Saturday, August 16, 2008

Asus's new Gaming Desktop

Asus looking to capture the burgeoning gaming PC market in India has released its ARES CG6155 desktop. This desktop seeks to combine an array of top-notch components to provide gamers with performance and stability.

The ARES CG6155 desktop boasts of an Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9650 processor, up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM and up to 4TB of storage space. This powerful specification is complimented by two power supplies, 3-way SLI with GeForce GTX280s and an NVIDIA nForce 790i Ultra board. The ARES CG6155 will be preloaded with Microsoft Vista Ultimate.

Logitech's USB Hubs for Laptops

Logitech has launched a 4-Port USB hub for notebooks and a Premium model of the same.

These new peripherals further expand Logitech's line of notebook products, which also includes notebook stands, notebook mice and presenters, webcams, headsets, speakers and bags and also establishes a new notebook peripheral category for Logitech - USB hubs.

"Executive travel compels us to have thin and light notebooks. This, usually, ends up in scaling down of some notebook features to enhance portability. One such feature that is sacrificed is the USB port. Many products today connect to the notebook through this port. These include printers, mice, webcams, notebook stands, digital cameras, Internet data cards, pen drives; the list is growing by the day." says Subrotah Biswas, Country Manager, India and SAARC, Logitech. "In order to cater to make the lives of notebook users easier, we have added these hi-speed USB Hubs to our already existing wide range of notebook peripherals," added Mr Biswas.

The Logitech 4-Port USB 2.0 Hub for notebooks provides high-speed connectivity with speeds up to 480 Mbps. Its compact design allows users to plug devices into the front and back of the hub.

The Logitech Premium 4-Port USB Hub for notebooks also provides users with connectivity up to 480 Mbps. It has indicator lights over each port that helps users understand whether the connections have been set or not. The bundled external power adapter lets one use all the high-power USB devices, while the bundled carrying case protects the hub when the user is traveling.

The 4-Port USB 2.0 hub is priced at Rs. 895 while the Premium 4-Port USB hub is priced at Rs. 1495.

The USB hubs come with a one-year replacement warranty and are available at all electronic showrooms.

A 2 watt computer

CherryPal Inc, has launched its cloud computer, that is a completely new type of PC with no moving parts and containing 80 percent fewer components. It uses only two watts of power and is designed to be highly secure. The CherryPal, which is currently available for pre-orders, retails for $249 and requires no monthly subscription fee and no other hidden costs.

"Today's typical PC is based on a computing model created 25 years ago, before the Internet, web browsers and global warming," said CherryPal CEO Max Seybold. "We have developed a new computing model that makes CherryPal the easiest to use, greenest, most affordable computer available today."

The CherryPal desktop consumes just two watts of power, compared to the 114 watts of power used by the average desktop machine, delivering a 98 percent decrease in energy consumption. Using 80 percent fewer components dramatically reduces the amount of resources it takes to manufacture a PC. Also, since there are no moving parts, the CherryPal desktop can last a decade or longer, eliminating the need to replace a computer every two to three years.

The CherryPal C100 desktop is simple to set up and boots in 20 seconds. Users just have to enter a username and password to access the CherryPalCloud, which offers an easy, intuitive interface. CherryPal has no exposed operating system, so all applications and functions are managed solely by a Firefox-based browser. CherryPal does all operation system and application upgrading and installation, meaning there is no maintenance required. Because there are no moving parts, there is little possibility of hardware failure.

The CherryPal Hardware Specs consist of Freescale's MPC5121e mobileGT processor, 800 MIPS (400 MHz) Processor, 256MB of DDR2 DRAM, 4GB NAND Flash-based solid state drive, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, two USB 2.0 ports and one 10/100 Ethernet with RJ-45 jack.

Gigabyte's new P43-based Motherboard

Gigabyte has launched EP43-S3L motherboards based on the new Intel P43 chipset.

The motherboard, GA-EP43-S3L, delivers a 1600MHz Front Side Bus by overclocking for the latest Intel Core 2 multi-core processors, and supports 45nm CPUs. It delivers several advanced Gigabyte innovations including the DES Advanced, Ultra Durable in CPU VRM, DualBIOS design, which provide optimized power savings, ultra cooling and ultra data protection.

The board is based on the Intel P43 + ICH10 Chipset, supports 45nm Intel Core2 multi-core processors with FSB 1600 (O.C.) MHz.,DDR2 1200 (O.C), 2 PCI-E x16 2.0 interface, Integrated high speed SATA 3Gb/s and 8 channel High definition audio.


Key points mentioned in the video:

  • Photo Browser: Basic drag-and-drop movements as well as the two-finger resizing of photos that users come to expect from multitouch.
  • Video Browser: Videos can be manipulated exactly the same way as photos, both when stopped or while playing.
  • Object Auto-Rotation: Pushing an image with a finger not centered on the image will cause it to rotate while it slides away.
  • Circular Menu: The menu for the Sphere's software, accessible by holding down both hands on top of the Sphere for a second. In this video, the menu contains the following options: RoundTable, Videos, Photos, Painting, Pong, Globe, and Navigation.
  • Send-to-Dark-Side: Placing a hand facedown on an object will send it over to the opposite side of the Sphere.
  • Live omni-directional camera: The Sphere can provide an outward view outside of itself, which includes its surroundings and the user.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

How to Polish Your Scratched Glossy Notebook


No brand is immune from this problem, with most manufactures offering at least one notebook with a glossy plastic exterior. Below is a small list outlining some popular laptops that have glossy finishes:

Lenovo: IdeaPad Y series, SL series
Toshiba: Satellite and new Qosmio series
Dell: New Vostros, M1730
HP: Almost the entire consumer lineup

Materials Needed

  • One scratched notebook
  • Polish (Novus 3 Step Plastic Polish, Meguiars Scratch-X)
  • Clean soft cloth (one for each step)
  • Patience

I chose Novus plastic cleaner for this guide since I had good luck with this polish in the past. You probably won't find it at your local autoparts store, but it can be easily and cheaply purchased online. I went to McMaster-Carr for this purchase, where it cost $17 plus shipping. The Meguiar's Scratch-X came from my local Advanced Auto store for $8, but it can be found online as well. The Scratch-X polish was added to the mix since it was a finer polish than the Novus cleaners and helped give the notebook a much smoother final look.

