drivers

Should I Use Linux on My Computer?

Linux Tux!

Episode 1763

Jacob from Montreal, CAN

Jacob wants to look into Linux, but which version to get? Leo says that there are various "flavors" of Linux, and based on your experience level, some may have different features. It's enthusiast driven, and so some devices may work, some may not. Most standard devices, like keyboards and mouses, will work natively. But you may need drivers for your monitors and peripherals like printers to get them to work. 

Why Doesn't My Mic Work After a Windows Update?

Windows

Episode 1750

Joe from Knoxville, TN

Joe got a vintage world war II 16mm movie camera for Christmas and managed to get in contact with the original owner's family. They sent him the accompanying movie projector along with many other artifacts of the owner's experience in WWII. He's been looking for the double perforated film that it uses, and after months of searching, he found the film for it. 

Joe is having issues with his microphone mixer app after a Windows update. Leo says that an update of the third-party soundcard driver should be able to restore access to it. Thanks, Microsoft!

How can I connect my printer to my Mac?

Canon Ink Cartridge

Episode 1742

Steve from Fullerton, CA

Steve is stuck in "printer hell," with his Canon printer running out of ink. He can't get a replacement cartridge because everywhere because everyone is out. And every store said it's a shortage due to CoVid19. Leo recommends trying Amazon. 

He tried a third party reload option. Didn't work. Leo said that many printer makers have put chips in a cartridge as an "anti-piracy measure," which prevents you from using a third-party ink cartridge option. It's terrible and anti-competitive. 

Where Do I Get Linux Drivers?

Linux

Episode 1729

Patrick from Fallbrook, CA

Patrick has put an SSD on his old iMac and he's going to install Linux on it. Will printers and audio cards work? Will they have drivers? Leo says they will work, but he won't get Linux drivers from the manufacturers. He'll get them from the Linux community. Look up CUPS for printer drivers for Linux. It's open-source. But he shouldn't need separate drivers, Linux should support it. But Epson does have a Linux support page

Why are my USB ports failing intermittently?

USB3 Card

Episode 1728

Brant from Upstate New York

Brant is having an intermittent problem with his USB ports not working. He has to reboot to get them working again. Leo says it could be hardware or software. Hardware-wise, the solders could be coming off and the computer has to warm up to reseat the solder connections. The easy fix is to get a USB card to add to your system and bypass the onboard connections altogether. It could also be your computer is underpowered or your power supply is getting flakey. Try unplugging your USB items and reboot. If could also be a bad USB driver. You can try removing them and then rebooting.

How do I get Windows 10 to recognize my keyboard?

Windows 10

Episode 1720

Tom from Costa Mesa, CA

Tom got a notice from Microsoft to update Windows 10, but now it won't recognize his keyboard, so he can't log in. Leo says that Tom can eliminate the keyboard as the problem by trying it with another computer. But likely, the update deleted or corrupted the USB drivers. Log into safe mode and see if it works. If you can at least get into the BIOS setup, then you know it isn't the keyboard. 

How can I get my trackpad to work in Windows 10?

Windows 10

Episode 1714

Michael from Carlsbad, CA

Michael has a ten-year-old HP laptop that he finally upgraded to Windows 10. But in doing so, his trackpad isn't operating properly. The scroll feature isn't working. Leo says that Synaptics trackpads need a driver to work with Windows 10, and most likely, HP will be the source to get that. If it doesn't, then you're out of luck with a ten-year-old computer.

But that computer is a great candidate for Linux, which has flavors that can work with older hardware. And since it's open-source, it's kept up to date by enthusiasts. 

Why does Windows change my drivers?

Windows 10

Episode 1672

James from Parkersburg, West Virginia

James has an issue where Windows will boot up with the wrong drivers after a feature update. Leo says that during an update, Windows will select what it thinks is the best driver for your hardware. Even if you prefer to use the manufacturer drivers if you built the computer yourself, you're going to need to update your drivers from the manufacturer, and they may not have updated it yet for the latest feature update. So check every once in a while for all the latest drivers.

Why doesn't WiFi work with my Linux Distro?

popOS

Episode 1668

Dave from Twin Falls, Idaho

Dave installed Ubuntu Linux on the HP Stream and now he's having issues with WiFi. Leo says that HP probably didn't make drivers available for Linux, and so the community needs to figure that out. So chances are, there isn't a specific driver for the particular WiFi chip that his Stream uses. Leo recommends trying another version of Linux called POPOS by System 76. It's very similar to Ubuntu, but it has far more drivers available.