unit

Mon
03
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Build an External HD?

Infopackets Reader John R. writes: " Dear Dennis, I have a question regarding how to make a custom built external 2.5 inch USB hard drive (similar to the Western Digital My Passport drive). First, can you tell me: do external USB hard drives operate ... similar to 3.5 inch hard drives found in PCs? Also, are 2.5 inch hard drives just as reliable as the 3.5 inch desktop PC hard drives? Lastly, do you have any recommendations for external 2.5 inch hard drive enclosures? " My Response: For what it's worth, the Western Digital MyPasport hard drive is a solid unit (I own the 2TB model ), but it tends ... (view more)

Thu
02
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Computer Keeps Powering Off, Unstable, Intermittent?

Infopackets Reader 'rbruner' writes: " Dear Dennis, I have an older, but still viable Systemax XP computer that was upgraded to Windows 7 . The problem is that the unit powers down within a few minutes of powering on. I have already replaced the ... motherboard and power supply , kept the CPU (an AMD 4400+, circa Q4 2008). When I boot into safe mode, the unit is operational, but but if I boot up Windows 7 normally or insert a Ubuntu Linux Live CD, my PC will crash. Should I try another CPU? " My response: Based on what you're telling me, the issue might be hardware-related, ... (view more)

Wed
29
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

Solid-State Drive (SSD)

A solid-state drive (SSD) is a data storage device that uses solid-state memory to store persistent data. SSDs are distinguished from traditional hard disk drives (HDDs), which are electromechanical devices containing spinning disks and movable read ... / write heads. SSDs, in contrast, use microchips which retain data in non-volatile memory chips and contain no moving parts. Solid State Drive (SSD) Compared to a Hard Disk Drive (HDD) Today's solid state hard drives are considerably faster than a standard (spinning) hard drive. For example: read / write speeds on a standard HDD are roughly 40-60 ... (view more)

Sun
28
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

Online Holiday Shopping? Read Dennis' Top 10 Recommendations

With over 30 years in computing experience, I'm often asked my opinion about computer hardware. Questions like, "What can I do to speed up my computer?", or "What type of laptop should I buy?" and things of that nature. Like anyone else, I love a ... good deal. In order to find the best deal possible, sometimes I spend an entire day shopping online to compare prices and features of similar components. Unfortunately, many of the "recommendations" I've read recently appear to be forged for the sake of making a sale, which means there's an awful lot of time wasted wading through ... (view more)

Wed
29
Apr
Dennis Faas's picture

McAfee '911' Helps Victims Recover from Online Attacks

McAfee has launched a new website designed to help the victims of various cybercrimes fight back against Internet deviants. Dubbed the " Cybercrime Response Unit," it acts a lot like an "Online 911". A victim of an online hacking is left with very ... little options following an attack. On one hand, the thought of calling the police to report a random computer virus is comical, but if the virus is comprehensive enough that it affects a great number of people, the party responsible for its creation should be held accountable. In the U.S., online crimes can be prosecuted by ... (view more)

Wed
15
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Technology Makes It (Almost) Impossible to Lose Your Pooch!

If you've taken a stroll through the park recently, you might have noticed a number of dogs sporting collars with attached ID tags, trinkets, G.P.S. equipment and...G.P.S. equipment? Garmin, a manufacturer of global positioning equipment, now makes ... tracking devices that keeps tabs on dogs whether they are walking through the park for exercise or chasing down a rabbit during a hunt. The latest Global Positioning System comes in two parts: a hand-held unit for the owner and another device that is mounted directly onto the collar or harness of the animal. (Source: nytimes.com ) Now if the dog ... (view more)

Thu
17
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

Backup Windows with External USB Hard Drive?

Infopackets Reader 'Holy Hal' writes: " Dear Dennis, I am at best an intermediate when it comes to computers -- and I certainly do appreciate all the effort you put into your newsletter! With that aside, my question for you today is in regard to ... backups. I have Windows 2000 Professional, and I would like to backup my entire Operating System (Windows). Would an external USB hard drive that has some backup software be appropriate for this type of application? Or would I still need to use a software program like Acronis True Image with my external unit? I feel that a software backup program ... (view more)

Tue
19
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

RAID = Blazing fast Hard Drive performance

Have you ever had a RAID before? RAID is a technology used to increase hard drive performance and fault-tolerance. What is fault-tolerance? The hard drive inside your computer is responsible for storing programs and user data. RAID performance ... refers to the time that it takes the hard drive to read and write information; fault-tolerance deals with the means to protect data stored on the hard drive. RAID is an acronym which stands for Redundant Arrays of Inexpensive (or Independent) Disks. Generally speaking, the word 'Array' is a techy-term which represents related information formed in a ... (view more)

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