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Episode 889 July 7, 2012

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Scott from Jasper, Georgia Comments

Using social media is a great idea. Leo thinks it's really the only way to advertise these days because word of mouth is everything. It’s also another way to handle customer service. Customers in the internet era are expecting companies to be authentic and to respond promptly. Social media services such as Twitter really make this possible.

Scott's website is FedoraOutlier.com.

Watch Chris from Pennsylvania Comments

It depends on how the array backs up. If it's using a proprietary system to combine the hard drives, he'll have to get a duplicate enclosure to the one he had to read the disks. If it's using a standard system like RAID 5 or RAID 0, he may be able to use another RAID box to put the drives in. Leo says he won't be able to read the drives at all unless he has something to duplicate the setup it was using. He'll need to get another enclosure identical to his previous one so he can read the drives.

Watch Justin from Indianapolis, IN Comments

iTunes will match songs with the copy that it has in its library. If it doesn't have that song in the library, it will upload it instead. It can't make it the higher quality because it doesn't have the original. iTunes may not be able to match everything, but at least it's keeping a copy in the cloud. For the music he previously bought in iTunes, he'll get a higher quality copy free of any copy-protection as well. If he's ripped a CD, sometimes iTunes will recognize it and other times it won't.

Justin can check in iTunes which songs have been matched or not by right clicking the categories at the top in iTunes. He should enable iCloud Status, Kind, and bitrate so he'll get an idea of what he will get back.

Watch Justin from Indianapolis, IN Comments

iTunes will match songs with the copy that it has in its library. If it doesn't have that song in the library, it will upload it instead. It can't make it the higher quality because it doesn't have the original. iTunes may not be able to match everything, but at least it's keeping a copy in the cloud. For the music he previously bought in iTunes, he'll get a higher quality copy free of any copy-protection as well. If he's ripped a CD, sometimes iTunes will recognize it and other times it won't.

Justin can check in iTunes which songs have been matched or not by right clicking the categories at the top in iTunes. He should enable iCloud Status, Kind, and bitrate so he'll get an idea of what he will get back.

Watch Justin from Indianapolis, IN Comments

He can leave the Windows Firewall on. In fact, Leo doesn't recommend the full ESET offering of desktop security products. Just get the antivirus, and turn on the Windows Firewall. Since Justin may be using college campus internet, the firewall will protect Justin from network viruses or worms propagating on his system. The Windows Firewall isn't real powerful, but it's good enough and will protect him against worms coming from within the network he's on. (Disclaimer: ESET is a sponsor).

Audience QuestionsHour 2

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

Marilyn is thinking of getting a Samsung Galaxy S III, which Leo thinks is a great phone, but we don't know enough about the next iPhone to really compare it. The rumors suggest that the next iPhone's screen will be larger, and it may only be taller than the current phone. But it won't be out until September so we don't know.

For Marilyn's first smartphone, an iPhone is probably the best choice. The problem with Android is that it's designed to be highly customized and tweaked, which is overwhelming for people who are not geeks. She doesn't like that the data plans are so limited, but Leo thinks the standard 2 or 3GB that the carriers offer would be plenty.

Marilyn also wanted to know what to get for a warranty on the phone. Leo doesn't do warranties. In every case these add-on warranties (which are basically insurance) are profit centers for the insurers. Leo always self-insures because if he were to break the phone the warranty wouldn't do much anyway. She would get a 1-year warranty from the manufacturer anyway.

Watch Marilyn from Los Angeles, CA Comments

The good news is that if she buys a Dell now, she'll be able to upgrade to Windows 8 for $15. Leo wouldn't upgrade though because he believes the best version of Windows is still Windows 7. Windows 8 is really designed for a touch interface, and she'd want to get hardware designed to work with it.

Watch Trevor from Houston, TX Comments

Yes, it should be enough to last him at least a few years. Things have changed considerably over the last few years. It used to be guaranteed that a computer wouldn't be powerful enough a few years down the road, but the speeds of computers today are more than adequate. There really isn't much an application can do to tax a computer these days. The Macbook Airs are a little bit slower, but the new Macbook Airs are much better and should be plenty fast.

If Trevor really wants to buy for the future, he should put as much RAM in as he can. The one area where he would suffer is in the storage capacity of the Solid State Drive the Macbook Air uses, but Leo says that's something he can live with. Leo doesn't think he'd have to buy the biggest hard drive or even the fastest processor for a laptop to be powerful enough to last the next 4 or 5 years.

Watch Trevor from Houston, TX Comments

Yes, all the ultrabooks are designed to copy the Air exactly. Dell, Asus, Acer, Toshiba, Lenovo, and Vizio all make very similar thin and light laptops. The Vizio looks amazing and is less expensive. It's also a Microsoft "Signature" experience, meaning they don't add bloatware. Another good choice is the Asus Zenbook.

