hard drive

How Do I Easily Back Up Google Photos Files Onto a Hard Drive?

Photos

Episode 1687

Rob from Arlington, TX

Rob uses Google Photos to back up his phone's photos. He wants to get those Google Photos pics onto a hard drive. Leo recommends Google Takeout, which allows users to download data from their Google features (including Photos). It allows users to download in a variety of formats and helps to avoid disaster if they get locked out of their account. 

Don't Pull the Power From a Computer While it is On

Pulling out the power cord from an awake computer can put the machine at risk for hard drive failure. Interrupting a hard drive writing process could result in a mess of data all over the digital space. The ideal way to shut off a computer should always be the "Shut Down" option in the OS. If the computer is locked up, find a reset button or hold the power button for a few seconds before attempting to touch the power cord.

Is Pulling the Power Cord on an Active Computer Risky?

 power cord

Episode 1628

Richard from Bell, CA

Richard is wondering if pulling the power cord on a computer (while it is on) hurts the machine. Leo says it is risky because if the computer/hard drive is in the middle of a writing process, pulling the plug could spew data all over the hard drive. Not to mention, physical damage could occur during the interruption as well. It is only okay to pull the cord when the computer is frozen solid and locked up. Unplugging is only a last resort, so always try to hold the power button first before attempting to cut off the power.  

Do Both Imaging and Incremental File Backups

Imaging a hard drive is basically creating an exact mirror copy of the hard drive. The copy is bootable and can be blasted onto the same or new hard drive fairly quickly. Of course, it can get out of date since the image is "frozen" in time, so making an image every month is a good idea. However, it is also smart to make a file-by-file backup procedure for extra peace of mind. It is recommended to use both backup methods in order to conserve important media and files.

Why is my Mac running so slow?

Mac Pro

Episode 1470

Timothy from Fresno, CA

Timothy started a new job and he's using a 5-year-old Mac Pro. Leo says that's not that old, actually. Leo prefers them to the recent models. Tim says that there's not a lot of RAM — only 4GB. Leo says that 4GB is OK for most things he'll do online and for documents. But he recommends running the activity monitor to make sure all the RAM is functioning. Sometimes, though, a program doesn't release the RAM when it no longer needs it, and it may be that is what's happening here. The hard drive may be slowing things down as well.

How can I find out what files are taking up the most space on my hard drive?

Episode 1303

Chuck from Riverside, CA

Chuck says his hard drive is filling up, and he has no way of finding and deleting the files that are using up the most space. Leo recommends using a free program called WinDirStat, which will give him a visualization of the files taking up space. It will also give him the option to delete files. Chuck should just make sure to empty the Recycle Bin after he deletes files.

Why is my computer saying I'm using more space than I actually am?

Episode 1277

Walter from Huntington, WV

Walter has a Windows 10 computer, and the hard drive consists of 284GB in the apps and games portion, but the apps and games only seem to add up to 4.5GB. The total drive is 570GB. Leo recommends getting WinDirStat. This is the best way to see how much space is used on the hard drive. It's a more visual representation of what's free and what's used.