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Archive for the ‘Hardware & Peripherals’ Category



Flash Drive Longevity

Thursday, August 19th, 2010


John from MA asks:
How long do flash drives last? Are they OK for backups?

A:
Good question, John. Let’s start by distinguishing flash drives (also known as thumb drives or USB memory drives) from portable hard drives, which are both excellent for backing up your data.

A flash drive contains non-volatile memory (memory that doesn’t go… Continue reading

Sleep, Hibernate or Power Off?

Monday, August 9th, 2010

JoAnn from Hollywood, FL asks:
If I’m going to be off my computer only for a couple of hours, is it better to put in in sleep mode, hibernate or just shut it down?

A:
This has actually been an issue of hot debate among computer geeks since probably the invention of the screensaver. Prior to that, you just shut your system down to prevent image… Continue reading

Building a Computer on a Budget

Tuesday, July 20th, 2010

Butch from IN asks:
With all the huge hard drives, multi-core processors and RAM options out there, what would be the best route to take for a new computer for those on a budget?

A:
The first thing that you need to decide on a new computer, whether you’re on a budget or not, is exactly what you want to do with your new computer… Continue reading

Software Vs. Hardware

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

John from Manahawkin, NJ asks:

I have been using a computer for over a year now, and would really like to know something: What’s the difference between software and hardware?

A:
Very good question, John. My daughter (she’s 15) spends a lot of time on the computer and I showed her the difference between software and hardware awhile ago. It was like… Continue reading

Your Computer’s Temperature

Monday, June 21st, 2010

Q:
I have heard that your computer can get too hot and ruin it. It’s summer now so I guess I will have to watch out for that. How do I make sure it stays cool? How can I check to see if it’s too hot?
-Jerry C.

A:
This question is so important – great question!… Continue reading

MP3 Player Buyer’s Guide

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

Do you want to listen to music while on the go? Watch videos and play games? Or, maybe even surf the net? If the answer is yes, consider getting yourself an MP3 Player. Before you do, however, read this tip to get insight on what to look for in MP3 players. Since the prices of MP3 players vary from $25 to over $200, this guide will help you… Continue reading

In this window you can choose how Windows reacts to new hardware. Most users will want to keep it on automatic, but if you ever need to install the original equipment manufacturer drivers this is the first step! Continue reading

Speedy Keyboard and Cursor

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Okay, so this might be of little to no use for most Windows 7 users out there, but you never know, right? If you’ve ever wanted your cursor to blink faster -perhaps so you could notice it easier, then follow these simple steps.

Press Start, and in the Search Box type “Keyboard”. Choose “Keyboard” under the control panel heading in the list that will appear… Continue reading

Digital Photo Frame Buyer’s Guide

Friday, March 12th, 2010

Are you running out of space to display your pictures? Do you want to buy a digital photo frame? If yes; read on and you’ll get an insight on the factors that you need to consider.

With the ever increasing number of Digital Photo Frames, it can be might difficult to decide on which one is most suitable for you. After all, Digital Photo Frames… Continue reading

Updating your Video Drivers

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Most of the drivers on your computer may never need to be updated, but there is one area where technology and software are always changing: video and 3D graphics.

Even if your computer and its graphics accelerator are years old, chances are there is a new driver that can update your compatibility with video players, software, and games. It may even boost your performance or… Continue reading

Amazon Kindle VS. Sony eReader

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

People everywhere are seeing the incredible convenience of Ebook readers. With a portable reader, such as the Amazon Kindle or Sony eReader, you can have hundred of ebooks available at your fingertips.

Whether you are looking for novels or magazines, ebook readers allow you to read books and documents electronically, no paper or ink is needed due to the use of E Ink… Continue reading

CES 2010 Televisions

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

If there was one thing that stood out the most at CES this year, it was TVs. Every major manufacturer was there showing off their new technologies. Just when you thought that television had reached its highest quality with HD content, the TV manufacturers come and change things completely. It seems that TV is not just for movies and shows any more. This year will show that the TV and… Continue reading

What is USB 3.0?

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

Chuck from CA asks:

What is USB 3.0, exactly? Should I care? 

Heck of a question, Chuck!

With new devices coming out every day, there is a need for a faster technology to transfer data to (and from) your computer. Some devices, such as Blu-ray players and very large

Is there a program out there that will convert my old cassette tapes or vinyl records to CD?

