Tag Archives: notebook

How to Cool Your Laptop Notebook Computer


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It’s important to keep your notebook computer cool. It adds wear and tear to your machine when it gets too hot. I’ve gone through a few different notebook coolers, and done reviews on each of them. I’m seriously considering a switch to the Laptop Liftsthough!

Laptop Lifts are designed especially for the punishment that mobile laptop computer use can dish out. The unique shape and large size resist side to side force and will not pop off. Use your laptop on the tiniest coffee shop table or airline tray: it will not slip thanks to the large soft rubber feet.

Regular fans can work well, but passive cooling like Laptop Lifts is generally than external fan-based cooling. If you are running a fan from the computer’s USB port, you are using extra power. You will raise the operating temprature of the machine and run down your battery faster.

There are rubber grips that you stick on to the bottom of your notebook. There are a couple of longer pieces, and four shorter ones. You’re elevating the notebook in order to add both extra padding and airflow. If you set it on a desk, you’ll also help prevent scratching and scuffing!

The idea is rock-solid. I’m thinking about adding them to my primary notebook. I could likely still use an external cooler if I need to, but I’m definitely going to try to go without it. That will help clear up the clutter on my desk a bit!

Laptop Lifts are simply a practical and affordable answer to many of the issues that you will face when using a notebook – including keeping it cool!

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HP Mini 1000 Unboxing and Review

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A Netbook is like a subset of a Notebook. They’re ultra-portable, relatively affordable, and they have decent processing power. A Notebook has more than enough power, but do you really need one? The HP Mini 1000 is good for doing word processing and any other tasks you may need to do on the road. It has 1GB DDR2 RAM, a 60GB Hard Drive, and a 3 Cell Lithium battery. It has a webcam and microphone built in, so that you can easily make use of VoIP clients when you need to.

Ponzi has a slightly different HP Mini, designed by the very uber awesome Vivienne Tam. Hers is red, with Peonies all over it. It’s cool looking, I suppose. I just prefer black. Mine has swirls all over the case, but they aren’t like overwhelming. They just add a touch of pizazz to it.

So anyway, back on track! The screen resolution is netbook-sized… 1024×600. The keyboard is great, with regular-sized keys. I’m quite happy with that. The HP Mini certainly does make a viable contender. HP is trying to think more along lifestyle lines when it comes to their hardware designs.

Some of the notes I’ve made just in the few hours I spent with it include that they’ve made a few engineering mistakes. The keys in the lower-left corner of the keyboard are out of order. A lot of desktop keyboards may not have the Function key.. and having it where it is on this machine will cause you to mis-type often. When you move between computers, you want it to be seamless, and the keyboard is a large part of that. We don’t have time to adapt to different keyboards all the time!

Another thing that I picked up on is on the trackpad in the middle – they put the buttons on either side (mouse buttons). It’s a little weird to use it in that way. Who knows… once I get used to it, I may like it. For now though, it is just odd.

Another thing to note… I don’t think HP is being very competitive on price. I bought the MSI Wind, and this one was sent to me as a review unit. The Wind has a few more features, yet the price is lower. Heck, the MSI Wind even has a 6 cell battery, so it lasts much longer than this HP Mini will.

HP is leading the charge when it comes to design. I know Ponzi’s review is likely going to be much different than mine. She’s been complaining for a long time about all computers looking the same. At least now, she doesn’t have that to worry about. Her Mini sure stands out from the crowd.

Email me if you know of another netbook that I should review and compare against both this HP Mini, and the MSI Wind.

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MSI Wind Mini Laptop Netbook Notebook Computer

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The MSI Wind Notebook that I have here in my hot little hand is very lightweight. It has the Intel Atom 1.6GHz CPU, 1GB of Ram, and a 160GB hard drive. Oh – did I mention I have the black one?

The MSI Wind offers many features that make this notebook a portable laptop PC. The 10-inch screen has a 1024 x 600 resolution, which allows you to view entire web pages while online. The Wind is also equipped with a webcam and microphone, allowing you to interact with friends, family or co-workers while on the go.

Of course, I put my Chris logo sticker on the back of it. You can grab one for yourself if you choose to have a cool-looking sticker on your netbook!

It comes with a 6-cell battery. This allows it to run for about six hours. There’s also a 9-cell available, if you need to have it run longer.

I’m pretty happy with this little Netbook. I wasn’t really in the market for one, until I read an article about a variety of Netbooks. This thing is very neat, actually. The keyboard is not full-sized, however it’s only about 20% smaller than a normal one. I don’t like the fact that keys like the period, comma and slash keys are smaller than the other keys… which makes me typo frequently. I don’t like that, as it makes me less productive.

There are many Netbooks in this price range, which all do the basics. I can get online with this one, I can do some processing with this one. It will do anything I actually need it to do. Generally speaking, I can do quite a bit for hours on end without having to charge it.

I really like the MSI Wind. It works well, and does more than I need it to do. It even sleeps well! Just shut the lid, and it’s out like a light.

