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Upgrading and Repairing PCs, 14th Edition

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Upgrading and Repairing PCs, 14th Edition


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  • NEW - DVD containing more than two hours of new, high-quality video of Scott Mueller demonstrating key PC repairs and upgrades.
    • Enables students to actually watch PC repairs and upgrades—even when they only have access to a DVD player, not a computer.

  • NEW - Thoroughly updated to reflect the latest PC technologies.
    • Helps students rapidly get up to speed with the latest PC technologies, as they understand how these enhancements fit into the evolving PC platform.

  • Comprehensive, authoritative PC hardware coverage—Covers CPUs, motherboards, BIOS, memory, drives, optical storage, video, audio, USB, FireWire, power supplies, cases, and more.
    • Gives students a single source for understanding all aspects of PC maintenance and troubleshooting.

  • Extensive troubleshooting index—Contains troubleshooting index pointing to solutions for over 250 common PC hardware problems.
    • Helps students rapidly solve the problems they are most likely to encounter.

  • Extensive technical reference on DVD-ROMContains an extensive technical reference with hundreds of pages of content drawn from previous versions of the book.
    • Helps students troubleshoot problems with older, more failure-prone PCs.

  • Coverage of network and Internet connections—Covers LANs, modems, cable/DSL modems, performance issues, and more.
    • Gives students practical guidance for understanding and troubleshooting problems with networks and Internet connectivity.

  • Comprehensive PC technical glossary—Includes hundreds of definitions of the PC hardware terminology and acronyms students are most likely to encounter.
    • Gives students a single resource for understanding virtually all contemporary PC hardware terminology.

  • Optional multimedia package.


  • Copyright 2003
  • Edition: 14th
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-7897-2745-5
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-7897-2745-9

This is the newest comprehensive update to the world's #1 guide to PC repair and maintenance. World-renowned PC hardware expert Scott Mueller has thoroughly updated his legendary Upgrading and Repairing PCs to reflect today's latest PC technologies, and added a new DVD with more than two hours of digital video demonstrating PC maintenance and repair, which can be watched on either their DVD-equipped PCs or any DVD player. Mueller presents updated coverage of every significant PC component: processors, motherboards, memory, the BIOS, IDE and SCSI interfaces, drives, removable and optical storage, video and audio hardware, USB, FireWire, Internet connectivity, LANs, power supplies, even PC cases. This book also contains a detailed troubleshooting index designed to help readers rapidly diagnose more than 250 common PC hardware problems, as well as an extensive vendor contact guide, and a comprehensive PC technical glossary.

Sample Content

Online Sample Chapters

PC Components, Features, and System Design

PC Components, Features, and System Design

Table of Contents


1. Development of the PC.

Computer History—Before Personal Computers. Modern Computers. History of the PC.

2. PC Components, Features, and System Design.

What Is a PC? System Types. System Components.

3. Microprocessor Types and Specifications.

Microprocessors. Pre-PC Microprocessor History. Processor Specifications. Processor Features. Processor Manufacturing. Processor Socket and Slot Types. Processor Slots. CPU Operating Voltages. Heat and Cooling Problems. Math Coprocessors (Floating-Point Units). Processor Bugs. Processor Update Feature. Processor Codenames. Intel-Compatible Processors (AMD and Cyrix). P1 (086) First-Generation Processors. P2 (286) Second-Generation Processors. P3 (386) Third-Generation Processors. P4 (486) Fourth-Generation Processors. P5 (586) Fifth-Generation Processors. Intel P6 (686) Sixth-Generation Processors. Other Sixth-Generation Processors. Intel Pentium 4 (Seventh-Generation) Processors. Eighth-Generation (64-bit Register) Processors. Processor Upgrades. Processor Troubleshooting Techniques.

4. Motherboards and Buses.

Motherboard Form Factors. Motherboard Components. Processor Sockets/Slots. Chipsets. Fifth-Generation (P5 Pentium Class) Chipsets. Sixth-Generation (P6 Pentium Pro/II/III Class) and Seventh-Generation (Pentium 4) Chipsets. Athlon/Duron Chipsets. Super I/O Chips. System Bus Types, Functions, and Features. Types of I/O Buses. System Resources. Resolving Resource Conflicts. Motherboard Selection Criteria (Knowing What to Look For).

5. BIOS.

BIOS Basics. BIOS Hardware/Software. Motherboard BIOS. Upgrading the BIOS. CMOS Setting Specifications. Plug and Play BIOS. BIOS Error Messages.

6. Memory.

Memory Basics. RAM Memory Types. Memory Modules. Installing RAM Upgrades. Troubleshooting Memory. The System Logical Memory Layout.

7. The IDE Interface.

An Overview of the IDE Interface. Precursors to IDE. The IDE Interface. ATA IDE. ATA Standards. ATA Features. ATA Upgrades. Serial ATA. ATA RAID.

8. The SCSI Interface.

Small Computer System Interface. ANSI SCSI Standards. SCSI-1. SCSI-2. SCSI-3. SCSI Cables and Connectors. SCSI Cable and Connector Pinouts. SCSI Drive Configuration. Plug and Play SCSI. SCSI Configuration Troubleshooting. SCSI Versus IDE.

9. Magnetic Storage Principles.

Magnetic Storage. History of Magnetic Storage. How Magnetic Fields Are Used to Store Data. Read/Write Head Designs. Head Sliders. Data Encoding Schemes. Encoding Scheme Comparisons. Partial-Response, Maximum-Likelihood Decoders. Capacity Measurements. Areal Density.

