Windows

Go For a Solid-State Drive When Getting a New Desktop PC

When you are buying/building a new desktop PC with any kind of stamina, make sure it has an SSD instead of an HDD. Solid-State Drives are a massive improvement in speed and durability from regular hard drives, Best of all, prices of SSDs have fallen drastically, so getting a 1TB drive is plenty and still affordable. Also, don't get a "hybrid" configuration of SDD and traditional, it's more worth it to go all-in on solid-state.

Why Can I Not Update Windows 10?

windows 1909

Episode 1719

Jim from Calabassas, CA

Jim's Windows 10 computer has been getting a message from Windows that it can't update to Windows 1909 due to not enough hard drive space. He has 2GB free. Leo says that's not enough. The latest update of Windows is 32GB. So if Jim doesn't have more than that, chances are he won't be able to install it. He tried to designate a flash drive as his update drive and that won't work either, even though Microsoft suggests it. 

Do I Have to Install the Latest Windows 10 Update?

Windows 10

Episode 1719

Jeffrey from Brooklyn, NY

Jeff has been spending hours downloading the 2004 version of Windows 10 and it's still not done. Is it important? Leo says that 2004 (April 2020) version (or 20H2) is a "feature" update, not a critical update. In fact, most of the features are things you won't use or even notice.  So users don't really need it. But Microsoft won't let users defer it for any longer than a month.

How can I free up storage space on my computer?

Windows Disc Cleanup

Episode 1718

Bernard from Hisperia, NY

Bernard hasn't turned on his old HP Windows computer since January and when he did, he got a ton of updates. But now he can't update any further because there's no room. Looking deeper, most of the room is under the "other users" category. They won't let him delete it. Leo says to try logging out and see what other users are listed. Leo says that older versions of windows are probably what's taking up all that space. There is the old utility called "Disk Cleanup," which will delete it for you. Windows key, type "disc clean up." You can also delete old media like podcasts. 

Why won't webpages load unless I move the mouse?

Firefox

Episode 1714

Walter from Los Angeles, CA

Walter has an old Dell i7 laptop that he loaned to a friend. But lately, the Firefox browser won't load a page until you move a mouse and the page pops up. What is that all about? Leo says it sounds like a bug in Firefox that is waiting for an input. It's called a "signal event loop." It may be a failed install of Windows 10 is likely the culprit. So back up the data, wipe the drive, and reinstall Windows 10. That should solve the issue.

Windows Disk Clean-Up Tool for Thumbnail Restoration

If you are using Windows 10 and can not see the thumbnails for your photo files (or otherwise), try rebuilding the thumbnail cache. There's a little-known program called the Windows Disk Clean-up Tool that can do the job. Select "This PC" > [Your Drive] > "Properties" and finally check the "thumbnails" option (while unchecking the other options) to rebuild the icons next to your files' names. It may take a while, but just wait it out and you should be good to go. Not everyone names all their files descriptively, so it's really handy to keep thumbnails visible!

Why does Windows think my screen is larger than it is?

Edge Browser

Episode 1712

Glen from Selmer, Tennessee

Glen is fed up with Windows 10 updates breaking his system or forcing him to use the Edge browser when he'd rather use Chrome. Leo says that Microsoft is doing too much with bi-annual system updates. Lately, his windows are going outside the borders of his screen after he clicked a link in an email. Leo says that there is a default setting for Edge in system preferences that you can disable. So it won't force you to use Edge.

Call Microsoft for a Refund on In-person Support

Microsoft has closed all 86 of their stores due to the ongoing pandemic, but what about your one-on-one support that you paid for? So frustrating, isn't it?! Their Assure Plan may include alternatives to in-person meetings, like online chats, but certain customers expected/needed inspections from an actual store expert. Try calling and pressuring Microsoft to refund your payment. They should make good on the situation.

Back Up Your Old Aging iPod and its Music!

If you have an old iPod and there are music files that haven't been transferred from computer to computer throughout the years, it is time to back up that library as soon as you can. If you use a Mac, there's an app called Senuti (iTunes backward!) that can help with the process. For Windows users, try YamiPod. At the very least, back up the iPod onto your computer with iTunes via the "Back Up Now" function. Don't lose those years of music tracks!

How do I regain access to my data with an new user account in Windows?

Windows 10

Episode 1706

Tom from Los Angeles, CA

Tom is having issues with Windows denying access to his hard drives after creating a new user account. It says "access denied." Leo says that could be a permissions system since it's a multi-user system. Go into security settings and take ownership of the contents of the drive. Sometimes the issue is a hardware issue where the drive is protected by a password in BIOS, but Leo doesn't think that's the case since Tom created a new user account. So taking control of the data through Windows security settings is the answer.