So there you have it, the skinny on the new MSI Wind Netbook. Why not pick one up for yourself today?

MSI Wind Deals:
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Do You Put Stickers and Skins on Your Hardware?

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Yes, this is me you’re watching in this video. But that’s also me in the sticker on the back of my notebook. How awesome looking is that sticker? Customizing your notebook or hardware with skins or stickers not only makes them more fun – it also allows you to help identify them as yours. The sticker on the back of my Macbook came with a full skin. I uploaded a square image, instead of a circular one. So, it didn’t look right. I simply cut it out and made it look much better. Skinit allows you to customize your own skin.

Set yourself apart from the crowd with a Skinit Skin that reflects your tastes and passions. Choose from thousands of designs for thousands of devices, including professional sports leagues, entertainment, colleges, fashion, exclusive art and more.

Skinit is the leader in on demand personalization manufacturing, powering programs for computer manufacturers, wireless carriers, retailers, OEMs and other companies. Your skin will perfectly fit over 1,500 different wireless handsets, PDAs, iPods, notebook computers, gaming consoles and other devices.

Skinit offers the highest quality and most durable product in the market place. The Scotchprint Graphics 3M logo assures photo quality imaging, residue free removal and air bubble free application. The Skinit R and D team is dedicated to developing the best products possible with feedback from our customers, manufacturers, OEMs and service providers.

Even if you don’t need to deck out your hardware, maybe you’re buying something for a holiday gift. Why not personalize it to make it that much more special.

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10 Tips to Keep Your Notebook Safe When Traveling

These days, we geeks don’t travel anywhere without our laptops. It’s a given that we need to have them on us! How would we survive?! Thankfully, Seth sent in the following tips to help us keep them safe while we are on the road.

    • Pad The Laptop: Make sure the laptop bag or carrying case you transport your laptop in provides adequate padding. As you move about the airport or shove the laptop under the seat in front of you or into the overhead storage compartment, the laptop can be jarred and jostled quite a bit.
    • Keep It On You: It is not uncommon for someone to set their luggage down while standing in line for a muffin, or to sit down while waiting for a flight. With all luggage, it is important to keep an eye on it and ensure nobody tampers with it or steals it. Because of their size and value though, laptops make prime targets and a thief can snatch the laptop bag and keep walking while you are unaware with your back turned. You should keep the laptop bag on your shoulder or keep it in sight at all times.
    • Back Up Data: Perform a backup of all critical or sensitive data before departing. Just in case your laptop does become damaged or lost, you don’t want to also lose your important files and information. You can buy a new laptop, but it is much harder to replace lost data.
    • Encrypt Your Data: Just in case your laptop should fall into unauthorized hands, you should make sure your hard drive is encrypted. Laptops with Windows Vista Enterprise or Ultimate come equipped with BitLocker drive encryption. If you aren’t using one of these versions of Windows Vista, and your company has not implemented any other sort of enterprise-wide encryption solution, you can use an open source solution such as TrueCrypt to protect your data.
    • Document Identifying Information: In case your laptop does end up lost or stolen, you should be able to provide detailed information about the make, model, serial number and any other identifying information. You may need the information to file a claim with the airline or your insurance company, or to provide law enforcement.

Use Strong Passwords: Follow the advice in Passwords and How to Make Them to make sure that your passwords can not be easily guessed or cracked if your laptop falls into the wrong hands. An excellent program for helping to secure and manage your passwords is Password Vault, which works for both Windows and Mac OS X.

  • Use a BIOS Password: Protecting your laptop with an operating system login and password is a good idea, but there are ways to circumvent that protection and gain access to the data still. For better protection, you should enable password protection at the BIOS level so that the laptop can not even be turned on without the correct password.
  • Implement Remote Data Protection: Another step you can take to make sure your data does not fall into the wrong hands is to look into products that will allow you to remotely destroy or erase the data on your laptop if it is lost or stolen. These products generally require that the unauthorized user connect to the Internet first in order for them to do their work though, so they are not a guarantee.
  • Use Portable Storage: To make sure you have the business critical PowerPoint presentation or Excel spreadsheet that you need to show your business partners in order to seal the multi-million dollar deal (or whatever other important files and documents might be on your laptp) you should carry a copy on a USB thumb drive or some other type of portable storage that you can carry separate from the laptop in case it becomes lost or stolen.
  • Just Leave The Laptop At Home: When it comes to all of the hassles and all of the issues that can arise from traveling with your laptop, you should also consider whether you really need to take it. You can carry your data or files on portable storage such as a CD, DVD or USB drive, or you can just email or FTP the data ahead of you. Then, you can borrow a desktop or laptop system once you are safely on the ground and at the office site you are visiting.

 

How can You Protect Your MacBook?

