Saturday Bonus Questions and Answers – 091022

By | September 10, 2022
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Saturday Bonus Questions and Answers – 091022

Summer is in its final days, and autumn’s waiting on our doorstep. And it’s Saturday, which means it’s time for another round of Saturday Bonus Questions & Answers.

Sometimes the best tips and tricks are hidden in the questions and answers we publish. And rarely do we post questions and answers on this website. Today, we’re featuring some of the questions and answers from past issues of our InfoAve Weekly newsletters. 

These questions & answers were selected at random from past InfoAve Weekly newsletters.

Saturday Bonus Questions and Answers – 091022

Robert is changing from HDD to SSD and has some questions
I’m changing from hard drives to SSD drives. Could you comment in your newsletter on what not to run or do with an SSD drive such as maintaining an SSD drive running DISM/SFC?

Our answer
Hi Robert. For those not familiar with the terminology – SSDs are Solid State Drives; HDDs are standard hard drives. OK on to your questions.

DISM/SFC are Windows scans, not hard drive scans. They are scans that can repair corrupted or missing Windows files.

There is nothing you can’t do with an SSD drive that you can do with an HDD except defragmenting. Windows 10 automatically defrags HDD but uses TRIM on SSD.

You can run SFC, DISM, or CHKDSK /Scan, CHKDSK /F etc. on both SSDs and HDDs. But if you’re using SSDs, never download a 3rd-party disk defragmenter. Otherwise, no worries!

Tricia wants to know if searching from our Start page helps us
I have your Start page as my browser’s home page. Do you get some remuneration each time I go to your Start page and use the search on that page to find something? If so, let me know, and I will use it a lot more. Tricia.

Our answer
Hi Tricia. We get a small amount from Google each time someone searches our Start page at

And… thank you so much for using our Start page and for using it to search from too! 

Shirley might be a victim of a phishing scam
I have bought Emsisoft from you, but I need to know if I need something like LifeLock. I have renewed Emsisoft. But someone from my local Home Depot put my Social Security number on the Dark Web. I had protection provided by Home Depot for two years, but last year I got all my credit cards hacked and even my PayPal account. Should I buy LifeLock?

Many thanks for years of great info and help. Blessing to you, Shirley.

Our answer
Hi Shirley. Thank you for your nice comments.

It sounds like you have been the victim of phishing emails and you’ve given criminals your personal information. No software program can prevent you from falling for a phishing scam. Lifelock has been sued a least a half-dozen times for false advertising.

The only advice I can give you is don’t click links in emails if you’re not sure who sent them – and NEVER click any links in emails that ask you to click to change your password or change your personal information.

See this page to learn how to avoid falling for phishing scams.

And remember you have to be careful with links in email because no software programs, antivirus, antimalware — no software at all — can protect you from you clicking a link and giving your information to criminals. So, don’t spend your money on LifeLock – it’s expensive and their advertising isn’t all true.

Just be very careful with email and don’t click links if you’re not sure who sent the email. And remember, criminals can make any email look like it came from Home Depot, or your bank, a credit card company, etc.

We hope this helps you, Shirley. If you need anything else, please let us know.

Please consider making a small donation and help us to keep on helping you!

Sandy asks about “Safely Remove Hardware”
While downloading Lock Hunter, something you recommended, they advertised for USB Safely Removed. I was wondering if this is okay to download. I know that you are supposed to be able to remove USBs, external drives, etc. with Windows 10, but quite frankly, I don’t trust it. I know of a few people that had an issue when they didn’t stop and remove their USB drive. The external drives have no way to stop or eject them.

Our answer
Hi Sandy. Since you are using Windows 10, you don’t need to use “Safely remove hardware” at all. You can safely unplug external devices, such as hard drives, thumb drives, etc. without doing anything – just unplug them. So, the answer is, no – don’t download that program.

Here is our article on why you no longer need to use “Safely remove hardware” if you’re using Windows 10.

One more thing… when we recommend a program, we are recommending only the program we specifically mention, for instance, “LockHunter”. Whatever else might appear on the LockHunter site may or may not be safe. Typically, freeware developers may have dozens of programs listed on their sites – but always we only recommend the ones we specifically mention. So, the “good by association” theory is not something you should ever assume.

Betty wants to know who to contact about her online privacy
From your post on the recent COMB data breach, I, unfortunately, found that my primary email account was included. I’m guessing this had to do with my info being affected by a 2017 Equifax security breach.

Even though I had updated my passwords not that long ago using LastPass, I thought it would be best to update the passwords or change the email addresses. Because I had 5 pages of personal/business accounts this took a lot of time, so I decided it might be a good idea to delete online accounts that I no longer needed. However, I found that you can’t always change an email login ID within the website, and it takes tenacity to get some online accounts deleted. I even had a couple of well-known companies say they couldn’t delete my account. (I’ve come up with a couple of workarounds that should take care of these nagging issues.)

Frankly, I’m not happy with the effort it has taken to make changes and deletions or the fact that some companies seem to think they own a customer’s personal data (unless you live in CA, the UK, or the EU).