Watch Brad from Lynchberg, VA Comments

If he's running Lion now, he should be fine for Mountain Lion as well. Apple has a compatibility page that shows the requirements for Mountain Lion and what systems it will run on. In general any Macbook Pro 13" from mid 2009, and 15" from mid 2007 or newer.

Watch John from Los Angeles, CA Comments

It could be an overheating issue, and the computer is just shutting down when it gets too hot. Then when it cools down later, it will start back up. John also mentioned that in BIOS his computer is unable to see his hard drive and optical drive. This could be from bad components on his motherboard. Geek Squad told him it's a bad motherboard, and it sounds like that is likely.

Watch Simon from Santa Ana, CA Comments

He should back up his data and do a system restore back to Windows 7. His copy of Windows 8 isn't a real version, it will expire in January anyway. It really wasn't meant to replace the current version of Windows, it's just a pre-release that's not yet finished.

Watch Lamarte from Lynwood, CA Comments

Lamarte was looking into the Droid 4 because it has a physical keyboard. Leo says that an on-screen keyboard is a common concern for people getting their first smartphone, but a physical keyboard makes the phone so much thicker and heavier. Leo thinks that once you get used to the on-screen keyboard, it really is better. Lamarte says he just can't get the on-screen keyboards to work well for him though.

The other thing Lamarte was looking for was a hotspot capability. Leo says virtually all Android phones can be used that way, as long as the carrier allows it. It costs a little bit more monthly, but but it's possible with pretty much every phone including the iPhone.

Leo says if he really needs the physical keyboard though, the Droid 4 is fine.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Paul from Columbus, OH Comments

Paul had a power outage and now his AT&T Uverse internet service is at half speed, and his email won't download in Outlook. Since AT&T's mail is through Yahoo, Leo suggested that Paul try accessing his email from mail.yahoo.com. Paul confirms that this does work. Leo thinks it's an issue on AT&T's end after the power outage in his area, and they don't have the Pop Mail server up yet.

Watch Paul from Columbus, OH Comments

No. Office 2010 will replace Office 2007, so it won't be a problem. Leo thinks it's also possible to choose whether to have Office 2010 replace 2007 or just have dual installs. There's no reason he'd want to have both installed though, so it should replace his previous version of Office just fine.

Watch Don from Palmdale, CA Comments

Since he's not seeing these spam messages are showing up in his phone's messages app, they probably are not text messages. They are most likely notifications from an app he has installed. Deleting the app those messages are associated with should stop the spam notifications. He also might want to look at his phone's settings and revoke notification privileges from apps there.

There's a known piece of malware that made it into the Google Play and Apple App Store called "Find and Call". It has been removed from both app stores, though.

Turning off the option to "download third party apps" on his phone would prevent him from getting malicious apps, and it's important to read up on what an app does before installing it. This article could help in getting rid of spam or mysterious alerts in the Android notification bar.

Watch Susan from Riverside, CA Comments

A LeapPad might be a good choice for such a young age. It's a lot less expensive ($100-$200) and is much more robust. It's also designed with software for little kids. They are very limited though, and not all that modern anymore either. Leo also knows of a lot of kids even as young as 2 or 3 who use iPads very effectively.

Leo also suggests looking into the Nexus 7 tablet from Google. It's a $200, small, and runs Android so it will be able to run a lot of apps. It also will be something the child could grow into over the years. Like the iPad, however, it's got a glass screen and would be more easily broken by a kid.

The nice thing about the iPad is that it has a wide variety of software for younger people, including great educational software. It would be a good way for the kids to grow into it and do more sophisticated things with it in the future, too. Not to mention it would also be a nice thing for Susan to use herself. Leo recommends the iPad with a robust, rubberized case (like Otterbox, for example) to protect it from being thrown around by the kids.

Watch Steven from Syracuse, NY Comments

Leo's not a big fan of HP printers. They're cheap printers, but they really get people on the ink. Leo would get an inexpensive laser printer because the cost per page is much lower. It won't print color as well though, and certainly won't do photos, but will be fine for charts and some presentations. Leo prefers the Epson Workforce All in One printers. Canon makes some decent ones as well.

Watch Sharon from San Clemente, CA Comments

No, Apple doesn't allow this. She could jailbreak the phone and use a third party app from Cydia, but that will make the phone less secure and more unstable.

Leo’s not much a fan of spying on kids, but he has used Find My iPhone to make sure his kids are where they say they are. But he believes that talking to your kids, being plugged in, and letting them know you can access their phone at any moment is a better way to go.

The iPhone also has pretty good parental controls, so that’s another way to make sure your kids aren’t going where they shouldn’t online.