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    1. [SOLVED] Google logged my mother out of all devices and now she can't login

      [SOLVED] Thank you so much for everyone's support and suggestions, it seems that I may have overreacted a little bit. One of the things that I did was send a form to Google, but the form was not...

      [SOLVED]

      Thank you so much for everyone's support and suggestions, it seems that I may have overreacted a little bit. One of the things that I did was send a form to Google, but the form was not really for this issue, so I wasn't hopeful at all. To my surprise, I received a message just now with instructions to recover the account and change the 2-factor phone number to my mother's current one. The cause of the issue is not clear, but whatever it was, they sorted it out. She is obviously ecstatic, when I went to her house two days ago I couldn't disguise my pessimism.

      I set her recovery email to my own and will generate recovery codes shortly, so we're good for now. I instructed her on how to download all her data from Google (it's easier than I thought), just because this made her quite paranoid, and I'll take the opportunity to gradually move my family out of Google, as well as myself. Thanks for being so supportive, this was very stressful, to say the least! Sometimes it's nice to know we're not alone ;)

      Original post

      So, for some reason Google logged my mother of everything at once: browsers in two laptops and two smartphones (one Android and one iPhone). Trying to recover the account sends a message to a cellphone number she no longer has. I understand Google is basically unreachable, but there must be something I can do, right? We're not famous, but she does pay for YouTube Premium.

      12 votes
    2. [SOLVED] Tech Support Request: Finding the biggest files of a specific type

      Hey Tildes! I need some help with a specific tech issue, and I'm sure someone here can help me do it way quicker than I would be able to on my own. General Request I'd like to be able to scan a...

      Hey Tildes!

      I need some help with a specific tech issue, and I'm sure someone here can help me do it way quicker than I would be able to on my own.

      General Request

      I'd like to be able to scan a directory and find all of the largest files of a specific type (e.g. the largest .jpg files). I'm running Pop!_OS and I'm assuming there's some way to do this in the terminal, or alternately some utility I could use.

      More Specific Details

      I'm cleaning up my digital music library, and I realized in setting it up I made some errors by saving some very high res cover art. Many of my Bandcamp purchases come with a cover.jpg or cover.png file that is several megabytes large. I made the mistake of writing these into the files (adding, for some albums, an extra, say, 100 MB across all tracks). They also take a lot longer to load when I pull them up in my cloud music player. I'd like to be able to identify the albums with the largest cover.* files so that I can go in and replace the album art with a lower res version and gain back all that wasted space lost to unnecessary duplication.

      I could go folder by folder and take a look at the sizes of each, but I figure there's an easier way to surface the ones that need my attention. Everything I've looked at online so far has helped me figure out how to identify the biggest files in general, but all that will do is surface the actual audio files, when it's the cover art that needs the specific attention.

      Also, in case it's necessary information, the directory structure is Music/[artist]/[album]/cover.*

      Any help will be very appreciated!

      12 votes
    3. [SOLVED] Looking to debug a wifi issue, or possibly for a new wifi router

      EDIT: Crisis averted! The problem was with the modem and not the devices connecting to it. I'm not sure why the first person I called at the ISP couldn't help me. In reality, the second person I...

      EDIT: Crisis averted! The problem was with the modem and not the devices connecting to it. I'm not sure why the first person I called at the ISP couldn't help me. In reality, the second person I called also didn't help, but something magically started working after talking with them a second time and rebooting the modem about 5 more times, so it turns out I don't need a new WiFi router at this time. That said, I will take these suggestions to heart, as I may be buying one anyway as a backup for when this inevitably happens again.

      TL;DR: I probably need a new wifi router and want one that isn't malware and will work even if the company I bought it from goes under or stops making it.

      Long version:
      So today my wifi stopped working. I use an Apple Airport Extreme (the tower one that has a Time Machine backup in it). I've had it for 5 or 10 years and it's worked fine during that time, other than replacing the hard drive it backs up to. My spouse and I were sitting on the couch after lunch surfing the web on our phones, when we suddenly couldn't reach anything. The router itself appears fine. We can connect to it and see other devices that are connected to it, but for some reason, it's no longer communicating with the cable modem via the WAN port. It still backs up the computers in our house, though. I have tested the cable that was connecting it to the cable modem, and it appears fine. I can connect my computer directly to the cable modem without issue using the same cable. So my guess is that the WAN port is hosed.