If you have a MacBook, you are likely protective of it. Notebooks are stolen every day, especially from college students. Would you like another layer of protection? TotalTechie from our live community sent in the following recommendation for all of us to try.

iAlertU is the ultimate free MacBook protection system. To activate and deactivate, you simply hold the menu button on your Apple Remote. This application runs in the background, so it doesn’t show up or interfere with you work, except for on the menu bar at the top of the screen.

So here’s the point. If anyone moves your MacBook, touches your keyboard, starts to close the screen, moves the Trackpad/mouse, unplugs the AC adapter, or unplugs any devices, an alarm goes off and a picture of the person is taken. The picture is sent through Mail.app to any specified email. Note that an account must be set up in Mail.app for this to work. This can be especially useful for college kids in dorms. People are always in and out of the dorms, and I know several people who had their MacBooks stolen.

Thanks to TotalTechie for this information that many of our readers may not have known. iAlertU is completely free, and can mean the difference between a stolen MacBook, and one that a potential thief runs away from.

How do you Keep your Laptop Cool?


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If things look different in this video compared to others I’ve done, it’s because I have a new laptop stand. I’m not sure if I’ll use it as my primary stand, though. They’re usually designed to help make your notebook more ergonomic and comfortable for people, and helps keep it properly cooled. No matter what kind of notebook you have, they tend to overheat without proper airflow. Getting some type of laptop stand is a good thing for this reason. The one I normally use is a Targus. It has a couple of fans, and a couple of USB ports. The Alto from Logitech is the one I want to talk about today. First, let’s look at the features:

  • Notebook display riser: Elevates and extends your notebook’s display for viewing comfort. Relaxes you while making you more productive.
  • Full-sized keyboard: Type faster, with less fatigue. The integrated soft palm rest adds wrist support and keeps your hands away from the hot notebook surface.
  • One-touch hot keys: Get instant access to your digital music with media and volume controls. Additional hot keys instantly take you to your favorite applications, folders, and Web pages.
  • Multipurpose USB hub: Use three high-speed USB 2.0 ports to connect your favorite peripherals, including cordless mice, webcams, printers, and external drives.
  • Works with virtually any notebook: Use it with your current notebook—and your next one.
  • Easy setup and storage: Flip it open for instant use on almost any flat surface; fold it down for easy transport and storage.

I think this is a nice laptop stand, but it is really pricey. It looks good, and is really functional. It will make good office decor, for sure. I don’t know. Maybe I’ll grow to like it more over time. It makes my MacBook sit up entirely too high for my needs.

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Do you Really Want to Win this PC?

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I’m going to be giving away the HP Dragon Notebook very soon… May 29th to be exact. This notebook is something you definitely want to have. Make sure you follow the rules for this giveaway, or you’ll be crying when you aren’t eligible!

Make sure you’re subscribed to my YouTube account, come hang out in our chat room (you must be present to win, and I’m not announcing the time ahead of time!), and leave as many GOOD comments on my blog as you can between now and the drawing. Any insipid or inappropriate comments will be deleted daily, and you won’t be eligible to win. A good comment shows you have read the post, and are contributing to the discussion.

That’s all there is to it. What are you waiting for? Get to commenting!

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HP Dragon Notebook Giveaway Information

We have received many questions regarding the giveaway. Three of them have been repeated over and over, so we thought we’d answer them in a post.

1. The contest is open to anyone in the world, whether in the US or not!!

2. Buzzcorps will be sending each winner a monetary donation to offset any taxes the winner may have to pay to their country or locality, due to the amount the prize is worth.

3. Shipping will be paid for by Buzzcorps, not the winners!

I hope that helps clear those issues up!

HP Dragon Notebook Giveaway

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I have been selected as one of the people to give away an HP Dragon notebook this month on May 29th!! My requirements to win will be simple: You must be present in my chat room at the time of the giveaway. You must be subscribed to my YouTube channel. And… you must comment on my blog. The winner will be chosen from a random blog post, so the more you comment… the better your chances of winning! Remember, only GOOD comments count. Any insipid or useless comments will be deleted by my assistant Kat, and will not count towards winning. A good comment is one that contributes and even adds more to any discussion within a post. Show me with your comment that you took the time to really read my post, and want to discuss it. Don’t just say “HI THERE EVERYONE!”, or “I want to win!”.

So, anyway.. let’s talk about this amazing machine sitting on my desk! The Dragon comes with an Intel Core2 Extreme Processor X9000, and 4GB of Ram. This baby is more of a portable PC than it is a notebook. It has a 20.1″ High Def monitor, and a 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 8800M GTS video card. Wow, eh? Wouldn’t you like to be the proud owner of this notebook?

HP is giving away 31 of these, can you believe it? The 31 machines are distributed amongst 31 technology blogs – some you probably read already and some you might not have heard of. Each blog will draw a winner on each day starting from May 9 to June 8. How each blog will pick a winner is unique but they will only accept entries starting from 7 days before the draw. Going to each blog to submit an entry is allowed and encouraged.

So to recap, get those comments rolling in, and you can be the winner of my Dragon giveaway!

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