Jim has built his own Windows Computer. He likes that the new Windows 8 just requires a 4 digit pin to log in, but he's lost the password and didn't choose the PIN. Leo says that worst case scenario, he can reinstall Windows and start over. Leo also says that LastPass is great for things like this because he can have both on his smartphone as well and look it up if he forgets it. He'd also get a real strong password in the process.
Doug wants to upgrade to Windows 7 or 8. He does audio recording with Audacity. Leo says that Windows 8 is essentially Windows 7 with a metro, tablet interface. Leo has taken Windows 8 and changed it to look like Windows 7 with a utility called StarDock. This is helpful because Windows 7 is getting harder to find, especially on a new computer. If he decides to get a touch screen computer, then Windows 8 is fine. If it's annoying for him, he can always get StarDock to make it work like Windows 7.
As everyone knows, Leo's not much of a fan of Windows 8's "Modern UI" interface. So, for $10, he installed Stardock. Now he gets all the functions of Windows 8, but with the layout of Windows 7, and it's just as fast.
Leo has heard that Windows 8.1 will bring back the start button and will allow users to natively boot into the desktop, rather than having the Modern UI forced upon them.
Charlene would like to get a new laptop that has a large screen. Leo says that will impact her mobility, but if Charlene is looking for a desktop replacement, then it may make more sense to have a larger screen and more power.
Should I get a solid state drive?
Leo says that SSD drives start up faster, run faster, and he doesn't get a computer anymore without them. She should get either a 128GB or 256GB SSD drive.
Pete wants a Windows 8 tablet. Leo recommends the Microsoft Surface, but Pete isn't much of a fan.
Pete's wondering about the HP Envy. Leo says it's not bad, it's a bit heavy because it's a laptop hybrid. It's also a bit under powered running the Atom processor, but it's a good choice for the money.
Mary has Windows 8 and she has to hunt around for solitaire. Leo says that Microsoft put Solitaire under Xbox games in Windows 8. Users can then install Microsoft Solitaire. She was able to install it, but it doesn't work quite right. Leo suggests uninstalling it, and then downloading and reinstalling it. It could be that when it downloaded, it wasn't a complete download or installation. Removing and reinstalling it often cures many things.
Leo says it's bizarre. He suggests installing from an original official Microsoft CD. It's likely that the ISO copy he's been using has gone bad, and only going to the original source will fix the issue. The official ISO download links can be found here.
Carlene has started a business with a website and she wants to upgrade her computer. Should she get a Windows 7 computer or Windows 8? Leo says that Windows 8 is a radical departure that would take getting used to. But either platform would do. Don't fear Windows 8. Even though it's different, it will be the norm moving forward. She can get a great deal at a big box store. Leo says don't go cheap for a business computer, and a cheaper computer won't have a touch screen. Big Box stores don't usually sell the best computers, they sell the ones the manufacturers want to blow out.
Judy bought a Windows 8 computer recently, and is having problems with it. Leo says to try and do a system restore - but make sure to backup the data so it isn't lost. If the problems go away after she does, then it was a software issue. If the hard drive continues to crash, then there's a hardware issue and it needs to be returned. As for the hard drive structure getting messed up, it could be a failing hard drive, which can happen at an early stage. She should take it back and ask for a replacement as Leo doesn't think this sounds like something she could have done to cause it.