Random Tech Questions you want answered.

I might be skimming, but have you tried booting with Vcard in and your display plugged in to your onboard graphics?

So i bought that egpu before I fully thought through what i wanted. It's not even here yet and the guy from ebay isn't letting me return it. Like i get it, he says he doesn't accept returns, but i offered to pay both ways for shipping and an additional 20$ for wasting his time, and he still says no. I get that it's my fault for buying it, but he's being a real dick about it.

I could take the more compassionate side thought, maybe he lost his job or something and is strapped for cash. He did say that "he's not in position to take a return." If that's the case, I wonder if there's a way i could float him the cash until he sells it again. I'd hate to give ebay a cut 2x for this thing.

Putting it up on the trading post for a discount from what i bought it for.

Unfortunately, he probably thinks you are trying to scam him. Take the hit and move on. It happens.

Is there anyway to take a non-bluetooth, non-wireless device that uses a usb-b connector to hook up to a pc and make it not require a physical cable? Looking to be able to move my guitar amp around the house and still use the tone editor from my pc. The other option is using an android app but that still requires an OTG usb cable and the use of 3rd party software not maintained by Boss (the amp manufacturer)

https://www.newegg.com/p/2SH-002S-00...

Would something like that possibly work?

More research on eGPU and the sleeper PC I built:
I was originally concerned that my new mother board only has pcie express 1.0 16x but found that most reviews claim that it’s of no importance and it rarely bottle necks GPUs. This has me scratching my head bc I think pcie 1 x16 only does 8gb/s and the eGPU I mentioned earlier has 10gb/s USB C connection but people claim a eGPU has significant bottle necks.

What am missing here? Is it just bc the motherboard has a much shorter distance from gpu to cpu?

Pci express is 8 GB (gigabytes), USB is 10 Gb (gigabits). 8 bits = 1 byte so PCIe is muuuuch faster.

Oh damn, thanks. That makes so much more sense. I was stuck on that for a while thanks!

As I think this is more about my Blu-Ray player then the media server, I'm going to post this here.

I'm running a Plex server where I store all the kid's music and movies on. Kid's movies are the only Blu-Rays I still physically buy, as they're the only ones watched more than once (to put it mildly).

Recently I bought some Disney classics and Frozen 2 on Blu-Ray, but the laptop/Plex server Blu-Ray player won't recognize any of these four movies meaning I can't rip them. It reacts as if there's no disc in the drive. I tried the following:

Tried a disc cleaning uhm disc
This disc was recognized as a movie disc
Tried a movie I had already ripped before, but he didn't recognize that one either

At first I thought they were copyright issues, but than the disc I had already ripped wouldn't have worked either. On the other hand, the drive did recognize the cleaning disc's 'movie' features. I'm leaning towards it being issues with the BR drive failing (it's 9 years old), but before I splurge on a new external BR drive I wanted to check if anyone has another theory?

Nine years old? And they run around 80€? That's less than 10€ a year if the next one dies...Not much of a cost considering the use it'll get.

billt721 wrote:

I've got a weird computer situation. I built a computer a year and a half ago, and suddenly there's some serious instability. The computer will be fine for several hours and then just crash. But not completely crash. The fans are still running on everything and the power button is still lit up like everything is fine, but the screen goes off and if I look at the motherboard (MSI Tomahawk B450) the 'EZ Debug LED' for the CPU is lit up.

I don't think it's the GPU, because if it was I'd expect the computer to respond to a long-press of the power button, but that's not the case here. I have to turn off the power at the power supply in order to shut everything down.

I instinctively associate behavior like this with overheating, but the temps aren't getting that high (~55-60C) anywhere.

There are a lot of people who complain about this motherboard online, but it seems to be almost all people who can't get it to POST, and that's not my case.

After the latest crash I decided to do some troubleshooting, so I'm starting with memtest. It crashed during my first run, so I removed 1 stick and am trying again.

I already re-seated the GPU and RAM, but haven't done the CPU because I don't have any thermal paste on hand.

Any thoughts?

So just to follow up here ... this ended up being the motherboard. I RMA'd things one piece at a time (CPU, RAM, Motherboard) until it was stable again.

As an aside, MSI, Corsair, and AMD were all real easy to work with and had quick turn-around times once they received the return. Bonus points to AMD for sending me a shipping label so that I didn't have to pay for it myself.

dejanzie wrote:

As I think this is more about my Blu-Ray player then the media server, I'm going to post this here.

I'm running a Plex server where I store all the kid's music and movies on. Kid's movies are the only Blu-Rays I still physically buy, as they're the only ones watched more than once (to put it mildly).

Recently I bought some Disney classics and Frozen 2 on Blu-Ray, but the laptop/Plex server Blu-Ray player won't recognize any of these four movies meaning I can't rip them. It reacts as if there's no disc in the drive. I tried the following:

Tried a disc cleaning uhm disc
This disc was recognized as a movie disc
Tried a movie I had already ripped before, but he didn't recognize that one either

At first I thought they were copyright issues, but than the disc I had already ripped wouldn't have worked either. On the other hand, the drive did recognize the cleaning disc's 'movie' features. I'm leaning towards it being issues with the BR drive failing (it's 9 years old), but before I splurge on a new external BR drive I wanted to check if anyone has another theory?

As someone who has done a heavy amount of ripping I expect to need to swap out my drive every three-four years or so (think I have had three in my ripping machine since 2011). Alternatively I have had issues with SATA ports and cables make me think I have a bad optical drive.

It's actually an internal BR drive of a 9-year old laptop, probably the device I got the most mileage out ever. I used it as a gaming laptop for a few years, then my wife used it as a workhorse laptop (she's a teacher) and since 2,5 years it's been running non-stop as a Plex server. It's a Sony Vaio laptop, when they used to make those, which I only upgraded from 8 to 16GB RAM and replaced the HDD with a SDD during those 9 years.

