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Netbooks: The Missing Manual


Netbooks are the hot new thing in PCs — small, inexpensive laptops designed for web browsing, email, and working with web-based programs. But chances are you don't know how to choose a netbook, let alone use one. Not to worry: with this Missing Manual, you'll learn which netbook is right for you and how to set it up and use it for everything from spreadsheets for work to hobbies like gaming and photo sharing.

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Netbooks: The Missing Manual: The Missing Manual

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Netbooks are the hot new thing in PCs — small, inexpensive laptops designed for web browsing, email, and working with web-based programs. But chances are you don't know how to choose a netbook, let alone use one. Not to worry: with this Missing Manual, you'll learn which netbook is right for you and how to set it up and use it for everything from spreadsheets for work to hobbies like gaming and photo sharing.

Netbooks: The Missing Manual provides easy-to-follow instructions and lots of advice to help you:

  • Learn the basics for using a Windows- or Linux-based netbook
  • Connect speakers, printers, keyboards, external hard drives, and other hardware
  • Get online using a wireless network, a public network, broadband cards, or dial-up
  • Write email, browse the Web, transfer bookmarks, and add tools to your web browser
  • Use business tools like Google Docs and Office for Netbooks
  • Collaborate with others online via instant messaging
  • Edit and share photos, play games, listen to music, and watch TV and movies online

You'll also learn about web-based backup and storage, staying secure online — especially when using wireless networks — and tips for troubleshooting. Netbooks point to the future of computing, and Netbooks: The Missing Manual will show you how to get there.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596802233
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/31/2009
  • Series: Missing Manual Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 1,465,246
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

J.D. Biersdorfer is the best-selling author of iPad: The Missing Manual, Best iPhone Apps (Second Edition), Netbooks: The Missing Maunal, and The iPod Shuffle Fan Book. She is the co-author of iPod: The Missing Manual, Google: The Missing Manual (Second Edition), iPhoto '09: The Missing Manual, and The Internet: The Missing Manual. She has authored the weekly technology column "Q&A" for the New York Times since 1998 and often writes about art, books, and design for other sections of The Times. J.D. also co-hosts the independent Pop Tech Jam audio podcast, which explores current events in the world of technology and geek culture.

