Top Desktop Computers Articles
How to Find and Dismantle a Desktop Hard Drive
Your hard drive serves as the primary storage location for your desktop computer. The most common hard disk drives use magnetic platters to hold data; these HDDs trade performance for massive storage capacities. Alternatively, solid state drives, or SSDs, provide considerably faster data access, but they only offer a fraction of the storage capacity and cost significantly more. A third option is hybrid drives that integrate both technologies to provide fast boot speeds and large capacities in a single drive. Your desktop could also house multiple drives, such as a boot SSD and a storage HDD.
Calibrating a NOOK Touch Screen
If your NOOK sometimes ignores input, like tapping or gestures, or is, alternatively, hypersensitive to touch, you can connect remotely to your device from your computer and recalibrate the screen via the command line. Unfortunately, the NOOK does not include any native apps you can use to configure the responsiveness of the touch screen.
How to Put Your iPod's Songs Onto Your iPhone
While Apple recommends consolidating files from an iPod to an iPhone through iTunes or iCloud, that's not possible when you're trying to do so with a device that isn't synchronized with your iTunes/Apple account. In such a situation, getting your music to your iPhone requires third-party file explorer programs. These programs are loaded onto your Mac or Windows PC, and require that you connect your iPod to your computer via USB.
How to Clean an Intel CPU
Unless you live in a laboratory clean room, chances are dust, lint and hair are all accumulating inside your computer every day. The dirtier the inside of your computer becomes, the more likely it is to overheat. Dust can settle on and around your CPU, causing it to overheat and fail. Cleaning your Intel processor is similar to cleaning any other brand of processor, the key is to handle the procedure carefully to prevent inadvertently causing damage as you clean.
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Barnes & Noble generally positions its Nook Tablet as a first-in-class e-book reader with access to millions of e-book titles, but the device is capable of so much more. Running a customized version of the Android operating system, your Nook can handle a range of media, including music. Although the device lacks dedicated software for transferring media from your computer to the Nook, it does function similarly to an external hard drive or thumb drive, so adding music to it -- whether from a Windows or a Mac computer -- is a simple process.
Text messaging has reached mind-boggling proportions: more than 8.5 trillion SMS messages were sent in 2012, according to research firm Portio Research. Unfortunately, when text messages are lost, they are often difficult to recover without hiring a forensic expert, and even then may be lost forever if they're overwritten within your phone's limited memory. However, a number of services allow you to send text messages that you can access on your computer if your phone is lost or damaged.
Most Hewlett Packard desktop computers ship with Wi-Fi cards, giving them wireless capability out of the box. Unlike laptops, where physically disconnecting the wireless radio can conserve battery life, most HP desktops don't have a physical switch to enable the wireless radio. Instead you enable your computer's Wi-Fi radio using Windows settings or the HP Wireless Assistant application.
Gaming on a PC offers a wide variety of experiences, ranging from multiplayer online role-playing games to the latest shooters and driving simulations. In response to this variety, manufacturers have developed a number of different input devices to suit the different categories of computer games. Selecting the right input device can enhance your gaming experience.
Most modern TVs have at least one compatible port you can use to connect your PC and display content or videos from the computer. With most computers, you can display content on a TV using a VGA, DVI or HDMI cable. However, using a cable means your computer must be relatively close to the TV to make the connection. Using wireless technology to connect your PC and TV provides you much more freedom and lets you avoid the hassle and clutter of more wires than absolutely necessary. While you could purchase a Blu-ray or TV with built-in wireless capability, these types of models are usually expensive and may not offer the features or flexibility of other wireless connection alternatives designed specifically for computers.
Your Toshiba computer's BIOS, or Basic Input Output System, stores important hardware and security configuration settings for the system. The BIOS stores these settings in special nonvolatile memory that retains its memory even when you power off the system. If you created a startup or hard-drive password for your Toshiba computer, and subsequently forget it, the BIOS usually prevents you from using the computer or booting into Windows. On many Toshiba desktop computers, and some laptops, you can remove passwords stored in the BIOS and return the system to its factory default hardware settings by removing the CMOS (Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor) battery for a few seconds.
