The Top Twenty

Category: Reference

Every night a friendly robot looks through the Ask Bob logs to see which articles were the most popular over the past week. Here are the current Top Twenty, ranked by readership volume. If you missed any of these, take a few minutes to read and comment!

Top 20


  1. Beware Fake Tech Support Scammers

    Have you received an unexpected phone call from a helpful customer service rep of Microsoft, or perhaps your ISP? I didn't think so. But many people have received calls from scammers posing as tech support reps, warning that their computers are infected with malware and offering help to fix the purported problem. Here's what you should do if they call you...

  2. Is This Amazon's Skype Killer?

    Amazon has launched a voice calling and videoconferencing service called “Amazon Chime.” There's a free “Basic” service is useful to consumers, and a paid version targeted at businesses. Free Chime competes with other free voice/video/text messaging systems such as Skype and Google Voice/Hangouts. Let’s see how Amazon Chime stacks up.

  3. The Return of Unlimited Data Plans

    Verizon announced the return of “unlimited” data service on February 12, 2017. For the first time in five years, all four major service providers (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon) are offering “unlimited” plans. You'll note I put the word in quotes, so let’s see how they compare, and what limits you may encounter in actual practice...

  4. Geekly Update - 22 February 2017

    Will robots have to start paying income taxes? Can Wikipedia get you VIP seats at your next concert? And is your child's voice-activated doll illegal where you live? Get answers... in today's Geekly Update -- it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!

  5. Can You Trust ScanGuard?

    A couple of readers have recently asked me about a new program called ScanGuard. One said: “Hey, Bob. Just ran across this on the internet. Article makes it sound really good – maybe too good. Also, what other alternatives are available that do the same thing? Appreciate all the good work you do and the information you share. God bless, Elwyn.” So let's take a look at ScanGuard…

  6. Yes, You Need Image Backups (and here's how)

    Did you know that online backup services like Mozy or Carbonite don't backup ALL your files? If your backup strategy only covers what you've got stashed in your Documents folder, you could be in for a rude awakening if a data disaster strikes. It's the same with manual, haphazard "pick and choose" local backups you make on a flash drive or external hard drive. Here's what you need to know about system image backups...

  7. Are All Online Colleges Accredited?

    A reader asks: 'Are online colleges and universities accredited in the the same manner as campus-based schools? I'm planning get my Master's degree, so I'm looking into various online college courses. Should I be concerned about the reputation of online schools, even if they're associated with a well-known university? I'd hate to do all that work, only to find out my diploma is worthless. How can I find out if an online college is accredited?

  8. Can You Still Get Windows 10 For Free?

    The last day to get a free upgrade to Windows 10 was July 29, 2016. Many of us chose to let that opportunity pass, following reports of ongoing bugs in the new OS. But now, eight months later, the major bugs in Windows 10 seem to be resolved, and it’s time to upgrade. The question is, can you still upgrade for free?

  9. [TAXES] Free Tax Filing Options

    The good news is: about 70% of U.S. taxpayers can get free online tax preparation and e-filing this year. The bad news is: you have to pick your online tax service very carefully. Here's what you need to know...

  10. HOWTO: Connect Your PC to TV, Wirelessly!

    Wouldn't it be great to beam whatever is on your computer screen directly to your big-screen TV? Now you can wirelessly send Netflix, Hulu, YouTube videos, photos and computer games from your PC screen directly to your television screen. Even browse the web on your fancy big-screen HDTV. Here's how to make a wireless PC to TV connection...

  11. Geekly Update - 15 February 2017

    Is your antivirus software employing magic and witchcraft to protect your computer? Can posting doggie pics on your Facebook page get you canned by your insurance company? And would you order consider ordering your next new car from a vending machine? Get answers... in today's Geekly Update -- it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!

  12. Internet Archive and the Wayback Machine

    The Internet Archive is either one HUGE pile of data, or a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide "universal access to all knowledge.” Or both. As part of their mission, the Internet Archive has been crawling the Web for over 20 years, making copies of Web pages and preserving them for posterity. Today, approximately 280 billion Web pages from 1.5 billion sites are stored on the IA’s servers. Read on to learn how you can access this amazing resource that offers a window into the history of the Internet...

  13. UPDATE: Free Antivirus Programs

    Readers often ask for my recommendations on antivirus protection. A common question goes something like this: “I got a trial version of Norton (or McAfee) antivirus with my computer, but the subscription expires in a few days. Should I pay, or switch to one of the free anti-virus programs? What do you recommend?” Read on for my updated list of the top FREE antivirus tools, and some tips on choosing free versus paid...

  14. HOWTO: Get Free Satellite TV

    A reader asks: 'I have heard about free satellite TV channels you can receive if you have a free-to-air satellite receiver and dish. Is this true? If so, what satellite channels can I get, what equipment do I need, and is it legal?' Read on to learn about free satellite TV options...

