The Real Deal 188: Tech Turkeys (podcast)

Tom and Brian name the tech they think was a turkey in 2009 and get a few turkeys from listeners of the show as well.

Tom Merritt Former CNET executive editor
5 min read

Tom and Brian name the tech they think was a turkey in 2009 and get a few turkeys from listners of the show as well.

Watch this: Ep. 187: Tech turkeys


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Episode 188

Twitter Peek
Garmin Nuvifone G60
Danger’s Sidekick Servers
Xbox 360 (Red Rings of Death)
Apple Magic Mouse
BlackBerry Storm
PSP (no)Go
Palm Pre?

Brother MFC-5890CN “The Brother MFC-5890CN all-in-one is hands down the worst printer to take up space in our lab. From the irritating initial set up to the horrendous output quality and slow print speed, this device is the easiest way to flush $200 down the drain.”



I was looking at getting a tablet PC. I was looking for a speficic kind. I would like for it not to have a keyboard and only have sceen input. My ultmate goal is one simular to the one used on Stargate Atlantis by Dr. Mckae. I was wondering what your opion on options would be.

Jason Johnston
Beaver Falls, PA

Answer: I think Tom’s opinon is probably “don’t”. But if you’re set on it as you seem to be, I would say Lenovo X60 Tablet. It does have a keyboard buit you can swivel it out of the way and pretend it’s not there. The thing is, it’s two years old. Nobody’s making a lot of good new tablets these days. The best recent one’s are netbook sized like the Yukyung Viliv X70EX.


HP Touchsmart TX2, another flippable tablet. Amazing specs for the price, but be warned it’s a creaky, rickety machine and the screen has sparklies on it. Or http://www.axiotron.com/index.php?id=modbook



The Windows System Repair disk on the Oct 21, 2009 How To video doesn’t
seem to do much. When my Win7 crashed for some mysterious reason within
the first 2 hours, Windows 7 seemed to boot but found an error, tried
but failed to repair itself. When I put in the Repair Disk, it does the
same thing as the self-repairing process as Win 7 on my HD, ending with
the same result. In both cases it says Unknown Error and cannot be
corrected. I even tried the Windows 7 original installation DVD and used
the Repair option ending with the same process and result screen. I had
to do a full reinstall.

Given this experience, it seems like the Repair Disk and the Windows
Installation DVD does the same thing–so why would one need to create a
repair disk.

Thank you.


Answer: Correct, the System Repair disk is included on the Windows 7 DVD. Making a system repair disk is god in a few scenarios though. 1. You didn’t get a Windows 7 disk form the manufacturer when you bought the computer. You got a ’system recovery’ disk that in fact doesn’t have a Windows System repair function on it. This is common. 2. You want a disk you can throw in your bag when you’r eon the go, without worrying about scratching up your original Windows 7 install disk.

As for it not working or doing the same thing as Windows did on it’s own that’s just the luck of the draw. If your system won’t boo the system repair disk will, giving you an extra chance. It also works better if you have restore points created. But it’s not guaranteed to work every time.

Rafe: Create a Sytem Repair disk. It can access system restore files, and there are instances when you will need those.


I was just driving through Atlanta and saw a billboard advertising a
4G Mobile Network from Comcast. Now if memory serves me right comcast
is an ISP, but not a mobile ISP, so I was wondering if you could
explain what was up.

(if it’s any help the advertisement ad some sort of box that looked
like it had something in the process of being plugged in to it, so it
seems like some marketing shinangin to me)

Answer: Comcast is an investor in the Clearwire WiMax service and sells a Comcast branded version of that service ins elect markets. Time Warner Cable Bright House Networks and Google are also investors.

Dear Real Dealers,

I was considering upgrading my 40GB PS3 hard drive with a 320GB one, as between game info files and a few movies and songs I’m just about out of drive space. I know most laptop SATA hard drives will work, but I dont want to lose the data thats on the old drive. I was thinking of trying to clone the drive, but the only way I can figure to do this is to take out the hard drive out of my laptop, put in the old PS3 40GB drive, boot a live CD with some linux backup software, clone the disk to my external hard drive, then insert the new drive into the laptop, and transfer the cloned drive to it. One, I don’t even know if the software will back up my PS3 data, and two, this seems needlessly complex, but I can’t think of a better way. Any ideas gents? Thanks

Rich in Lovely Cleveland

Answer: Actually the standard method requires two drives, your new 320GB drive and a second external drive that should be close ot he old 40 GB drive in capacity, though it can be a bit less. Take the small external drive formatted to Fat32, hook it up in an enclosure (or just use a USB drive) to the PS3 and back up all your data. Then just put the new hard drive in the PS3 and format it. Then take your small external drive, plug it into the PS3 and restore the backup.

That’s the easy way, if you have an extra drive laying around. If you don’t, you can make a bit-for-bit clone of your PS3 drive that will work in YOUR PS3 drive. Don’t get all wide-eyed about being able to clone drives and sell them to friends with saved games on them. This bit involves mucking about with reiserdriver. The whole process is listed out here: http://www.ps3news.com/forums/ps3-hdd-news/help-transferring-old-data-new-playstation-3-a-108384.html




Tom Merritt is a big fat liar!

Dear Tom Merrit,
Don’t take this seriously.
The tip on using the free version of Yahoo Mail as a POP3 Failed me. Google got rejected by Yahoo POP3.
Perhaps Yahoo realized that you were working for CNET and could give them a bad review? Maybe? Just a theory,
anyway love the show.

This is the error.
Server denied POP3 access for the given username and password.

POP access is limited to Yahoo! Mail Plus subscribers. Please contact Yahoo! Mail’s support team for more information.

Server returned error: “[AUTH] invalid user/password”



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