10. Hard Disk Storage.

Definition of a Hard Disk. Hard Drive Advancements. Hard Disk Drive Operation. Basic Hard Disk Drive Components. Hard Disk Features.

11. Floppy Disk Storage.

History of the Floppy. Floppy Drive Interfaces. Drive Components. Disk Physical Specifications and Operation. Types of Floppy Disk Drives. Analyzing Floppy Disk Construction. Drive-Installation Procedures. Troubleshooting Floppy Drives.

12. High-Capacity Removable Storage.

The Role of Removable-Media Drives. Comparing Disk, Tape, and Flash Memory Technologies. Interfaces for Removable Media Drives. Overview of Removable Magnetic Storage Devices. Hard-Disk-Size Removable-Media Drives. “Orphan” Removable-Media Drives. Magneto-Optical Drives. Removable Drive Letter Assignments. Comparing Performance of Removable-Media Drives. Flash Card and Digital “Film”. Microdrive Technology. Tape Drives.

13. Optical Storage.

What Is a CD-ROM? Compact Disc and Drive Formats. CD-ROM File Systems. DVD. CD/DVD Drives and Specifications. Writable CDs. Recordable DVD Standards. CD/DVD Software and Drivers. Caring for Optical Media. Troubleshooting Optical Drives.

14. Physical Drive Installation and Configuration.

Installing All Types of Drives. Hard Disk Installation Procedures. Formatting. Replacing an Existing Drive. Hard Disk Drive Troubleshooting and Repair. Installing an Optical Drive. Floppy Drive Installation Procedures.

15. Video Hardware.

Video Display Technologies. Monitor Selection Criteria. Maintaining Your Monitor. Video Display Adapters. 3D Graphics Accelerators. Upgrading or Replacing Your Video Card. Video Cards for Multimedia. Adapter and Display Troubleshooting.

16. Audio Hardware.

Early PC Audio Adapters. PC Multimedia History. Audio Adapter Features. Choosing the Best Audio Adapter for Your Needs. Playing and Creating Digitized Sound Files. Audio Adapter Concepts and Terms. Who's Who in Audio. 3D Audio. Troubleshooting Sound Card Problems. Speakers. Microphones.

17. I/O Interfaces from Serial and Parallel to IEEE-1394 and USB.

Introduction to Input/Output Ports. USB and IEEE-1394 (i.Link or FireWire). Standard Serial and Parallel Ports. Serial Ports. Parallel Ports.

18. Input Devices.

Keyboards. Running Windows Without a Mouse. Keyboard Technology. Keyboard Troubleshooting and Repair. Keyboard Recommendations. Pointing Devices. Input Devices for Gaming. Wireless Input Devices.

19. Internet Connectivity.

Relating Internet and LAN Connectivity. Comparing Broadband and Analog Modem Internet Access. Broadband Internet Access Types. Cable Modems and CATV Networks. Digital Subscriber Line. Fixed-Base Wireless Broadband. Internet Connectivity via Satellite with DirecWAY or StarBand. Integrated Services Digital Network. Comparing High-Speed Internet Access. Leased Lines. Securing Your Internet Connection. Asynchronous (Analog) Modems. Modem Standards. Sharing Your Internet Connection. Internet Troubleshooting.

20. Local Area Networking.

Focus of This Chapter. Defining a Network. Client/Server Versus Peer Networks. Network Protocols: Ethernet Versus Token-Ring. Hardware Elements of Your Network. Network Cable Installations. Wireless Network Standards. Network Protocols. Other Home Networking Solutions. Putting Your Network Together. Tips and Tricks. Direct Cable Connections. Troubleshooting a Network.

21. Power Supply and Chassis/Case.

Considering the Importance of the Power Supply. Primary Function and Operation. Power Supply Form Factors. Motherboard Power Connectors. Peripheral Power Connectors. Power Supply Specifications. Power-Use Calculations. Power Cycling. Power Management. Power Supply Troubleshooting. Repairing the Power Supply. Obtaining Replacement Units. Chassis/Case. Power-Protection Systems. RTC/NVRAM (CMOS RAM) Batteries.

22. Building or Upgrading Systems.

System Components. Case and Power Supply. Motherboard. Floppy Disk and Removable Drives. Hard Disk Drives. Optical Drives. Input Devices. Video Card and Display. Sound Card and Speakers. Accessories. Hardware and Software Resources. System Assembly and Disassembly. Motherboard Installation. Troubleshooting New Installations. Installing the Operating System. Disassembly/Upgrading Preparation.

23. PC Diagnostics, Testing, and Maintenance.

PC Diagnostics. The Hardware Boot Process. PC Maintenance Tools. Preventive Maintenance. Basic Troubleshooting Guidelines.

24. File Systems and Data Recovery.

File Systems. File Allocation Table. Undocumented FDISK. VFAT and Long Filenames. FAT32. FAT File System Errors. FAT File System Utilities. New Technology File System. High Performance File System. Common Drive Error Messages and Solutions. General File System Troubleshooting for MS-DOS, Windows 9x, and Windows Me. General File System Troubleshooting for Windows 2000/XP.

Appendix A. Glossary.

Appendix B. Key Vendor Contact Information.

Appendix C. Troubleshooting Index.

List of Acronyms.



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