Articles tagged: The Best of Ask Leo!

What For-Pay Email Providers Do You Recommend?

People often use free email providers for critical data only to lose everything when a problem occurs. So what do you look for in a paid email provider?

How Can I Make the Text on My Screen Larger?

There are several ways to adjust the size of text and items on your screen.

Windows File Explorer Settings: the Setting You Should Change Right Now

Windows File Explorer tries to help by hiding some information. Unfortunately, that opens a hole hackers can use to fool you.

Why Did My Security Software Not Detect a Virus on My PC?

Even with up-to-date anti-malware tools, you can still fall victim to malware. I’ll explain why by comparing your computer to your… bathroom?

Could the Microsoft Servers Be Infected?

It’s tempting to blame the mail service for account hacks and vulnerabilities, but in fact that’s rarely the case. Much more likely is that hackers gained access to individual accounts through more traditional means.

Are Automatic Updates a Good Thing?

Unless you’re willing to pay a lot of attention on a very regular basis, automatic updates are an important part of keeping your machine safe.

What’s a Screenshot, and How Do I Take One?

A screenshot — an image of your computer screen saved as a picture — can eliminate a lot of frustration when trying to describe what you’re seeing on your computer to someone .

My Print Queue is Stuck. How Do I Print Anything?

Every so often, the Windows print queue gets stuck. Everything looks like it should print, but it won’t. We’ll fix it.

How Do I Find Out Who Owns an Email Address?

Finding out who owns an email address is difficult at best. There’s little you can do on your own, but if you’re being harassed, law enforcement may help.

Why Does My Machine Take Forever to Shut Down?

Booting your machine can take time, but so can shutting it down. Various issues contribute to a slow shutdown.

How Do I Get an Email Forward Notification When Someone Forwards My Message?

Several urban legends would have you believe that when you forward an email, it can somehow be tracked. It cannot. Period. I’ll explain why that is.

Why is My Disk Busy Even Though I’m Doing Nothing?

Unexpected hard disk activity isn’t unusual. I’ll show you how to use a free monitoring tool to determine what program is causing it.

How Does Screen Resolution Work?

Screen resolution is a simple concept, but when combined with the myriad ways that Windows can be configured, it can become confusing.

Why Does Email Bounce?

Email can bounce for many reasons. I’ll look at several of the most common email bounce messages and try to interpret what they really mean.

What Is a Server?

The term “server” is used a lot in many contexts, but it’s really just a computer.

How Do I Hide the Email Address I’m Sending Email To?

It’s possible to send email to someone without having their email address show up on the To: or CC: lines by using Blind Carbon Copy, or BCC.

Can My Boss See My Mail and Instant Messages?

When using your company’s machine and/or network, it’s safe to assume that your boss or IT department can see your emails, instant messages, and everything else.

Why Am I Getting Bounces for Email I Didn’t Send?

Spammers want to send email that looks like it’s coming from someone who can be trusted. They want it to look like it’s coming from you — and you end up getting the bounce notifications.

What Should I Do About the Latest Breach?

Another week, another breach. What steps should you take in the wake of the latest large-scale data breach?

How Do I Fix a Blue Screen Error?

Blue screen errors are less common than they used to be, but they can still happen for a variety of reasons. I’ll review what to do and when.

How Should I Configure Virtual Memory Settings?

The default settings for virtual memory are good enough for most. Tweaking virtual memory settings depends on your computer and what you do with it.

How Was My Bank Account Hacked When I Did Everything Right?

Even with all the right things in place, stuff happens. I’ll review the additional steps you can take to protect yourself.

Half a Dozen Uses for OneDrive

OneDrive is a surprisingly powerful service that many people overlook or don’t understand. I’ll review six ways you can leverage OneDrive.

Protecting Your Privacy: Points of Vulnerability

Tracing the privacy and security of the path from your fingertips through the services you use to your information’s final destination.

How Can One Service Take Down So Much?

