Apple WWDC: What We Expect Best Mattress Deals Assessing Viral Sleep Hacks Netflix Password Sharing Meal Subscription vs. Takeout Best Solar Companies Verizon 5G Home Internet Best Credit Cards
Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?
No, thank you

The Real Deal 197: All questions (podcast)

We answer your questions about note-taking apps, facial recognition software and more.

We answer your questions about note-taking apps, facial recognition software and more.

Now playing: Watch this: Ep: 197: All questions


Subscribe with iTunes (audio)
Subscribe with iTunes (video)
Subscribe with RSS (audio)
Subscribe with RSS (video)

Episode 197


Hi Tom and Rafe,

I’m in the market for a new computer and I thought I would ask your advice. I was thinking about getting a big external hard drive (like a terabyte or so) along with a new computer. The idea is that all my data would sit in a separate place and it would be easier to switch to a new computer in the future. Also, I like the benefit that if the computer dies or gets viruses, it’s not a nightmare trying to retrieve the data. My main concern is that having data on an external drive would slow down the system a lot? When I open some big files in photoshop and Adobe FlexBuilder, would it all run slowly? Would a USB 2 interface be so outdated (in 4 years when I buy another computer) that I would need to replace the external hard drive right along with my next computer anyway? I don’t need an external HD for day to day portability. Will the speed be significantly different so that I should just get a new computer with a big HD in it?

Thanks in advance for your advice,

Brian G

For same benefit with no speed hit: Use two drives, system and data. I have a velociraptor for system (300GB) and a 1TB data drive. When I upgrade to a new PC, I’ll replace the system drive but keep the data drive.


Tom and Rafe-

I’ll be buying a MacBook Pro soon for college and was wondering which productivity suite will suite me best. My main concerns are compatibility and price. Should I fork over the $150 for MS Office, spend a little less for iWork, or go with the free OpenOffice? I’ve only ever used office and really like Office 2007’s UI but I know it’ll be different on the Mac. I like the style of iWork and obviously OpenOffice’s price is its most appealing feature. What does you guys use?

Thanks for the help,
Dan in Mass.

Rafe: If you like Office 2007 on Windows, avoid Office 2008 for the Mac. It’s different and it’s frustrating. So much so that I use Office 2007 on VMWare isntead of the Mac version. The good news is that there’s a new, more Office-like Office coming to the Mac later this year:

Meantime, Open Office or iWork, depending on what ppl around you use.


Hey Tom and Rafe, excellent show to start with, certainly keeps me entertained and informed!

Apologies if this has been raised before.

After listening to Tom (among others) on the Podcast version of TWiT, and hearing yet more news of the immediately ubiquitous iPad, my question is this: What do you guys do with regards to old Tech?

I think it’s pretty much a certainty that this will follow the Apple trend of a yearly refresh, and I’d like to know what happens with the outdated hardware? Do you sell them immediately, do you keep a hold of them until they become collector’s items, or are you collectors of old Tech (possible for sentimental value)?

Would love to hear your thoughts,

Roshan Patel, London, U.K.

We did a show on this:


Hey guys

love the show.

I'm trying to find a great antivirus software that is cheap or free but that is not junk, and more importantly won't infect my pc with crap.

Thanks guys, i'm kinda pc stupid.

solid schuyler

Rafe: I know we’ve answered this a few times before, but it’s worth repeating: Microsoft now has its own free antivirus app, MS Security Essentials. Just install it and stop worrying about which AV product to get. It’s not 2005 anymore, we can move on to other problems.


Hey Tom and Rafe! Love the show!

If you could answer this simple question on the next “All Questions” show (or as a reply to this email), it would be greatly appreciated.

I’ve been longing to get a Macbook for some time now, but I want to know how to do (nearly) everything I do on my PC on a Mac before I spend the $1,000+ on one. One of the things that isn’t clear to me yet is how to uninstall programs from Mac OSX. I’ve heard it was as simple as going to “Applications” and deleting the program, but that apparently seems too simple for me. Does this method leave any files or whatever junk from the program behind? Is there any Revo Uninstaller-like programs out there for the Mac? Any explanations on the whole process of deleting programs from a Mac would be appreciated.

Thanks and keep up the good work!

- Kenny

Answer: Essentially what you've heard is correct. You delete an application and in the majority of cases, you're done. OS X has no registry so there are few things to go dig up.

Some programs like Microsoft Office for instance, do put folders in other directories like /bin or /lib. I use a nifty program called AppCleaner ( to handle uninstalling. It makes sure to delete all the folders no matter where they are.

Rafe: Can I rant about the registry?


Real Deal,

While listening to show 196 of the real deal you mentioned that the easy transfer tool in windows 7 doesn’t work from going winxp 32bit to win7 64bit. Well actually… I’m not sure if it works with upgrading the same physical machine but… it does work if you have an old system with 32bit winxp and it’s on the same local network as your new windows 7 machine. I did that very thing with someones system at work today and I ranted and raved to my boss of how great windows 7 was. Everything transferred perfectly including it automatically updating outlook from office2003 that was on the old system to office2007 that is on the new one.

Thanks for doing the show

Chris the broadcast engineer

Hey Tom and Rafe,
I think around two episodes ago I had asked you guys about my
problem of connecting the slingbox wirelessly. I was digging around
and found tom’s video of hacking your own router. Even though I had
to buy another router it was much cheaper option than the powerline
option, and I was successful in setting up a bridge between my slingbox
and my router wirelessly using an open source slingbox router. Hope
this solution helps with any one else out there with a similar problem.

Appreciate your help from last time,
Thanks a lot and love the show


I Tom and Rafe; I thought it was worth mentioning, many of the camp stoves out there that use fuel canisters like the JetBoil, do not all ways perform well in colder temperatures and some not at all below freezing. All thought there are a few that do work in the cold, I have used an older Coleman stove using their powermax fuel at -10 here in Minnesota.

All so there are a number of stoves marketed as “international” that will work with multiple fuels like white gas, kerosene, or unleaded gasoline.

Love the show! Matt in MN

p.s. It looks like Coleman has quit making the stove I have, bummer.


Next time: Beginner’s guide to blogging