Search found 593 matches

by gtd98765
Sun May 24, 2020 8:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Update current laptop or buy new one?
Replies: 26
Views: 1242

Re: Update current laptop or buy new one?

Agree it's time to say goodbye to the 2012 laptop. If you want to save on a newer used laptop, several people on BH have recommended dellrefurbished.com to get a 3-yr-old laptop coming off a lease. I would definitely go for an SSD and at least 8GB RAM.
by gtd98765
Fri May 22, 2020 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How a SIM swap attack works
Replies: 31
Views: 4091

Re: How a SIM swap attack works

I had Google Fi which is tied in to Google Account which is setup using Google Authenticator. I recently switched from Fi to Mint Mobile and now i'm concerned about this. It looks like Vanguard still has pretty dismal security and can be easily hacked using a SIM Swap attack. Any way to prevent thi...
by gtd98765
Sun May 17, 2020 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WFW (Work from Wherever)
Replies: 70
Views: 6291

Re: WFW (Work from Wherever)

If my income depended on having a laptop, I would have a spare available; I would boot the spare up every couple of months just to make sure it still works. Maybe an old one, or something from Dell Refurbished. Overall laptops are very reliable, but every once in a while they can croak with no warni...
by gtd98765
Sat May 16, 2020 7:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WFW (Work from Wherever)
Replies: 70
Views: 6291

Re: WFW (Work from Wherever)

How do people who work from wherever handle time zone differences? I think it depends on what you do and how your organization works. My wife worked for an East Coast organization from both the West Coast and Europe for a couple of months. Her organization wanted her available during their office h...
by gtd98765
Fri May 15, 2020 8:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who needs a firewall and who doesn't?
Replies: 18
Views: 1304

Re: Who needs a firewall and who doesn't?

If you look at independent lab results you will see the Microsoft Defender is among the best AV programs. There is no need or advantage in using any other AV on a regular basis. Windows includes a firewall as well. https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/home-windows/ :rates Defender a "top product" ht...
by gtd98765
Fri May 15, 2020 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?
Replies: 11
Views: 770

Re: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?

I have hired three property management companies over the years. 1 was good, 1 mediocre, 1 bad (left identified problems unrepaired that became bigger over time). I would definitely interview clients of any companies you may be interested in, both the owners and the renters, and find out what they t...
by gtd98765
Wed May 13, 2020 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dentist charges $10 for PPE
Replies: 234
Views: 10750

Re: Dentist charges $10 for PPE

I don't think the charge is unreasonable at all. The practice's expenses have obviously gone up due to the pandemic. If your insurer is unwilling to pay the practice for the higher cost you should be complaining to the insurer.
by gtd98765
Wed May 13, 2020 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Laptop Recommendations
Replies: 49
Views: 3024

Re: New Laptop Recommendations

It is interesting. My Yoga 2 Pro has horrible wifi signal (only getting 10-15mbps) yet when I run the same speedtest on my work laptop, it gets 200+mbps. I'm wondering if it is because the Yoga 2 Pro only has Wireless-N 7260 network adapter vs today's technology I don't know about that particular a...
by gtd98765
Tue May 12, 2020 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Internet Device for Elder Parent
Replies: 24
Views: 1634

Re: Internet Device for Elder Parent

How about a used iPad that you can set up with FaceTime only to relatives?
by gtd98765
Mon May 11, 2020 8:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Password vault or generator?
Replies: 74
Views: 3916

Re: Password vault or generator?

You are correct that a password manager that is designed to use only a local device is not vulnerable to attack via the internet, but it's still vulnerable to revealing all the passwords it contains to someone having the required credentials and the physical device. I didn't think of the case of no...
by gtd98765
Mon May 11, 2020 8:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how much to charge for two large dogs at rental
Replies: 41
Views: 2524

Re: how much to charge for two large dogs at rental

I would ask for a $1K pet damage deposit refundable when they move out if there were no problems. We had a small dog do a lot of damage to our house when it was rented out.
by gtd98765
Mon May 11, 2020 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Password vault or generator?
Replies: 74
Views: 3916

Re: Password vault or generator?

