Friday, July 11, 2008



Due to their portability and tight integration, laptops are more subject to wear and physical damage than desktops. Components such as batteries, screen hinges, power jacks, and power cords are commonly subject to deterioration due to ordinary use. These components are usually expensive to replace, with a typical laptop battery costing US$130, the AC Adapter US$75. Other parts are inexpensive such as a power jack costing perhaps US$20, but replacement may require extensive disassembly and reassembly of layers of internal components. Other inexpensive but fragile parts often cannot be purchased separate from larger more expensive components. For example, the video display cable and backlight power cable that passes through the lid hinges to operate the screen will eventually break from opening and closing the lid hundreds of times over many years, and usually these tiny cables cannot be purchased separate from an entire US$400 LCD panel.
A liquid spill onto the keyboard, which is rather a minor mishap with a desktop system can damage costly components such as the motherboard or LCD panel. Dropping a laptop can damage the LCD screen if not break apart its body. The repair costs of a failed motherboard or LCD panel may exceed the purchase value of the laptop.
Laptops must also rely on extremely compact cooling systems involving a fan and heatsink that eventually fails due to filling with airborne dust and debris. Most laptops do not have any sort of removable dust collection filter over the air intake for these cooling systems, resulting in a system that gradually runs hotter and louder as the years pass. Eventually the laptop cooling is so choked with dust that it starts to overheat just from minor operational load. This dust is usually deeply buried inside where casual cleaning and vacuuming cannot remove it, and instead complete disassembly is needed to clean the laptop.


Parts standardization and compatibility issues

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Current compatibility problems in the laptop trade are reflective of the early era of personal computer hardware, when there were many different manufacturers, each and every one of them having their own connectivity and mounting systems and incompatibility was the norm. While there are accepted world standards of form factors for all the peripherals and add-in PC cards used in the desktop computers, there are still no firm worldwide standards relating to today's laptops' internal form factors, such as supply of electric voltage, motherboard layouts, internal adapters used in connecting the optical drive, LCD cable, keyboard and floppy drive to the main board. Most affected by this are users uneducated in the relevant fields, especially if they attempt to connect their laptops with incompatible hardware or power adapters.
Some parts, such as hard drives and memory are commodity items and are interchangeable. However, other parts such as motherboards, keyboards, and batteries are proprietary in design and are only interchangeable within a manufactures brand and/or model line.
A significant point to note is that the vast majority of laptops on the market are manufactured by a small handful of Original Design Manufacturers (ODM).[4] The ODM matters more than the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM). Major relationships include:
Quanta sells to (among others) HP/Compaq, Dell, Toshiba, Sony, Fujitsu, Acer, NEC, Gateway and Lenovo/IBM - note that Quanta is currently (as of August, 2007) the largest manufacturer of notebook computers in the world.
Compal sells to Toshiba, HP/Compaq, Acer, and Dell.
Wistron (former manufacturing & design division of Acer) sells to HP/Compaq, Dell, IBM, NEC, Acer, and Lenovo/IBM.
Flextronics (former Arima Computer Corporation notebook division) sells to HP/Compaq, NEC, and Dell.
ECS sells to IBM, Fujitsu, and Dell.
Asus sells to Apple (iBook), Sony, and Samsung.
Inventec sells to HP/Compaq, Toshiba, and BenQ.
Uniwill sells to Lenovo/IBM and Fujitsu.



2.5" hard disk drive
Most modern laptops feature 12 inch (30 cm) or larger active matrix displays with resolutions of 1024×768 pixels and above, and have a PC Card (formerly PCMCIA) or ExpressCard expansion bay for expansion cards. Internal hard disks are physically smaller—2.5 inch (60 mm)—compared to the standard desktop 3.5 inch (90 mm) drive, and usually have lower performance and power consumption. Video and sound chips are usually integrated. This tends to limit the use of laptops for gaming and entertainment, two fields which have constantly escalating hardware demands,[3] however, higher end laptops can come with dedicated graphics processors. These mobile graphics processors tend to have less performance than their desktop counterparts, but this is because they have been optimized for lower power usage.
There is a wide range of laptop specific processors available from Intel (Pentium M, Celeron, Intel Core and Intel Core 2), AMD (Athlon, Turion 64, and Sempron) and from VIA (C3 and C7-M). Motorola and IBM developed and manufactured the chips for the former PowerPC-based Apple laptops (iBook and PowerBook). Generally, laptop processors are less powerful than their desktop counterparts, due to the need to save energy and reduce heat dissipation.
Current models of laptops utilize lithium ion batteries with more recent models using the new lithium polymer technology. These technologies have largely replaced the older nickel metal-hydride batteries. Typical battery life for most laptops is two to five hours with light-duty use, but may drop to as little as one hour with intensive use. Batteries gradually deteriorate over time and eventually need to be replaced in one to five years, depending on the charging and discharging pattern.

