Save battery usage on your laptop  

Posted by Laptop Tips

Here are some tips to help you save the batteries on your laptop:

What consumes power?
Electronic and mechanical components consume energy (Electricity).
There are devices like the hardisk, DVD reader, screen etc. There is also the Motherboard and the processor.
So you should keep in mind, the more you use the processor i.e. the Cpu rate used will consume more power.
When you are playing to 3-D games, more power is consumed than using a simple text editor.

How to reduce consumption of power
-The Screen brightness can be adjusted. Try to reduce but enough to be able to see easily.
-Adjust the Energy Usage in Windows so that it can turn your screen and hardisk to stand by mode when not in use.
- You can even stop Windows, Use the hibernation Mode. This will help Windows to start more rapidly.
- There’s an option to avoid the CPU to run at a maximum speed, which will help to reduce power usage.
- Some devices (graphic cards, modems, PCMCIA cards) do turn off when they are not used. So some devices cannot be used when they are on power saving mode.
- Use integrated devices on your laptop and avoid using the mouse (it consumes more power). So try to reduce the use of USB devices.
- Defragment your hardrive regularly, i.e. once each month. Less the hard disk is fragmented, the less there will be trips heads playback, and therefore there will be less current consumption. Use BootVis which is useful to manage your system files at startup.. then windows will start more rapidly.
Another important fact: The more you have programs running and consuming CPU time, the more you eat of course.
- Close down on programs running in the background. Itunes, Desktop Search, etc. All these add to the CPU load and cut down battery life. Shut down everything that isn’t crucial when you’re on battery.
- Add more RAM - This will allow you to use the laptop memory, rather than relying on virtual memory. Virtual memory results in hard drive use, and is much less power efficient. Note that adding more RAM will consume more energy, so this is most applicable if you do need to run memory intensive programs which actually require heavy usage of virtual memory.
- Keep operating temperature down - Your laptop operates more efficiently when it’s cooler. Clean out your air vents with a cloth or keyboard cleaner.

Configuration of your OS
It is important to disable unnecessary programs and services.

Disable unnecessary services, especially the Indexing Service. This service is a little heavy on CPU and lots of disk access.

Reduce the number of programs launched at startup. There are certainly full are useless (QuickTime Task Java Update Scheduler, Office toolbar, "Quick Start" Office, RealPlayer, etc.).

Change the subject of Windows: Use the standard theme. Indeed, the Aqua theme for Windows requires a bit more computing power, and therefore consumes a little more current.

Disable visual effects (animations, transition effects). They are pretty, but require the CPU to make further calculations, and thus consume more current. Especially under Vista, and Linux (with Beryl / Compiz / XGL): All the 3D effects and transparency are major consumers of CPU. Turn them off.

Disable ClearType.
If it is not necessary, cut the sound (mute);

Avoid animated screensavers (3D or otherwise). Choose the screen saver or the standard Windows screen blank. Do not forget to enable the economy to energy to the screen in "Power Management".
If you do not use your WiFi connection, disable it. This saves your WiFi to deliver consistently to find an access point (it consumes power).

Under Windows 95, 98 and ME, use programs such as ATM (Another Task Manager) to force the processor to execute the instruction HTL (halt) when it does nothing. This helps to save energy. (Some laptops are already supplied with utilities doing this). This manipulation is not necessary under Windows NT, 2000, XP, 2003 and Linux because they already use a standard instruction HLT.

Maintaining the battery  

Posted by Laptop Tips

Li-Ion batteries, are the mostly used technology nowadays.This type of battery cam be found on most laptops and netbooks as their main advantage is their ability to pack up a large amount of energy in a small volume. These batteries come along with many other advantages that in a way justify their cost prohibitive cost. Some of them are listed below: * Secure compared to the first versions of lithium batteries (covered with plastric) * Self-discharge (when not in use it will naturally be discharged) * Require less maintanance. * The physical properties of lithium ensures a good energy/ volume ratio. These advantages come along with several drawbacks: * Slow to charge up. * Very expensive. * Low resistance to high temperature * Batteries wear out over time. * Deterioration occurs when the battery discharge below 10%

How to make a good use of your battery
Changing your battery will cost a lot of money....So if you have one that is still in good state and working properly or if it is imperative for you to buy a new one ,here are some tips, on how increasing its lifespan and make an optimal use. Before getting started, here's are some technical terms, you better get used to before going any further. The battery voltage measured in Volts (V) As for the amount of electricity, it is measured in Ampere/hours (Ah) or milliamp-hours (mAh) The efficiency of a battery can be determined through this equation: Voltage (V) x amount of electricity (Ah) = Energy (Wh)