Anyway, my question is… Do you have any suggestions about what organizations, etc. one might contact to address data privacy? Or do you know if there are any current efforts being made to improve U.S. data privacy laws? Ordinarily, I’d contact a state legislator or congressman, but I’m now living in Florida.

Sorry for the long message.

Our answer
Hi Betty. I wish there were someone you could contact about privacy, but right now the USA has no centralized privacy policy or agency like Europe and Australia do. You would need to contact each company you deal with and address your privacy concerns with them.

There are some sites that promise to help you with your privacy concerns, but I’m not sure I’d trust them. And even if they are trustworthy, you’d be bringing another party into the privacy fray.

If you just want someone who champions privacy rights as well as personal rights, the Electronic Freedom Foundation is a foundation you may want to look into. You can visit them here.

I’m sorry I don’t have a really good answer to your question. Our (United States) government and its representatives should have taken action long as far as privacy rights go. Personally, I don’t even assume I have any privacy at all on the web and conduct myself accordingly.

Cathy wants to know if it’s safe to order online with her tablet
I was wondering how safe it is to order online with my tablet. I always use my desktop computer when I order online, but I never order online with my tablet.

Our answer
Hi Cathy. As long as you’re careful and you order from your home wireless connection and not from public wireless (like a restaurant, airport, etc.) you should be just fine.

Jim wants to know what’s wrong with LastPass
I have seen your article about leaving the free version of Last Pass. Is there something wrong with the paid version?

Our answer
Hi Jim. I don’t believe we disparaged LastPass in any way. We were just answering the dozens of people who are using LastPass on different devices and who asked us if there was a good free alternative. I tested BitWarden for about a week and at first, I was not impressed until I removed LastPass from one of my browsers and decided to cold turkey with BitWarden – then I was very impressed.

That being said, it has recently been reported that LastPass for Android – tablets & phones is not exactly on the up and up. Read LastPass Android app has some sneaky tracking software hidden away. It’s bad enough when browsers track you – but I don’t think I’d want my password manager tracking me.

If you want to pay for LastPass that’s fine – all we are saying is that BitWarden is a great free alternative.

Christine asks about the Brave security browser
Emsisoft recently recommended the Brave browser. What is your opinion of Brave and does Brave have TOR built in? Thank you. Christine

Our answer
Hi Christine. Brave is yet another security browser – and like all other browsers and so-called “security” browsers, it has its flaws. But it’s definitely usable. But if you plan on using it for Gmail, Amazon shopping, or any online shopping, etc. you’re going to have to get used to signing into those websites each time you visit. Some folks would find that annoying – especially with Gmail.

Brave is a browser that is built on Chromium, just like Edge and Chrome, and dozens of other browsers. Brave has TOR built in. Keep in mind governments and authorities are very well acquainted with TOR and it’s not as secure as it once was.

I’d recommend Brave for advanced users who are aware of the disadvantages of privacy browsers. Additional privacy means less convenience. And I’m not truly convinced that anything you do on the Web is “private” and sometimes I wonder if a false sense of security and privacy isn’t worse than always being watchful, alert, and wary.

Darlene asks about IMAP and POP3 email protocols
I forgot the neat article on POP3 and IMAP. I don’t remember learning that before. I remembered that Google kept messages, but I want to be sure my Comcast account is set up that way, as well. Question: How can I check my Comcast account to determine which system (protocol) it is using? Thanks a lot for explaining what the difference is. Darlene

Our answer
Hi Darlene. You can look in your email program’s server settings.

IMAP will show the following:
Incoming Mail Server Name:
Incoming Mail Server Port Number: 993

POP3 will show the following:
Incoming Mail Server Name:
Incoming Mail Server Port Number: 995

I hope this helps you, Darlene.

For those who have the same question, normally, but not always, IMAP or POP3 will be in the incoming server name.

Joyce deleted a folder by accident
Hi. I deleted a folder from my PC that I thought was empty I sent it to the recycle bin and emptied it then realized it had the fonts I had downloaded and saved in it. Is there a way to recover them? Is there a program I could use? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks, Joyce.

Our answer

Hi Joyce. If you have File History turned on (look in Settings > Update & Security > Backup – and look to see if File History is turned on. If it is, you can recover your folder from File History.

If File History is not turned on, you can try using Puran File Recovery … to recover the files/folder(s). See our article here.

We hope this helps you, Joyce.

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Don’t have a Cloudeight SeniorPass? It’s a great deal. Learn more here.

Our Cloudeight SeniorPass is a great deal. You get unlimited support for one full year from the date you first use your SeniorPass. We can help keep your computer running well, fix all kinds of computer problems, clean up malware, and a whole lot more. Our SeniorPass is like having insurance for your computer. And it’s only $99 for an entire year.

Get your SeniorPass today for just $99.  It’s just like having insurance for your computer – only better!

To learn more about our SeniorPass, please see this page.

Linda has a problem with RoboForm
My RoboForm is not working correctly, and I cannot get help from them. The website won’t take my master password. The page told me they would send me a way to reset my password. I gave them my email address but didn’t receive an email from them. The password I’m talking about is my RoboForm master password. When I click the RoboForm icon, a wheel keeps spinning around, and I can’t put in my master password. Help.