Anyway, the optical drive is probably the only part of this beast that hasn't had heavy use, but it's still the most likely culprit. And I can always use an external BR drive for my other devices, if only to make an occasional backup to keep up with the 3-2-1 rule.

dejanzie wrote:

It's actually an internal BR drive of a 9-year old laptop, probably the device I got the most mileage out ever. I used it as a gaming laptop for a few years, then my wife used it as a workhorse laptop (she's a teacher) and since 2,5 years it's been running non-stop as a Plex server. It's a Sony Vaio laptop, when they used to make those, which I only upgraded from 8 to 16GB RAM and replaced the HDD with a SDD during those 9 years.

Anyway, the optical drive is probably the only part of this beast that hasn't had heavy use, but it's still the most likely culprit. And I can always use an external BR drive for my other devices, if only to make an occasional backup to keep up with the 3-2-1 rule.

Impressive. The optical drives in my 2004 iBook and later my 2009 Macbook were some of the first things to fail and I have had to have many replaced in Dell laptops over the years of doing tech support.

I have a nice pair of speakers that tuffalobuffalo recommended to me a few years ago. I want to go back and forth between wirelessly streaming music to them from my phone and playing game or Zoom-meeting audio from my computer.

Back in the day when I lived in the Apple ecosystem, I had an AirPort Express, but now I am overwhelmed with choices. Bluetooth audio receivers come in a huge range of price points — what’s worth buying?

Rykin wrote:
dejanzie wrote:

It's actually an internal BR drive of a 9-year old laptop, probably the device I got the most mileage out ever. I used it as a gaming laptop for a few years, then my wife used it as a workhorse laptop (she's a teacher) and since 2,5 years it's been running non-stop as a Plex server. It's a Sony Vaio laptop, when they used to make those, which I only upgraded from 8 to 16GB RAM and replaced the HDD with a SDD during those 9 years.

Anyway, the optical drive is probably the only part of this beast that hasn't had heavy use, but it's still the most likely culprit. And I can always use an external BR drive for my other devices, if only to make an occasional backup to keep up with the 3-2-1 rule.

Impressive. The optical drives in my 2004 iBook and later my 2009 Macbook were some of the first things to fail and I have had to have many replaced in Dell laptops over the years of doing tech support.

Quick update: it was, in fact, the optical drive. The external replacement arrived today, and all goes smoothly now. In fact a lot faster too, no idea whether that's because the old drive was already in its autumn or just tech advancing.

So I've been using Foxit Reader to scan in files from my printer/scanner, but the most recent update pushed that behind a pay-wall. What do people use to scan? I guess I could utilize the HP software, but in the past, that's been terrible at best.

Have you tried the Windows built in scanner? OSX has one too.

mrtomaytohead wrote:

So I've been using Foxit Reader to scan in files from my printer/scanner, but the most recent update pushed that behind a pay-wall. What do people use to scan? I guess I could utilize the HP software, but in the past, that's been terrible at best.

The basic Microsoft one works great for me. I have no idea why it's not built into Windows:
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/wi...

Windows does come with it built in, but it's not an app. And it looks like it hasn't been updated since Windows 98:

IMAGE(https://i.postimg.cc/vTMn3GxD/image.png)

Sorry, I meant the Microsoft one that Tom linked. I didn't realize it is not pre-installed.

I'm 99% certain I didn't explicitly install the Microsoft Scan app in my Windows 10, because I was flabbergasted when PaladinTom mentioned that it existed. I fired it up on my PC and it immediately started interacting with my scanner.

Regardless, if you don't have it and you're running Win10, it's a mere Windows Store click away.

Thanks, I'll give that a try.

Any good place to get a deal on Microsoft Office single year? My company used to give us a good deal but now the only deal they offer is on Office 366

Are you sure those aren't the same thing? And is this for work or for personal use?

Kurrelgyre wrote:

Are you sure those aren't the same thing? And is this for work or for personal use?

Home use

Office is the single purchase you own your license for life (as much as you can own software licenses)
Office 365 is their annual subscription service

Office 366 sounds like a scam or a leap year special.

The best deal I've seen on Microsoft 365 (no longer called Office 365) family edition is at Costco. $89 for 15 months. They also have the personal edition for 12 months for $59.

Ego Man wrote:
Kurrelgyre wrote:

Are you sure those aren't the same thing? And is this for work or for personal use?

Home use

Office is the single purchase you own your license for life (as much as you can own software licenses)
Office 365 is their annual subscription service

I don't think they sale it that way anymore. One thing that most companies don't like to advertise is that you can sign in to your corporate Office 365 account and download it to use on your home PC. Microsoft allows you to use it on up to 5 devices.

Edit: Looks like they do, but it cost more than two years of the subscription at regular prices.

Rykin wrote:
Ego Man wrote:
Kurrelgyre wrote:

Are you sure those aren't the same thing? And is this for work or for personal use?

Home use

Office is the single purchase you own your license for life (as much as you can own software licenses)
Office 365 is their annual subscription service

I don't think they sale it that way anymore. One thing that most companies don't like to advertise is that you can sign in to your corporate Office 365 account and download it to use on your home PC. Microsoft allows you to use it on up to 5 devices.

Edit: Looks like they do, but it cost more than two years of the subscription at regular prices.

the only limitation is no personal OneDrive space, so just make sure you've moved everything you want to save if you're planning to change jobs.

Thanks everyone. Looks like I really got a deal when I bought my copy of office 2016 for $10 back in the day. It’s too bad I couldn’t do anything like that for my wife. She would use it mostly for her charity work and volunteering at my son’s high school