By Marc Saltzman WHAT’S THE STATE of your home electronics? Here’s a look at some simple upgrades that can increase productivity and make life better at home when it comes to your PC and wireless network. for your home ; TECHconnection
A cleaner, leaner Windows
One frustration typically hits new computer
buyers right off the bat: “trialware” and other demo
programs that open at start-up.
All of these extra icons can make your desktop
look very cluttered. And knowing which one to use
could be confusing, as many of the programs do the
same thing, such as play music or provide an antivirus solution. Even worse, booting up the computer
can take a long time with all those extra programs.
To remedy this problem, Microsoft has launched
a highly specialized configuration of Windows
called Microsoft Signature. Available on select Dell,
Acer and Samsung PCs at Costco, it’s the cleanest
and leanest version of Windows 7 available, as the
desktop houses a single icon (Recycle Bin). Initial
boot-up and shut-down times are significantly
faster on these new PCs.
PCs with Microsoft Signature are configured to
operate at each model’s peak performance level. All
Microsoft Signature machines include Windows 7,
Windows Live Essentials, Microsoft Security
Essentials antivirus software, Internet Explorer 9
with Bing optimization, Zune software and more.
You’ll see the Microsoft Signature logo on these PCs.
HP has introduced a similar feature, called HP
Premier Experience, on select PCs at Costco.
You can customize the desktop as you please.
But you maintain control over what shows up and
when, which makes for a more productive and personal computing experience. For more information,
Can your network handle this increased demand? If
it’s been a few years since you
installed a wireless router,
the answer is probably no.
The latest routers feature
802.11n technology (
compared to the older 802.11g/b),
which offers faster speeds—
especially ideal for streaming
video and playing multiplayer
games. Some models also have
multiple antennae to better
handle a number of wireless devices at the same time.
These new 802.11n routers
offer a broader range, easier setup
and better security. Speaking of security, remember to password-protect
your wireless network.
Updating your wireless network
electronics or computers
you purchased at
Costco? Email them to:
Or send them to:
The Costco Connection
P.O. Box 34088
Seattle, WA 98124-1088
or fax to (425) 313-6718.
in the subject line. Marc
will answer selected ques-
tions in this column. We
regret that unpublished
questions cannot be
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On Costco.com, enter “Connection.”
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The Costco Connection
Costco offers a complete selection of electronics for your home in the warehouses and online
at Costco.com, including a range of PCs with
Microsoft Signature, routers and computer monitors in a variety of sizes.
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