Logitech wireless keyboards are compatible with a wide variety of computers. Many of the keyboards come packaged with a wireless Logitech mouse as well. The installation process for the two is the same. Installing certain wireless keyboard models will require the Logitech Unifying receiver, which allows you to connect up to six Logitech devices to your computer with a single USB receiver. The receiver comes with your keyboard, or you can purchase it separately.
Whether you want to grab a single image from an MPG video or transform the entire video into a series of slides, you have a few options available. If you have Windows Movie Maker or VideoLAN's free VLC video player, you already have the tools you need to capture images from video. ImageGrab is another free option. Each of these programs allows you to quickly and easily capture as many images as you like. Of course, the Print Screen button is always an alternative. Although it involves a little more work, it does save you from installing extra software on your computer and doesn't take long if you only want a couple slides.
Bootable DVDs are a helpful tool for anyone from a home user to a trained PC repair technician. Depending on what’s on the disc, you can install or repair operating systems, boot to an alternate OS, check your system’s hardware or scan for viruses. Using a Dual-Layer DVD gives you twice the space on your bootable disc. There are a vast number of bootable disc images available on the Internet that you can download, but Windows has all the software you’ll need to burn an image to a disc and use it.
CompactFlash cards offer rugged, high-capacity storage. Favorites of professional photographers and consumers alike, CF cards come in a variety of sizes and write speeds. Both of these factors influence price, but you also have to decide between Type I and Type II versions, which are different thicknesses. Don't confuse them with the competing standard, the smaller-format SD; they aren't interchangeable. Once you understand the key differences in capabilities and price, choosing the right CF card should not be an arduous task.
Microsoft sells a range of wireless mouse input devices. These convenient tools can free you from the space limitations and potential cord tangles of a traditional mouse that connects to your computer with a USB or 9-pin serial cable. An included radio transceiver plugs into a free USB port on the computer and picks up the signal from the mouse as you move or click it. To get the mouse working correctly, you must first install on your computer Microsoft's IntelliPoint software. The software is included on the CD that shipped with the mouse and available by free download from Microsoft.
Conservation awareness is changing how people use -- or, rather, don't use -- their computers. While it's still common to leave computers on all night, running a screen saver or something like SETI@Home, for people on tighter budgets, and people in remote locations or living off the grid, power usage is a significant concern, whether it's for a laptop or a desktop workstation.
You can use your BlackBerry mobile device to listen to your favorite tunes for between 30 and 40 hours, depending on your BlackBerry model. Furthermore, you can store approximately 2000 MP3 files -- considering an average file size of 4MB -- on the 8GB memory card of your BlackBerry device. The BlackBerry Media Sync software helps you transfer the MP3 songs from your computer to your mobile device. The program works well with iTunes, as well as with Windows Media Player.
Gone are the days of the monolithic tower on your desktop defining the state of modern computing. Today laptops, notebooks, netbooks and tablets join the venerable desktop PC as conduits for work and play. Even smartphones possess more processing power than many conventional computers, enabling online research and high-quality gaming among other tasks. Although processing and overall capabilities are very good on most computer types, there are situations where one solution works better than another.
Secure Digital High Capacity cards are used for storing photos, videos and music and are designed to be inserted into a wide assortment of electronic devices. The Apple iPhone, however, is not one of those devices. The iPhone doesn't itself have an option to add storage once it's been purchased, nor does it have the slot required for expanded memory like an SDHC card.
Wireless network adapters untether you from traditional workplace location constraints. Installed in your computer or laptop, these adapters let you roam free while surfing the Internet or completing your latest project. Wireless network adapters come in a variety of forms, whether card, USB or router based. No matter which format your hardware requires, the freedom experienced from unhooking your Ethernet cable and working where you choose is worth the effort.
