Tag Archives: bluetooth

Bluetooth and Netbooks

Bluetooth to Netbook
Bluetooth

Many netbooks tout bluetooth as one of their important features. But what exactly does bluetooth mean to you? Well, here’s the lowdown: In short, bluetooth is a wireless standard for exchanging data over very short distances -up to 32 feet or 10 meters. A bluetooth device transmits a 2.4 GHz radio signal, while other device receives the signal, both will start talking with one another.

Bluetooth is named after a Danish King Harald “bluetooth” blaatand. Of course Harald did not invent the wireless protocol – but he was known for unifying Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. Because the bluetooth inventors saw the protocol as a unifying communications standard, they wanted to honor King Harald. Obviously, the symbol on the bluetooth logo is King Harald’s initials in Nordic runes. It is a good way to replace data and peripheral cables. There are bluetooth-compatible mice, headphones, keyboards, printers, GPS receivers, cell phones, and PDAs. None of them need cables. One of the most useful features of bluetooth is calendar and contact synchronization among cell phones, laptops, and PDAs.  If you have a bluetooth-compatible cellphone, it’s possible to connect to the internet through the cellphone without data cable.

Remember that bluetooth transfers your files at a rate of 1 Mbps. Although that’s about six times faster than serial and parallel ports, it is substantially slower than an 802.11 Wi-Fi connection – you shouldn’t use bluetooth for your day-to-day Internet connection.

Even so, the next generation bluetooth Ver. 3.0, will amp up the standard’s data rate to a zoomy 24 Mbps. Other than the speed increase, the bluetooth standard will also offer improved power management capabilities, so new bluetooth devices can run longer on batteries.

If you don’t have built-in bluetooth in your netbook, but you are tired of those data cable, you can get an affordable bluetooth adapter (around $25) that you can plug in to a USB slot – you may need a driver to run your modem, but in most cases, Windows would automatically do it for you.

In Windows, you need to configure bluetooth before using it, just follow the configuration wizard to easily adjust the setting. You should choose the types of services you need, such as file transfer, PIM (Personal Information Manager) synchronization, headset, and so forth.

When the configuration is completed, Windows creates a ‘My bluetooth Places’ icon on the desktop. If you click the icon, a window is opened to control all bluetooth connections (you can also search for nearby devices). Another bluetooth icon is also placed in the taskbar for easy access.

Check the netbook’s user manual for more information on using bluetooth.  If you have a built-in bluetooth in your netbook, you should turn it off to improve battery life. Use a menu command or press a function key (check the user manual) to turn it off and on.

Facts About Wi-Fi Technology

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Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi essentially is the technology that enables you to transmit information, images without the need for wires or VGA cables. It is the best option that enables you to get access to data of all kinds as well as images, videos without the need to put in place cabling, wiring, connectors and other paraphernalia normally associated with a wired service.

How does it work?

Wi-Fi makes use of a technology called as IEEE 802.11a or 802.11b. This means that speeds of 11Mbps or 54 Mbps can be harnessed as the network operates in a radio band that is unlicensed. This is the 2.4 – 5 GHz radio band.
This technology facilitates transmission of data almost ten times quicker than Bluetooth and has a much wider range as well. The technology enables you to connect many computers to each other seamlessly and with appropriate security. You can also use it to connect them to other wired networks.

What would you need to put in place a good Wi-Fi network?

The essential elements are an access point that is typically in the form of a LAN receiver and is also referred to as the base station. You then have Wi-Fi cards that can easily accept as well as relay signals. These cards can be fixed internally or externally to a laptop or desktop respectively. Certain safety features like firewalls as well as anti-virus programs need to be installed so that hackers are not able to get into the system and cause damage.

What are the limitations or disadvantages of this system?

Firstly, you could experience some interference in the airwaves that could reduce the performance levels. Secondly, the power consumption is much higher and that could push up your maintenance or operating costs. The limited range could also be something that may not appeal to many users.

However, considering that any Wi-Fi enabled gadgets like the PC, cell phone, MP3 player and the PDA can be connected to the internet at hotspots, the convenience of this technology is making it very popular. There are many hotspots that are being created by establishments like malls, cafes, restaurants, airports and other such public places so that users can do their work on the internet and do not have to depend on a wired connection.

