What's the best Chromebox for $500?

Acer Chromebook

Episode 1706

John from St. Petersberg, FL

John is working from home and needs to get a  new computer. Would a Chromebox work? He already has a Chromebook, but it's too small for daily use. Leo says that you can get Chromebooks in just about any price and performance level. It just depends on how much John wants to spend and what he needs. John's budget is $500. Leo says that the ASUS Chromebox 3 is a good option starting at $300. It's an i3 processor and 4K graphics. But you can upgrade to an i7. But that's almost $1000. If you want a Chromebox, that's the brand Leo would go with. What about Linux? Can he buy a Linux machine?

What do I do when my Chromebook "expires?"

Acer Chromebook

Episode 1704

Bob from Warren, RI

Bob's Chromebook is "expiring" this month. Leo says he hates that Google does that. But even though Google will stop updating your Chromebook, that doesn't mean it'll stop working. It will be fine for most things. Will it be a security issue? Not really. Chrome is inherently secure as it is. So Leo wouldn't really worry about it all that much. When you're ready to upgrade to a new one, then buy it. Acer's Aluminum Chromebooks are great for around $300. But no need to feel pressured to do so now. 

Why Can't I Scroll a Webpage?

Episode 1699

Barb from Rancho Mirage, CA

Barb has both a Chromebook and Windows laptops. But she's been having issues with scrolling on both. It's stuck.  Could it be due to installing ExpressVPN? Leo says that's unlikely. For the Chromebook, Leo recommends trying the Powerwash feature. Save the stuff into the cloud and then run PowerWash to reset everything. Then once re-logging back in, everything should be back. If the issue comes back, then it could be that her mouse, trackpad, or even the keyboard are dirty and need to be cleaned. Especially the keyboard. There may be stuck keys, especially the spacebar.

Do Chromebooks have good accessibility features?

Google Assistant

Episode 1696

John from Fresno, CA

John wants to know how good the accessibility features are in a Chromebook. Leo says that many Chromebooks have Google Assistant, enabling you to dictate. There's even a button on the keyboard that can enable it. But the screenreaders may not be very good. John is also looking for an affordable mobile service. Leo recommends Mint Mobile. You can pay as you go.

Should I buy a Chromebook?

Lenovo Chromebook Duet

Episode 1696

Eli from San Antonio, TX

Eli is looking to buy a Lenovo Chromebook Duet. Leo says that for the money, $299, it's a great price. Decent 10" screen. Ideal for a "daily driver." The only issue may be the keyboard. What you'll want to do is go into a store and type on it to see if you like it. Another issue is "lapability." You'll not likely be able to use it on your lap. 

Another thing you can do is take an old laptop and create a Chromebook with CloudReady. But Leo says it's a lot of work to get it right. 

How Often Should I Update Windows 10?

Windows 10

Episode 1695

Bill from Colorado

Bill has a computer running Windows 10 and he wants to know how often he should update it? Leo says that there are patches done every month on the first Tuesday, so it's best to set updates to automatic. But if he won't really need that much, Leo recommends getting a Chromebook. It's far more secure. An iPad also. He can't do heavy things like video editing or gaming, but if that doesn't matter, it's far more secure. But keep the Windows machine updated. If he's running an older version of Windows, upgrade to Windows 10. If he's using Windows 10, update regularly.

Is a Windows Computer Still Necessary?

Windows laptop

Episode 1689

Sue from OFallon, IL

Sue wants to know what new Windows computer she should buy. Leo says that he's noticed that 99% of what he does right now is through a web browser. So that means a Chromebook is ideal. For most people, Windows is really overkill and requires people to become an expert in the OS, especially in security. But a Chromebook offers much better security for just about everyone and if something goes awry, they can simply "powerwash" it... and they're back up in minutes. So for most people, the default really shouldn't be a Windows PC these days. 

Can I install Linux on a Chromebook?

Acer Chromebook

Episode 1688

Rich from Sonoma, CA

Rich has an original Google Chromebook that isn't supported anymore. Can he wipe it and install Linux? Leo says you can, but it's a bit tricky. There is a physical hardware switch you must enable to turn on developer mode. Once you do that, you can install Linux. Look up the model, plus Linux, and you should be able to find step by step instructions. Check out as well.