Each week, I receive tons of questions from my listeners about tech concerns, new products and all things digital.
Sometimes choosing the most interesting questions to highlight is the best part of my job.
This week, I received questions about speeding up your internet, finding forgotten passwords, converting VHS tapes, and more. Do you have a question you'd like to ask me?
Q: I heard you say on your national radio show that you can double your internet speed by making one change and it has nothing to do with paying for more bandwidth. Can you please tell me more? That sounds terrific to me!
A: I’m glad you caught that, and yes, there is a setting that you could change to speed things up. Before you dive in, there are some caveats: First, the setting might not work as you expect in the beginning. Fiddling with your internet settings is all about trial and error. Second, there are lots of ways to improve your internet speed, which is also simple and relatively easy to test.
Speed Up an Old PC
Q: My PC is older and I cannot afford a new one right now. How can I speed this old boy up?
A: There are lots of ways of speed up your desktop: Scan for viruses, check your hardware, or reinstall Windows, for starters. Start using the same approach to your PC as you would a cluttered desk – straightening things up. The more extra files and unused start-up programs your PC holds, the more its processor will lag. At the same time, you have to be careful about the programs you delete because other programs might require a seemingly useless piece of software to operate. And what about media files, like photos and video, you want to archive, but you don’t necessarily want to keep on your desktop? There’s a place for that, too.
Deduce Wi-Fi Password
Q: How can you look up a Wi-Fi network password? My long-gone techie setup my network and now I need the password.
A: When it comes to social media or online banking, you can usually retrieve your password in a minute or so. Wi-Fi is a different story. You can’t just have the password sent to your email account, and most passwords are a convoluted string of letters and numbers. Luckily, there are a few clever techniques you can use to figure out that essential code.
Digitize VHS Tapes
Q: I have boxes of old VHS tapes of my kids. How do I get the videos to my kids so they can see the videos online?
A: In their heyday, VHS tapes were cheap, durable, and easy to stick into a camcorder. You could record hours of home videos, and when you ran out of tape, you could amble down to the nearest pharmacy and pick up another pack. Several major companies can easily make the digital conversion, and you can probably find one of these stores in your neighborhood. The service is reasonably priced. Just imagine the time capsules you’ve had sitting in your attic all these years.
Fix Slow Wi-Fi
Q: My 4,500 square foot home Wi-Fi is so very slow! What can I do to speed things up?
A: You may be familiar with mesh networks. Basically, you can connect additional units to your router to spread the signal around your space. Whether you want to expand the Wi-Fi coverage in your home or office, mesh networks are extremely effective, and the investment is very reasonable. This is just one of several ways you can maximize your current Wi-Fi signal. You might also consider the location of your router, the architecture around you, and even the position of certain furniture, which may all impact your signal.
What questions do you have? Call my national radio show and click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to the Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet or computer. From buying advice to digital life issues, click here for my free podcasts.