Cleaning the notebook

Before you even touch the notebook with some of the fine rubbing compound to buff out scratches, you want the notebook to be clean enough to eat off of. You need to remove any leftover dust or fine grit that might re-scratch your notebook during the polishing process, which would make it look much worse than when you started. A damp cloth sprayed with the Novus Step 1 polish (just a cleaning spray) will work, or plain soap and water.

Polishing the notebook

Start off with the Novus #3 or Novus #2 depending on how bad the scratches are. If you have a very mild scuff that you can't feel with your fingernail, start with the #2 fine scratch remover. If it is deep enough to catch your fingernail, you will need to start with the #3 heavy scratch remover. Apply the polish to a clean cloth and gently rub the surface of the notebook. A circular motion or just up and down will work fine. Continue rubbing the polish onto the surface until it starts to dry and absorb into your cloth. When barely anything is left on the surface, wipe the dried polish bits off the notebook and inspect the surface.

Don't be alarmed if you see many fine scratches. If you started with the number 3 cleaner, it will leave a mild haze. The important thing are the original blemishes on the notebook, and if they have been removed or greatly lessened. Deep scratches will be impossible to completely remove unless you polish away a good deal of the plastic layer. I prefer to just smooth off the rough edges and let them blend into the notebook surface.

Move onto the finer polish once you find the original blemish to be acceptable. Apply it in the same manner, with a gentle motion and continue until the polish completely dries and absorbs into your cloth. Continue this step until the original polished area matches the surrounding notebook surface. It might take a few reapplications before all of the haze and fine scratches are gone. If you had deep scratches when you started, you will still see them, but they should be less noticeable and blended into the glossy finish.

Below is a quick example of a line of fine scratches being removed from the lid of a glossy Acer notebook. First picture is before, second is after the #3 polish, and last is after the fine polish.

Notice how the bulk of the scratches were removed, and you are left with the deeper marks. Once the highly scuffed area is polished the visibility of the scratches is greatly reduced. You are only left with deep blemishes that are only visible under close scrutiny. Each stage of the polishing took about 30-45 seconds and the entire process took roughly five minutes. Additional polishing effort (much greater time) might yield better results.

Results may vary

Depending on the exact glossy surface and the process used you might remove all marks or be left with some leftovers from an abusive past. While our example shows the process with regular "by hand" application, some of our more adventurous readers might experiment with power buffers or additional applications. This could yield much better results, but also runs the risk of wearing away more of the surface with the possibility of damaging the glossy notebook further.

Review CODi Phantom CT3

The Phantom CT3 Specifications

  • Dimensions: 16.5" x 6.25" x 12.25"
  • Notebook compartment: approx. 14.5" x 11.5" x 2"
  • Weight: 3.67 lbs. (CODi says 2.8 lbs.)
  • Military grade ballistic materials
  • Business organization system
  • Butterfly design with a dedicated laptop compartment for a clear x-ray image
  • Ergonomic shoulder strap
  • Carry-all sleeve
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty


The Phantom CT3 is a quality bag with some great features beyond the "checkpoint friendly" selling point. In fact, other than the price - a whopping $225 - it was hard to find many cons with this bag.

On top of that, CODi's Phantom CT3 seems to pass every test that TSA has set for manufacturers but only time will tell. We are going to try to test this bag in an actual airport once the training as been completed so stay tuned for an update sometime in the coming weeks.


  • "Checkpoint friendly"
  • Stores a ton of accessories
  • Good amount of padding
  • Lifetime warranty


  • Side buckles are plastic
  • Bland design
  • Very expensive


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Motion Computing’s first semi-rugged tablet PV, the F5, will feature Authentec’s fingerprint sensor technology for protecting stored data and networks the tablet connects to.

Other mobile devices have adopted this security module considered to be the most advanced, and these include cell phones such as the Asus M536 and Asus M50 and M70 notebooks.

"We worked very closely with our customers on the development of the new F5 tablet, and among the requirements was best-in-class security. That's why we turned to Motion's longtime fingerprint sensor supplier AuthenTec to add convenient security to this innovative new tablet," said Jerome Kearns, Motion's SVP of Operations. "We believe that the AuthenTec fingerprint sensor helps simplify password management while increasing data security on highly mobile devices."

Designed and optimized for field workers’ needs, Motion Computing F5 tablet PC is small and semi-rugged with magnesium-alloy internal frame and Elastomer overmolding.

Available at a suggested retail price of $2,699, Motion Computing F5 runs on Windows Vista Business or XP Tablet PC Edition being powered by the Intel Core Solo U1400 processor clocked at 1.2GHz, and integrating 1GB RAM memory, 40GB HDD storage, wireless module, optional mobile broadband module, optional barcode scanner, optional SSD drive, high-clarity display, and built-in 2MP camera.

"We are pleased to further expand our longstanding relationship with Motion, and we look forward to supporting the successful launch of their new semi-rugged tablet PC," said Tom Aebli, AuthenTec's senior director of PC Marketing. "Our durable fingerprint sensor adds convenient security to the F5. Today's field service personnel will experience reliable and consistent operation when they're ready to put the F5 to work. That's because our TruePrint-based fingerprint sensor reads below the surface of the skin to quickly and easily image their worn, calloused or dirty fingerprints."


These are the walls of a Human-Computer Interaction Institute lab at Carnegie Mellon, and as you can see, they provide plenty of opportunities to create such interactions on the fly when you snag your sweater on some spiky solder leads or that ZIF socket handle. Chris Harrison, a PhD student, bought old motherboards on eBay by the pound to completely adorn the lab in mo-bos. And while this is great for the computer science lab and maybe OK for the garage (maybe), don't even think about doing this in your bedroom if you ever want to have sex again. It does look pretty sweet, though.