Points to consider
* Never exceed the discharge current specified by the manufacturer. * Don't to use your battery to power other machines. * Perform Calibration, minimum 2 times a month: this process is to "reframe" your battery. Perform it a maximum discharge level (not below 10%) , it must then be fully recharged without interruption (OS in standby mode). * When you buy a battery, the first thing to check is (after its power in W) , the date of manufacture (don't forget that your battery deteriorates with time)... * You should never buy cheap batteries, such as the ones imported directly from China, they are quite unsafe. * Don't fall below 10% of charge. Normally your OS, directly put the computer to sleep mode when only 15% remain in charge. You can really lose 20% of the efficiency of your battery. * Take care battery charger: its not just a simple power cord , you will spare some battery use while using it(on one end it charge up your battery and on the other it power up your laptop.

Things to avoid
*Unplug the power cord of a laptop when it is off, to avoid micro-charge of the battery. *Never try repairing a battery by opening it. You can get injured (burned) or seriously become intoxicated. *Rechargeable batteries, lead acid batteries & lithium are harmful to health and to the environment So they should never be thrown away. They must be completely recycled.

Upgradig your laptop  

Posted by Laptop Tips

It's not really easy to upgrade components on a laptop. 

Upgrading a laptop is divided into 2 categories:1. The change of internal components

- Memory (the simplest operation). 
- The Hard disk. 
- The optical drive. 

Upgrading the motherboard, processor or the screen, is very expensive and complex ...2. The addition of PCMCIA cards:

- USB 2.0 and Firewire. 
- Network card. 
- WIFI map. 

In addition the possibility for USB or Firewire: 

- USB Hub. 
- Keypad. 
- Reader / writer optical (CD / DVD). 
- Floppy Drive, memory cards. 

Every peripherals that plugs into these ports ... 

Adding memory in a laptop. 

This operation is the easiest to achieve, we must know where to find the location of them: sometimes with a trapdoor on the underside of the laptop, sometimes under the keyboard ... The manual of the laptop will often be necessary to locate them. 

This fact must then determine the type of memory to use (PC100 or PC133 for older PC2100, 2700 or 3200 for new laptops, all in SODIMM format 

Changing the hard disk of a laptop. 

This operation is somewhat more complex: it will be necessary, as in the case of memory modules, locate the door concealing the hard disk. 

This is generally set on a rack: it will need to unscrew and then recover the adapter pin fixed on the front of the disk, reinstall it exactly the new disk, and finally reinstall the operating system. 

Unlike a desktop PC, mobile ones generally offer the possibility of installing a single hard drive. 
These hard drives are formatted in 2.5 "(against 3.5" for desktops). 
The interface is most often PATA (or UDMA). 

Upgrade the optical drive. 

To replace a CD drive or combo DVD / CD with a DVD burner, it will often have to go through the manufacturer of the computer to hope to find a compatible hardware. 
Indeed, if the optical drives of desktops are usually provided in standard format 5.25 "is different for each laptops, the racks are often different from one manufacturer to another. 

It is sometimes not possible to change the drive, which is incorporated directly into the casing of the laptop. 
The only solution in this case would be to buy an external USB or Firewire Drive. 


Posted by Laptop Tips

If you are a computer user, whether a moderate or a frequent user, it is evident that you use some sound system with your PC and as such it is often seen that there is some problems with the sound that you must deal with. Some of the common sound problems encountered by PC users include when sound can be heard coming out of only one speaker or when you need help because the volume control of your speaker is not functioning. 

For the first problem, it is imperative you pinpoint exactly what is causing the problem – whether the sound card or the speaker cable or the speakers themselves. To tackle with the first type of problem, check if the cables that connect your sound card to the speakers are firmly in place and ensure that the sound balance setting of your speakers is neither to extreme right nor to extreme left but in the middle position. If you are still having sound problems then to find out if your speakers are faulty and need repairing, connect them with a separate sound source and check the quality of sound output. Now what can you do if you cannot control the volume of your speakers? 

The basic reason why this happens is that either you have forgotten to insert batteries or you have overlooked connecting the speakers to an external source of power. Taking care of these mistakes can fix the sound problem of your PC. However if your sound problem is centered on why you cannot see the red light on your speakers after you have turned them on, then be assured that it is only a power issue taking care of which your problem also gets solved.

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