      However, I'm suspicious that something else is going on for 2 reasons. #1, the cable company (Spectrum) made me replace my cable modem last week. I did that, got my Airport connected to it, and after a call to tech support got it up and running. It's been working for the past week. I suspect the modem may have updated or changed configuration without me knowing it and that's the real cause here. They sent me a Wifi router with the modem, but will charge me $5.00/month if I keep it. I'd rather own the hardware. #2, I have an older Airport Express that was working the last time I used it. I replaced it with the newer model about 5 years ago so I could do backups. It fails to work in the same way. It seems like the WAN port isn't communicating with the cable modem. So, if there's some way to verify that the WAN ports on my Airports are or aren't working, I'd be interested to hear about it.

      I am able to connect a wired ethernet switch to the cable modem and all devices on the switch can see the Internet just fine. I tried connecting both Airports to the switch via their WAN ports while the switch was connected to the cable modem, but that did not work. (Or at least, I couldn't connect to the internet via either Airport.)

      So, on the off-chance that both my Airports have a similar failure, I need to replace them. I have gotten suggestions from others, but have been pretty unhappy with them. I have the following requirements:

      • Absolutely must not store any information about me in the cloud (for example as Ubiquiti apparently does)
      • Absolutely must not rely on any sort of connection to the manufacturer to work properly and must not phone home without my permission
      • Preferably not a poorly made device that will die in 3 years
      • Must work properly and at full speed with Apple devices
      • Must not require a phone app to configure
      • Must have ~3 ethernet ports so I can hardwire in my TV devices (AppleTV, TiVo, etc.)

      Things I don't need, but aren't a deal-breaker if it has it:

      • The ability to configure every little setting. I prefer to set it and forget it.
      • Mesh networking. My house is not huge, the cable modem is in the middle of the house and my single Airport base station has good coverage of the entire house.

      If you know of any device like this, please share!

      7 votes
    4. [SOLVED] A background process using a significant amount of CPU power stops immediately when I open task manager. Is there a way to identify what's doing thing?

      It started a day or two ago. Three threads (I think?) jump from nearly 0% to 100% and go back as soon as I open task manager to try figure out what's causing it. My first thought was a virus or...

      It started a day or two ago. Three threads (I think?) jump from nearly 0% to 100% and go back as soon as I open task manager to try figure out what's causing it. My first thought was a virus or bitcoin mining trying to hide itself (though isn't that done on GPU's?), but Windows' Defender came up empty handed.

      I know certain OS apps, like automatic VIRUS scans behave similarly, stopping when you click or type, but this culprit seems to only react to opening the task manager. It also doesn't start again until task manager has been closed for a while.

      17 votes
    5. [SOLVED] US websites no longer work, at all, in EU (?)

      So, I had an issue with the radionouspace.net website, referenced here. Since then, I've started hitting the exact same issue on a few other sites ... webpage never resolves, the browser just...

      So, I had an issue with the radionouspace.net website, referenced here. Since then, I've started hitting the exact same issue on a few other sites ... webpage never resolves, the browser just spins its wheels until it times out.

      I went thru and systematically shut down all of my add-ons, no joy. Tried other browsers, does not work anywhere ... except, oddly, sometimes, in TOR. On a hunch, I fired up my VPN service and tried to connect thru a US-based VPN server ... and there it is.

      I have now confirmed, multiple websites (I'm assuming these are all US-based -- have not checked) no longer resolve for me, here in Hungary. Can anyone, anywhere else in the EU, confirm this?

      I'm guessing this is the US response to the latest GDPR ruling against data-sharing across the Pond, but I'm on a "news fast" and haven't been keeping up-to-date ... anyone care to fill me in -- the "in a nutshell" version?


      Update: Definitely something local-ish, probably specific to my ISP. VPN thru Hungary works, non-VPN thru Hungary does not.

      10 votes
    6. [SOLVED] Archiving a deceased loved one's Twitter timeline, including media

      Recently a loved one of a friend has died and they would like to archive their entire timeline (no retweets), including media they posted. I've looked around a little bit and the Twitter API only...