Why We Always Write to the Hard Disk

Just to clarify, we're not posting this "5.25 floppy inches" shirt for actual purchase and real world wear. But if you absolutely cannot resist, then go ahead. Just wear it to bed when you're sleeping alone. That way the precious illusion is maintained that the solitude is optional. [Geek Swag via Gearfuse]

Make Your Own USB Batman Spotlight

Unless you are a race car driver or something, work is boring. This DIY project is slightly more fun than spinning around in your seat and does a good job of killing around 2 hours of time. And, when all is said and done, you will have the satisfaction that comes with building a USB Batman spotlight that is fairly useless but amusing. It is an easy hack to pull off, and most of the materials are basic--bottle caps, tin foil, some cardboard etc.

Intel expands it's range of processors

Intel on the launching spree has loads to reveal to the sector that is inspiring new comers walking in all the time. The Nehalem processor has an authorized name, the i7. Intel has provided the Nehalem an authorized name, the Core i7. There will be a standard adaptation and an Extreme publication. "The Core name is and will be our flagship PC processor brand moving further," revealed Intel Corporation supervisory vice president and general manager Sean Maloney. "Expect Intel to meeting point even more marketing resources predicted around that name and the Core i7 products opening now."

0 watt displays

Fujitsu Siemens' latest line of LCDs will have a standby mode that draws no power, compared to the 1-6 watts of power competitors' monitors draw in standby. According to BIOS Magazine, the technology will be included in the 20-inch P20W-5 ECO and 22-inch P22W-5 ECO, and consists of a switch in the power supply breaks when the connected PC goes idle, and powers back on when any key is pressed (essentially, your keyboard acts as the power button).

AMDHD Radeon 4850 X2 revelaed

AMD has publicized their new-fangled HD Radeon 4850 X2 and HD Radeon 4870 X2. According to Neal Robison of AMD, these 2 chips are preordained to board the 'super high end' of the market. The 2 chips are dual-GPU with 635MHz core clock and 900MHz GDDR3 for the 4850 X2 and 750MHz core clock and 900MHz GDDR5 for the 4870 X2.With this supremacy approaches a high draw of force - the 4870 X2, when at crest, draws 270 watts, and the 4850 X2 drawing 230 watts. The HD Radeon 4850 X2 is cost at $399, while the Radeon 4870 X2 is tagged at $599.

Pinnacle PCTV HD Pro Stick 801e available now


The Pinnacle PCTV HD Pro Stick 801e is a very-portable TV tuner intended for the traveler. That means watch LIVE standard or high definition TV on your notebook. The PCTV HD Pro Stick is in reality 3 devices in 1: HDTV Tuner & FM radio receiver, DVR, and A/V adapter to convey camcorder recordings into digital format.

Upon opening the wrap up for the apparatus, you'll find the following tidily placed inside:

  • USB 2.0 TV tuner for ATSC/ClearQAM/NTSC and FM radio greeting
  • Mini remote control together with batteries
  • Portable telescopic high-gain antenna
  • A/V Adapter wire
  • USB extender wire
  • Printed swift start guide
  • CD with Pinnacle TV Center Pro and Video Spin editing software
When you 1st pick up the PCTV HD Pro Stick, you’ll be surprised at the size of this appliance consider it can do so much. Measuring the size of nearly all USB Pen drives, the Pinnacle PCTV HD Pro Stick is about 3.2-inch in length. Whip it out, plug it in and you have on the spot TV! What wasn’t so stimulating was the incorporated high gain antenna that reminded me of amazing from the 1980’s. However, Pinnacle has also incorporated a remote control so you can punt back and relax while flipping through channels while meeting at the beach!

6 battery charger

In order to solve the problem of laptop computers used by students in classrooms, that provide 3 hours of battery life on average, Oncore Power Systems came up with a device capable to recharge 6 batteries simultaneously via the 6 bays.
This way, an entire classroom will be powered up cost effectively.

Oncore 6-Bay Charger is designed especially for Apple laptop computers, MacBooks and iBooks, and comes with 6 rechargeable batteries, the device measuring 11 x 7 inches.
The charger is small and sleek, coming in white to match the Apple laptops’ look, while it takes almost 8 hours to power the batteries.

"Budget cuts are keeping schools from upgrading equipment, and many classrooms are using older notebooks. Students at our local schools have complained of batteries that last only 10-15 minutes before needing to be changed. This is a distraction for the students and the teachers. What schools need is a low cost power upgrade solution tailored for their specific needs. The right charger, combined with six new high capacity Oncore batteries, can maximize students' run time and improve a school's performance on older notebooks at a fraction of the cost of buying a new machine today," said Mark Rapparport, president of Oncore Power Systems and design leader.

This device is simple to use as it doesn’t offer additional functionalities besides the battery charging, and it detects the inserted batteries automatically, but after evaluating its state of health, as a safety measure. It has 2 charging bays, each for 3 batteries, which charge one battery at a time, starting with the first one inserted. There is one LED light for each bay indicating the power status.
Compatible Apple laptop models are: 12-inch iBook, 14-inch iBook and MacBook.

Available at authorized resellers at a price of $395 each, the Apple laptop computer battery chargers are the latest products released by Oncore Power, a US provider of high performance replacement power products for laptops and electronic devices.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Get the serial number you need

Get the serial number you need ! (For Certain Things)

* Go to Google.

* In the search field type: "Product name" 94FBR

* Where, "Product Name" is the name of the item you want to find the serial number for.

* And voila - there you go - the serial number you needed.


Quite simple really. 94FBR is part of a Office 2000 Pro cd key that is widely distributed as it bypasses the activation requirements of Office 2K Pro. By searching for the product name and 94fbr, you guarantee two things. 1) The pages that are returned are pages dealing specifically with the product you're wanting a serial for. 2) Because 94FBR is part of a serial number, and only part of a serial number, you guarantee that any page being returned is a serial number list page.