I don't understand how such things can be secure. Can't someone bust into one website and get all your passwords? I favor leaving the passwords on scraps of paper in the bolted to the floor safe, very heavy. No, someone cannot hack one website to get your passwords, since the password manager maker...
by gtd98765
Sun May 10, 2020 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Problems with Xfinity Internet drops
Replies: 28
Views: 1629

Re: Problems with Xfinity Internet drops

A few years ago I lived in a house where the internet went out occasionally when it rained. After months of being instructed to reboot the modem, I finally got the cable company to come out and look, and it turned out that water was leaking in to some vital part of the network on the telephone pole....
by gtd98765
Sun May 10, 2020 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Laptop Recommendations
Replies: 49
Views: 3024

Re: New Laptop Recommendations

The Wirecutter has a lot of reviews here: https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-laptops/ and more reviews if you search their site. The Best Windows Budget Laptop is within your $500 price range, although I would try to step up to 8 GB RAM and 256GB SDD.
by gtd98765
Sun May 10, 2020 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A Tsunami of Unsolicited Stupidity
Replies: 12
Views: 2974

Re: A Tsunami of Unsolicited Stupidity

Rarely, but not never, this could mean a hack. A hacker gets into a financial account of a victim, knowing that the account auto-sends transactional emails to the owner, the hacker will subscribe the victim to a flurry of web sites, hoping the financial transaction emails will not be noticed behind ...
by gtd98765
Sun May 10, 2020 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Laptop Recommendations
Replies: 49
Views: 3024

Re: New Laptop Recommendations

Those are better specs than I have on my two five-year-old laptops (i5) that continue to be acceptably fast. You will get better help if you tell us why you want to lose the one you have now.
by gtd98765
Sun May 10, 2020 6:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Making backups in Windows 10 with File History
Replies: 17
Views: 1149

Re: Making backups in Windows 10 with File History

If anyone has found additional information online , I'd be interested in being alerted to it via PM , thanks !! Here's another guide: https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/55480-restore-files-folders-file-history-windows-10-a.html Although I used the techrepublic article when my hard drive croaked. M...
by gtd98765
Sat May 09, 2020 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Problems with Xfinity Internet drops
Replies: 28
Views: 1629

Re: Problems with Xfinity Internet drops

I have this same problem sometimes and use an Arris Surfboard SVG2482 + Xfinity. I am on the Arris website but do not easily see how to update firmware..... :| The website states: "No Drivers & Firmware Currently Available" Only the cable company can update the firmware for a cable modem; the user ...
by gtd98765
Fri May 08, 2020 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in woman-directed businesses
Replies: 4
Views: 326

Investing in woman-directed businesses

Are there any mutual funds or exchange-traded funds that focus on firms with woman executives? Firms with women in executive officer and director positions post higher annual profit margins than those without female leaders. Between 1997 and 2017, firms with at least one female director or executive...
by gtd98765
Thu May 07, 2020 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [On-going Scams - Post them here]
Replies: 297
Views: 16723

Re: [On-going Scams - Post them here]

Krebs just wrote about another scam, this one alleging the victim's computer has accessed child porn: https://krebsonsecurity.com/2020/05/tech-support-scam-uses-child-porn-warning/ A new email scam is making the rounds, warning recipients that someone using their Internet address has been caught vie...
by gtd98765
Wed May 06, 2020 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: [Does anyone own American Century Value Fund TWVLX?]
Replies: 5
Views: 260

Re: [Does anyone own American Century Value Fund TWVLX?]

I did many years ago. When I looked at it carefully and saw that it underperformed the market AND had a high expense ratio, I realized I was in the wrong fund. This led me to Vanguard funds and somewhat later, to Bogleheads. So while I don't own American Century any more, I owe it a lot!
by gtd98765
Wed May 06, 2020 4:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [On-going Scams - Post them here]
Replies: 297
Views: 16723

Re: Scam eMail Threatening to Expose My 'Private Life'

How do you think they got your email? The email/password combinations in these scams generally come from the hacking of a poorly-secured website that the victim once registered at, perhaps long ago. Since people often re-use passwords (DANGER!) among websites, the victim may have used it multiple t...
by gtd98765
Wed May 06, 2020 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Does Vanguard have target date funds lower then .15% Expense Ratios?
Replies: 4
Views: 690

Re: Does Vanguard have target date funds lower then .15% Expense Ratios?

If you've got $100K in the fund, the difference between 0.15% and 0.08 is about $70/yr. I would not find that worth the hassle of switching fund families, myself.
by gtd98765
Tue May 05, 2020 12:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New laptop/desktop for [Work From Home]?
Replies: 41
Views: 2946

Re: New laptop/desktop for [Work From Home]?