Today's computer buyer has such a wide array of options, it's almost hard to believe that until very recently the choice was simple for most people: a desktop or laptop. However, with the popular adoption of netbooks and touchscreen tablets, there's a computer with a form factor for everyone. Whether you want massive screen real estate, high-powered processors, great industrial design or the ability to check your email while you walk down the street, there's a computer for you.
A desktop PC does not require a router to connect to the Internet; a CAT-5 cable can run directly from the DSL or cable modem Internet signal output to the desktop’s network interface card. There are, however, two reasons to deploy a router with a desktop computer: to connect several computers to a single modem with wired connectivity or to provide a wireless connection for one or more devices. Only higher quality routers supply this second service, called Wi-Fi.
Purchasing a new computer can be very exciting - especially if it's been a few years since you upgraded. If your old computer is still relatively modern, you may want to keep it as a backup or let others in your home use it. If you feel your old desktop PC has outlived its usefulness, though, you may be thinking of just tossing in a dumpster somewhere. However, before you just throw the old machine away, you should know that doing so might be illegal in your area because of environmental and health concerns. Additionally, there are other disposal options available for your old PC that could benefit you as well as others.
HP offers two different designs in its selection of desktop computers. The Envy is a tower PC, which requires a separate monitor and can generally fit under a desk. The HP Pavilion is an all-in-one PC, which integrates a monitor into its design. It takes up less space and looks elegant on a desk or table, but does not have the speed or power of a tower. All-in-one PCs are available with a standard LCD monitors or with a touch-screen monitor. Keeping in mind what you need a computer to do and what you might not need is key to choosing the model that is right for you.
Full-featured GPS models such as the Garmin nuvi series offer a variety of additional features, such as spoken street names and one-touch locations for emergency services. One of the most powerful functions is the ability to add points of interest, or POIs, to the device. This lets you customize your nuvi with anything from historic sites to the location of school zones and traffic-safety cameras. You can download POI files from various sites, or create your own custom files.
There are three main ways to transfer pictures from your LG phone to your computer. Your can manually transfer the photos with the USB cable and software that came with your phone. Alternatively, you can download a photo app onto your smartphone so you can store your photos on the app's cloud server, then later download them to your desktop computer. Finally, some older LG models can also use Bluetooth to transfer photos.
High on everyone's list of frustrations is when you push the power button on your computer and nothing happens. Right up there, but with a scary component, is when the computer starts but doesn't load Windows, or partly loads Windows and then gives an error message saying it can't continue. Before disconnecting all the wires and packing the computer off to the repair shop, there are a few things anyone can try to get the machine working again.
Although most desktop computers offer a hard-wired Ethernet network connection, the location you chose for your computer may not lend itself to running a cable there. The wireless modem and router you choose determines the range, future compatibility and security of your network connection. Also known as gateways, these combination devices enable you to place your networked devices anywhere in your home or office.
Most wireless networks employ a router as the central hub for connecting multiple computers to a wireless network. In most cases, using a router to create a wireless network is the easiest way to connect more than one wireless to the Internet. However, if you only have two PCs and don’t want to invest in a separate routing device, you can create an ad-hoc Wi-Fi network using nothing more than the wireless cards installed in the computers and sharing features already built into Windows.
A 2011 Pew Research Center study found that three out of four Americans who own wireless phones send text messages. However, when you use your wireless provider's normal SMS functions, your messages are stuck on your phone. Using a third-party messaging service, you can send and receive text messages on your phone and also read them online.
There once was a time when a computer's internals were intentionally difficult to access, but times have changed. Today, manufacturers typically meet consumer demands for hardware upgrades by making computers easier to open and exchange critical parts such as hard drives. Although desktops offer more options for upgrading, most laptops manufacturers make components accessible, even to novice users. Your computer's hard drive is the primary storage location for computer and houses your operating system, libraries and program files. If you plan to give away your computer, you should remove the hard drive to prevent other users from recovering personal data. Removing the drive may also be required if it dies, or you want to upgrade to a larger or faster drive.