See these example searches:

"Photoshop 7" 94FBR
"Age of Mythology" 94FBR
"Nero Burning Rom 5.5" 94FBR


Logitech research revealed that the vast majority of people who use a notebook PC are mobile both within and outside the home,” said Rory Dooley, Logitech senior vice president and general manager of the Control Devices business unit. “To meet the demands associated with increased mobility, the V550 mouse offers a complete set of features to make it easier to use a mouse with a notebook when moving from the kitchen to the living room or from one’s desk to a meeting. Now, you won’t have to choose between grabbing your mouse or a cup of coffee.”

Based on this, the new Logitech V550 Nano Cordless Laser Mouse designed for laptop computers features the Clip-and-Go dock for clipping the mouse to your system and carry both with you wherever you go.
Its nano receiver used for the wireless connectivity is very small, and the On/Off button saves power when you don’t need the mouse, providing up to 18 months of operating. In addition, the mouse is designed so that when you store inside the battery compartment it turns Off automatically.
Using the 2.4GHz wireless technology, the interference is significantly reduced, and the data rate is 300 times faster.

On the mouse we find the scroll button designed for very fast scrolling, being capable to cover 10,000 lines in just 7 seconds and with only one spin, while the button below it is in charge with switching between the applications opened on the desktop.
It is available at $59.99 and comes in silver grey and light blue, with 2 Clip-and-Go docks, 1 Clip-and-Go storage box, 1 Clip-and-Go removal tool, desktop USB extension stand, 2 AA batteries, 2 cleaning wipes, a quick-start guide and the 3 –year warranty.

Logitech V550 Nano Cordless Laser Mouse seems the best cordless laptop laser mouse solution of the moment thanks to this smart and practical idea of clipping it on the system.


Laptops are machines, and they do overheat. No matter what any company says about their laptops, it is an inevitable fact that all laptops do tend to overheat at some moment or the other. Now firstly, let us understand how laptops work.

Laptops have an internal system of functioning, just like any CPU or for that matter, any other electronic device. Now since a lot of electricity passes through these internal parts, and a LOT of processes take place every second of you operating the machine, as a result, these circuits and systems tend to become hot due to all the activity.

Before you start blaming your laptop manufacturer right away, you must understand that most laptops manufactured after the year 2003 tend to have prevention measures in place for overheating. These laptops have certain vents on their lower body (on the sides and bottom) which allow the hot air to pass out of the laptop after it is blown away by a fan inside the machine (or a blower)

I know certain tech geeks who insist on taking off the lower covering of their laptop whenever they go hardcore gaming or into any other process that requires a lot of CPU usage. This helps a LOT in fact but for most normal people this isn't the obvious *way to go* solution. So what can you do to prevent your laptop from overheating then?

- Don't use in high temperatures
Don't use your laptop when the temperature is high (Above 40 degrees). This might cause your laptop to overheat very quickly (as normally the laptop is hotter than the outside temperature, which is called the base temperature).

- Prevent use in humid conditions
Don't use your laptop for a very long time (exceeding two hours) or for gaming when the conditions are above 60% humid. Because this causes the hot air blown out of the laptop to find it difficult to escape (Since vapor is generally denser than normal air and the molecules find it pave their way out)

- NEVER Block the vents
Your Laptop's air outlets or vents are its best friends, NEVER block them, especially the vents at the bottom of the laptop, they put a lot of air out, therefore always keep your laptop on something which provides sufficient area for the hot air to escape (preferably some sort of a stand). If you keep your laptop on your lap, try to put something on your lap first so it doesn't block the vents.

- Never leave a running laptop closed
Sometimes people tend to leave their running laptops closed, as in, they powered a laptop on but didn't turn it off and just closed it that way and kept it inside some enclosed place. If you do this, there is a high chance your laptop's hardware gets fried due to the trapping of hot air.

- Don't go hardcore
Laptops are meant for casual usage, yet sometimes people insist on gaming on their laptops, there is no problem with gaming on a laptop, but when you go on for a LONG time (2 hours plus) it becomes inevitable for the laptop to sustain some damage due to overheating caused by your actions. Not just gaming, this applies even to the usage of softwares which are high on CPU usage (Photoshop, CS, Flashy GUI stuff). If you want to game/use these softwares, do it, but try not to exceed a few hours.

- Turn your laptop OFF sometimes
A lot of people don't turn their laptop off, which is not just a major cause of all overheating problems, but actually of ALL laptop problems. Ideally, one should turn their laptop off for at least five-six hours everyday so that it is cooled off. By cooled off I don't mean the cooling of the outer crust, but there are SEVERAL internal parts of laptops which don't cool easily, they need time, and to get the most out of your laptop, you need to take care of them as well.

- Get more cooling
You could install some extra cooling for your laptop, something like a small water cooler, you know the ones found in certain high end gaming CPU's, something like that, and then you could affix a place for the actual blower inside the laptop in a way such that the cooler could be taken out and carried with you and your laptop, it would require extra power supply of course.

- Clean your Laptop sometimes
You must clean the internal area of your laptop sometimes, the recommended time is every two months. IF you believe you cannot do it, take your laptop to some repair shop and get it done. A laptop is frequently exposed to outside surroundings and hence has the biggest chance of catching dust hence obstructing the flow of hot air to the outside of the laptop.

Also, if ever your Laptop gets overheated and shuts down (for the first time) DO NOT turn it on until it has cooled off, or else there is a big possibility your laptop would get overheated and get some permanent damage on it.


Purchasing a notebook computer can be a tricky process. With so many possible options and specs how can you be sure you are making the best purchase. Here we will take a look at some of the most commonly asked questions on notebook PCs in an effort to make your buying decision a little easier.

Dual core or single core? Which offers better/faster performance given the same application?