What happens when a major cloud service goes down, and what’s the takeaway?

How to Back Up Windows 10 (& 11)

How to back up Windows using its own built-in tools in eight easy steps. Four bonus steps handle Microsoft’s plans to retire one of those tools.

Just What Is a Backup, Anyway?

At its most basic, backups are simple: a copy of something kept somewhere else to keep it safe.

Can a USB Flash Drive Wear Out?

While the technology continues to improve, flash memory has a limited number of times it can be written to and can, in fact, wear out.

No Signal: What it Means and What to Check

“No Signal” is a message coming from your display device (not from your computer), indicating it has nothing to display. I’ll review possible causes.

Don’t Be Afraid of Your Computer

Are you afraid of your computer? I’ll look at some ways to become less fearful and more adventuresome.

Never Blindly Trust an Online Recommendation (Even Mine)

A snide remark about one of my recommendations raises an important point about any recommendation you find online: there are many opportunities for abuse.

What’s the Difference Between CHKDSK /F and CHKDSK /R?

CHKDSK is a powerful Windows utility used to diagnose and repair disks. /F and /R represent two types of repairs.

My Machine’s Full of Malware; Should I Get a New Computer?

For some reason, many people’s gut reaction to a malware infestation is to consider getting a new computer. That’s unnecessary.

Why Your Computer Might Be Slow

A friend’s slow computer provided me an opportunity to review the four primary characteristics of computer slowdowns to help you diagnose issues in the future.

Why Doesn’t Blocking Email Senders Work?

Most email programs can block email from a specific address. Unfortunately, blocking email from a sender is ineffective when it comes to spam.

How Using BCC Reduces Spam

Using BCC on forwarded email is one way to reduce the amount of spam your recipients might get.

Should I Switch to Linux?

Linux is a viable alternative to extend the life of older machines, or if you’re just fed up with Windows. I’ll look at some of the issues involved if you switch to Linux.

How Long Should I Keep Backups?

Having a regular backup system in place is critical. But then what? I’ll look at how long you might want to keep those backups, why, and how long I keep mine.

How Do I View the BCC Recipients on an Email I’ve Received?

“BCC” is a way to send copies of email without all the recipients being visible. But can you still view the BCC’ed?

If I Had to Do It Over

I never planned to be a writer. And yet here I am. I kinda wish I’d approached a few things differently along the way.

How Do I Fix “Your Connection is Not Private”?

“Your connection is not private” errors are often benign, but are worth paying attention to.

My Registry Scan Reported Hundreds of Errors! Which Do I Fix?

Registry scanners often report hundreds, if not thousands, of issues. Should you fix them, and if so, which? Here’s my approach.

Can My School See Email I Send and Recieve?

Your school can see email being sent and received across its systems, and there’s no way to know whether or not they’re actually looking.

Can I ZIP Photos or MP3 Files to Save Space?

Most music, picture, and movie files are already compressed. Compressing them again won’t make much difference, and could even make them larger.

If I Share Wi-Fi With My Neighbor, Can They See My Network Traffic?

Sharing Wi-Fi with your neighbor might seem like a friendly thing to do, but be aware you are potentially putting your own computers at risk.

How to Email Large Files Using Any Email Program or Service

Emailing large attachments is typically a bad idea, as your mail may not be delivered. I’ll look at alternatives.

How to Get Rid of Spam Emails

If you’re not getting spam now, you will soon — and probably lots of it. What can you do? There’s no magic answer, but there are various things you can do to help.

When Is “www” Needed and Why?

The “www” in website addresses is now typically optional and even redundant, but there was once a reason as to why it was required in URLs.

How Do I Change My Microsoft Account Phone Number?

Mobile numbers are an important component of Hotmail and Outlook.com security. I’ll review how to change the mobile number and keep it up to date.

How Do I Stop My Neighbor Using My IP Address?

If it’s certain a neighbor is using your IP address without permission, you need to take steps. But first you need to make sure.