      Recently a loved one of a friend has died and they would like to archive their entire timeline (no retweets), including media they posted.

      I've looked around a little bit and the Twitter API only allows 3200 tweets to be exported. As this includes RTs, this goes back to about 2018, while the account was made in 2011, so it's missing about 90% of their tweets. Also, getting all the media isn't really possible.

      Do any of you know a way to accomplish this? Or, can anyone direct me to scripts that crawl the page and save every non-RT tweet + potential media? I'm not very tech-oriented but I can at least run python scripts.

      I should mention that I've so far checked out Allmytweets.net (returns RTs) and the Twitter archival project (or whatever it's called), which is a group of people that help in archiving accounts, but they haven't responded yet.

      13 votes
    7. [SOLVED] Tech support request: Possible screen-tearing issue while gaming on TV

      EDIT: This is now solved thanks to @Amarok! Solution is here. Changing the refresh rate from 60 Hz to 120 Hz fixed it. My husband and I recently upgraded our TV to a Samsung Q70, and I have...

      EDIT: This is now solved thanks to @Amarok! Solution is here. Changing the refresh rate from 60 Hz to 120 Hz fixed it.


      My husband and I recently upgraded our TV to a Samsung Q70, and I have started experiencing an odd issue, visible in this video here.

      The Issue

      There's a horizontal section across the entire bottom of the screen that seems to be refreshing later than the rest of the TV. The game is running on a PC hooked up to the TV via HDMI, and the TV is running on game mode. This issue did not happen on our last TV (a 10-year-old Visio that I don't remember the model number of).

      The Oddness

      • It doesn't happen on the desktop or in video inputs.

      We've been watching YouTube and Hulu through a Shield TV that we also have hooked up, and this issue isn't present in any of those, nor is it visible when I'm using desktop applications on the TV through the PC.

      • It only happens in certain games.

      The video is from Trackmania 2: Lagoon, where it is always present. Meanwhile, it is not present at all in Trackmania (2020). Likewise, I've been playing 428 Shibuya Scramble where it shows up in the exact same way in the exact same area, but it does not exist in Distance or Rogue Legacy, for example.

      • It does not respond to v-sync.

      I've tried toggling v-sync on and off, both through the game itself and forcing it through my video card. Neither alleviated the issue. The display looked the same whether or not v-sync was turned on or off.


      I'm looking for any guidance anyone can give me, especially if this is a hardware issue with the TV itself, since I'm still in the return window.

      6 votes
    8. [SOLVED] How to cast internet videos to my Chromecast? (It's not as simple as it seems!)

      Recently, I've been posting here about all sorts of theatre that's available for streaming during the pandemic lockdown. Sounds like fun! But when I actually try to watch some of it... I'm having...

      Recently, I've been posting here about all sorts of theatre that's available for streaming during the pandemic lockdown. Sounds like fun! But when I actually try to watch some of it... I'm having technical problems.

      My Lenovo Yoga tablet won't cast from Chrome. At all. The option just doesn't exist in the Chrome browser on the tablet. The only way to cast anything is to open an app - but the videos I want to watch are on a webpage. In Chrome. Which doesn't have a casting option. Not helpful!

      So I go to my desktop computer. It can cast from Chrome to Chromecast. But the result is video only, because "casting tab audio is not supported on this device." I tried Googling that error message, but I ended up getting flummoxed. The Google Help pages don't even mention this error, and other tech blogs are too complex for me to understand.

      The Chromecast works fine. It accepts input (with sound) from other sources. It's just webpages (like YouTube.com and Vimeo.com) I'm having trouble with. I managed to watch one video last week, but I had to resort to installing the YouTube app to make it work. But not all the videos are on YouTube.

      Any ideas?

      7 votes
    9. [SOLVED] Tech support request: Getting a scanner and controller working in Linux

      Most recent update is here. The Tildes community has been amazing and patient with me as a new and uninformed Linux user, and I'm greatly appreciative of that. I return to you today with yet...

      Most recent update is here.


      The Tildes community has been amazing and patient with me as a new and uninformed Linux user, and I'm greatly appreciative of that. I return to you today with yet another request.