Unfortunately there is no simple answer. In most cases, the level of performance is directly related to the type of application and the manner in which it was programmed. For a dual-core processor to fully maximize it's performance, the application has to be programmed to allow multi-thread processing.

However, even when dealing with single-thread processing, the faster speed of the Core Duo chip set very well might give it a significant edge if the the application is frequently transferring data. Conversely, a quicker single-core chip will usually out-perform a slower dual-core processor when it comes to single-thread number crunching assignments.

AMD vs Intel. Which processor is better for both school assignments and high level gaming?

While numerous reports have the Intel Core 2 Duo out-performing equivalent AMD processors, an equally important consideration will rest with the choice of graphics card. Laptops with AMD processors have the advantage in regards to being affordable. The final decision may come down to whether or not your financial situation will play a large role in choosing a processor type. If it will, then it might possibly make more sense to select a AMD based machine with a respectable graphics card.

Processing speed or RAM? Which is more important?

This is another question that depends greatly on the type of applications you will be using most frequently. For applications that require large amounts of computations, such as scientific calculations, a faster processor will often be more valuable. On the other hand, applications that are constantly transferring large amounts of data to and from the hard drive will perform better with more RAM.

There are also scenarios in which both increased processing speed and RAM will be ideal, such as gaming and other processing and memory intensive activities.

In general, remember that it is much easier to upgrade the RAM via third party options and that due to warranties, you will often be stuck with the processor you have chosen.

HyperMemory and TurboCache memory?

HyperMemory and TurboMemory are characteristics that increase video RAM by using memory from system RAM in discrete graphics cards. Still, discrete graphics memory is exceptionally quicker, therefore, the more discrete memory a graphics card has, the higher the performance.

Battery duration?

One simple way to increase your laptop's battery life is to reduce the screen brightness. Also consider disabling wireless applications when they are not in use. Optical drives also sap the power from your battery, consider copying files to your hard drive in lieu of frequently accessing them from a CD.

Certain companies, such as Fujitsu, offer a secondary battery that can be switched with the optical drive. This will give for longer battery life away from outlets.

Leaving the battery always plugged in?

The majority of modern batteries switch into a "trickle" state when a battery reaches or is near 100 percent charged, however, the lithium cells will continue to heat and the result is a shorter battery life. It is suggested that the battery should be removed when the laptop is connected to power outlets for long periods of time. Also, when storing a battery for extended periods, remember to reduce the battery charge to 40 percent in order to prevent cell deterioration.

HD-DVD or Blu-ray? Are they the same?

These are two separate and competing formats of HD media. They are completely incompatible and require specialized optical drives to read their respective discs. HP has recently announced a hybrid optical drive capable of reading both formats for desktop PCs. It is assumed that in time this technology will become available for notebooks.

Vista or XP? Should I switch?

Quite honestly, it is currently better to have Windows XP installed unless you are using advanced features only supported by Vista or if you have recently bought Microsoft Office 07. Although Vista is capable of handling nearly all XP programs, many bugs reported still remain un-addressed. In addition, many offices have software applications that are specifically programmed for the XP operating system.

Running Windows Vista on a MacBook?

Running Windows Vista with an Apple MacBook requires the latest installation of Boot Camp 1.2, which is available for download on Apple's web site. Make sure that your machine meets the minimum operating requirements before installing Vista, and also note that Apple programs only allow the 32-bit version of the operating system.

Windows vs. Mac OS

This comes down to a question of personal preference. Both systems offer a variety of similar applications, and both operating systems have there positives and their drawbacks. One thing to consider is that certain business applications may only be available for one operating system or the other. Also consider the functionality of both operating systems in regards to your everyday life when making your final decision.


Nicholas Negroponte has a problem . He has an amazing product at a blockbuster price - a high- powered, full-featured laptop for $188. The trouble is, he needs a huge global market to make it an amazing success.

For that you have to know first what is included in that laptop . Really you will be suprised because The OLPC program is among the most impressive I have ever seen.

The laptop, a nearly unbreakable one, is an educational tool. It doesn't need electricity from a wall and can be recharged via solar power, a crank, a pull cord or a pedal and the battery last 23 hours. It won't break.

It will connect to any other laptop nearby for an ad-hoc network to the Internet making any laptop in the area its own wireless router for all of the others. If stolen from a child it is deactivated and won't work.

The 7.5-inch screen is bright in direct sunlight.And it has a brighter display than any Dell, Apple or HP !! It won't need tech support and doesn't run Windows. It has only two internal cables and no hard drive. In short, it's a handheld technological miracle !!


We live in a world of advancement in every field. We also need some better features to enhance the way we look at our computer monitors. A company called Display Link on contract with Toshiba will change the way we look at our monitors soon.

Toshiba’s latest Dynadock Laptop will deliver a very high resolution images and pictures via a USB 2.0 connection. Dynadock PA3542E-1PRP plugs into a single USB port and can drive pictures and images upto 1680 x 1050 pixels while powering up the sound systems, USB peripherals, PDA’s and so on.

The purpose of this is to avoid the maximum usage of cable clutter which the standard VGA lead monitors have used. The company is on a search to use wireless USB to drive monitors without any cables used.


I have been using a laptop for more than 2 years and the biggest challenge that I still face is to make it go for longer periods when operating in battery mode. Over these years I have found and learnt many tips in improving the laptop’s battery performance and would like to share them here.

laptop Battery

1. Screen Brightness: When operating in battery mode dim your screen brightness. All the today’s modern laptops come with this feature, this usually can be done by using the Function Key (Fn) or by your manufacturer provided software.

2. Hibernate instead of Shut Down: I have seen many people using laptops are not aware of hibernate feature hence they tend to use the more power expensive shut down instead hibernate. For those who are not aware of hibernation: “Hibernate saves an image of your desktop with all open files and documents, and then it powers down your computer. When you turn on power, your files and documents are open on your desktop exactly as you left them.” You can use hibernate option instead of standby in situations where you are required to leave your laptop unattended for more than 20 minutes.

