Apr 9, 2014

Mar - 26 2014 | By

Glenn was in the studio with Adam Brodel from Smarter Broadband. Paul was traveling somewhere.

Contact info for Smarter Broadband – internet service and PC repair:
530-272-4000
sales@smarterbroadband.com
<Adam was on 12-12-12 show
Not too long ago Smarter Broadband purchased Full Spectrum, which does PC repair>

Notifications of new show notes and edits are tweeted at: twitter.com/ddhart.
– They're tagged with #Zentech.
– When what's said is unclear to me (or I'm unfamiliar with a topic) I tend to quote (" ") verbatim.
– Editor's comments are delimited by < >

Mikail sent Glenn some links concerning Windows XP and a 3-D printer for $299.
– 3-D printers have come down on price a lot.
– Adam read about an entire house being built in Norway using a 3-D printer.
– Many kinds of thing are being created with the printers, including guns.
< $300 3D printer Kickstarter campaign raises $1 million in funding in 24 hours>
< How to survive the Windows XP apocalypse>

Support for Windows XP ended yesterday. Glenn thought that support for Microsoft Security Essentials has ended, too. Adam corrected him: support for Security Essentials will continue for now but Microsoft hasn't given a date for its demise. <I heard that Security Essentials support will continue for later versions of Windows.>
– Some anti-virus programs, like Avast, will, for the time being, will continue to be updated for XP users.
– Unless you have a very strong reason to continue using XP, it's time to move on, Adam said.
– There are places that will update your XP computer to a later operating system.
– Consider getting a new computer rather that upgrading, if your computer is about 5 or more years old. Prices for new computers can be on par with paying for the upgrade and data migration.
– Adam said his company could do the upgrade. The license for Windows 8 is about $110. Moving your data is an additional $129 (Win8 can't be installed while keeping the data and programs in place). Reinstalling the programs is an additional cost, but that's something you can do yourself.
– Adam mentioned PC Mover, an application that can move the programs without having to reinstall them. His company hasn't tried it yet so he didn't know how well it works.
– Windows 8.1 doesn't have the data mover feature that came with Win7 and Win8, so Microsoft is offering PC Mover Express for free.

Nick called to add some details about upgrading an XP machine.
– Upgrading an XP machine purchased just a couple of years ago is often not viable.
– Minimal system requirements for Windows 7 & 8 don't lead to acceptable performance of the upgraded older computer. The requirements for RAM, for instance, will tilt ones choices toward just getting a new PC.
– Video cards on machines older than a couple of years often aren't supported by Win7 or 8, even if the "arrow mode" is turned off.
– There are more details at 4reliablecomputers.net : Nick's business.
– The sunset date for Windows Defender updates is 1 year from now. <Maybe he meant Security Essentials>

Deborah called with a Mac question. She updated her Flash Player to version 13.0.0.182 and now she can't play her videos. She went to the Flash Player's web site and ran their diagnostic that confirmed to her the player was installed.
– The guys aren't very familiar these types of Mac issues. Glenn suggested she try the VLC player instead of Flash.
– Glenn asked her to send him an email and he'll consult others about the problem. Send the email to zen at kvmr at org.

Pam called with a question about her too-old-to-updated XP computer that's on a dialup internet connection. Someone told her that Win7 is better suited for use with dialup. And, is a Mac a better choice for dialup.
– Macs don't support dialup anymore.
– Adam noted that Win8 interacts with Microsoft while online, which can slow things down while using dialup. Adam uses Win7 and likes it very much
– To keep from getting bogged down on a dialup connection; Glenn suggested that she keep automatic updates turned off until she gets to a wi-fi hotspot, where she can update at broadband speeds.
– Choose a laptop for a new machine, so when you need to do big downloads, it would be easier to lug it to a wi-fi hotspot.
– Give Adam a call to see if or when his broadband service is coming to your area. His phone is 530-272-4000.

Pam called in. She has Norton for her anti-virus and wondered if it will continue to be updated on her XP.
– If you paid for it, then it will be updated, but for how long is questionable.
– An anti-virus program is not a substitute for updating the operating system.
– An anti-virus program is only as good as its last update.
– Glenn's other security precautions: if you don't recognize an email, delete it and don't click on links in emails, even if they are from a friend (unless it's something you're expecting).

Tomas called. He has an old Dell XP and has been looking to upgrade to a Google Chrome Book computer, since his needs are modest. He likes their cheap price and the prospect of fewer viruses. He wondered if there were disadvantages to the Chrome.
– Chrome is more like a tablet than a PC, Adam said. But if you're doing simple things like web browsing & email, it should be fine.
– Glenn went to Google's website and found that HP is selling a Chrome Book for $279.
– You won't be able to install something like Microsoft Office in a Chrome Book, but you can use Google Docs to get similar functionality online.
– Programs like the Flash Player & Adobe reader run as plugins on a Chrome Book: they work as part of the Chrome browser.
– Chrome Books depend heavily on the internet for the things you'll be doing, including data storage, so be sure to have a good <fast> internet connection.

Marilyn called. She downloaded some software but didn't get the registration number with it. If she upgrades to Win7, will she not be able to use that software anymore?
– It depends. If you were never sent a registration number, it may not require one. Check the website where you download it to see what their registration policy is.
– Use Belarc Advisor to scan your computer. It will tell you what programs you have installed. And for some of the programs, it will tell you their registration numbers.

Marilyn has an older version of Microsoft Office (circa year 2000) and was told that older programs like that may run on the newer versions of Windows.
– That's possible. It's one more thing to consider before upgrading.
– You may be able to set the compatibility mode for some software to mimic Windows XP in the newer Windows version, but there's no guaranty that will be sufficient.
– The documents created with the older Office can generally be read by newer versions of the Office suite or even other programs.
– Use Google Docs to edit Office documents from various versions of Office.
– Try Office 365 — a cloud version of Office. <Sounded like Glenn said it's free for now, but there will be a subscription service eventually.>
– There are other programs, like Photoshop, that are moving to the cloud and charging a subscription fee. Glenn doesn't care for that business model: Software as a Service (SaaS).

Nick called in again to say he uses Smarted Broadband and likes the service.

He also had a tip for avoiding downloads of big files over dialup. He said some email programs that run on the user's machine have a setting that prevents big files above a certain size from being downloaded automatically.
– The user has to give permission for each big file to be downloaded.
– Not all email programs have this option.
– He's never seen that type of setting in online email services <Yahoo, Gmail, etc.>, only the programs that run on the user's machine.
– Adam will sometimes advise people to use web-based email because the user can choose what to download and whether to delete email with big attachments. <I think the IMAP protocol offers that choice for people using a mail program that's running on their machines>
– Using the web-based email from your service provider, rather that Gmail, Yahoo, etc., could mean a lot fewer ads, which can slow things down for dialup users.

Nick also cautioned dialup users about lightning strikes coming over the phone lines. He said it's cheaper to replace the modem board in a desktop computer than having to replace an entire laptop. <Laptops being harder to service>

Michael called to say he's been using a Chrome Book for over a year and he's happy with it.
– He said that there are thousands of app that can be used on it.
– You can use an extern USB drive for local storage.
– You can use cloud-based storage like Google Drive for online storage.
– He offered to talk to Tomas (above) about any questions he might have. Michael's phone number: 530-277-6927

Last update 11:28 PM 4/9/2014