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Ask Leo! #397 – Why your machine’s slowing down, disabling https, localhost, sharing your password and more…


The Ask Leo! Newsletter

*** Featured

Why is my machine slowing down?

Slow machines represent one of the largest sources of questions to Ask Leo!

Perhaps when you purchased it, your computer ran like a champ and did everything you needed (and quickly). Now ... well, not so much. Perhaps it takes forever to boot. Or starting applications is slower than molasses. Or maybe the machine just acts sluggish when you try to use it for just about anything.

Regardless of the specifics, the underlying theme is simple: it's slow.

The problem is that there are many, many reasons that a machine could slow down.

I'll try to list a few of the most common reasons here along with some advice on what steps to take.

Continue reading: Why is my machine slowing down?
http://ask-leo.com/C1854

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*** Answercast

Answercast #60 - Listening to cell phones, file sizes, partitioning external drives, giving out passwords, and more...

Confused about security on a website or who to give your password to? Wonder about partitioning an external drive or securing a mobile hotspot? Want a really good, and permanent, email address? All that and more in this Answercast from Ask Leo!

Listen

Continue reading: Answercast #60 - Listening to cell phones, file sizes, partitioning external drives, giving out passwords, and more...
http://ask-leo.com/C5899

How do I set up an email address once and never again have to tell all my contacts of a new one?
One solution is to get your own domain. That way, it can be used conveniently with an online service, such as Gmail.
Continue reading: How do I set up an email address once and never again have to tell all my contacts of a new one?
http://ask-leo.com/C5900

What is the IP address 127.0.0.1 and why is it called localhost?
The local host address is a quick way to fool browsers into connecting to software running on your local machine, instead of some remote software.
Continue reading: What is the IP address 127.0.0.1 and why is it called localhost?
http://ask-leo.com/C5901

Who is it safe to give my passwords to?
When we talk about not giving your password out to others, you should remember to keep it private, keep it safe, keep it secret, and keep it secure.
Continue reading: Who is it safe to give my passwords to?
http://ask-leo.com/C5902

Can I create a true factory fresh image without even the initial customizations?
This requires backup software with rescue media (a boot DVD or CD) that allows you to perform not only a restore, but an actual backup.
Continue reading: Can I create a true factory fresh image without even the initial customizations?
http://ask-leo.com/C5903

How do I disable https?
You don't want to eliminate https. That's eliminating the security that you want. There are better ways to deal with website security warnings.
Continue reading: How do I disable https?
http://ask-leo.com/C5904

Should I partition my external drive?
Partitioning creates an artificial restriction on the disk that you must choose to begin with. There is a better way to organize a drive.
Continue reading: Should I partition my external drive?
http://ask-leo.com/C5905

Why does only half of my email scroll?
Sometimes, video drivers have issues that can manifest in this type of unwritten screen. We'll check for drivers and upgrades.
Continue reading: Why does only half of my email scroll?
http://ask-leo.com/C5906

Why does a file grow dramatically after I add only a small amount?
It sounds to me like a feature of the program that you're using to edit the file; a feature that is easily turned off.
Continue reading: Why does a file grow dramatically after I add only a small amount?
http://ask-leo.com/C5907

Can my mobile phone calls be listened to?
While it's possible that cellular calls can be listened in on, it's one of those things where somebody would really have to go out of their way for it to happen.
Continue reading: Can my mobile phone calls be listened to?
http://ask-leo.com/C5908

How do I properly secure a mobile broadband hotspot?
Mobile security is important. There are several things you'll want to do to secure your hotspot.
Continue reading: How do I properly secure a mobile broadband hotspot?
http://ask-leo.com/C5909

*** Our Sponsor

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*** Last Issue's Articles

*** Comments

Is it safe to run as administrator now that Windows 7 has UAC?

Schnazola writes:

In the government (U.S. Navy) we say that security and convenience are (mutually) exclusive: As security measures increase, usability decreases and vice versa. I suppose it will always be such. I run my Win7 machine with a standard account; I don't mind the occasional "reminder" from the UAC to enter my password. In the big scheme of things, is THAT really a hardship?

