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Episode 1226 October 4, 2015

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Matthew from Austria Comments

Matthew has a USB key, and while the computer sees it, he can't open any files on it. His backup is no better. Leo says that a USB thumb drive can get corrupted just like any drive and the good news is that he can recover it with software. It's probably just a corrupted file catalog and that can be fixed. He should right click on the USB key, select properties, then "scan and fix errors." He can also run Scandisk.

He may need to go deeper, and for that Leo advises Piraform's Recuva. The chatroom suggests copying the entire drive to his hard drive. Don't open it. Just right click on it and copy.

Other options:

- Sandisk Rescue Pro and Rescue Pro Deluxe
- IsoBuster

That's why Leo recommends having a 3-2-1 backup strategy: Three copies on two different formats with one off site. It's the best strategy for guarding important data.

Watch Kenny from Temple, TX Comments

Kenny wants to know what the best ad blocker is for the iPhone. Leo says that there are two out there he uses including Crystal and 1Blocker. Crystal is easy to use, while 1Blocker has more features. Leo suggests installing both, and just switch one off while he's trying the other and see which one he likes best.

Watch LaVerne from Bronx, NY Comments

LaVerne updated to OS X El Capitan and now her email account has been wiped clean. Leo says that doesn't mean the email is missing. The messages are probably still on the server. It just means that since LaVerne is using Apple Mail and linked it to GMail, El Capitan probably missed a step in linking the old email. Other El Capitan users have reported similar problems.

LaVerne should go into the account settings and disable all the accounts. Then exit out, go back in, and re-enable each account so that Apple Mail will re-download all them. If that doesn't work, he should delete the account from Apple Mail. Then re-add each account. Apple Mail will re-download it just like the first time he created the GMail account through Apple mail.

Watch Don from Arizona Comments

Don can't see his Samsung Galaxy Note 2 in Android Device Manager. Leo says that chances are the Note 2 doesn't have the latest version of Android and as such, the Android Device Manager can't see it. He'll need to look for an update through his carrier, and chances are they aren't updating it. He could try rooting it.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Brian from Santa Ana, CA Comments

Brian can't find a third party Type C charger for his new Google Nexus 6. He thinks that at $25, the Google one is overpriced. Leo says it's not bad. Type C connectors can be inserted either way, and it has the advantage of being able to charge via USB 3.1, which will transfer data far faster. The Type C 3 Amp charger will support quick charging, but does he really need it?

Brian should check out MonoPrice.com. If they don't have it, nobody does. And he'll have plenty of time before he gets it. A 2 amp charger would also work, and it supports quick charging. Amazon has one, but it's $25. So he's not saving anything.

Watch John from Cleveland, OH Comments

John is a Mac user and tried a Samsung Galaxy Note 5, but he had to go back to the iPhone. Leo says that being all in with Apple does make it far easier because it syncs across the board. And that's not by accident.

He's a bit concerned about internet security with all of his information syncing, though. Leo says Apple is really secure but he does recommend LastPass. It's a great password vault that will let him generate a unique password for every site he goes to. Then he'll only need to remember one password, his LastPass password.

Watch John from Cleveland, OH Comments

John is wondering whether he should buy Microsoft Office or subscribe to Office 365. Leo says he does the subscription to Office 365. The personal edition is $8 a month, and he'd get unlimited storage on OneDrive, which is worth it all by itself. OneDrive works on Macs and iPhones as well, so it's not even limited to Windows.

Watch Sam from San Diego, CA Comments

Sam's mother needs a larger phone for her failing sight. Leo says that many elderly people don't want a smartphone, they just want a phone to call with. There are plenty of phones out there that are accessible for older folks, like the Jitterbug. It's got huge buttons, an amplified speaker, works with hearing aids, and has a larger screen. It's well designed. Sam can get it from GreatCall.com.

There's other options to consider at phonearena.com

Watch Brenda from Southern California Comments

Brenda is having trouble updating Skype. It just won't work in Windows 8. She left it running overnight and it's still running. Leo says that there is a bit of confusion over Skype for Windows 8 because Microsoft made the Windows Store version and the Windows Desktop version. So it could be updating the wrong one.

Leo advises uninstalling everything related to Skype. Then just install the Desktop version. It could also be a registry issue. The chatroom found a technote for it at support.skype.com. It includes a link to Microsoft's FIX IT tool as well.

Watch Alex from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Alex is having trouble with Siri and using his contacts in iOS 9. Leo says that sometimes connecting a third party app like Facebook to contacts will cause multiple entries and that can confuse Siri. Especially if the contact in question has no phone and has the same name as the one that does. So it would be a good idea to merge his contacts. He should log into iCloud as well and see what his contacts look like. It's likely that Siri is just using a contact that has no number so it can't call or send a text. Merging the contacts will fix it, and it'll clean up his contacts as well.

Watch Karen from Colorado Comments

Karen is finding that her Virgin Mobile service is just terrible. Leo says that's because Virgin uses Sprint and their coverage is pretty spotty. There's no carrier that works everywhere, unfortunately. Karen should make sure to go with a service that works where she travels the most and where she lives. That's likely going to be AT&T or Verizon.

