Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Should I buy a replacement HP laptop?

HP Spectre 4K

Episode 1700

Brian from New York, NY

Brian picked up a new HP Spectre 4K laptop with 16GB of RAM, 1 TB SSD, and a thunderbolt port. But out of the blue, it won't boot. No power. Just out of warranty. The battery is charged, there's power going to the board, but nothing. He's discovered a known problem with the HP Spectre voltage regulator. A repair place found it in Northridge. And HP won't even take the call without $100 charge because it's out of warranty. Leo says that HP should consider doing an out of warranty fix if they want to keep customers coming back.

Should I pay for an OwlCam subscription?

OwlCam

Episode 1700

Fred from Upland, CA

Fred recently learned that OWLCam had been sold to CallPassNow, and now he needs to pay an annual subscription of $375 a year to keep using his two cameras. Leo says ouch, but it also includes LTE service, which isn't too bad, considering it will still be able to upload videos instantly again. But will they replace any cameras being stolen? Leo suspects not, since the Owlcam won't probably continue to be made or developed. But if you love the OwlCam, it may be worth to see how long this will last. 

Will Apple come out with an Apple Watch that doesn't need an iPhone?

Apple Watch

Episode 1700

Chris from Miami, FL

Chris recently updated his iPhone to 13.4.1, and it got stuck into restore me mode. He was able to mail his phone to Apple to clear it, but he was without his iPhone for a week, and as such, was stuck with not being able to use his Apple Watch as well. Will they be coming out with a stand-alone Apple Watch with its own connections? Leo says that seems to be the rumor, but you can't do anything on the Apple Watch, really, without the iPhone nearby. That's why Leo always has a backup phone that he can put the SIM into should he have to send the iPhone in for repair. 

How do I add a standard user account in Windows?

Microsoft Surface 3

Episode 1700

Tom from Torrance, CA

Tom just bought a Microsoft Surface 3 and he'd like to set it up with a standard user account. How does he do that? Leo says that the first thing Tom wants to do is enabled User Access Control (UAC). This will give you a popup to make sure anything being installed is something you want to install. But to add a new user, go into the control panel and add a new user, making sure to give them standard user rights. Then use that account, rather than the Admin account. Settings. Account. Other Users. Add User.

Sam Abuelsamid ... Sanitized

Sam Abuelsamid

Episode 1700

Sam joins Leo to talk about a new UV disinfectant you can get for your car that will sanitize the interior of your car after you get out of it. Currently in the testing phase, these units will start in rideshare, buses, and cabs, but could eventually make their way into everyone's car. Another solution, developed by Ford, uses existing hardware in the car that is controlled by software. The decontamination mode will run the engine at 2000 rpm for 15 minutes and turns up the heat to 133 degrees to kill any pathogens that have made their way into the car.

Are there third party add-ons for my car to integrate my mobile device?

Accele RVCLPMBS Backup Camera

Episode 1700

Andy from Mizzoula, MT

Andy has a 2004 Chevy Truck and wants to know if he can get aftermarket add ons for Bluetooth, GPS, and a backup camera. He'd also like to install sensors to collision detection. Leo says he isn't sure about the last one, but a new head unit (stereo) that supports Apple Carplay or Android Auto can do most of the things that Andy wants, and it connects to your phone to do just about all that.  And most units can do both. There are third party backup cameras as well that you can then install into the headend.

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.

The Giz Wiz ... Lit Up

Episode 1699

Dickie D joins Leo with some super cool Light Up Terrarium Glass Bulbs! It’s a home decor conversation piece that adds 10 tiny LED’s inside a bulb that also holds a (fake) succulent Agave or Torch Plant! They’re super cool accent decorations will spruce up any bookcase, shelf or table top in your home. (But read about battery life below.) Inside the thick glass light bulb is a mini succulent surrounded by small river rocks. They plants are artificial but they look real. (Make sure no one tries to water them.) The screw in part of the upside down light bulb has a push button on/off switch.

Why Can't My Mac See My External Drive?

Episode 1699

Rick from North Hollywood, CA

Rick is backing up his photos and after formatting the drive, his Mac can't see it anymore. Leo says it sounds like Rick formatted for the wrong format. He wants to re-format it with exFAT. That makes it readable on both macOS and Windows. Also, choose MBR compatibility or GBT. There's also a utility called PARAGON and FUSE that will teach the Mac to write to NTFS. But reformat that drive in exFAT and you should be OK. It may also be that Rick partitioned the drive, but didn't format it. You have to do both.