  15. Why Backup? 9 Good Reasons (and YOUR backup questions answered)

    It's a good question... why should you bother to make backups? It's especially understandable if you've never experienced any sort of data loss. But I've got a list of NINE reasons, some of which may surprise you. Read on for that list, and ANSWERS to some of the best questions submitted by those who took my survey on backups...

  16. Geekly Update - 08 February 2017

    Is there a super-simple strategy to protect your computers from ransomware? Does the MacBook Pro have a secret feature to help people cheat on tests? What happens when you pour 11.3 ounces of apple juice on the keyboard of a CTL J5X Chromebook? And what's the real reason Time-Warner Cable changed their name to Spectrum? Find out... in today's Geekly Update -- it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!

  17. Boost Your WiFi Signal: Ten Tips and Tricks

    A reader asks: 'How can I boost my wifi signal? I finally got high-speed internet with a wireless router, but the wifi signal is weak in some parts of the house. What tweaks or gadgets do you recommend to boost wireless signal strength and distance?'

  18. Can MagicJack Replace Your Landline?

    A reader asks: “I've seen commercials for Magic Jack, a device you can plug into your computer for really cheap phone service. It sounds too good to be true... is MagicJack a scam, or does it actually work? Can it really replace my landline?” Read on for answers...

  19. [BUSTED] Vizio is Watching What YOU are Watching

    Vizio, the second-largest seller of smart TVs, recently agreed to pay $20 million to settle a Federal Trade Commission complaint alleging the company sold the TV viewing habits data of individually identifiable customers to third-party data broker and advertisers without the customers’ informed consent. Here is what you need to know, even if you don’t own a Vizio smart TV…

  20. Save Time and Money with Printing Alternatives

    How often do you use your printer? If it’s more than just occasionally, I’ve got some tips to simplify your life and save you money. Aside from wasting paper, killing trees unnecessarily, and spending more than $300 a gallon on printer ink, you’re also creating a stack of pages that you’ll have to do something with. Here are some ways to minimize those hard copies, as well as the associated filing, and tedious searching tasks…



 
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This article was posted by on 4 Mar 2009


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The Top Twenty
Next Article:
My New Phone is an iPod Touch

Most recent comments on "The Top Twenty"

(See all 65 comments for this article.)

Posted by:

Randy Rehwoldt
09 Dec 2013

Hello,

About 2am last week I was looking through my email on my nook and I opened one of your emails. I click on a geek update item that lead me to an article about an very interesting story about a mystery code that had appeared on the net that no one had been able to track completely. When I went back to share it with some fiends I could not find it again. Can you help me find that story?

EDITOR'S NOTE: You'll find that link in the most recent Geekly Update: http://askbobrankin.com/geekly_update_27_november_2013.html


Posted by:

Bill D
11 Dec 2013

Hello Bob ;

What do you think of www.freedompop.com ??

You have o buy an Older Refurbished One HTC EVO for $99 , then you get FREE 250 Texts and 250 FREE Phone calls in USA for free for as long as Freedompop will last .

Is that a Good deal or are there any BETTER Deals where you get a Refurbished Smartphone for $99 then Calls and Texts are Free every month . ??

I might not even learn How to use a Smartphone but at least I will get FREE Texts and Phone calls all over USA .

I am Always open to ANYTHING for FREE even Advice about Anything for FREE !!

Maybe you could open a Forum for suggestions for Everything that is FREE !!!!!!!

Regards
Bill


Posted by:

Dan
19 Dec 2013

I do not agree About a virus can not hurt a hard drive hard drives are poorly vented in a lot of laptops and over heating guess what a virus can do and dose put a system in a full work load loop causing an over heated hard drive to die, I know I did it to a laptop on the bench and watched as the hard drive died by over heating do to a virus People should know it can happen and dose in poorly cooled systems the hard drives are costly being over heated, some smart testing software shows pore cooling damages.


Posted by:

Lin Aung
01 Jan 2014

Thank you, for messing those letter. I was read some. I am not full for English language.


Posted by:

LindaSView
02 Apr 2014

Hi Bob:
Forgot to include this in my comment about the billions of dollars corporations are expected to spend. This is what was on the IE site that popped up:
res://ieframe.dll/invalidcert.htm?SSLError=33554432#https://blog.bit9.com/2014/03


Posted by:

Geoff
18 Apr 2014

I want to thank you for all of your varied articles. I found multiple programs or utilities trying to do the same thing, and the new Mcafee Total Protection was too complex and complicated for this 71-year old. Thanks to your articles and Avast I no longer want to put a bullet in my computer. Please, please keep up the great work.