She also is looking to get the new Google Nexus 6P, since she can get a $50 credit. Leo says it's wiser to wait for the reviews. Although, three months of Google Music for free and a $50 credit for apps is pretty tempting. She can also use Google Fi, which Google has started. They combine T-Mobile and Sprint service, so it doubles up. That's the benefit of an MVNO like Google Fi. She'll need an invite to it, though. Google is opening it up, so she should apply for one. The price isn't bad, either -- $20 for voice and unlimited text, and then she'll pay as she goes $10 per gig for data. Quite a bargain.

Leo says reviews will be coming soon though, if she can wait.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch David from Los Angeles, CA Comments

David heard the caller with problems with Skype and he always sets a restore point before he installs a new program. Leo says that's a good idea, but Leo's experience has been hit or miss on that. But it's a good practice. Most of the time when you make a big change of your system, Microsoft sets a restore point, so it may already be there. Good tip.

Watch Pat from Cypress, CA Comments

Pat has a problem with his Windows 8 computer which he just upgraded to Windows 10. It runs slower and he's also having issues with resolution of his photos. They even print blurry. Leo says that Windows 10 should speed up his computer, not slow it down. As for lower resolution photos, that's a concern. It could be a printer driver issue, or even the beginning of a flakey hard drive. He should try tweaking the settings. Here's a forum from windowscentral.com where others are discussing this same issue.

Windows 10 should not modify his data. But when Microsoft put out Windows 10, it was rushed to make the back to school crowd. There will be an update later next month which should fix all the problems. He can roll back, and he'll have 30 days from when he upgraded to do so. Then he can upgrade to the Windows 10 Threshold 2 later this year.

Watch Gail from Huntington Beach, CA Comments

Gail would like to listen to Leo's show live on her phone. How does she do that? Leo says it may be easier to just listen to it from the website directly. She can use the TWIT App in the Google Play store. Leo uses the one by FConn. Leo is having an official TWiT app made, so that'll be coming up soon. TuneIn is a great app for it, as is iHeartRadio.

She also has a Dell XP 8000 for her business. She had to get a new modem and a hard drive, but suddenly, her keyboard died. Now she's having POST errors. What is happening to her computer? Leo says there's something so wrong that the power on self test has failed. This could mean she has a bad motherboard, which at the age of her computer is possible. But it could also be a loose RAM or video card. She can go in and make sure everything is seated properly. But if all that's done, then she shouldn't pay to fix it. It's too old.

What new computer should she get? Leo says to stick with Dell. She should get a Windows 10 computer and restore her backup from Carbonite. But she shouldn't throw away the old computer just yet. The hard drive is still good and can act as a bonus hard drive. She can keep that, and donate the old computer. She can then buy a USB external enclosure, put that 5 1/4" drive into it and she'll have an external drive to plug in to her new computer.

Watch Chris from Florida City Comments

Chris says that financing on the iPad Pro is confusing. Should he just buy it outright or finance it? Leo says that financing on the iPad is far different on the iPad Pro because Apple isn't competing with carriers. But it usually costs more with interest. Apple has sweetened the pot with the iPhone, bringing the interest down to almost nothing. It's still better than buying it on a credit card. Leo advises waiting to see what the financing options are when it comes out. By then, Apple should make their terms and conditions more clear.

Leo says it's not like a regular iPad. It's designed for specific uses that need that much more real estate and Leo suspects it'll be somewhere in between an iPad and a Macbook. If he's an artist or video editor, it will be most naturally suited for him. For productivity, still not so much.

Watch Brian from Fountain Valley, CA Comments

Brian upgraded to Windows 10 and it's been running great. But when he did the factory reset to get rid of Windows 7 and hit restore, his hard drive crashed. Leo says that the way the hard drive crashed, he could still have the restore partition there. If not, the Windows 10 upgrade is married to his computer. The good news is, that will mean he can restore it directly from Microsoft when he puts in a new hard drive.

Watch Louis from New Jersey Comments

Louis had a similar issue with a corrupted USB thumb drive and he used Total Commander to fix it. The nice thing about that classic program is that it didn't give up. It kept reading it over and over to try it. That's what SpinRite does. It doesn't time out. It could take days, or even weeks, but it then worked. So that's a benefit.

Watch Francis from San Diego, CA Comments

Francis can't get videos to play on websites anymore on her old Windows XP machine. Leo suspects this is a Flash issue. If Francis is going to have Flash, she needs to make sure she keeps it up to date. Leo says there's a few ways to use Windows XP safely. All of the bad stuff that could get on her system will come from the internet, so anything that gets online has to be kept up to date. The good news is that even though Microsoft isn't keeping Internet Explorer up to date, Google has said that it will keep its Chrome browser updated. Firefox has also said it will keep its browser up to date as well. Leo suggests that Francis use Internet Explorer one last time to get Google Chrome. Its a free download, and it actually has Flash built-in, so just by using it, she should be able to get video to work again.

Another way she can make Windows XP safer is to not use an administrator account. While she's in the administrator account, she should go to Control Panel and find Users and Accounts. Then she should make a new administrator account called "admin." Then log out of her current account, and log into the new account. Then go to Users and Accounts in Control Panel and downgrade her regular account to "limited user." She'll then use the limited user account for day to day use.