3. Clean your laptop’s air vents regularly: Your battery works most efficiently when the operating temperature of your laptop is lower. To avoid overheating and improve thermal efficiency you need to avoid dust build-up in air vents. If your air vents are dust free the cooling fan would run at much lower speed there by reducing the load on your laptop battery. I usually blow dust out of air vents once a week, you can select your time interval depending upon your usage.

4. Close unwanted programs that you do not use: Close unnecessary programs that are running in background which you do not intend to use. For example you can close IM applications that are not required. Another advantage of closing unwanted applications it frees up your RAM and this avoids using the power expensive virtual memory.

5. Don’t perform Hard disk and CPU intensive tasks: The more CPU and hard disk intensive task you carry out the more pressure you put on your laptop battery. Avoid playing games or watching movies when in battery mode. Always shutdown your desktop indexing program like Google desktop and other desktop indexing programs as they tend to use more hard disk and CPU resources there by increasing the load on your laptop.

6. Turn Off unused Devices: You can turnoff bluetooth, Wifi, infrared devices when not in use. Most of the devices get powered from your laptops USB port hence makes lot of sense to avoid using them when in battery mode.

7. Laptops with Intel Centrino Processors: Laptops that are using Intel Centrino processors make sure Intel speed step technology is enabled in your BIOS.

8. Make best use of your Operating Systems (OS) Power Management feature: All the present generation operating systems (OS) come with good set of power saving features so make best use of them. You can configure how your laptop should behave when it is idle with these features. An example would be like turning off the display after some minutes.

9. Disable Scheduled Automated Tasks: When in battery mode disable scheduled tasks like virus scanning that can put pressure on your laptop batteries.

10. Avoid running programs from CD/DVD drive: CD/DVD drives are expensive when it comes to power consumption when compared to your hard drive. When running battery mode copy the programs that you need to run to hard drive and then use them.

11. Use the latest BIOS update from your laptop manufacturer: Make sure you are running your laptop with the latest version of BIOS as sometimes laptop manufacturers issue BIOS updates that can enhance your laptops efficiency.

12. Plan your Work before hand: When you plan to work in battery mode plan your activities before hand so that you don’t spend time thinking and your battery at the other end is draining. When ever I need prepare presentations or prepare some documents I always plan before and then only start my laptop.

Bonus Tip for Vista Users: To improve your battery life under Windows Vista you can disable Aero and Windows Sidebar. You can also make use of VISTA BATTERY SAVER program that does this automatically.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lenovo Offers Olympic Branded USB Range

Lenovo, in its capacity as an official sponsor of the Olympic Games has released a couple of limited edition USB drives. These drives have been released under the Mascot series and are priced at $29 for 4 GB. In all, six drives have been released with their front side printed with a Fuwa image. Apart from this, the company is offering a 1 GB titanium limited edition drive that comes with a swiveling USB plug in a special mahogany box. Considering the amount, the company has probably already had to spend, it may be brave enough to venture a guess that we just might see an Olympic branded laptop sooner or later.

10 Security Fixes

The silver lining is that you don't have to be a genius to avoid these common attacks either. Implement a few simple fixes, and you'll avoid most of the bad stuff out there.

Fix 1: Patch Over the Software Bull's-Eye

Have you turned off automatic updates for Windows and other programs on the rationale that "if it ain't broke, don't fix it?" Then consider this: Your programs may be very, very broken, and you don't know it. The days of big splashy viruses that announce themselves to PC users are over. The modern cybercriminal prefers to invisibly take control of your PC, and unpatched software gives them the perfect opportunity to do so.

Today, a hijacked Web page--modern digital crooks' attack of choice--will launch a bevy of probes against your PC in search of just one unpatched vulnerability that a probe can exploit. If it finds one, better hope your antivirus program catches the ensuing attack. Otherwise you likely won't even notice anything amiss as it infects your system.

Luckily, you can completely block the majority of Web-based exploits by keeping all your programs--not just the operating system or your browsers--up-to-date. Attack sites ferret out holes in seemingly innocuous applications such as QuickTime and WinZip as well as in Windows and Internet Explorer. So turn on automatic update features for any software that offers the service--it's your quickest and easiest option for getting patches.

Fix 2: Find the Other Holes

If every program used easy automatic updates--and we were all smart enough to use them--the thriving malware business would take a serious hit. Until then, a free and easy security app from Secunia can help save the day.

The Secunia Personal Software Inspector, available as a free download, scans your installed software to let you know which out-of-date programs might be making your PC unsafe. But it doesn't stop there--for each old program it finds, it offers quick and easy action buttons such as one labeled Download Solution, which retrieves the latest software patch without you even having to open a browser.

The program also gives you links to the software vendor's site as well as Secunia's full report about the vulnerability on your system. You can choose to block future warnings about a particular program (but you should, of course, be careful before doing so).

Secunia PSI isn't perfect, and doesn't always make it easy to update unsafe program components. But for most apps it provides a quick--and very important--fix.

Fix 3: Let the Latest Browsers Fight for You

The most insidious hijacked Web pages are nearly impossible to spot. Tiny snippets of inserted code that don't display on the page can nevertheless launch devastating behind-the-scenes attacks.

Trying to avoid such pages on your own is asking for trouble, especially since crooks like to hack popular sites--attacks against sites for Sony games and the Miami Dolphins are just two well-known examples. But new site-blocking features in the just-released Firefox 3 and Opera 9.5 browsers provide some shielding.

Both browsers expand on the previous version's antiphishing features to block known malware sites as well, whether they're hijacked pages on legitimate sites or sites that were specifically created by bad guys. Neither browser completely eliminates the risk of landing on such pages, but every additional layer of protection helps.

Microsoft plans to add a similar feature to Internet Explorer 8, but this version won't be ready for prime time for a good while. For more on the browsers' improved security, see "New Browsers Fight the Malware Scourge."