Laptops typically use SODIMMs, as shown here.
Docking stations became another common laptop accessories in the early 1990s. They typically were quite large and offered 3.5" and 5.25" storage bays, one to three expansion slots (typically AT style), and a host of connectors. The mating between the laptop and docking station was typically through a large, high-speed, proprietary connector. The most common use was in a corporate computing environment where the company had standardized on a common network card and this same card was placed into the docking station. These stations were very large and quite expensive. As the need to additional storage and expansion slots became less critical because of the high integration inside the laptop itself, the emergence of the Port Replicator as a major accessory commenced. The Port Replicator was often a passive device that simply mated to the connectors on the back of the notebook and allowed the user to quickly connect their laptop so VGA, PS/2, RS-232, etc. devices were instantly attached. As higher speed ports like USB and Firewire became commonplace, the Port Replication was accomplished by a small cable connected to one of the USB 2.0 or FireWire ports on the notebooks. Wireless Port Replicators followed.
Virtually all laptops can be powered from an external AC converter. This device typically adds half a kilogram (1 lb) to the overall "transport weight" of the equipment.
A pointing stick or touchpad is used to control the position of the cursor on the screen. The pointing stick is usually a rubber dot that is located between the G, H and B keys on the laptop keyboard. To navigate the cursor, pressure is applied in the direction intended to move. The touchpad is touch-sensitive and the cursor can be navigated by moving the finger on the pad.
Intel, Asus, Compal, Quanta and other laptop manufacturers have created Common Building Block standard for laptop parts.



Mainstream :
Laptops weighing between 5 and 7 lb (2.3–3.2 kg) with a screen size of 14.1 or 15.4 inches (35 or 39 cm) diagonally.
Desktop replacementAn Apple PowerBook G4 17" often used as a desktop replacement.
Main article: Desktop replacement computer
A desktop replacement computer is a personal computer that provides the full capabilities of a desktop computer while remaining portable. They are often a larger, bulkier laptop. Because of their increased size, this class of computer usually includes more powerful components and a larger display than generally used in smaller portable computers and can have a relatively limited battery capacity (or none at all). Some use a limited range of desktop components to provide better performance per dollar at the expense of battery life. These are sometimes called desknotes, a portmanteau of the words "desktop" and "notebook," though the term is also applied to desktop replacement computers in general.
Powerful laptops meant to be mainly used for fun and infrequently carried out due to their weight and size; the latter provides more space for powerful components and a big screen, usually measuring 17–20 inches (43–51 cm). Desktop replacements tend to have limited battery life, rarely exceeding three hours, because the hardware is not optimized for efficient power usage. Sometimes called a luggable laptop. An example of a desktop replacement computers are gaming notebooks, which are designed to handle 3D graphic-intensive processing for gamers.

Subnotebook :

Main article: Subnotebook
Laptops weighing typically between 4.6 and 6 lb (1.8–2.7 kg) and a screen of 10.6 to 13.3 inches diagonally. A subnotebook is a small and lightweight portable computer, with most of the features of a standard laptop computer but smaller. The term is often applied to systems that run full versions of desktop operating systems such as Windows or Linux, rather than specialized software such as Windows CE, Palm OS or Internet Tablet OS.
Subnotebooks are smaller than laptops but larger than handheld computers and UMPCs. They often have screens around 10.6" (26.92 cm) (diagonal) and weigh less than 1 to 2 kg, as opposed to full-size laptops with 14.1" (35.81 cm) or 15.4" (39.12 cm) screens that typically weigh 2 kg or more. The savings in size and weight are usually achieved partly by omitting ports or having removable media/optical drives; subnotebooks are often paired with docking stations to compensate.
Subnotebooks have been something of a niche computing product and have rarely sold in large numbers until the 2007 introduction of the Asus Eee PC and the OLPC XO-1.


A laptop computer or simply laptop (also notebook computer, notebook and notepad) is a small mobile computer, typically weighing 3 to 12 pounds (1.4 to 5.4 kg), although older laptops may weigh more.
Laptops usually run on a single main battery or from an external AC/DC adapter that charges the battery while also supplying power to the computer itself even in the event of a power failure. This very powerful main battery should not be confused with the much smaller battery nearly all computers use to run the real-time clock and backup BIOS configuration into the CMOS memory when the computer is without power.
Laptops contain components that are similar to their desktop counterparts and perform the same functions, but are miniaturized and optimized for mobile use and efficient power consumption, although typically less powerful for the same price. Laptops usually have liquid crystal displays and most of them use different memory modules for their random access memory (RAM), for instance, SO-DIMM in lieu of the larger DIMMs. In addition to a built-in keyboard, they may utilize a touchpad (also known as a trackpad) or a pointing stick for input, though an external keyboard or mouse can usually be attached.
Laptops began from a desire to have a full-featured computer that could be easily used anywhere. Their predecessor was called the luggable. These all-in-one systems could be easily transported, but were heavy and usually were not battery powered. The CRT was one of the major reasons luggables were so large and heavy, but the use of a full-size desktop motherboard with room for ISA expansion cards was another size factor.
It was the transition to LCD and plasma displays that permitted the luggable to shrink in size and become the first real laptop, though at first still without internal batteries. Battery technology improvements and the introduction of smaller devices such as the 3.5-inch floppy disk permitted a gradually more compact and sophisticated complete portable system.