Our answer
Hi Linda. If you have RoboForm Everywhere, just go to the RoboForm website and log in. RoboForm will not give you your password. It is very well protected, so if you were told they would send you your master password, you were not talking to RoboForm. I hope you did not give any personal info. There is no way to recover your master password.

For more information see this page,

Bill might be confusing MS Outlook with the Windows 10 mail app
This may seem silly, however, I currently run Microsoft Office with Outlook. I also seem to have another email program that appears to be web-based running the same account.

I am going to help a friend who is not computer savvy and I would like to load this email app for him to access his email. account. Unfortunately, I don’t remember/know how I got it in the first place. I wonder if you can shed any light on the subject. You guys seem extremely knowledgeable, and I have learned a lot from your articles and answers to users’ questions. Keep up the good work. Best regards, Bill.

Our answer
Hi Bill. Windows 10 comes with Windows 10 Mail app pre-installed and many people confuse it with Outlook – even though its interface and icon are quite different from Outlook’s.

If you want to verify that what you’re seeing is Windows 10 Mail app, open the Start menu, and under the “M” section, click “Mail” or just type Mail in Taskbar search and click on Mail app when it appears.

We hope this solves the puzzle for you.

Jo read where SSDs can crash abruptly...
Last year I purchased an Acer TravelMate P215-51 that has an SSD (238 G). I heard that this type of drive can crash abruptly. Is there any way I can keep track of drive health? Also, what can I do so as to prolong the life of the drive? I’m not able to understand its read/write function. Is it true that once this ability is used/filled up, the drive will be toast? If so, can a person protect the drive from having to use read/write too often?One more question. In your fine article about Wi-Fi adapters: If internet connections sometimes get cut off, could it mean a driver needs updating, in addition to buying an adapter?

Any information you can offer would be immeasurably helpful! I rely on your expertise and trust it implicitly. Thank you kindly, Jo.

Our answer
Hi Jo. I’m not sure where you’re getting your information, but SSDs generally last longer than HDDs since solid-state drives.

Backblaze is a well-known data recovery and data backup company. Here’s what they say:

“…Generally, SSDs are more durable than HDDs in extreme and harsh environments because they don’t have moving parts such as actuator arms. SSDs can withstand accidental drops and other shocks, vibration, extreme temperatures, and magnetic fields better than HDDs. Add to that their small size and lower power consumption, and you can understand why they’re a great fit for laptop computers and mobile applications…”

The average lifespan of a solid-state hard drive is about 10 years according to a study by Google and the University of Toronto. Google has been using SSDs in its data centers for over 6 years. The average lifespan of a standard hard drive is around 6 years. If Google uses SSDs on its servers in its data centers, that’s pretty good proof, at least for me, that they’re not prone to abrupt crashes.

Also keep in mind, that new SSDs are not like the ones from a few years ago. New SSDs use wear-leveling and “bad block management” new SSDs are a lot more resistant to catastrophic data loss. HHDs are much more prone to failure and data loss than SSDs.

Finally, there are many free programs you can download and install that work on both SSDs and HDDs, like CrystalDiskInfo – which was one of our freeware picks.

USB WiFi adapters come with installation software when necessary – you don’t need to download any drivers.

We hope this addresses your concerns and answers your questions, Jo.

Wait! Before you go…

Every week we help dozens of people with their computers without charge or any expectation of payment. And we have helped many folks who have fallen for tech support scams or other scams designed to steal their money.

And we now depend more on readers like you to help keep us going. Your donation helps us to help more people with their computers and helps us keep everyone safer online.

Please help support our small business and help us to keep on helping you.

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2 thoughts on “Saturday Bonus Questions and Answers – 091022

  1. Jeanne Rodel

    This email is about Brave browser. I love your site and your tips are usually right on except for this one. You mentioned in your response to Christine that in Brave she would have to get used to signing into websites, such as Gmail, Amazon shopping, or any online shopping, etc. each visit. I use Brave and do not have to sign into my Gmail account. When I signed in, the first time, I clicked on the ‘remember me’ button. Now I do not have to sign in next time. I do that for any sight where I do not need privacy.
    Thank you for your wonderful website.

    1. infoave Post author

      Thanks for your nice comments.
      If you use Brave and you don’t have to sign into Chrome, then you’re not using Brave as a privacy browser – you’re allowing it to save browser history, cache, and passwords. A truly private browser would not even allow this. Brave can be set up to be totally private, but if you’re going to use it the way you’re using it, you’re not gaining much privacy – you may as well use Edge or Chrome.

      The idea of a privacy browser is not to save history, passwords, cache or anything else that could compromise your personal information. Anyone with access to your computer or any malware connected to your PC could find browsing history, passwords and whatever’s in your browser’s cache.

      Now I’m not that paranoid, so I just use Chrome, Edge, and Firefox. I really don’t believe there’s any privacy on the Internet to begin with. But if you’re using Brave because you want to stay as private as possible, then you’ll have to give up the convenience, bite the bullet, and not allow Brave to save your passwords or browsing history.

      Just sayin’ 🙂


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