Linksys E- and EA-Series routers enable the devices on your home network to connect to each other and the Internet without the need for cables. Before setting up the wireless router, make sure you have an active Internet connection; log on to any website or search for something. Measure and note the distance from your modem and desktop computer to the location you have selected for your Linksys wireless router. How long the setup takes will depend on the speed of your Internet connection.
In an August 2011 article, PC Magazine listed Time Warner Road Runner as one of fastest Internet service providers in the country. With average download speeds of over 12 megabits per second, a Time Warner cable connection not only lets you surf the Web and stream movies quickly on a single PC, but provides adequate bandwidth for connecting additional computers as well. With a Time Warner cable modem and a wireless router, you can connect multiple desktop and laptop computers to the high-speed Internet connection without cumbersome or unsightly Ethernet cables. You can add wireless support to your network whether you use a Time Warner modem/router combo device or a standalone modem and a separate router.
If you want to play a 3-D game, watch a movie or show a presentation on a larger screen, connecting the laptop to a television can be an ideal solution. Many modern TVs have VGA ports for connecting laptops, but even if yours does not, multiple solutions exist for connecting your laptop via an adapter or converter box.
When you enable the Wi-Fi wireless features on your router, you immediately put the data on all your connected computers at risk. Hackers or unauthorized users who use, or "piggy-back," your Wi-Fi connection also consume precious bandwidth that could slow your browsing and streaming experience and perhaps even cause your Internet bill to increase if you go over your allotted data transfer amount. Securing your router and network from outside intruders is relatively simple and takes only a few minutes.
The typical home Internet signal comes in over a telephone line or cable, goes through the modem provided by the Internet service provider and reaches your desktop via an Ethernet cable that plugs into the back of your desktop computer. Wi-Fi connects the modem with your desktop computer by using radio signals. The technology dates back to a decision by the FCC in 1985 to open radio-frequency spectrum at 2.4GHz and 5.8GHz for unlicensed operation. By 1997, the 802.11 committee of the IEEE had developed a standard that allowed for wireless networking, or Wi-Fi. Various versions of the 802.11 standard are still used.
Restoring a Dell PC to its factory default condition erases all of the files on the hard drive and reinstalls the operating system, as well as any proprietary applications that were shipped with the computer. In the past, users would have to reinstall the OS on a Dell PC using recovery discs, but since the release of newer OSes like Windows Vista and Windows 7, the recovery software is more commonly installed to the hard drive, and the restoration process is almost entirely automated. The software used to recover your system varies depending on the make and model of your PC.
Wireless routers open up a completely new world of remote connectivity for your laptop, netbook, smartphone, streaming media player and even your game console. The more sophisticated dual band wireless routers perform at upload and download speeds that approach many hardwired units. If you already have Internet service and a cable or DSL modem, adding a wireless router is simply a matter of plugging in both ends of a CAT-5 cable and plugging in the power cord to your nearest wall socket.
For many years, desktop computers were considered by most experts to be superior to laptops for computer buyers who demanded the best performance at the lowest cost. However, laptop computers have become faster and more affordable in recent years. They now offer sufficient performance for most applications along with the added benefit of portability. By weighing these and other factors against your priorities, you can choose between a desktop and laptop and buy the computer that best meets your needs.
ITunes patches and updates are a vital component in managing and safeguarding your Apple mobile device. ITunes manages all aspects of your Apple experience, from purchasing applications and storing music and movies to backing up the content of your iPhone, iPad or iPod. Updates provide important bug fixes that improve the stability and performance of the software, as well as support new features so you can continue to enjoy the latest application releases. You can update iTunes by manually downloading and installing the updates, configuring iTunes to automatically receive and install each update or by using Apple Software Update.