Laptops have not gotten significantly faster/better in the last several years. That means a 3-year old laptop coming off a lease is probably going to be fine. Others on BH have recommended the Dell Refurbished site: https://www.dellrefurbished.com/. I have not used it myself. I do note that today on...
by gtd98765
Sun May 03, 2020 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Protective Case For IPad 7 - FOUND!
Replies: 15
Views: 515

Re: Best Protective Case For IPad 7th generation 10.2"

The Wirecutter has reviews of these: https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-ipad-cases/ A good iPad case is surprisingly hard to come by these days. But thankfully you can find a protective, functional, and relatively good-looking protector for about the price of a burrito and chips at Chipotle (inc...
by gtd98765
Sun May 03, 2020 8:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Dealers not really wanting to make a deal
Replies: 226
Views: 31064

Re: Car Dealers not really wanting to make a deal

CarBargains will do all the negotiating for you with new car dealers for $250 for a sale, or $375 for a lease. https://www.checkbook.org/auto/
by gtd98765
Sun May 03, 2020 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can you transfer files without Wifi, bluetooth, cable?
Replies: 37
Views: 2048

Re: Can you transfer files without Wifi or cable?

Windows 10 has "nearby sharing" in the controls box at the bottom right. Right click on it, it takes you to settings which describes being able to transfer info nearby devices using Bluetooth. I have never tried it myself but seems to be what you have in mind.
by gtd98765
Fri May 01, 2020 9:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Experts
Replies: 13
Views: 1750

Re: HVAC Experts

There have been many recent threads on this. Put HVAC in the search box above and you will find them.
by gtd98765
Fri May 01, 2020 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Front load washing machine recommendations
Replies: 98
Views: 4656

Re: Front load washing machine recommendations

Consumer Reports has done several articles on these. If I were buying one I would definitely spring the $25/yr for online access to read the articles. As mentioned up-thread, mildew can be a big problem.
by gtd98765
Fri May 01, 2020 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mesh Wifi
Replies: 118
Views: 7338

Re: Mesh Wifi

One issue that I did not see mentioned is the question of security. While I like the idea of the mesh network, according to Consumer Reports (March 2020), the traditional wireless router is more secure than a mesh wireless routers. I just read through the CR March 2020 article entitled "How to Get ...
by gtd98765
Thu Apr 30, 2020 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roofing Experts... Help me Identify my Shingles (w/ links to pics)
Replies: 16
Views: 1139

Re: Roofing Experts... Help me Identify my Shingles (w/ links to pics)

It's really hard to match shingle colors from a photo; we just had our roof re-done and the shingles turned out to be somewhat lighter than we expected based on the photos on Certainteed's web site. fortunately, we still like them. I'm betting a roofer would be able to recognize them, however. If yo...
by gtd98765
Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken 2019 and forward
Replies: 322
Views: 29548

Re: Quicken 2019 and forward

Yes, that always worked for me until this past Saturday. Now, even with deactivate-reactivate, a simple download from Vanguard brings the dreaded OL-362-A message, "Your financial institution has downloaded data for an account that does not exist." I have tried many variations with no luck yet (unl...
by gtd98765
Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbotax What If Question
Replies: 15
Views: 932

Re: Turbotax What If Question

If you have the PC based version you can just Save your tax file (Hockey10.tax) then Save As it again with a new name like "What if Hockey10.tax" and make all the changes you want. Your original tax file "Hockey10.tax" will remain unharmed.
by gtd98765
Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: SHould I have my kid pursue coursera / edx courses?
Replies: 19
Views: 1223

Re: SHould I have my kid pursue coursera / edx courses?

I recommend you call your child's high school guidance counselors and ask. They are probably still working from home.
by gtd98765
Tue Apr 28, 2020 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [On-going Scams - Post them here]
Replies: 297
Views: 16723

Re: [On-going Scams - Post them here]

This scam has been around the block a few times. Krebs has a good description of how the whole thing works here: https://krebsonsecurity.com/2018/07/sextortion-scam-uses-recipients-hacked-passwords/ Here’s a clever new twist on an old email scam that could serve to make the con far more believable. ...
by gtd98765
Sat Apr 25, 2020 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Go or no go on Carnival cruise
Replies: 114
Views: 6971

Re: Go or no go on Carnival cruise

A Post review of cruise line statements, government announcements and media reports found that the coronavirus infected passengers and crew on at least 55 ships that sailed in the waters off nearly every continent, about a fifth of the total global fleet. https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/202...
by gtd98765
Sat Apr 25, 2020 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mesh Wifi
Replies: 118
Views: 7338

Re: Mesh Wifi

Upgrading to a faster router doesn't do much for you unless your router is the choke point for your internet. Even cheap routers like the Archer A7 will have no problem at speeds well above the average speed delivered to U.S. households. Unless your internet speed is above 200 Mbps or you do signifi...
by gtd98765
Fri Apr 24, 2020 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken 2019 and forward
Replies: 322
Views: 29548