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How do Outlook, Outlook Express, and Outlook.com relate?

Ron Hoffman writes:

Leo, I see you are at it again. Bad mouthing Outlook Express. I know you like thunderbird but it is not a good replacement for Outlook Express. I am not sure why you have never liked Outlook Express but you have never liked it long before it was discontinued by Microsoft and that is your option and your opinion.

Thunderbird is a good Email client but it is not a replacement for Outlook Express. Thunderbird is too bland to replace Outlook Express. Thunderbird does not do stationary. Sometimes I like to put stationery in my Email. It does not leave the sound in the email but makes it an attachment. Sometimes it even does that to pictures. It does not condense the folder bar. It is a good Email client for people who like things bland.

I know that Microsoft has discontinued support for Outlook Express but then Microsoft does a lot of silly things. For a long as I can use it I will and even then I will try to find a way to still use it. Leo, may I ask you to stop bad mouthing Outlook Express? You are too bias to give a good report for Outlook Express.

My "bad mouthing" as you put it is based SOLELY on the experiences I hear of people losing email, and the fact that Outlook Express will never, ever again be updated. Outlook Express was a GREAT email program, and enabled huge numbers of people to communicate on the internet. But in the 9 years of doing this my experience is that no other email program has lost more people more email. So, no, I cannot in good conscience stop "bad mouthing" it. As another commenter has already pointed out there are stationary plugins for Thunderbird - but honestly this isn't even about Thunderbird (for example, my wife has never used Thunderbird, and likely never will - she's used Outlook, from Microsoft Office, for years, and is currently using Gmail's web interface). This is about using something other than Outlook Express, and there are many, many options. In my opinion continuing to use Outlook Express puts your email at risk. If you can live with that risk, perhaps because you have an exceptionally robust backup system, or perhaps you consider my experience invalid, then of course, you have the option of staying with Outlook Express for as long as you like. It's just not an option that I can endorse.

-Leo

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How do I transfer my email stored in Gmail to another online email service?

PC Resolver writes:

I wonder if the concern about Gmail closing is from Google's own message on its google.com/ig page? On that pays it says very clearly that Google IG is being discontinued in November 2013. I made the 'mistake' of mentioning this in my newsletter : I expressly stated that it did NOT affect Gmail. I still received emails asking for alternative email providers for when Gmail stops. As for IG: I'm on the look out for an alternative because I think it's very good and I'll miss it.

Good point. And to be clear "ig" is "iGoogle", the custom home page you could set up using Google. As you point out this is completely unrelated to Gmail.

-Leo

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Why is my laptop hot and why does it eventually crash?

Duane writes:

I agree with previous comments suggesting that the cooling vents are blocked. a processor will shut down to protect itself from over heating. I've seen exactly this behaviour in my wife's Compaq Presario CQ61 laptop. She's purchased a small stand with USB powered fans to keep the unit cool. I suggest that cleaning the inside of the case would be the best option, but I suspect this would be a specialist job, seeing as we're talking about a netbook computer. I'd happily clean the built up dust from a PC, but I'd hesitate at removing the casing of a netbook. Good luck.

*** Leo Recommends

Thunderbird - A Free, Open Source, and Powerful Email Client

Mozilla's Thunderbird is my choice for email. I use it all day every day, and I can heartily recommend it as an often more powerful and capable replacement for mail programs like Outlook Express, Windows Live Mail and many other desktop email applications.

The feature list is long, but I want to call out some of my favorite features and some of the things that personally draw me to Thunderbird and cause me to make it my recommendation for almost anyone using a desktop email program.

Continue reading: Thunderbird - A Free, Open Source, and Powerful Email Client
http://ask-leo.com/C3451

Each week I recommend a specific product or resource that I've found valuable and that I think you may as well. What does my recommendation mean?

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