      Hardware

      System76 Oryx Pro
      Distro: Pop!_OS 19.10


      Issue #1 (mission critical)

      Brother MFC-L2750DW

      I have a Brother printer/scanner for which I have installed the drivers using the .deb file provided on the Brother site. It's connected via USB. Printing works fine; scanning does not. My husband and I both need the ability to scan for our jobs, so this issue is pretty important to us.

      I am using the program Document Scanner (I believe it's one of the GNOME default programs?). When I open the program it says "Searching for Scanners" and then recognizes my scanner, giving the model number and says it's "Ready to Scan". Whenever I attempt to scan, however, whether from the ADF or the flatbed, it says "Unable to connect to scanner". I am not sure how to proceed, and any guidance on this would be greatly appreciated!


      Issue #2 (optional)

      Hyperkin Duke Wired Xbox Controller

      This is an optional issue and not at all one that needs to be solved by any means. A while back my husband got me this because it's my absolute favorite controller of all time (I know, scoff all you want!). It worked fine in Windows, but now that I've shifted over to Linux it has been sitting and gathering dust.

      When I plug it in the controller rumbles briefly (which it also did on Windows), but other than that does nothing. No input is accepted. If it's easy to get this up and running in Linux, I'd love to be able to use it, but if it's not that's totally fine. I have another controller I can use, and again, none of this is essential to my work. I just figured since I was asking for help I'd throw this in here too.


      If you need any additional information or need me to try any specific things, let me know!

      10 votes
    10. [SOLVED] Tech support request: Broken start menu on Windows 10

      Solved! Thanks to @pseudolobster's post here, I was able to resolve the issue by creating a new user account on the computer. I'm leaving the post up for posterity, in case anyone else is ever...

      Solved!

      Thanks to @pseudolobster's post here, I was able to resolve the issue by creating a new user account on the computer. I'm leaving the post up for posterity, in case anyone else is ever searching up this same issue in the future.


      My husband is starting to transition to work from home. He is using his personal computer and just yesterday set up a VPN, Microsoft Teams, and Windows' built-in remote desktop so that he can access his work computer. Everything worked smoothly and he was able to finish out his workday from home just fine.

      Primary Issue

      This morning, upon booting his computer, he cannot access his Start Menu. It is on screen, and it appears clickable, but nothing comes up. Likewise, the search bar in his task bar is present on boot, but upon clicking the start menu for the first time it disappears and does not return. Other basic Windows functionality seems to be broken. Alt-tabbing does not work to switch between windows. System tray icons are present, but right clicking them and selecting an option does nothing. We cannot open taskbar settings or network settings this way, for example.

      This might be indicative of a larger breakdown. Even by command line, I can't get to the Windows 10 settings or Windows Update. It seems like all of the "new Windows"-style interfaces won't start (though the old ones, like the Control Panel, do).

      We can still open up apps by clicking on the links in his taskbar, and those seem to work fine. I can also get to the run command with Win+R.

      He is running Windows 10, and as far as I know, it's fully up-to-date (I can't open Windows Update to check).

      Additional Information

      In attempting to diagnose this issue, I've come across several others that are potentially related. I don't know if these are relevant and they're not a primary concern at the moment, but I'm including them here in case they help contextualize what's going on.

      There seems to be a runaway process that slowly eats up more and more memory over time, as well as a chunk of CPU. Sometimes it's called "Service Host: Windows Push Notifications User Service_#####" and sometimes it's called "Service Host: WpnUserService_#####" with the numbers changing each boot.

      Also, in attempting to restart the computer, it sometimes (but not always) pauses with a notification about programs still running, with one of them being "Task Host Window" with the message Task Host is stopping background tasks. (\Microsoft\Windows\Plug and Play\Device Install Reboot Required) Finally, immediately before restarting, it shows an error message from "svchost.exe" which reads The system detected an overrun of a stack-based buffer in this application. This overrun could potentially allow a malicious user to gain control of this application.

      Is this potentially a malware/intrusion issue?

      Attempted Solutions

      I have tried, to no success:

      • Rebooting the computer, both via a restart in Windows as well as by holding down the power button
      • Signing out and back in to his user account on the computer
      • Running sfc /scannow
      • Running DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

      Request for Help

      I know we have a lot of techy people here, but I also know you are all probably busy with everything that's going on. Nevertheless, if anyone has any guidance or help they could give on this issue, I'd greatly appreciate it.

