Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Can I refill ink cartridges in new printers?

Ken from Long Beach, CA

Episode 1063

Ken wants to refill his ink cartridges, but has heard that there are now chips in printers that prevent you from using it after refilling it with ink. Leo says that it is true. In many printers, you can't use third party cartridges. It's anti competitive, but the printers are so cheap, they make their living on selling the ink. So as long as Ken is refilling the same cartridges and can reset the cartridge chip, it should work. The printer also reads the chip in the cartridge and knows when it's out of ink. So it could be a problem on that end as well.

What's a good laptop to replace a Windows XP desktop?

Josslyn from Pasadena, CA

Episode 1063

Josslyn is looking to replace her XP Desktop with a laptop. Her son has a MacBook Pro and he really likes it. Leo says that it's important to stay within the family as they can be her support system. So a MacBook Pro would be a good idea. An even better idea is the MacBook Air because of it's long battery life and super light form factor.

How can I speed up my computer while I'm online?

Episode 1062

Jack from Liverpool, UK
MacBook Pro

Jack wants to know if an SSD will make his MacBook Pro perform better. He's noticed that it takes longer to open websites. Leo says it absolutely will. SSDs are very fast and it's likely that Jack's regular hard drive is starting to fail. So now is the right time to make a change. The other thing to do is reset Safari, which will clear out the cache, cookies, and website history. He should also remove his extensions. That can slow things down as well.

Can I run Windows XP and only boot into Linux to get online?

Ron from Little Rock, AR

Episode 1061

Ron has a PC that runs XP and wants to use Linux when he wants to go online. Should he worry about any XP programs sneaking online if he dual boots? Leo says no, there won't be any crossovers. There are some programs that Linux can run that run on Windows, but none that go online. Just don't forget to only go online with Linux and not Windows XP!

Why can't I format the hybrid drive in my Mac?

Conrad from Los Angeles, CA

Episode 1061

Conrad has a Mac and he's having trouble with his hybrid hard drive. He's tried formatting and partitioning it using Disk Utility and he gets an "can't allocate memory" error. Leo says it sounds like a bad hybrid drive. The fact that it's a hybrid drive shouldn't matter because the hybrid part is handled internally by the drive circuitry. It should appear as a single drive to Mac OS X.

Can I get a docking station for my MacBook Pro?

Episode 1061

Bob from Hisperia, CA
Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock

Bob is replacing a PC laptop and docking station with a 13" Mac Pro with Retina. He needs docking stations on both ends with external monitors and network connections. Leo says that Apple doesn't do docking stations anymore. Thunderbolt monitors will handle the external part with connectors for keyboards and monitors. All he'll need to do is plug it in. He won't even have to open the MacBook Pro.