TAILIEUCHUNG - Laptops All-in-One Desk Reference For Dummies- P25

Laptops All-in-One Desk Reference For Dummies- P25: Okay, I’ll admit it: I’ve got a strange biography. I’ve been a writer all my life. My first semi-pro job was sports editor of my high school newspaper. (Go Commodores!) After college I was a political reporter for daily newspapers in Ohio and New York (I covered four national nominating conventions and two Presidential campaigns) and a correspondent for The Associated Press. And then, in 1983, I gave in to my inner geek and became the first Executive Editor of PC Magazine, back in the days when most people asked, “What is a PC?”. | 214 Taking Inventory Taking Inventory Before you poke around run any diagnostics or take a blood test examine your laptop s installed hardware and software. You have several ways to do this including a straightforward utility called System Information. See Figure 3-2 for an example of a report. To check System Information follow along 1. Click the Start button in Windows Vista. On Windows XP choose Start All Programs Accessories System Tools System Information. 2. Type System Information into the Start menu s search bar. You may find a number of versions of the utility. 3. Click the System Information supplied as part of Windows. If you subscribe to AOL you may also see an AOL System Information utility which is also a quite capable examiner of your laptop although it focuses more on the operating system firewall antivirus and connectivity components of your machine things of importance to an AOL connection than it does on hardware. Figure 3-2 A Windows System Information screen shows details of the operating system processor and memory installed on a Toshiba Satellite P205 laptop. Taking Inventory 215 Many laptop manufacturers add their own versions of a system information report. These reports often serve multiple purposes Details of your system for you to examine A consistent report that can be examined over the Internet by support technicians for the maker of your machine A bit of advertising for Windows operating system upgrades or hardware accessories On most current laptops running Windows Vista manufacturer s system information screen can be found here Click Start Control Panel System and Maintenance System. An example of Toshiba s screen is shown in Figure 3-3. Figure 3-3 Toshiba s information screen includes the system s Windows Experience Index its processor specs memory network configuration and phone or online access to support technicians. Book III Chapter 3 216 Taking Inventory Device Manager Poking under the hood Once you have a sense of what you ve

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