Fix 4: Sidestep Social Engineering

The most dangerous crooks use clever marketing to get you to do their dirty work for them and infect your own PC. Lots of social engineering attacks are laughably crude, with misspelled words and clumsy grammar, but that doesn't mean you should dismiss the danger. Every now and then, a well-crafted attack can slip past your defenses and lure you into opening a poisonous e-mail attachment or downloaded file. A targeted attack might even use your correct name and business title.

To fight back, turn to a simple but powerful tool: You can easily upload any file (up to 10MB) to the site and have it scanned by a whopping 35 different antivirus engines, including ones from Kaspersky, McAfee, and Symantec. A report tells you what each engine thought about your file. While some (such as Prevx) are prone to false alerts, if you get multiple specific warnings that include the name of the particular threat, then you almost certainly want to delete the file.

A lack of warnings doesn't guarantee a file is safe, but it does give you pretty good odds. Use VirusTotal to check every e-mail attachment and download you're not 100 percent sure about, and you'll avoid insidious social engineering.

If using VirusTotal starts to become a habit (not a bad idea) and you want to make sending files for scanning to VirusTotal really easy, download the free VirusTotal Uploader. Once you've installed the utility, just right-click a file, and you'll see an option (under Send To) to upload it to the VirusTotal site.

Fix 5: Get the Jump on Fast-Moving Malware

Traditional, signature-based antivirus software is getting snowed under by a blizzard of malware. Attackers try to evade detection by churning out more variants than security labs can analyze. So besides signatures, any antivirus program worth its salt today uses proactive detection that doesn't require a full signature to spot sneaky malware.

One promising approach uses behavioral analysis to identify malicious software based solely on how it acts on your PC. But your antivirus software by itself may not be enough. ThreatFire, a popular free download from PC Tools, adds such a layer of behavior-based protection. In recent tests, it correctly identified 90 percent of malware based on its behavior alone.

PC World's ThreatFire review provides a thorough analysis of the program and a quick download link (as well as a warning about installing too many security programs on one PC). And for more on behavioral analysis and proactive virus detection, see "When a Signature Isn't Enough."

Note: If you use the AVG Free antivirus program, hold off on trying ThreatFire until PC Tools releases a new version. The current 3.5 version conflicts with AVG, but PC Tools says it's working on a fix.

Fix 6: Rescue Your Inbox From Spam

Spam filters are getting better, but some junk still makes it through even the best of them. Instead of resigning yourself to hitting delete for all those hot-stock and Viagra come-ons, try disposable e-mail addresses.

Such an address is something you create every time you encounter an online shopping site, forum, or other service that requires you to enter an e-mail address. If that address gets flooded with spam, you can terminate it. That's a better system than the alternative, creating a free Web mail account that you use only for purchases and Web signups. With a single separate account, you have to throw the baby out with the bathwater and cancel the whole account if it gets too much spam.

Yahoo Web mail users can opt for the $20-a-year Plus service, which includes the AddressGuard disposable e-mail service (among other benefits). With it, you can click a bookmark to create a new, disposable address for any given site in about 10 seconds.

Gmail users can simply append "+ whatever" to their regular e-mail address before handing it out, but if that address starts to receive spam you can't simply turn it off. You'll have to create a filter in Gmail to block all mail to that address.

For everyone else, we suggest a good, free service from that's quick and easy to set up and use; it allows you to create disposable addresses on-the-fly that will forward e-mail messages to your regular address.

Fix 7: Develop an Antiphishing Habit

The dastardly practice of phishing for personal information is still alive and well, and many fake sites can be hard to distinguish from the real ones. But a few simple practices can ensure you'll never be snagged by a phishing hook.

The best approach, and the most straightforward, is never to click a link in any e-mail message to access your financial accounts. Instead, always type the URL or use a bookmark. That one habit will protect you from almost every phishing attack.

If you can't make that change, then at least use the latest version of Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Opera to browse the Web. All have built-in features to block known phishing sites (and, as described in Fix 3, Opera and Firefox now also block known malware sites). Avoid Safari, which lacks any built-in antiphishing protection.

Finally, keep an eye out for the common phishing tactic of using URLs like "" If you glance at the URL (an actual recent example listed by, you might think the site's domain was In fact, it's heading to, a site in China where operators are standing by to swipe your personal details.

Internet Explorer 8 will use an innovative feature called Domain Highlighting that will make spotting such trickery easy. But until it becomes available, watch URLs carefully.

Fix 8: Keep Your Own Site Safe

It's not a good time to run a Web site. The Web may look like a digital wonderland, but behind the scenes it's a war zone. And the guns are trained on your site.

Crooks use automated tools to search sites for the most common vulnerabilities. If they find one, they blow the hole wide open to plant harmful code that will attack your loyal visitors.

To help keep your site safe, start with some quick, free scans that ferret out the most obvious problems. First, fill out a form at to request a free scan of one IP address.

Next, download the also-free Scrawlr tool from HP. After a quick install, use Scrawlr to scan your site for SQL injection vulnerabilities (a type of hole targeted in a recent Sony site hack).

A clean bill of health from both scans won't guarantee that your site is safe. For instance, neither will find problems with custom JavaScript code, another common type of attack. And while requesting or running either scan is easy, fixing a reported hole might involve a fair bit of work. But that job will still take far less work than repairing your site and your reputation after your site has been hijacked.

Fix 9: Make Your Passwords Secure--And Easy to Remember

Online passwords are starting to seem about as safe as tissue paper protecting a bank vault. The supply of stolen logins is now so huge that crooks can hardly make any money selling them unless they add other ripped-off data, like addresses or Social Security numbers, according to security researchers. And thieves don't stop with stealing logins to financial accounts--the bad guys regularly pilfer access information for Web mail accounts as well. In one recent case, a scammer broke into Web mail accounts and sent messages to the victim's friends asking for money.

