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Tech Q&A: How to store camera photos where you want them

Steve Alexander, Star Tribune on

Published in Science & Technology News

Q: When I had Windows 7, photos from my camera would be downloaded to my PC. But Windows 10 wants to put my camera photos on OneDrive, Microsoft's online storage service. How can I get Windows 10 to just put the photos on my PC instead of on OneDrive?

Glenn Correnti, Metairie, La.

A: You can avoid using OneDrive simply by changing your preferences in the Windows 10 Control Panel. But first consider the benefits of using or not using OneDrive.

—If you use OneDrive, here is what happens: The photos are imported from your camera and stored in the OneDrive folder on your PC. The contents of that folder are then copied to the OneDrive online storage service (you are limited to 5 gigabytes of free online storage.) The good news is that your pictures are backed up online in case your PC is lost or damaged. The bad news is that the online storage is continuously linked to the PC folder. If you accidentally delete something from the PC, it disappears online as well. (For details, see tinyurl.com/teaeke44).

—If you don't use OneDrive, here's what happens: The photos are imported from your camera and stored only in the PC's Pictures folder. However, you can make your own backup by occasionally copying the Pictures folder to a USB flash drive. Because the Pictures folder and flash drive aren't continuously connected, accidentally deleting a photo on the PC won't affect what's stored on the flash drive.

If you still want to stop using OneDrive, open Control Panel and, in the search box at the upper right, search for "Autoplay settings." In the next menu, click on "change default settings for media or devices." In the resulting menu, find "camera storage" and below it the box labeled "choose a default." Click the arrow on the box, and in the resulting drop-down menu choose "import photos and videos [photos]."

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Last week, I incorrectly told Michael Davis of Shoreview, Minn., that his iPhone 5C would work on AT&T's 4G LTE network once the old 3G network is shut down in February 2022.

 

While the 5C will work on the data portion of AT&T's LTE data network, it won't be able to make phone calls. As a result, Davis needs to get a new phone that can handle both data and voice. (For a list of phones that are fully compatible with the LTE network — current as of May 14 — see tinyurl.com/yfnhn3xt).

Verizon Wireless, which plans to shut down its 3G network no later than December 2022, also said some existing phones won't work once its 3G network is gone (see tinyurl.com/uuheujad).

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Q: My 10-year-old HP PC runs Windows 10 and McAfee antivirus, but it is incredibly slow, especially when loading things like pictures and Adobe PDF files. Is there anything I can do to speed up the PC, or do I need to buy a new one?

—Mark Hodapp, Belle Plaine, Minn.

A: A slow 10-year-old computer should be replaced. It has outlasted its useful lifetime. Conventional wisdom says that any PC will be useful for three years. Depending on its component parts and upgrades, a well-maintained desktop PC may have a useful lifetime of five to eight years. The useful lifetime of a laptop is said to be three to five years, largely because its components are not as upgradeable.

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