Internet and Web

Your internet connection, web sites and services.

Should I keep FIOS for my internet?

Verizon FIOS

Episode 1718

Dan from New Jersey

Dan's phone contract and his FIOS contract have both expired. So he's thinking what's next. Leo says that if you get good fiber speed, there's nothing faster. It really comes down to how much they charge for the speed you want. And then how much they say it is, vs. how much you are actually getting. $49 for 200MB down is not bad. Gigabit would be even better because it's symmetric (same up/down) for about $60 a month.

Is Amazon Photos Good for Storing Images in the Cloud?

Amazon Photos

Episode 1717

Al from Upland, CA

Al and his wife have decided to move everything up to the cloud and use a smaller Mac Air instead of his huge 27" iMac. He's uploaded everything up to Amazon. Will that be safe? Leo says it will, but it's a smart idea to have more than one backup option. Make a local backup copy and a second service in the cloud. Leo recommends Google Photos because it's free. If Al has iCloud, then he can turn on Cloud syncing and then sync them all. He can then optimize storage in Apple Photos and it'll eliminate the high res versions until he needs them, but he can still see them in Photos. 

Can Starlink Satellites Be Used to Track You?

Starlink

Episode 1717

Luke from Trucker on the Road

Luke wants to know more about Starlink and if it can be used for tracking people on the road. Leo says that Starlink satellites do not have photo surveillance capabilities, they are more like a cellular satellite, sending data up to the satellite and down to a receiver on the ground. It's very simple. Besides, there are plenty of surveillance satellites up there already. Not only that, but a mobile phone has GPS and it can be used to track every move one can make, even if they turn it off. And law enforcement can use it to track. It's a great violation of privacy that Google has fought.

Why Won't My Smart TV Connect to Stream?

Roku

Episode 1717

John from Fallbrook, CA

John has a 55" Samsung TV that's about eight years old. He also moved away from surround sound to a soundbar. But even though his TV is a smart TV, it won't accept the internet signal to stream. He talked to Samsung and after resetting several times, they decided his chip was defective. Leo says that doesn't mean he'll have to get a new TV. Those smart tv apps are terrible because they are never updated. He recommends getting a ROKU device and plugging that into the HDMI port. Let the Roku handle the stream. But don't get the stick, they tend to overheat.

How can I cut the cable and get over the air TV?

Silicondust HDHomeRun

Episode 1716

Jay from Temecula, CA

Jay was thinking of dropping his cable connection and getting a SilconDust HDHomeRun Premium. Leo is waiting for it, but it's been delayed. And cable is ridiculously expensive. How can he get channels with an antenna without a receiver? Leo says that the Home Run Duo or Quatro have multiple tuners to watch one show and record another. Midnight Commander is another good one. The Amazon FireTV ReCast is a new one. Tableau (they want a fee though). You can even use PLEX on your network.

Why can't I get online with the new version of Windows 10?

Windows 10

Episode 1716

Mike from Burbank, CA

Mike recently upgraded his old Acers to Windows 10. But after running the Microsoft System File Checker, he's having issues accessing features in his account, particularly settings. So he did a repair reinstall. Now he can't get back online to the Internet. 

Leo says to go into the device manager (Windows + X) and see if any devices are missing or have a red "x" or "!" in the corner. It could be a driver issue. Also, look in the settings to see if sleep is enabled and turn it off.

But your WiFi card may not be supported anymore. Luckily, they're cheap.

Should I make up my own password?

Password Manager

Episode 1716

Jim from Hart, Michigan

Jim has a solution for remembering passwords. He uses a date mixed with his name and an @ symbol. Leo says that's easy enough for a hacker to remember, and anything that makes a password not random makes it easier to break. And hackers are very adept at breaking personal generated passwords. That's why Leo uses a randomly generated and long password using his password manager. But even your OS will do it. It's much better to let the computer do it, and remember it. If you can remember it, it's easy to break.

Is online banking secure?

Online Banking

Episode 1716

Georgia from San Marcos, CA

Georgia wants to know how safe online banking is. Leo says it's very safe now, and you don't need to worry about having your bank account compromised. Nor do you have to have a separate computer dedicated to banking. All websites now are encrypted by design. Google began requiring that last year. Just be safe with your online behavior. Don't click on links, open attachments, or reply to emails from a bank. They will never contact you.