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    PC Hardware in a Nutshell

    ISBN-10: 059600513X
    ISBN-13: 9780596005139
    Edition: 3rd 2003
    Author(s): Robert Bruce Thompson, Barbara Fritchman Thompson
    Description: "PC Hardware in a Nutshell is the practical guide to buying, building, upgrading, and repairing Intel-based PCs. A longtime favorite among PC users, the third edition of the book now contains useful information for people running either Windows or  More...
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    List Price: $44.99
    Edition: 3rd
    Copyright Year: 2003
    Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
    Publication Date: 8/3/2003
    Binding: Paperback
    Pages: 874
    Size: 6.00" wide x 10.00" long x 1.50" tall
    Weight: 2.310
    Language: English

    "PC Hardware in a Nutshell is the practical guide to buying, building, upgrading, and repairing Intel-based PCs. A longtime favorite among PC users, the third edition of the book now contains useful information for people running either Windows or Linux operating systems. Written for novices and seasoned professionals alike, the book is packed with useful and unbiased information, including how-to advice for specific components, ample reference material, and a comprehensive case study on building a PC. In addition to coverage of the fundamentals and general tips about working on PCs, the book includes chapters focusing on motherboards, processors, memory, floppies, hard drives, optical drives, tape devices, video devices, input devices, audio components, communications, power supplies, and maintenance. Special emphasis is given to upgrading and troubleshooting existing equipment so you can get the most from your existing investments. This new edition is expanded to include: Detailed information about the latest motherboards and chipsets from AMD, Intel, SiS, and VIA Extensive coverage of the Pentium 4 and the latest AMD processors, including the Athlon XP/MP Full details about new hard drive standards, including the latest SCSI standards, ATA/133, Serial ATA, and the new 48-bit "Big Drive" ATA interface Extended coverage of DVD drives, including DVD-RAM, DVD-R/RW, and DVD+R/RW Details about Flat Panel Displays, including how to choose one (and why you might not want to) New chapters on serial communications, parallel communications, and USB communications (including USB 2.0) Enhanced troubleshooting coverage "PC Hardware in a Nutshell, 3rd Editionprovides independent, useful and practical information in a no-nonsense manner with specific recommendations on components. Based on real-world testing over time, it will help you make intelligent, informed decisions about buying, building, upgrading, and repairing PCs in a cost effective manner that will help you maximize new or existing computer hardware systems. It's loaded with real-world advice presented in a concise style that clearly delivers just the information you want, without your having to hunt for it.

    Robert Bruce Thompson is a coauthor of O'Reilly's Building the Perfect PC and PC Hardware in a Nutshell. A born geek, he built his first computer in 1976 with 256 bytes of memory, toggle switches, and no operating system. Since then, he has bought, built, upgraded, and repaired hundreds of PCs for himself, employers, customers, friends, and clients. Robert spends most clear, moonless nights outdoors with his 10-inch Dobsonian reflector telescope, hunting down faint fuzzies, and is currently designing a larger truss-tube Dobsonian (computerized, of course) that he plans to build.

    Barbara Fritchman Thompson, the coauthor of Building the Perfect PC and PC Hardware in a Nutshell, worked for 20 years as a librarian before starting her own home-based consulting practice, Research Solutions. She's also a researcher for the law firm Womble, Carlyle, Sandridge, & Rice, PLLC. During her leisure hours, Barbara reads, works out, plays golf, and, like Robert, is an avid amateur astronomer.