Posted by:

Jessie
04 May 2014

Hi Bob, I am struggling with a slow computer and this is my only computer in my home business. Could you please suggest a reliable software that I could purchase and that will not damage my computer? Thanks,

I used US Tech support and I believe they made my computer even slower. Thanks

EDITOR'S NOTE: You might have been scammed. I recommend a System Restore. See http://askbobrankin.com/system_restore_for_windows_7.html

Next step, see:
http://askbobrankin.com/speed_up_windows_7.html


Posted by:

steve
15 Jul 2014

I recently purchased a net gear mp101 digital music player to hook up to my home stereo.after finally getting it to find server and for it to show me music file library, I was all set,only to be let down as nothing flowed through my Harmon lardons .the unit is running through Ethernet, firewall is OK,book really doesn't give troubleshoot. Anybody run into this ? Or any answers! Gave up after about 2-3 hours..should be simple,but!!!! Thanks Steve


Posted by:

Gill Kelly
17 Oct 2014

sending you this on my partners PC as I just cannot get into my Hotmail account, my user name is accepted but my password keeps being rejected as'invalid'despite changing it several times via Microsoft. What am I doing wrong?

EDITOR'S NOTE: What email program do you use? Hotmail web version or a desktop client?


Posted by:

Ray
30 Dec 2014

Smart Phone 15 digit Number pulse date cell was sold IMEI 15 digit Number showed up after I dialed *#06# on our Mobile's.
in case ours are stolen we mail the 15 digit IMEI number to cop@vsnl.net You will find where your Mobile is being operated, even if they changed the number.It didn't work on android Mobile phone. I haven't Used it yet and was wondering will it Work or is it a scam??

EDITOR'S NOTE: See http://www.hoaxorfact.com/Technology/if-you-lose-your-mobile.html


Posted by:

Ernie Brunton
07 Jan 2016

You are recommending LD for ink cartridges. On the comments section first page there a10 replies. Five are OK but 5 are negative, which is only 50-50. The negative ones nearly all complain about the LD cartridges clog the printer head. I may have had this problem with my existing printer and had to replace it. I was using non Epson cartridges Have you had this problem ?????
On price. The cartridges are shipped free in the US, but in Canada they charge $26.50 which is half the purchase price. One has to add on exchange of 40% and that makes a purchase of $52.57 come to a total of $110.69. Which is quite high
I look forward to an answer

I enjoy you articles very much

Ernie Brunton


Posted by:

Yvonne Mathis
08 Mar 2016

I need help, Linskeys is trying to hi jack my router cannot remove it from computer, can you help?

EDITOR'S NOTE: I did a Google search for "Linskeys" but came up empty. Can you provide more details? What do you mean by hijacking your router? What specific symptoms are you seeing?


Posted by:

Harold
27 Mar 2016

I'm sure you've covered this before. Just cant find it. When trying to watch educational videos on youtube Windows 10 won't let me. It gives me a message to re-start my computer (which works for 1 video). Is there any fix for this?

2nd problem: When loading pics I get a message in the lower right corner that says tap here to indicate what to do with the original device. You can do whatever you want. It doesn't work and it won't go away. It looks like it's too far to the right to see the X. Changing screen resolution doesn't help. Can you help.


Posted by:

Sandy Lumsden
01 Apr 2016

why oh why does windows behave the way it does, I seriously considered using a Linux operating System but Microsoft even make that difficult, so I will continue using windows 10 until I can afford an Apple Mac.One thing I am sure of I will not be using Windows for ever,for I am fed-up with programs not working.


Posted by:

Yvonne Mathis
02 Apr 2016

Wrote once before and since I am not computer savy, I was saying Linksys was tryin to hi jack router. Now A friend says modem, Linksys has removed my isp and entered their own code and now are controlling my computer,has removed my security which is Norton, who by the way cleaned my computer and said all was good, after that, noticed the Icon disappeeared and then reappeared, but is not functioning, I am redirected to sites other than the one I try to get to. I am elder female, other than a pricey computer service, can you help?


Posted by:

John
11 Apr 2016

I need virus clen my drive


Posted by:

Peggy
04 Jun 2016

Greetings
My internet speed is slow and if I have my grandchildren streaming a movie, it constantly buffering and my PC too.
I have a dual web-band and a range extender 3 yrs. old and Verizon router is over 5 yrs. old
Base on your expertise, what step should I take.
Greatly appreciate your help


Posted by:

Calvin
06 Jun 2016

can you go back and read articles further back than the last 20, if so how?


Posted by:

Ken Fisher
21 Jul 2016

Upgraded my Win 7.1 Dell computer to Win 10 last December. Two weeks ago, it downgraded itself by dropping the Start Button and screen, the info button on the left and Cortana. It has not corrected with updates. Pressing the Start produces a critical error and a restart.


Posted by:

Pay
08 Aug 2016

Bob, My Microsoft Publisher software gas disappeared from my computer sometime since I downloaded Windows 10.

Also, the names of my directories have been eliminated. I used to have one called Pat and Ray Computer and it no longer exists. There were two directories called mydocuments, one inside the other directory that I can no longer find.

I did a backup of 7 before I installed 10 (thanks for you publication!) HELP!!!


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Article information: AskBobRankin -- The Top Twenty (Posted: 4 Mar 2009)
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