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Episode 1054 February 2, 2014

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Mike from Glendale, CA Comments

Mike bought a Dell Latitude and had to replace the hard drive. Now he doesn't have a serial number to activate it. Leo says that Dell puts a sticker on the bottom of the laptop that has the activation code on it. Mike says it wasn't there. Leo says he should contact Dell and tell them that he can't activate the machine.

The chatroom says that Dell puts the serial number in the BIOS, so that may be a place to look. There are also programs that will provide the key from the installation.

Watch Alvaro from West Palm Beach, CA Comments

Alvaro is interested in what Leo thinks of Litecoin and Bitcoin. Leo says that Litecoin is a different technology than Bitcoin that makes it easier for users to buy into it. Bitcoin has a finite amount of currency and it is harder to "mine." Both are cyptocurrencies online, but the difference between that and actual physical currency is that it isn't backed by the government. It's fiat currency based on faith. Since the US government is now taking Bitcoin as payment for taxes, it has official value. However, that value can disappear in a heartbeat.

There can only be 21 million Bitcoins in "circulation." The harder it gets to solve the complicated math depends on how many Bitcoins are left. The value fluctuates like other currency. One Bitcoin, for instance, is worth $1,000. Litecoin is similar, but it can be efficiently and easily mined as opposed to mining Bitcoin.

MtGox.com is a site that exchanges Bitcoin for dollars. Right now, the value is $995 per Bitcoin. It's very volatile, much like the stock market. Leo doesn't recommend it, but if he's going to do it, he should understand that everyone is anonymous, so the potential for being ripped off is huge. And government could start banning it. China, for instance, is very suspicious of it.

Watch Kathy from Santa Clara, CA Comments

Kathy watches Leo online through UStream and is frustrated because it buffers a lot. Leo says it's on UStream's end, and he can't do much about it. He also streams through BitGravity and Justin.TV, so she could try one of those. Also, choosing the lower resolution from BitGravity could help. Kathy should also look at her bandwidth online. If she only has 1.5 Mbps down, for instance, she will continue to have a rough time with streaming. It could also be a bad modem. She should ask for a new modem or buy her own. She could first try rebooting both the modem and router. Sometimes that clears everything out and fixes the issue.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Taylor from Cincinnati, OH Comments

Taylor is moving from an iPhone to a Samsung Galaxy S4. He has two factor authentication set up on his current phone, and is wondering if there's an easier way to transfer it all to the new phone.

Leo says that he just saves the QR codes, which contain the authentication codes, in Lastpass. In Lastpass, if he goes into two factor authentication, he can have it show the code. So then all he needs to do is launch Authenticator, set up a new account, and scan the QR code. So then he can just scan all those codes with his new phone from Lastpass. Microsoft also has an authenticator program which will work in just the same way on Windows Phone.

What about Duo security? Leo says it's interesting because the app notifies him if someone is logging in and stops it. Second factor authentication is a great thing. Banks really should be using it.

Watch David from Venice, CA Comments

David bought an Epson Powerlite 2030 projector, but the image isn't very good with DVDs. Leo says that DVDs are 480p, and get upscaled to 1080p. If it's not very good quality, then the projector isn't upscaling as well as it should be. David should use HDMI cables from the PS3 to the projector.

He should be mindful that if the cable he uses isn't HDCP compliant, the quality will go down to 480i, and that could be the culprit. He should also try using the PS3 to upscale. He should look at the settings, and tell both the PS3 and the projector to provide the highest quality it can get. They can upscale to 1080i.

Watch Rob from Tarzana, CA Comments

Rob is frustrated because he bought an Asus Zenbook and it's a lemon. He's gotten four replacements and they've all been duds. Now he's waiting on parts, and Asus isn't telling him what's going on with it. Leo recommends contacting Jerry Shen, the CEO of Asus. He should write to him through the mail, to this address:

Jerry Shen
CEO, AsusTek
Begtwo District
Taipei, Taiwan

Watch Ernest from Nofolk, VA Comments

Ernest's cellphone is making "ghost" cellphone calls. Leo says if he's getting phone numbers on his bill and they're not in the call log, it could mean that someone has cloned his SIM card. Since he has Verizon, it means someone may have cloned his CDMA phone. Ernest should contact the cellphone company and demand they refund him. He should go into a Verizon store and talk to someone face to face. They should be able to see the phone and the bill and see the issue is that the phone has been cloned.

Leo also wonders if he's using Google Voice, because the unknown phone numbers on his bill could be the direct access numbers that Google is using to place calls.

Watch Rich from Scranton, PA Comments

Rich has two desktop computers running XP. Leo says that After April 8, Microsoft will not be supporting them with software security patches, so he shouldn't have them online. Rich can put Linux on them, that would give them a second life.

What should he replace them with? Leo says that a tablet is a good choice for basic needs of email and surfing. The iPad Air is great for that, and it's less expensive, more secure, and easier to use. Leo advises going to the Apple Store and trying one. He could also consider a Google Chromebook.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Brent from Fort Worth, TX Comments

Brent called last week about setting up a mail server and it was true that his ISP was blocking port 25 for that purpose. So what does he do with using his own domain name? Leo says that he has his own domain name at leoville.com and he doesn't run a mail server. He just runs Leoville.com through GMail.

Brent should figure out where his domain name is hosted. In the domain name settings, he can add an MX record, which will tell the domain to bounce his email to GMail. It'll automatically route the emails to his GMail account.

Watch Chip from Cherry Hill, NJ Comments

Chip has a hobby of winning prizes through Facebook and other media. He would like to figure out a way to enter without using his Facebook account. Leo says that a token is used to link to his "Like," and without it, he can't enter. One way around it is to use a fake account, but it is cheating in a way.

Watch Dennis from Virginia Comments

Dennis goes overseas a lot and listens to both audio books and podcasts. He has an audio library now of several hundred books. But recently he's been unable to transfer purchases from his iTunes account. It requires him to erase his iPod to transfer them. Leo says that's copy protection nonsense. One thing Dennis can do is download them again from Audible.

If he has them on his iPod, he can get them onto his computer using a third party program called Senuti. There's also Ephpod. Then he can import them into iTunes.

In iTunes, Go into File>Devices, then select the "Transfer Purchases" option. If it doens't appear, then his iPod isn't linked to iTunes.

Watch JR from Detroit, MI Comments

JR has been a Linux guy for about 20 years exclusively. He's building a new computer with a fixed budget. Leo recommends going to PC Perspective's website and on the menu bar they have the HWLeaderboard. The Hardware Leaderboard lays out price ranges for building your own PC and what components you should get.

If he sticks with Linux, the issue will be drivers. The good news is that Steam is using Linux for their Steam Machines and as such, Linux support is growing.

Watch Bill from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Bill is having problems with someone who is maligning him on the Internet by posting stuff that isn't true. Leo says all he can really do is sue them for liable. The record industry does this with music pirates. Unfortunately he can't force Google to take it down. He'll have to get a lawyer who knows about Internet law and sue them.

What about reputation management companies? Leo says they're not really effective. They post stuff and try to push the negative stuff down the results page, essentially drowning it out. But the only real effective ones are very expensive. It's a big problem. The Internet is full of trolls and there's not much anyone can do. The best defense is to just be active on the internet with blogs, social media, etc, so that his content will show up along with the negative content.