The Rough Guide to PCs and Windows Paperback – 30 Sep 2004
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About the Author
Peter Buckley and Duncan Clark have both worked at Rough Guide for nearly five years. Experts in both computers and music, they are the authors of numerous computer-related titled - including the multi-million-selling Rough Guide to the Internet - and editors (respectively) of the Rough Guide to Rock and Classical Music.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
HOW DOES THIS BOOK WORK?
The first part of this book provides you with everything you need to know when buying PCs, parts and peripherals: where to get them, what to look out for and how to decide what youll actually need for the kind of computing youre aiming to do. Also in this section youll find the lowdown on what a PC consists of and how its various components work before long youll know your RAM from your ROM and youll be waxing lyrical about buses, buffers and burners.
Part 2 whisks you through the world of the Windows operating system. Whether youre new to Windows or already familiar with its tools, menus and buttons, youre sure to learn a lot. This book covers the basics, but it also introduces you to a barrel-load of tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your operating system. As well as covering the latest version Windows XP we also deal with Windows Me and Windows 98. And if youre using Windows 95, most of what we say will still apply.
In Part 3 youll learn how to set up a home network and get to grips with the Internet, while Parts 4 and 5 present a roll call of some of the best software titles around, tips on keeping your PC working as it should, a troubleshooting section to pull you out of deep water should things go wrong and a detailed guide to upgrading your machine.
Weve tried to keep the book as friendly as possible, but if you do find yourself flummoxed by the odd bit of techie jargon, turn to the Glossary (p.350) to get a concise and digestible definition if nothing else, youll be much better at Scrabble after reading this book. And if we succeed in whetting your appetite, the Web Directory (p.390) will point you towards some of the best, most friendly and most entertaining PC-related sites on the Web. Happy computing . . . --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Top customer reviews
One of the most helpful features for me is the glossary at the back, which gives explanations for all the most common computer jargon. Now I can actually understand what the guys from IT are saying! There are also chapters on buying, setting up, maintaining and upgrading your PC, troubleshooting, using various applications and surfing the internet. The chapters on customisation and shortcuts are particularly handy - it's so simple but makes such a big difference to the speed and ease with which you use your PC.
The book combines easy-to-follow practical advice (e.g. how to 'defrag' your hard drive) along with background information (what a hard drive is, what defragging is, and why it's useful to do it). Therefore it can be read at two levels - a quick reference if you want to do something right now, and a more in depth guide to help develop your knowledge and understanding of computers in general, thus increasing your confidence.
Overall I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is new to computers and to more experienced users up to the level of IT professionals (for whom it would be a bit basic). The information will prove useful to both home and office users. Its small size makes it very handy and it can fit easily into a desk drawer, and it's well worth the (very reasonable) price. I wouldn't be without it now. A real investment.
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