Posts Tagged ‘new models’

Ins and Outs of a USB DVD Drive



By Anne Ahira

The Netbook is an excellent, compact way to keep your internet and files with you at all times. However, there is a down side to having a Netbook. There is no disk drive.

While the designers were ensuring that the user had everything that they needed to take their networking and information with them, they did not have the room for a disk drive.


This typically means that anything you may want to download, you must do from a USB Thumb Flash Drive. However, there is another option. If you enjoy watching movies and want to do so on you Netbook, you will need an external DVD drive that connects through the USB ports.

There are many different manufacturers and they each have different features that come with them, however, there are some things that they share. Keep in mind though that there are essentially two types of USB connection.

The standard USB connection is typically found on older model laptops, desktops, and netbooks. It is conventional and most USB device works on it, though, not always well.

The newer models have a type of USB connection that is required by most devices, including flash drives and external DVD drives. This connection is called the USB 2.0 port and is preferred because it can allow the device to run smoother and faster.

It is also best for USB DVD drives, due to the video needs required to properly play videos without having issues, such as synch with audio and skipping. The external USB DVD drive is excellent for connecting to a Netbook and is portable enough to take it anywhere.

There are many different manufacturers that offer external USB DVD drives. One of the more popular manufacturers is Targus, which offers the Slimline USB 2.0 DVD/CD-ROM drive.

The design offers a connection with a standard USB connection, as well as a USB pass through that can allow for a secondary USB device to be connected to the computer. This model is also powered directly from the USB port on the computer, eliminating the need for an AC adapter.

Another popular model is the Sony DRX S70U DVD-RAM drive which also offers a DVD writing and rewriting capability. The design utilizes USB 2.0 and can connect quickly to Windows Vista, XP, and 2000. The computer manufacturer ASUS has also released the SDRW 08D1S-U.

This model is lightweight and compact and also comes with a stand that will allow you to stand your external US DVD drive on its side to make room for other devices. This model also offers the capability of DVD and CD write and rewrite.

The manufacturer, Iomega, also offers a Super Slim external USB DVD Portable Writer. This drive is another that has the capability to copy CDs and DVDs. The Toshiba external USB DVD Super Multi Drive also offers CD and DVD copying capabilities.

With the choice between the different manufacturers, there is always an option that will work just for you and for your computer. The USB 2.0 connections are very important and can keep your tasks from timing out or freezing while you are working. You can find these devices in any electronics retail store, as well as online at internet markets like Amazon.

Maintaining your Computer Battery


Computer Battery

Computer Battery

By Anne Ahira

The main feature of laptops that separates them from the desktops is the computer battery.

This allows the laptop to continue to run even when it is not connected to a power source which can be pretty convenient when using in a shop or any area where there isn’t a power outlet nearby.

Most laptops should be able to last 3-4 hours while newer models and many netbooks can go beyond 5 hours.

The computer battery is also rechargeable so it can be used for another few hours when it is disconnected again.

However, like other batteries, their overall lifespan is reduced and at some point of time, you will need to buy a new battery if you wish to enjoy the mobility features that your laptop has to offer. Fortunately, there are maintenance tricks to maximize the intervals for a battery change.

Referring to your Laptop’s Manual

Since different laptop manufacturers use different batteries, a good thing to do first is to consult your laptop’s manual for basic tips on how to make the most of your battery and make sure that it is treated properly.

A manual or two should come with the unit, but if you don’t have one available, there might be an online help section in the Start Menu’s “Help” item. If you have an Internet connection, you can also visit the official support site of your manufacturer and check the knowledge bases or community forums for computer battery tips.

Basic Calibration Techniques

In case there are not many tips being offered, you can always stick with the basic calibration techniques. A common practice is to fully drain the battery at least once a month. This means using it however you like as long as it is not plugged in. When your battery level starts to dip low, save any of your important work and leave it stationary.

It is normal for the laptop to enter a “Suspend” or “Sleep” state to save power, but continue to leave it there and eventually it will switch off automatically. If the laptop automatically switches off, chances are you have a “Hibernate” option set which you can remove by referring to your “Power Options” in the Windows Control Panel.

After fully draining the battery, charge the laptop for a few hours and your battery will be calibrated which means that your status indicators should be more accurate.

Finding a Spare Battery

If you see the overall lifespan of your computer battery diminishing, you will have no choice but to purchase a spare battery. Spare batteries aren’t normally sold in local computer vendors so visit the online areas like Amazon as they offer some spare batteries for laptops.

Just make sure that you read the description of the battery as the computer battery may not be compatible with your laptop. Some laptops may support 6 and 12 cell batteries where 12 cell batteries have a longer lifespan at the cost of a heavier weight.

As long as you keep your computer batteries well maintained, you shouldn’t be replacing your battery so often.