    Foreword
    Preface
    Fundamentals
    PCs Defined
    PC Components and Technologies
    System Resources
    Building or Buying a PC
    Upgrading a PC
    Smart Buying Practices
    Things to Do with Old PCs
    Working on PCs
    Rules to Upgrade By
    Tools
    General Procedures
    Motherboards
    Motherboard Characteristics
    Choosing a Motherboard
    Installing a Motherboard
    Upgrading the System BIOS
    Our Picks
    Processors
    Processor Design
    Intel Processors
    AMD Processors
    Choosing a Processor
    Forthcoming AMD and Intel Processors
    Installing a Processor
    Our Picks
    Memory
    Understanding Memory
    Memory Access Methods
    CAS Latency
    Memory Packaging
    How Much Memory Is Enough?
    Memory Selection Guidelines
    Installing Memory
    Troubleshooting Memory Installation and Operation
    Our Picks
    Floppy Disk Drives
    Diskette Types and Formats
    Drive Types
    FDD Interface and Cabling
    Installing an FDD
    Working with FDDs
    Working with Obsolete Diskette Formats
    Salvaging Diskette Data
    Our Picks
    High-Capacity Floppy Disk Drives
    High-Capacity FDD Types
    Choosing a High-Capacity FDD
    Using an ATAPI Zip or SuperDisk Drive as the Boot Device
    Drive Letter Assignment Problems
    Our Picks
    Removable Hard Disk Drives
    Uses for Removable and External Hard Disk Drives
    Cartridge-Based Removable Hard Disk Drives
    Frame/Carrier-Based Removable Hard Disk Drives
    Our Picks
    Tape Drives
    Tape Technologies
    Choosing a Tape Drive
    Installing and Configuring a Tape Drive
    Care and Feeding of a Tape Drive
    Troubleshooting Tape Drive Problems
    The Dirty Little Secret of Long Filenames
    Developing a Backup Strategy
    Our Picks
    CD-ROM Drives
    Compact Disc Fundamentals
    CD-ROM Drive Performance
    Choosing a CD-ROM Drive
    Installing and Configuring a CD-ROM Drive
    Cleaning a CD-ROM Drive
    Our Picks
    CD Writers
    CD Writers and Media
    Writable CD Formats
    CD Recording Methods
    Buffer Underrun Protection
    Choosing a CD Writer
    CD Writer Software
    Installing and Configuring a CD Writer
    Updating CD Writer Firmware
    Media Issues
    Burning CDs
    Special Problems and Applications
    Writable CD Troubleshooting
    Additional CD-R(W) Source Material
    Our Picks
    DVD Drives
    DVD-ROM
    DVD Writable and Rewritable
    Installing and Configuring a DVD Drive
    Troubleshooting DVD Problems
    Our Picks
    Hard Disk Interfaces
    IDE
    Serial ATA
    SCSI
    ATA Versus SCSI
    Our Picks
    Hard Disk Drives
    How Hard Disks Work
    Choosing a Hard Disk
    Installing a PATA (Standard ATA) Hard Disk
    Installing an SATA Hard Disk
    Installing a SCSI Hard Disk
    Preparing a Hard Disk for Use
    Our Picks
    Video Adapters
    Video Adapter Characteristics
    Choosing a Video Adapter
    Installing a Video Adapter
    Configuring Video Under Windows 98/Me/2000/XP
    Configuring Video under Linux
    Troubleshooting Video Adapter Problems
    Our Picks
    Displays
    CRT Monitors
    Flat-Panel Displays
    Installing and Configuring a Display
    Troubleshooting Display Problems
    Our Picks
    Sound Adapters
    PC Audio Types
    MIDI Synthesis Methods
    Downloadable Sounds
    Sound Card Components
    Sound Card Characteristics
    Choosing a Sound Card
    Installing a Sound Card
    Configuring a Sound Card Under Windows 98/98/2000/XP
    Configuring a Sound Card Under Linux
    Troubleshooting Sound Card Problems
    Our Picks
    Speakers and Headphones
    Speaker and Headphone Characteristics
    Choosing Speakers and Headphones
    Our Picks
    Keyboards
    Keyboard Switch Types
    Keyboard Styles
    Keyboard Interfaces
    Choosing a Keyboard
    Configuring a Keyboard
    Cleaning a Keyboard
    Troubleshooting and Repairing Keyboards
    Our Picks
    Mice and Trackballs
    Mice Versus Trackballs
    Mouse Characteristics
    Choosing a Mouse
    Configuring a Mouse or Trackball
    Cleaning a Mouse
    Troubleshooting a Mouse
    Our Picks
    Game Controllers
    Game Controller Characteristics
    Gameport Interface
    Choosing a Game Controller
    Installing a Game Controller
    Troubleshooting Game Controllers
    Our Picks
    Serial Communications
    Serial Communications Overview
    Serial Ports
    Serial Cables
    Installing and Configuring Serial Port Hardware
    Troubleshooting Serial Port Problems
    Our Picks
    Parallel Communications
    Mapping Parallel Ports to LPTs
    Our Picks
    USB Communications
    USB Characteristics
    USB Host Controller Interfaces
    Configuring USB
    Troubleshooting USB
    Our Picks
    Cases
    Case Characteristics
    Choosing a Case
    Our Picks
    Power Supplies
    Power Supply Characteristics
    Volts, Amps, Watts, and Regulation
    Power Connectors
    Choosing a Power Supply
    Installing a Power Supply
    Troubleshooting Power Supplies
    Our Picks
    Backup Power Supplies
    What BPSs Protect Against
    BPS Types
    BPS Characteristics
    Choosing a BPS
    Our Picks
    Building a PC
    Purchasing Components
    Building the System
    Index

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