Just how EVIL is Chinese tech?

We hear a lot these days about China and the E-vils of their techie toys.

Obviously, there is also a lot of political nonsense going on here given China’s economic rise on the world stage. But how bad are Chinese toys – really?

I mean, everything is Made in China anyway, right?

Join Cletus and I for a fascinating look behind the tech curtain! Iron curtain? Red curtain? Some kind of curtain!

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How to manually Shuffle music files on your not-fancy MP3 player

Shuffle your MP3 files

Bluetooth speakers are pretty popular these days. Unfortunately, I don’t carry a smartphone around with me.

That means my “wireless speaker” is actually an Anker SoundCube Mini – complete with microSD card for storing and playing all my MP3 files. No smartphone or Bluetooth required!

There’s just one problem: portable speakers like the SoundCube Mini don’t have a shuffle mode. They just read the music files off the SD card, and play them in order.

That means I have to shuffle the files myself, which is easier said than done… Until now!

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How to use Ethernet for your Smartphone or Tablet

Ethernet for smartphones and tablets

Many people have asked me how to use ethernet instead of WiFi with their tablet or smartphone.

While the idea is simple enough, getting ethernet to actually work with your gizmo can be anything but easy…

Some devices simply won’t work with certain USB-Ethernet dongles, and other devices won’t work at all with any dongle – period.

So, the short answer is: it’s complicated!

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VICTORY! Reactivate Windows 10 after a hardware upgrade

Windows 10 Reactivation after hardware upgrade: CONQUERED!

Regular readers are aware that I have been doing battle with re-activating Windows 10 after performing numerous major upgrades on various puters.

I had another opportunity recently to upgrade yet another machine… This time, the entire computer was replaced – except the graphics card and power supply.

Once again, I was confronted with an activation error after the upgrade.

Out of desperation, I tried something crazy… and it WORKED!

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Is a microwave oven a good smartphone Faraday cage?

Microwave oven as Faraday cage?

Ever since I made my Stylish Smartphone Faraday Box videos, countless people have told me to just use a microwave oven, or just use an empty potato chip bag.

Well, no… And yes! It depends.

The truth is that Faraday cages don’t block signals – they attenuate (or weaken) them.

That means that depending on the situation – the phone itself, the signal strength, the microwave oven itself, and so on – it may or may not work.

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Windows 10 1809 Update: What you need to know

Windows 10 1809 Update - What you need to know

It’s that time again!

A new update to Windows 10 was re-released a few weeks back, and it appears that it’s FINALLY rolling out to end users.

You may have heard that this update was the October 2018 update. It was, but then there were “a few problems” like people’s files disappearing.

I finally got the update on my desktop and lappy, and I’m happy to report zero problems.

It seems this bad boy is finally ready for prime time. So, what’s new in the features and privacy departments??

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At long last, LANscanner works on Windows 10!

LANscanner v2.0

Way back in early 2009, I wrote a post entitled: How to Determine the Master Browser in a Windows Workgroup

Since then, quite a number of people have downloaded and used my little LANscanner program for displaying the IP addies, MAC addies, workgroup, and Master Browser of all the gizmos on their local network.

One problem: With the release of Windows 10 1709, it stopped working.

Well, I’m happy to announce the release of LANscanner v2.0!

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The real reason for Airplane Mode

The real reason for Airplane Mode

“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome aboard CletusAir flight 353 with non-stop service to Mos Eisley.”

“Please return your seatbacks and tray tables to their upright position, fasten your seatbelts, turn off and stow all portable electronic devices, or put them in airplane mode for the duration of the flight.”

Eh… Why airplane mode?

Most of us think it’s to prevent interference with the airplane’s electronics.

It turns out that’s not quite correct…

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How to safely clean the dust inside your laptop

Clean your lappy!

Has your laptop ever started to sound like a vacuum cleaner?

Cooling fans start spinning like crazy. If things get bad enough, your CPU can even overheat, halting the laptop and giving you a scary-looking error message.

To avoid such mayhem, you should dust inside your laptop twice a year.

It’s pretty easy. Should your laptop be REALLY clogged up inside, you may need to get a little crazy and start opening things up.

But don’t panic! YouTube will save you…

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