The short answer is yes. There is a program out there that will record cassette tapes or vinyl records to CD. Today, I will show you how. If you have the right software

Hidden Drives

Tuesday, November 17th, 2009

If you share your computer with other people, you know privacy and security are very important. Thankfully, Windows XP allows you to have different user accounts for all the people using the same computer. These accounts can be password protected, but passwords alone do not always provide the best security and privacy.

You can encrypt and protect your My Documents folder and other personal folders with NTFS… Continue reading

Wireless Router Tips

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

When it comes to connecting to the Internet, three options are the most popular. You can use a dialup connection, which is the slowest kind. A wired broadband connection will let you browse the web faster but it still means that you’ll be plugged into a cable in the wall. In other words, you’re bound to a laptop or PC in a fixed location -you can’t… Continue reading

ATI Eyefinity

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

ATI Eyefinity has advanced multiple-display technology with the introduction of new GPUs from AMD. This is compliant with the next generation DirectX 11 that expands our view of gaming, productivity, entertainment and uncovers a new realm of panoramic computing. A single GPU supports six independent display units simultaneously. The visual workspace is vastly expanded and offers the ease of multitasking. Gaming is more intensified with a breathtaking view and ultra-immersive… Continue reading

Connect a Laptop to an External Monitor

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

A laptop offers a lot of convenience and portability, but its screen size can be a real drawback. If you want to, though, you can enjoy the travel portability as well as a lot more screen space when you get home. Most of the the newer laptops manufactured in the past few years are able to connect to several types of external displays, such as flat panel display, a CRT… Continue reading

USB and Data Cables

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

Knowing the difference between the two: a cell phone data cable and an USB cable is important, and can be so easily misunderstood.

The two are easily confuse because most modern cell phones now have a USB port (with an USB symbol on them), as well as similar features. A lot of people are under the impression that if it fits into the outlet, it’s okay to… Continue reading

Install a Case Fan

Friday, September 11th, 2009

There are multiple reasons you’d need to install a case fan in your computer, but we can all agree that they are there for the sole purpose of making your PC all that much cooler. In my case, I’m installing a fan to keep my graphics card from overheating, as my previous card had overheated and burned out. This was probably due to lack of good airflow in the case… Continue reading

Computer Fan Speed

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

I received an e-mail earlier this week from a reader who was concerned about his computer’s fan speed. During the course of normal operation, the fan would randomly go into a sort of “turbo mode”; spinning really fast for awhile and then going back to normal after a few minutes.

So why does this happen?

It’s simply, really. Your computer… Continue reading

Front and Back USB Ports

Friday, September 4th, 2009

Most modern PCs have USB ports in the front and back. For best results, use the back ports for hardware such as printers, scanners, keyboards, mice, card readers, or digital camera docks—things you never or rarely unplug.

Save the front USB ports for things you plug in/unplug often like digital cameras, mp3 players, “thumb drives”, etc. This is not only a better way… Continue reading

Change your Power Supply Unit

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

The Power Supply Unit, or PSU, is the most important part of any PC, powering each section of your computer, it is essential to make sure it is running smoothly.

There might be multiple reasons for you to change your PSU, but the most common would be that you want to upgrade, as some higher range graphics cards need more wattage than your… Continue reading

Core 2 and Core 2 Duo

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

Back in the day buying a processor was as simple as looking at the megahertz or gigahertz and purchasing based on the bigger number. I know there’s more to it than that like onboard cache and what-not, but in comparison to what we’ve got to work with today, life seemed simpler back then.

So, for example, what’s the difference between Core 2 and… Continue reading

Modern Laptop Batteries

Friday, August 14th, 2009

Recently, Worldstart ran a tip on laptops concerning the dangers of keeping them plugged in for too long. Corrections are in order, I feel, and although some of the information found in the article holds true, I’d like to take the time to explain a key point with more detail.

On the topic of batteries exploding or being ruined form being plugged in… Continue reading

Netbooks

Friday, July 17th, 2009

Are you looking for an affordable, modern way of getting on the Internet and checking your e-mail? You don’t need a gigantic desktop computer or even an expensive laptop, people! All you need to do is take a closer look at netbooks.

A netbook is a wireless enabled, mini laptop primarily used for web browsing and e-mailing. There’s a lot of options out… Continue reading

Single Click Mouse

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

This is another one of those instances where I could’ve sworn we already had a tip on this somewhere, but again I was left in surprise. A reader e-mailed me recently and asked me how to set their mouse to single click in Windows Vista and Windows 7. I went looking through our vast archives and found no such thing, so I thought today would be a good day to… Continue reading

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