Notebooks, PCs & Printers

12 great apps for bridging Windows, Linux and Macs

Blogger Ron Barrett has scoured the IT world to bring you this list of affordably priced business productivity tools that run on any desktop (many are even free). Also check out Barrett's full review of each tool in his A Better Windows World blog.

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Upgrading the HP Mini-Note

The HP Mini-Note PC is one of the best ultraportable laptops on the market for under $1000. The best part is that its RAM and hard drive are easily upgradeable.

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Acer Aspire One: adding RAM

The Linux version of the Aspire One ships with 512MB of RAM. However, there is a free SO-DIMM slot for you to add a DDR2 module but it can be tricky to get to it, as there is no access panel underneath the unit.

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Upgrading your laptop's graphics card

Who doesn't want better graphics quality from their notebook PC? You can get there by doing it yourself. But be warned: If the upgrade is possible at all for your laptop, it can be a time-consuming operation that involves disassembling virtually your entire notebook, so don't enter into this process unless you are willing to accept the risk of doing serious harm to your machine. That said, if done properly, this project can give you noticeably higher frame rates in the end. The process should take about 45 minutes all up, and it's not a procedure for novices. Here's how we did it...<br><i>Photograph: Charlie Nucci</i>

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A look inside the MSI Wind

At 10in, the MSI Wind is perhaps the perfect low-cost ultraportable laptop on the market. It possesses good speed for Web browsing and office applications and plenty of storage, and it's very comfortable to use. Because we're naturally curious about the way these types of laptops are put together, we opened the Wind and took a peek inside. The biggest surprise was the 2.5in SATA hard drive, which takes up the majority of the space.

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Toshiba's next-gen notebooks

Yesterday Toshiba unveiled its new line-up of consumer and business notebooks, with an ultramobile prototype stealing the show.

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Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

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Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

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Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

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Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

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Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

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Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

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Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

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Budget

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PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

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