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?
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.
Hi Tricia. We get a small amount from Google each time someone searches our Start page at https://thundercloud.net/start/.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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
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
Hi Darlene. You can look in your email program’s server settings.
IMAP will show the following:
Incoming Mail Server Name: imap.comcast.net
Incoming Mail Server Port Number: 993
POP3 will show the following:
Incoming Mail Server Name: pop3.comcast.net
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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