Re: Quicken 2019 and forward

I just upgraded from Quicken Windows 2017 to subscription this week. Somehow the upgrade disconnected my Vanguard accounts from Quicken, but with help from chat support I was able to reauthorize them for info download without too much trouble. Connections with my credit union accounts and other mutu...
by gtd98765
Thu Apr 23, 2020 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ridiculous HVAC Duct cleaning quote
Replies: 51
Views: 4707

Re: Ridiculous HVAC Duct cleaning quote

Good article about duct cleaning in a consumer magazine: https://www.checkbook.org/washington-area/air-duct-cleaners/ BLUF: Do ducts get dirty? Sure they do! Should you have them cleaned? PROBABLY NOT! Then why do so many companies recommend this service? Because they’re wrong or get paid to clean d...
by gtd98765
Thu Apr 23, 2020 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pending military PCS, sell townhouse or rent out from afar?
Replies: 26
Views: 876

Re: Pending military PCS, sell townhouse or rent out from afar?

We rented out our house in Virginia when we were assigned abroad multiple times. Even though we hired a property manager - beware we found more bad than good ones - it cost us pain, money, and stress. We only kept the house and rented it out because we intended to return to live in it again (we did)...
by gtd98765
Mon Apr 20, 2020 9:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to report hotmail security issue
Replies: 8
Views: 600

Re: How to report hotmail security issue

If you click on your picture in the top right of the hotmail window, then My Account, you will get a screen with many categories, one of which is Devices. Click on all devices and you can manage things like your account on your iPad.
by gtd98765
Mon Apr 20, 2020 6:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Growing Fruit and Vegetables
Replies: 30
Views: 1858

Re: Growing Fruit and Vegetables

green beans, zucchini, eggplant. best if they go straight from plant to stove. also herbs like basil, cilantro, depending on taste. if you get enough basil you can make homemade pesto, which is terrific.
by gtd98765
Sun Apr 19, 2020 9:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Excess liability auto insurance?
Replies: 6
Views: 554

Re: Excess liability auto insurance?

When I lived abroad I had an inexpensive non-owner car insurance policy that would cover me for limited rentals when I was visiting the US. This was from USAA, which has eligibility requirements (mostly current & former military), so I don't know if this would be helpful to you, but I wanted to poin...
by gtd98765
Sun Apr 19, 2020 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 401k plan investment choices
Replies: 14
Views: 770

Re: 401k plan investment choices

Thanks for the thoughts and links, everybody. She's decided on Traditional, 70/20/10 VINIX/int'l/bond.
by gtd98765
Sat Apr 18, 2020 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Possible to move in retirement without HUGE capital gain tax
Replies: 19
Views: 1540

Re: Possible to move in retirement without HUGE capital gain tax

I have been a long-distance owner of a rental house; even though I paid a property manager, it was a burden. I only kept the house because I knew we would move back to it one day (we did). So unless your parents really want the joys of landlordship, I would caution against renting it out. If it were...
by gtd98765
Sat Apr 18, 2020 6:56 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 401k vs Roth 401k
Replies: 8
Views: 651

Re: 401k vs Roth 401k

Good info on this wiki page: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Traditional_versus_Roth For deductible traditional vs. Roth contributions, or current vs. future traditional withdrawals (e.g., to convert traditional to Roth), one needs to compare a known tax rate now vs. an estimated tax rate later. If ...
by gtd98765
Fri Apr 17, 2020 6:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 401k plan investment choices
Replies: 14
Views: 770

Re: 401k plan investment choices

Forgot to ask about tax-deferred vs Roth?
by gtd98765
Fri Apr 17, 2020 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Windows 10 Defender ( Anti Virus )
Replies: 2
Views: 337

Re: Windows 10 Defender ( Anti Virus )

This article reports that MS has pushed out a revised version that fixes the issue: https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/microsoft/windows-defender-broken-by-recent-updates-how-to-fix/ the problem apparently only occurred when running an antivirus scan, which most people do not do. Not clear whethe...
by gtd98765
Thu Apr 16, 2020 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experiences with TopResume Free Resume Review & Resume Writing Services
Replies: 4
Views: 358

Re: Experiences with TopResume Free Resume Review & Resume Writing Services

I am not familiar with that particular company, but I would avoid any service provided "FREE!" It costs real money to provide expertise; where will they be getting that money from? a) upselling you on "premium" services; b) selling your info to others; or c) something more nefarious? Do you have fri...
by gtd98765
Tue Apr 14, 2020 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investing for newborn
Replies: 15
Views: 871

Re: Investing for newborn

Look at 529 educational savings programs for college. Many states have tax advantages for using them. We started 529 plans for our children when they were young and invested continuously in them for many years. That, plus the bull market from 2009 allowed us to fully fund college educations for each.