Laptops Guide: Choosing a Laptop that is Right for You

Written by Jonathan Chase

Most of us tend to think of laptops inrepparttar same way: a fairly small portable computer that can open and close like a suitcase, with all ofrepparttar 134925 capabilities of a desktop. In fact,repparttar 134926 term “laptop” is really very generic. There are currently four main styles of these portable PCs, each offering something a bit different, depending upon your specific needs.

Ultralights – Also known as sub-notebooks or ultraportables, this style of laptop weighs up to – but no more than – four pounds, making them ideal for travelers. The upside of an ultralight is that it doesn’t burden those who have to spend a lot of time carrying them with aching muscles, as its larger cousins often do. The downside, however, is that – in order to cut down onrepparttar 134927 size and weight – this type of laptop is so small that there’s no room for a network card or internal CD drive. In order to reaprepparttar 134928 benefits of these types of “attachments,” you’d have to bring an external CD drive and port replicator. Another negative inrepparttar 134929 scenario is that ultralights tend to be onrepparttar 134930 expensive end ofrepparttar 134931 laptop spectrum.

Notebooks – This is basically just a regular laptop, but is slightly less heavy, weighing in at four to six pounds. While it’s heavier thanrepparttar 134932 smaller ultralight, it also offers more options with less fuss. Offeringrepparttar 134933 flexibility of a combo bay, notebooks are designed with a large opening onrepparttar 134934 side which allowsrepparttar 134935 user to plug a CD drive, floppy disk or extra battery – allowing you to accessrepparttar 134936 features that you need withoutrepparttar 134937 burden of making room for those that aren’t needed.

Standards – Commonly referred to as “regular laptops,” these weigh between six and eight pounds and offer a full range of benefits. This technological pack-mule isrepparttar 134938 best buy – dollar for dollar – when you considerrepparttar 134939 cost/performance ratio. Due to their popularity, combined with their design and usability, it’s not uncommon to find discounts on these from major manufacturers. Other types of laptops, which fall into more specialized categories, tend to be inrepparttar 134940 higher price ranges. The bottom line is, ofrepparttar 134941 four main types of laptops,repparttar 134942 standard isrepparttar 134943 most economical forrepparttar 134944 most reasonable amount of money.


Written by Bob McElwain

When you get a new computer, you'll want to install your favorite software and get everything running justrepparttar way you want it to. Then you'll likely add some new stuff, possibly over a period ofrepparttar 107908 next couple of months. Beyond this point, hesitate to add more. Here's why.

Shared Library Files

Many software firms use DLL (Dynamic Linked Libraries) in developing programs. They are kind of like a tool box from whichrepparttar 107909 programmer choosesrepparttar 107910 one needed. Even thoughrepparttar 107911 program being created may need only a couple of "tools" from this DLL, using them saves programming time, which is expensive. This is a safe and efficient procedure, forrepparttar 107912 code inrepparttar 107913 library is well tested and will run reliably.

Other software developers userepparttar 107914 same library. Some DLLs are used in many programs. For you, this means less disk space required on your system, for only one copy ofrepparttar 107915 library is needed.

You also benefit in that you pay less forrepparttar 107916 software and it runs reliably. It's hard to see anything negative in such a procedure. Or in software using any other shared procedures. For example, you might have several programs that use a common routine that is part of connecting your system torepparttar 107917 Web over a phone line.

All About Versions

Most companies developing software will userepparttar 107918 latest version of a DLL. It contains changes and enhancements over earlier ones. Thus differences exist between them.

This is true of different versions of other software. The latest version of IE (Internet Explorer), for example, contains changes and enhancements overrepparttar 107919 previous one. Migrating from repparttar 107920 current version torepparttar 107921 latest, can mean installing what amounts to almost a new program.

The Catch In Upgrading Or Installing Software

When you install an upgrade or a new piece of software, any DLLs used will also be installed. Windows makesrepparttar 107922 rules in this. An older version of a DLL is not allowed to overwrite a later one. But a newer one IS allowed to overwrite an older one. Here's how things can go wrong.

Suppose you have a program call SPLAT, another called SPRANG, and a third call SPUNK. Suppose they all use a DLL called STUFF. If you upgrade SPUNK, andrepparttar 107923 upgrade includes a new version of STUFF, then quite suddenly SPLAT and SPRANG may not run properly. That is, they are now forced to use a version of STUFFrepparttar 107924 programmer had not planed for.

While it's quite likely a new DLL will run just fine with older programs, it may not. If your older programs won't run well enough to suit your needs, you may be forced to upgrade to later versions. Unfortunately, this may not solverepparttar 107925 problem ifrepparttar 107926 older DLL is still in use.

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