It therefore appears that Wi-Fi technology will only become more and more popular in the coming years.

Ethernet and Netbook

Most netbooks have an RJ45 jack placed somewhere on the case. It should look like what you would plug a landline phone into but is a little larger – a phone cord won’t fit in it.

Ethernet

The RJ45 jack is important for wired network access and it connects to a 10/100 Ethernet card in your netbook. Plug a network cable with a  RJ45 connector (commonly called a Category 5 or CAT5 cable) into your netbook’s jack and plug the other end into a switch, router, or wall network port, and you are ready to go. If the switch or router you’re connecting to uses Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), Windows quickly connects to the Internet. It is as simple as plugging in a cable and getting connected in just a matter of seconds. Many networks today use DHCP, but some still use static IP (Internet Protocol) addresses. In this case you’ll need to have a valid IP address from the system administrator and configure your IP settings. Your administrator may provide an instruction on how to do it.

If an Ethernet connection is available, these are a few things you need to consider:

  • An Ethernet connection is a lot faster than a wireless (Wi-Fi or Bluetooth)

connection – except a 4G network at full performance.

  • An Ethernet connection uses less battery power than a wireless connection.
  • An Ethernet connection isn’t vulnerable to radio wave interferences.

A network status icon shows up in the Windows taskbar – it appears like two computer monitors, which will lit up when data is transferred. Move the cursor over the icon to find out whether you have an Ethernet connection. If you do, its speed is displayed.

You don’t have to turn off your netbook’s Wi-Fi or Bluetooth when you are using an Ethernet connection. Windows is clever enough to handle these connections at once. However, if you are having a few networking glitches though, consider terminating your wireless connections.

Wi-Fi and Netbooks

If you own a netbook, you’ll without doubt want to use its wireless features – after all, that’s what the netbooks are designed for. If you have plenty of experience connecting laptops to the Internet, you may know most of the instruction – although; you might find something new. IEEE 802.11 or better known as WLAN or WiFi is a set of wireless data communication standards for connecting to networks, especially the Internet. Your netbook has an internal antenna and wireless card that can be used wherever there is a nearby wireless router or AP (access point) – such a place is called as a hotspot. Access points and wireless routers access the Net through a wired connection (usually DSL) and share the connection with computers through radio waves.

Wi-Fi and Netbooks

If the Wi-Fi hotspot uses public access (doesn’t need a password), Windows quickly connects to it, and voilà; you are on the Internet.  Wi-Fi routers cost between $30 and $120 (depending on the features and brands).  Because they’re easy to install and cheap, many people broadcast their DSL connection and set up a wireless home network. Just be sure to activate WPA security on your router. If you don’t, it is possible for someone to “steal” your wireless Internet access – and rack up a huge bandwidth bill if your internet connection is metered.
Windows is already configured to quickly connect to nearby, public access points. If your netbook doesn’t immediately connect, here’s what you should do:

  1. Double-click the Wireless Network Connection icon in the Windows taskbar. Available Wireless Networks will be shown on the pop-up menu. You can left-click a connection icon to see more information on it.
  2. To connect to a wireless network, just click the Connect button.  If you see a lock icon under the network name, it means the network is secured and uses encryption. You must enter a password to access it.

A signal strength indicator shows the connection quality. Often, more bars mean faster and more reliable connection.  Windows gives status information when it tries to connect a wireless network and it informs you when the connection is established. In a nutshell, connecting to a wireless network is relatively straightforward – you may need to check the netbook’s user manual for more information. You can switch off the wireless card to improve battery life. Also, you may need to turn off the wireless card during a flight where wireless signals might interfere with the aircraft’s avionics – or so they say.  If you have an 802.11b/g wireless card, it transmits and receives 2.4 GHz radio waves. Unfortunately, baby monitors, certain cordless telephones, microwave ovens and Bluetooth devices emit similar frequency. If means when you pop a pouch of corn kernels in the microwave, there is a possibility your Internet connection will go snap temporarily while the oven is turned on, depending on where your access point, microwave, and netbook are located.