      Also, it's been a while since I've used Windows, but IIRC there's a way of just resetting the whole thing and starting fresh? That's not ideal, but if that's the course of action I need to take, just let me know. Ultimately I just want this to work, by whatever method, so that my husband can be at home and reduce his exposure.

      7 votes
    11. [SOLVED] Some of my internet radio stations aren't playing on my computer

      EDIT: The problem has been solved. @Sill identified the problem here and @cfabbro found a work-around here. Crisis averted! I listen to some internet radio stations on my computer, but a couple of...

      EDIT: The problem has been solved. @Sill identified the problem here and @cfabbro found a work-around here. Crisis averted!



      I listen to some internet radio stations on my computer, but a couple of them aren't working any more: they appear to play, but there's no sound coming from my computer's speakers.

      It is only two stations. I've tested other internet radio stations I listen to, and they still work: I can hear them. I can play and hear YouTube videos. I can stream Spotify on my computer. I can play and hear my music files stored on my computer's hard drive. So I know my speakers work. I know Chrome works as a music player for other sources, including other internet radio stations. It's just these two radio stations.

      One of them is this radio station. Also this radio station. I know their digital streams are working, because I can listen to them via an internet radio app on my phone. So I know their digital signals are being sent out. But, while my phone app can play them, my computer browser can't play them.

      I've tested both non-working stations in Chrome and Internet Explorer. They both don't work in Chrome, but this station also doesn't work in IE.

      I'm using Chrome 80.0.3987.122. And I'm running Windows 7.

      This problem only started a couple of days ago.

      What's going on? How do I fix this?

      12 votes
    12. [SOLVED] Friend's computer is cutting power randomly

      So my friend has a computer she put together, and after replacing what feels like every single part on the rig, multiple trips to the repair shop, and calling a priest wrestling the demons out of...

      So my friend has a computer she put together, and after replacing what feels like every single part on the rig, multiple trips to the repair shop, and calling a priest wrestling the demons out of it, it is randomly cutting power and we think the replacement power supply might be just as busted as the last one. Are there decent odds of that being an issue, or could it be something that we are overlooking?

      EDIT: So, I had a car issue pop up and I won't be able to to take a look at at it tonight. Will download the tools you all mentioned to a jump drive and will keep you posted.

      Was there, stayed up the whole time. Really thinking it might be a bad power switch that stuck, so it would turn off randomly. Thanks for all your help.

      FINAL EDIT: So I narrowed it down to the Graphics Card and/or the Cooling System. Running the Heaven Benchmark on Extreme pretty reliably cleans it's clock, especially turning it off and then turning it on again. This happens on the latest Windows Updates, with latest Nvidia Drivers. (RTX 2080) Pulling the card and running the benchmark anyway causes the same issue, and this time it powered on and then back off in a loop. CPU-Z stress caused it to crash, so I'm assuming it's the cooler. Thanks again.

      11 votes
    13. [SOLVED] I might switch my PC media player from VLC to something else due to potential data leaks. What other media player should I choose if I do so?

      edit: Problem solved, davidb informed me about the vulnerability in version 3.0.4, and that it is fixed in the new version 3.0.6. Somehow Spyhunter thinks i still use 3.0.4, which in turn is the...

      edit: Problem solved, davidb informed me about the vulnerability in version 3.0.4, and that it is fixed in the new version 3.0.6. Somehow Spyhunter thinks i still use 3.0.4, which in turn is the actual problem i had with Spyhunter, not VLC.

      Spyhunter 5 has been bothering me about potential data leaks from vlc media player. The vulnerability is generally based on publicly available information.
      It would be a shame if i have to switch, been using vlc for as long as i remember. It is probably the best media player out there, but i hate sharing my personal data in any way or form.

      Spyhunter msg:

      • Severity: Medium, VLC media player (Version 3.0.4)
        • The CAF demuxer in modules/demux/cad.c in VideoLan media player 3.0.4 may read memory from an uninitialized pointer when processing magic cookies in Caf files, because a ReadKukiChunk() cast converts a return value to an unsigned int, even if that value is negative. This could result in a denial of service and/or potential infoleak.

      Is this even anything to care about? I have updated VLC including removing cashe and still get the alert. Is a rollback another option perhaps?

      5 votes