Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

What budget laptop should I buy?

Episode 1492

Dan from San Francisco, CA
Acer Chromebook

Dan has to buy a new laptop. He likes Apple, and is getting an iMac. So what low budget laptop with a good screen should he buy? Leo says to look at an Acer Chromebook. It's only a few hundred dollars, and it's ideal for being on the move. 99% of what he does can be done with a Chromebook. If he does need a full OS laptop, then Dan should wait until after Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference. Apple will be announcing new laptops, including an $800 MacBook. Good Windows PCs include Acer, HP, and Lenovo.

Why is my computer so sluggish with Windows 10?

Episode 1492

Luis from Medford, MA
Windows 10

Luis wants to know if Windows 10's Spring update is worth accepting. Leo says that Windows 10 is pretty good, but the latest update, 1803, is breaking Windows 10 for a lot of users, and Microsoft is pushing it out. The best he can do is defer the update. Luis updated, but his hard drive is sluggish. Leo says that could just be a failing sector on the hard drive. Sometimes, reformatting a hard drive and starting over will fix it. Using an SSD will also solve that issue. So if he can replace the hard drive with an SSD, he'd be far better off.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1491

Dick DeBartolo

From GizWiz.Biz - Acer Chromebook Spin 15 – 1st 15-inch Chrome convertible powered by a choice of 3 Intel processors, from two dual-core Celeron chips to a quad-core Pentium CPU. There's also a choice of 4GB to 8GB of memory and 32GB to 64GB of eMMC storage. A higher than before 13 hours of battery life was also announced. There's USB-A & USB-C and a microSD card reader. The Acer Chromebook 15 series starts at $349 and the 360 degree SPIN version adds $100 ($449) in stores and online, coming this July.

Do I have to record every episode on my TiVo Bolt?

Episode 1491

Scott from Dallas, TX
TiVo Bolt

Scott has a 500GB TiVo Bolt and wants to set it up to just save the recent week's worth of recordings, not every single recording forever. Leo says it's in the settings. He can set it to just keep a week's worth and delete the rest, as well as to delete when it starts to run out of space. Can he upgrade the hard drive? Leo says yes. He will also probably have to "bless" the hard drive so that TiVo will read it. Leo recommends contacting Weaknees.com.

How can I reset my iPod?

Episode 1491

Stacey from Los Angeles, CA
Apple iPod Nano

Stacey made a one letter error setting up her iPod and she can't download any music on it. She went to the Apple store and the Genius punted and said to call Apple Care. Leo says that the music industry insisted on using a single iTunes account authorized to an Apple account. Stacey should be able to authorize the iPod using her Apple account. If she resets the iPod through iTunes, she should be able to set it up as a new device.

How can I connect Thunderbolt 3 to USB-C?

Episode 1491

Brian from Nashville, TN
SanDisk Dual Drive Type-C

Brian runs an external Thunderbolt 2 drive and Parallels to dual boot into Windows. He upgraded his SSD, which works on his laptop, but it won't attach to his Mac Mini. How can he adapt it? Leo says that the Thunderbolt 3 connector is the same as the USB-C connector. But that doesn't mean it has the Thunderbolt controller built in. So he may need to get a Thunderbolt 3 external enclosure to use it, but it's not cheap. He could use a Type A USB 3.1 data cable connector to the Type-C drive and he should get full throughput.

How can I stop my old PC from crashing?

Episode 1491

Austin from Beaumont, TX
HP all-in-one

Austin has a 5 year old HP all-in-one and it's crashing on him. Leo says it may be that simply backing up his data, wiping the drive, and reinstalling Windows could fix the problem by repairing any corrupt files. It will also clean out any background applications that are running in the background, taxing the system. Using the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool can help. Then he can go to the HP site and update all of his drivers. If it's not a hardware flaw, then that should solve the issue. But if the problem lingers, it could be time to replace the hard drive.