He can download it here.

He also needs to make sure the date and time are correct on the Mac. If the clock is wrong because the battery backup has died, that could affect the browser certificates that won't allow him to log in or load. Leo suspects it could be a certificate issue since Google now requires encryption certificates for all sites.

He can also reset Chrome. That'll clear out the cache and cookies. 

Watch Chris from Ithaca, NY Comments

Chris is having issues with her Canon Pixma printer, wirelessly printing from her Chromebook. Leo says that Google Cloud Print has been discontinued. But she should be able to still print to the printer on the local network. Look to see if the printer can log into WiFi. If the Pixma can't log into the network separately, then Chris needs software provided by Canon to log into the printer and set it up.

Leo says that Canon probably hasn't made a Chromebook driver, and thus it may not work unless they put out a driver. But if Chris can see the printer, that's half the battle. 

Chromebooks do support CUPS, the open-source printer system. So that may be an option. Here's a link to how.

Watch Reise from Riverside, CA Comments

Reise would like to get into Ham Radio. What does he need to do? Leo says there are three levels, and he can start with the Technician license. That's great for starting out and just talking to people over the air. There are three levels: Technician, General, and Extra. And each requires a test for a license. Check out the Gordon West Radio School

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jimmy from Pennsylvania Comments

Jimmy wants to recycle his old laptop by giving it to his grandkids. Leo says he will want to wipe the drive. There is a temptation to give it as is so that they'll have programs, etc. But it's far more secure to wipe the drive and start over. The good news is that Windows 10 is an entitlement for the computer, not the user. So he can use the Windows Media Creation Tool to put Windows 10 on a USB and then format the drive and reinstall Windows.

Watch Bill from Denver, CO Comments

Bill has thousands of images on CDs. Is that the safest way to keep them? Leo says Bill wants to get them all in the cloud ASAP. Burned CDs can oxidize and stop working over time. Sometimes within a year. So he wants to have other options, including putting them online.

Google Photos is a great place to start. They offer unlimited photo backup for free. If an Amazon Prime Member, he will have free photo storage of originals. So go there as well. But the wrap there is, he can't cancel a prime account as long as he has those photos there. Lastly, Leo recommends putting prints up on a photo printing service like Shutterfly. That way he can share them with friends and family. Just send them a link and they can order their own prints.

Remember, one backup isn't a backup. Leo recommends three backups, two different formats, and one in the cloud. So back them up on an external hard drive. Then one in the cloud. And then he's got those CDs.

How can he organize them? He hates Windows Photos.  Will Picasa work? Leo says that Google killed off Picasa, so if he has a copy, KEEP it. Another option is ACDC. It's a great photo organizer. 

Then, every year or two, evaluate options in favor of newer options.

Watch Dan from St. Petersburg, FL Comments

Dan converts regular pianos into player pianos for a living. He wants to know how he can make sure he isn't drawing too much amperage or wattage and damage the power device. How can he prevent that? Leo says that in general, a power brick won't work if it doesn't match the wattage. Leo says that watts are volts times amps. So watts are where he'll want to be careful. So take the volts and multiple by amps, and see what voltage it can take. Both should be on the power supply or adapter.  

Watch Rhonda from Beverly Hills, CA Comments

Rhonda is locked out of two different laptops running Windows 10 and Windows 8.1 respectively. She got back into Windows 10 after watching a few videos. Then she got locked back out after creating a new Outlook account. How can she get back in? There are a lot of legal documents and data she needs. Leo says that if she has a backup, then there are easier options. Rhonda says she did on the Windows 10 machine. 

This is why it's so crucial to have backups.