Experts say we should use strong, unique passwords for all our accounts. But they don't tell us how we're supposed to remember them, so most of us end up using the same, not-so-safe password at all our accounts.

Here's an easy fix that allows you to remember just one password, yet still have a strong, unique password for each site you use. The Password Hash (or PwdHash) add-on for Firefox and IE takes that simple password you type and runs it through an algorithm that uses the site's domain name as part of the calculation. The utility subs in the resulting strong password before you send it to the site. All you have to do (after installing Password Hash) is hit the F2 key in a password box before you type.

Fix 10: Get Extra Cleaning Help for Stubborn Infections

Sometimes even the best antivirus program misses an infection. And once a virus or Trojan horse gets in, removing it can be incredibly tough. If you suspect some nasty got past your defenses, then it's time to bring in extra help.

Many antivirus makers offer free and easy online scans through your Web browser. The scan will take time, as the scanning service will need to download large Java or ActiveX components before it can get started, but they're easy to kick off. You can run them in addition to your already-installed antivirus application for a second (or third, or fourth) opinion. Here's the lowdown on your options.

Trend Micro HouseCall: Will detect and remove malware; works with both IE and Firefox.

BitDefender Online Scanner: Detects and removes malware; requires IE.

Kaspersky Online Scanner: Detects malware, but doesn't remove it; works with IE and Firefox.

F-Secure Online Virus Scanner: Detects and removes malware; requires IE.

ESET Online Scanner: Detects and removes malware; requires IE.

Replace Your Laptop's CPU

Saddled with an old, slow processor in your laptop? Ripping it out and subbing in a new one can result in an exceptional boost in speed. For instance, upgrading from a 1.66-GHz Intel Core Duo to a 2-GHz Core 2 Duo T7200 raised our laptop's WorldBench 6 score from 57 to 68. But this upgrade isn't as simple as most of our other notebook upgrades.

Make sure that you buy a CPU that will work with your portable. In fact, some laptops have nonreplaceable, soldered-in CPUs.

If the processor is upgradable, you'll need to find a compatible replacement. As with a laptop graphics card upgrade, the best way to proceed is to look at what CPUs have been sold with your laptop over the course of its life span, by googling "[your notebook model] CPU." We purchased a 2-GHz Intel T7200 from a niche online reseller (we have yet to find a laptop vendor that will sell us a new processor).

Be sure to consult your laptop's service manual (which you should be able to download from the manufacturer's support page) before attempting to open up your machine. Also, make sure to guard your hardware against possible electrostatic discharge by wearing an antistatic wrist strap whenever you handle any internal components.

Step 1: Update the BIOS

Before you remove your first screw, it is critical that you upgrade your BIOS to the latest version. Manufacturers often update BIOSs to allow support for newer CPUs. If you upgrade to a chip that's newer than your BIOS allows, your notebook won't boot at all. Check the support section of your manufacturer's Web site for any BIOS updates for your notebook.

The process for upgrading your CPU is usually almost identical to that for upgrading your graphics board. In the case of the Inspiron E1505, the CPU resides directly underneath the video card assembly, so disassembly instructions are exactly the same for this part as for that one.

Step 2: Remove Any Cover Plates

Laptop designs vary, but the upgrade process usually begins with removing hinge covers: Pry up any plastic hinge cover and pull it away from the chassis. Avoid excessive force, as pulling too hard can break the plastic parts.

Step 3: Detach the Keyboard

Detach the keyboard by taking out the screws beneath the hinge cover that secure it, lifting it off, and then unplugging the connector. On some notebooks, simple latches allow you to remove the keyboard without unscrewing anything.

(Note: In a job like this, keeping track of where each screw came from is important. A good way to keep things organized is to use paper cups to hold the screws--one cup for each step of disassembly--and label each cup clearly.)

Step 4: Remove the Display Assembly

Remove the display assembly--the entire apparatus of the screen--by taking out the screws on the bottom and back of the portable, and unplugging the video and Wi-Fi antenna cables (pictured).

Next, pull out the optical drive; this usually means depressing the latch on the bottom of the laptop and sliding the drive out sideways.

Step 5: Remove the Shell

Remove the upper shell by taking the screws holding it out of the bottom of the PC. As you lift the shell off of the chassis, make certain that no part of it is still attached to the bottom of the case or to the motherboard. If it feels like you have to force it, that probably means either a screw is still in place or a clip remains to be unsnapped. Before continuing, back off and double-check your service manual to discover any well-hidden screws that may have eluded you.

Step 6: Remove the Graphics Card

We've now reached the part of the upgrade that involves actually laying hands on critical system components, so be sure you're wearing an antistatic wrist strap and are well grounded before continuing. Obviously, you'll have to use care in handling any components that you touch.

On our laptop, the preceding steps gave us access to the graphics card assembly, which we removed by loosening two screws. The CPU sits beneath that card.

Step 7: Remove the Heat Sink

With the graphics card out of the way, we removed four more screws to get the heat sink off and to expose the CPU itself, held in its socket by a single locking screw.

Step 8: Replace the CPU

Turn the CPU socket's locking screw counterclockwise until it stops, and lift the CPU straight up and out of the laptop. Drop the new CPU in, but don't push it (if it looks as though it needs a push, it isn't aligned properly). Turn the screw clockwise to lock it. Note: Some systems use a locking bar in place of a screw.

Step 9: Apply Thermal Paste and Reassemble

Next you need to prepare the heat sink anew: Remove all of the old thermal compound (silver-gray gunk) by wiping the heat sink with 99 percent isopropyl alcohol and a lint-free rag. If you bought a used CPU, it may be covered with this goop, too, so clean it off as well. When it's dry, reapply a paper-thin layer of thermal paste to the top of the CPU, spreading it evenly with a business card or an old credit card.

Clean up any excess paste and replace the heat sink. Reassemble the laptop and boot it up. Jump into the machine's BIOS setup to make sure the laptop is seeing the CPU properly. Finally, launch Windows and enjoy the performance boost!

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