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More Peripherals How-To

  • How-Tos: How to dial phonecalls from your PC with a USB modem

    I used to be able to dial out to contacts whose numbers were held on Smart Address 2000 (Oakley Data Services), using a PC card modem added to my Windows XP desktop PC. I now have a Windows 7 laptop and, as far as I know, no dial-out facility, although Smart Address 2000 still runs. Is there such a thing as an external USB dial-out modem for my laptop?

  • How-Tos: How to fit a hard drive in a SATA drive bay

    My HP dv9700 Vista laptop has a spare SATA drive bay. A 500GB Hitachi drive has been fitted using the correct caddy and connector, but when I reboot the PC, the drive doesn't appear in Computer. When connected using USB it appears as drive F.

  • How-Tos: How to connect a graphics card to your PC's PSU

    QUESTION I bought a Club 3D ATI Radeon HD 5750 graphics card, but my motherboard doesn't recognise it. When I plug the monitor cable into the graphics card, the screen goes blank; when I put the monitor cable back into the onboard graphics card slot, the screen is fine.

  • How-Tos: How to import photos to Photo Gallery from an SD card

    When I try to import photos from an SD Card to my Windows 7 laptop, the card doesn't appear in Photo Gallery's 'Import Photos and Videos' dialog box. I can access my SD Card in Windows Explorer, however. How can I get Photo Gallery to display the SD Card?

  • How-Tos: How to fix a PC that constantly shuts down

    My desktop PC immediately shuts down after I turn it on. At the second attempt it will stay switched on, but nothing appears onscreen. The processor fan is running and the RAM is okay, but the motherboard LED blinks.

  • How-Tos: How to use your BlackBerry as a Bluetooth modem

    Using your RIM BlackBerry as a tethered modem for your laptop can help avoid pesky hotel, cafe and airport hot spots and save a stack of cash. But in this wireless world, who wants to be "tethered?" Follow these steps to cut the wire and use your BlackBerry as a Bluetooth modem.

  • How-Tos: How to use a BlackBerry to transfer files by Bluetooth

    You can transfer information and files between BlackBerry smartphones in countless ways, but one of the quickest and easiest methods is via Bluetooth.

  • How-Tos: How to use your BlackBerry's email flags

    The simplest way to employ the email message flags in BlackBerry OS is to assign a flag to a message you received to remind yourself of something. For example, you can flag a message from your spouse requesting that you pick up a gallon of milk on the way home from the office. And you can program your device to remind you right at 5pm to make sure you remember the grocery store stop and avoid the dog house.

  • How-Tos: How to make digital photos appear quickly

    FORUM QUESTION I have a 10Mp camera. When viewing photos it takes a couple of seconds for each one to become sharp. Would a better graphics card than my six-year-old nVidia GeForce FX2500 speed up this process?

  • How-Tos: How to repair a hard drive that won't boot

    My Windows 7 PC has four hard drives (C, E, F and G). I've been having a lot of trouble with them lately, and a couple of weeks ago my computer wouldn't start up. I ran through Startup Repair a few times, but it hasn't helped. I've tried disconnecting my secondary hard drives and reconnecting them one at a time following restarts. Everything worked fine for a while but, after I tried to burn a DVD, I again got a locked-up computer with only two of the four drives available. Selectively adding the drives hasn't cured things this time, although the C drive continues to work normally.

  • How-Tos: How to install a second hard drive

    I want to install a second hard drive for backup purposes. I think I have a SATA drive at present. How can I be sure, and how do I go about installing a new drive?

  • How-Tos: How to clean a virus off a USB stick

    As a regular speaker at conferences, I carry my presentations on a USB memory key and plug it into the organiser's laptop to access them. In doing so, I believe my USB drive has picked up some malware. In Windows it appears on the desktop as a green icon with 'Keygen' written on it. It also creates a message box saying 'UpdateNetFramework'. If I delete the file it simply reappears. Norton Antivirus 2009 hasn't managed to eradicate it, and I now have the same message on all the USB drives I use.

  • How-Tos: How to: Set up a Wi-Fi router and home network

    We hate to see precious bandwidth go to waste. Here, we outline how to make a trickle of connectivity go a long, long way.

  • How-Tos: How to: Set up a 3G failover

    Mobile broadband is a useful alternative for getting online when a connection via your usual means isn’t possible. We show you how to set up a 3G failover.

  • How-Tos: How to use touch to control your Windows 7 PC

    I want to use touch to control my Windows 7 Home Premium PC. Is it as simple as plugging in a touchscreen display? I’d also like to view a 3D image – will I need a new graphics card?

  • How-Tos: How to get more from a quad-core PC

    QUESTION My Windows 7 Home Premium computer has a quad-core processor and 4GB of RAM. I’ve not found any advantage to using four cores. How can I use the processor more effectively and allocate different processes to the individual cores?

  • How-Tos: How to restore an iPhone

    I've bought a number of apps for my iPhone via iTunes and the App Store. To avoid draining the battery by downloading apps directly to the handset, I'd like to connect my iPhone to my Windows XP PC using USB and transfer them over. However, when I connect the phone its icon doesn't appear on the desktop (although it does charge up). I've tried updating iTunes, restarting the PC and using a different USB port, all to no avail.

  • How-Tos: How to initialise your PC's microphone

    My Windows 7 PC plays audio through headphones but is unable to pick up sound from them. I’ve got a Creative SoundBlaster X-Fi card and a Logitech USB phone/microphone. The drivers are up to date.

  • How-Tos: How to set up your printer to save ink and paper

    The paperless office is yet to become a reality, which means print costs are a continuing issue. We look at how to be print-savvy to save paper and ink, plus when to PDF your documents instead

  • How-Tos: How to upgrade your PC to run cooler and quieter

    We demonstrate how to upgrade a PC for super-silent, energy-efficient, ice-cool performance


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