If you've noticed your computer slow to a crawl when multiple programs or files are simultaneously opened, you might consider adding more random access memory, or RAM. Increasing RAM allows more programs to run and more files to open without having to exchange data to the slower hard drive. This can significantly speed up your computer. However, your hardware and operating system limit the amount of RAM you can actually use. Therefore, you should always check these limits before buying RAM so you don't potentially waste your money.
The Secure Digital memory card standard ensures interoperability among devices. It's supported by most small electronic devices that use memory cards for storage. A regular SD card uses the first version of the standard, which limits its maximum storage capacity. SDHC cards, which use a later version of the standard, can store more data and may also support ultra high-speed data transfer rates that a regular SD card does not support. SD standards are only backward compatible, which means that an SDHC card may not work in every device or card reader that supports the SD standard.
When you initially set up your Netgear wireless router, you had two options. You could manually configure settings through the browser-based interface or use the Smart Wizard to hold your hand through the process. After this initial setup, the Smart Wizard is no longer available unless you reset your Netgear router back to factory defaults. That leaves you with only the manual option for subsequently accessing wireless settings.
By transferring images from a digital camera to a PC, you can share your memorable moments with friends and family online or use them to create a video slideshow. In addition, it allows you to free up space on the device. Many digital cameras include a USB cable that can be used to transfer media files from the device to a PC. Alternatively, you can use a memory card reader to transfer the pictures. A variety of laptops, desktops and printers include a built-in card reader. If the PC or printer doesn’t include this feature, you can purchase an external card reader.
As with any electronic device, working with your computer demands a safe approach to maintain its well-being as well as your own safety. Keeping your computer running in peak condition should be the cardinal rule to prolong and preserve your machine’s utility and performance. Several other computer safety rules should be considered to achieve this goal.
Kindle e-readers were not initially designed to directly support podcast downloads. The 8GB Kindle Fire, 4GB Kindle Touch, Kindle DX and Kindle Keyboard, 2GB second-generation Kindle or 256MB first-generation Kindle all support MP3 audio. The internal capacity of each Kindle model influences how many podcasts and audio titles you can install along with book titles. For all models other than the Kindle 4 which does not support audio, this has the additional benefit of music play back as well as podcasts. Adding podcast audio allows you to increase your Kindle's versatility, mimicking a full-featured tablet rather than simple an e-reader.
Most modern Dell laptops and tablets include a built-in wireless adapter that you can use to connect to Wi-Fi hot spots and surf the Web. With a desktop PC, however, unless you specifically request that Dell install a wireless adapter when you order, it will not include one. In fact, very few desktops include wireless network adapters; instead, these computers connect to networks and routers through a standard RJ-45 Ethernet cable. You can add a USB wireless adapter to a Dell desktop computer easily enough; just plug into a USB port and go in most cases. However, if you want an adapter with better range, and one that does not take up a valuable USB slot or clutter your desk, install an internal PCI wireless card.
Cleaning is an essential part of routine computer maintenance. Keeping your computer's intake and exhaust vents clear prevents overheating problems, while cleaning the monitor ensures that you see clear images and text to avoid eyestrain. If you have allergies, cleaning the keyboard and mouse or touchpad may help you avoid flare-ups due to dust and other allergens. Giving your computer a thorough cleaning requires just a few minutes. The tools needed to do the job are affordable and readily available.
Comcast Internet connections not only download applications and stream movies quickly on a single computer, but offer more than enough bandwidth to ensure speedy connections for additional computers as well. With a wireless router -- whether it be one you rent from Comcast or one you purchase on your own -- you can connect two or more desktop and laptop computers to a high-speed Internet connection -- as well as to each other, so that you can share files and devices between them -- without running cumbersome or unsightly network cables.
After installing a wireless router in your home, you may decide to cut down on cable clutter by establishing a wireless connection between it and your desktop computer. Some modern desktop computers have wireless cards installed, but many do not. If your desktop computer has a wireless card, you can locate it from within the operating system using the Windows Device Manager. Alternatively, perform a physical inspection by looking inside the computer's case.