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Table of Contents

The Missing Credits;
About the Author;
About the Creative Team;
The Missing Manual Series;
Why Netbooks Are Not Notebooks;
About This Book;
Part I: Meet Your Netbook;
Chapter 1: Buying and Setting Up Your Netbook;
1.1 What to Look for When Buying a Netbook;
1.2 Customizing and Buying Your Netbook;
1.3 Setting Up Your Netbook;
1.4 Transferring Files to Your Netbook;
1.5 Netbook Battery Options;
1.6 A Note About Netbook Keyboards;
Chapter 2: Getting to Know Your Windows Netbook;
2.1 Which Windows?;
2.2 Seven Things You Should Know About Windows 7;
2.3 Setting Up a Windows XP Netbook;
2.4 The Start Menu: Where It All Begins;
2.5 Windows Desktop Basics;
2.6 Taking Control with Control Panel;
2.7 A Tour of the Windows Programs Menu;
2.8 Adding More Programs;
2.9 Removing Programs;
2.10 Organizing and Finding Files;
2.11 Checking Hard Drive Space;
2.12 Backing Up Your Windows Netbook;
2.13 Closing Down Your Netbook;
Chapter 3: Getting to Know Your Linux Netbook;
3.1 Which Type of Linux?;
3.2 Setting Up a Linux Netbook;
3.3 Exploring the Linux Desktop;
3.4 Applications Menu: All Your Programs;
3.5 Places Menu: Organizing and Finding Files;
3.6 System Menu: Preferences and More;
3.7 Seeing How Much Hard Drive Space Is Left;
3.8 Backing Up Your Linux Netbook;
3.9 Closing Down Your Linux Netbook;
Chapter 4: Connecting Devices to Your Netbook;
4.1 Mice, Trackballs, and Tablets;
4.2 Connecting an External Monitor or TV;
4.3 Setting Up a Printer;
4.4 Storing Data on External Drives;
4.5 Capturing Images: Connecting Scanners and Webcams;
4.6 Listening to Music: MP3 Players and External Speakers;
4.7 On the Road: Cases and Cables;
Part II: Taking Your Netbook Online;
Chapter 5: Getting Online;
5.1 Ways to Connect to the Internet;
5.2 What You Need to Connect;
5.3 Getting an Internet Service Provider;
5.4 Setting Up a Wired Network;
5.5 Setting Up a Wireless Network;
5.6 Connecting to a Wireless Network;
5.7 Common Wireless Network Problems;
5.8 Using Public Wireless Networks;
5.9 Getting Online with a Wireless Broadband Card;
5.10 Using Your Mobile Phone as a Modem;
5.11 Using a Dial-Up Connection with Your Netbook;
Chapter 6: Email and Web Browsing;
6.1 Setting Up an Email Program;
6.2 Email Basics;
6.3 Using a Web Browser;
6.4 Transfering Bookmarks from Another Computer;
6.5 Adding Tools to Your Web Browser;
Part III: Working on Your Netbook;
Chapter 7: Business Basics: Word Processing and More;
7.1 Microsoft Office for Windows Netbooks;
7.2 Microsoft Office Live Workspace;
7.3 Free Word Processing, Spreadsheets, and More;
7.4 Google Docs: An Online Alternative;
7.5 Working with Contacts;
7.6 Staying on Track with Calendars;
7.7 Online Calendars;
7.8 Viewing PDFs with Adobe Reader;
7.9 Working with Graphics;
7.10 Welcome to the Free World: Software;
Chapter 8: Collaborating with Others;
8.1 What You Can Do Online;
8.2 Setting Up Instant Message Software;
8.3 Voice Chat by Instant Messenger;
8.4 Video Chat by Instant Messenger;
8.5 File Transfer by Instant Messenger;
8.6 Making Phone Calls with Skype;
8.7 Working Together with Google Docs;
8.8 Online Collaboration Sites;
8.9 Social Networking Sites;
Chapter 9: Multimedia Fun: Photos, Music, and Video;
9.1 Importing Digital Photos;
9.2 Organizing Your Photos;
9.3 Editing Photos;
9.4 Sharing Photos Online;
9.5 Photo Sharing Websites;
9.6 Popular MP3 Jukebox Programs;
9.7 Playing Digital Music on the Netbook;
9.8 Recording and Editing Sound;
9.9 Watching TV and Video Online;
Chapter 10: Playing Games;
10.1 Games That Come with Your Netbook;
10.2 Gaming Websites;
10.3 Downloading Games;
10.4 Serious Gaming on a Netbook;
Part IV: Taking Care of Your Netbook;
Chapter 11: Protecting You and Your Netbook;
11.1 Ten Online Safety Tips for Netbooks;
11.2 Keeping Viruses at Bay;
11.3 Putting Up a Firewall;
11.4 Other Security Software for Netbooks;
11.5 Public Wireless Network Security;
11.6 Protecting Yourself: Ergonomic Tips;
Chapter 12: Troubleshooting Your Netbook;
12.1 Troubleshooting Common Problems;
12.2 Built-In Windows Help Files;
12.3 Tuning Up with Windows System Tools;
12.4 Using Windows System Restore;
12.5 Using Remote Assistance;
12.6 Reinstalling Windows;
12.7 Built-in Linux Help Files;
12.8 Maintaining a Linux Netbook;
12.9 Ubuntu Remote Desktop;
12.10 Installing (or Reinstalling) Ubuntu;
12.11 Finding Help and Information Online;

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 13, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Netbooks, The Missing Manual

    This is a good book, but for my needs overly general and too much Windows! My computer is an Asus 901 running both original Xandros and eeeBuntu. No Microsoft tax for me. I also have the Que book recommended below. It is much more Linux oriented so I would rate it higher that the O'Reilly book.

    The manuals that came with the Asus are awful. The Internet and books filled in the gaps for me.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Great for Ubuntu,

    Netbooks are the bright spot in the world of personal computers. More powerful than a mobile phone, but without the bulk nor the power of a laptop, netbooks represent the "just right" mix of features, portability and price.

    The earliest netbooks came with various versions of Unix which made them downright scary to non-technical users. Then after some negotiations with Microsoft, a majority of netbooks now have Windows XP. Netbook owners running Windows XP will find little value in this book. The book assumes no background with Windows and walks the reader through the very basics of setup and usage such as configuring email or an Internet connection. What is missing for Windows netbook owners is general tips and tricks specific to the unique characteristics of netbooks. Biersdorfer briefly covers some ideas for backup and synchronization, but doesn't go in enough depth to really be useful and worth the price of admission.

    In contrast, Biersdorfer's coverage of Ubuntu is invaluable for owners of netbooks that come with Ubuntu, such as the Dell Mini. I know when I first encountered a Mini with Ubuntu I was completely lost. While Ubuntu is intuitive, it takes some getting used to. Ubuntu doesn't come with a manual and Dell tech support as of this writing won't answer Ubnutu questions. Coverage of printer and email setup is something of value to Unix based netbook owners. All this stuff is out on the Internet, but this book is designed for the non-technical end user. The author's coverage is excellent and comprehensive.

    If you have a Windows-based netbook, take a pass on this book as a majority of the explanations apply to any Windows based computer. However, if you have a Ubuntu based netbook, you'll find this book an invaluable resource to translate your Windows knowledge into the Ubuntu world.

    Pros: Excellent coverage of Ubuntu for netbooks
    Cons: Few netbook specific tips and tricks for Windows users

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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