Archive for Netbooks

Word for Chromebook

Need help installing Word on your Chromebook? Call Skylark NetWorks at (516) 308-2759 or read on.

One of the most frequent calls I’ve received lately as a computer repair technician revolves around the new Chromebooks using the ChromeOS Operating System. The typical call sounds like this:

Caller: How do I install Microsoft Word on my Chromebook? I can’t get Word to work on my Chromebook.

Skylark NetWorks: Do you have a Windows or a Mac version of the Microsoft Word software that you are trying to install on your Chromebook?

Caller: Yes! I have the _________ version. (Fill in the blank)

Skylark NetWorks: You can’t install that on your Chromebook because your Chromebook isn’t a Mac or a Windows computer, but —

Caller: So what do I do? I need a word processor, and I prefer to use Word.

Skylark NetWorks: I would recommend you go to the Microsoft Office Apps website at http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/web-apps. Then you can use and share your Word documents anywhere.

Get Started with Microsoft Office Web Apps

Since Chromebook users cannot install Microsoft Word on Chromebook because Chromebook uses ChromeOS, a Linux-based operating system which doesn’t support Microsoft Windows-based or Mac-based software.

This doesn’t mean that you’re locked out forever from working on Word documents. There are a number of ways Chromebook users work on Word documents, and their Excel and PowerPoint files, too. You already know these are important file types, and having access to them is a must.

Download Microsoft Office Web App

This Chrome app was generated by Microsoft to allow Chromebook users the chance to go online and use Microsoft Office programs such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. The web app also gives you access to Microsoft’s Cloud Storage Service called SkyDrive.

Alternate: Google Docs

Have you heard of Google Docs? It’s a free service from Google. Google Docs can open and edit most of the popular file types of Microsoft Office including Microsoft Word and Excel documents. Since your Chromebook was also developed by Google it is the perfect tool for working with Google Docs.

FYI: Anyone Can Use Microsoft Office Web Apps

Microsoft’s Office Web Apps aren’t just for Chromebook users. Your can use it on just about any desktop, laptop, netbook, or tablet computer.

TigerDirect Deals

Skylarking is gearing up for Black Friday, but you can get an early start with these home entertainment and computer specials from TigerDirect.

SONY BRAVIA HDTVs w/FREE Blu-Ray Player.- (11/9 – 11/16/09) or while supplies last!

sonyset1SAVE $545 – FREE SHIPPING – Sony Bravia II 40″ LCD HDTV KDL40V5100 w/ Sony BDP-N460 Network Blu-Ray Disc Player Bundle $954.98. I’ve been wanting to get one of these network blu-ray disc players. Hook them up to your home network to stream movies, videos, music, and more right off the Internet from Netflix, YouTube, and more. Plus you can also play and upscale your standard DVDs to near high definition with this player.

sonyset2SAVE $650 – FREE SHIPPING – Sony 52″ Bravia V LCD HDTV KDL52V5100 w/ Sony BDP-N460 Network Blu-Ray Disc Player Bundle $1,599.98. One more foot of viewing space on your screen with fantastic Sony Bravia features. Too many to list, and, once again, the same great network Blu-ray player as before.

sonyset3SAVE $750 – FREE SHIPPING – Sony 55″ LCD HDTV KDL55V5100 w/ Sony BDP-N460 Blu-ray Disc Player Bundle $1,799.98.

BEST SELLERS.- (11/9 – 11/16/09) or while supplies last!

  • SAVE $40 – FREE SHIPPING – AOC 20″ Widescreen LCD Monitor with 1680 x 1050 pixels of resolution, a 3000:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio for crisp images with sharp black and white. Has a VGA connector for use with any PC or notebook. All yours for $109.99.
  • SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – ACER Aspire Desktop with an AMD Athlon 2.6GHz processor, 2GB of DDR2 RAM (memory), a massive 320GB hard disk drive for storing all your files. All powered by Vista Home Premium. $249.99. This computer is eligible for a free Windows 7 upgrade, too.
  • SAVE $200 – FREE SHIPPING – HP Pavilion dv2 Notebook with an AMD Athlon Neo 1.6GHz processor, 2GB of DDR2 RAM (memory), a 250GB hard disk drive (storage) with an external DVD-RW (rewriteable DVD burner). The screen measures 12.1 inches. Comes with Windows Vista Premium $549.99 after $50 MIR, rebate expires 01/16/2010. Plus you can get a Windows 7 upgrade for this machine.

    gateway-win7

    Gateway Win7 Notebook $700

  • SAVE $90 – FREE SHIPPING – HP Pavilion G70 Notebook with an Intel Core2Duo T6500 processor with a 2.1GHz clock speed, 4GB of DDR2 RAM (memory), and 320GB of hard disk space. A large 17 inch screen tops it off. With Windows Vista Premium (64-bit) This is a refurbished unit for $579.97. Upgrade it to Windows 7 while you’re at it.
  • SAVE $150 – FREE SHIPPING – Gateway Notebook Intel Core2 Duo T6600 2.2GHz processor, 4GB of DDR3 RAM (memory), a 500GB hard drive for storage, and a large 17.3 inch LED screen. Equipped with the Microsoft Windows 7 Premium 64-bit operating system for a mere $699.99.

Toshiba: Favorite Laptop, Favorite Netbook

I was reading Walter S. Mossberg’s Personal Technology column in today’s Wall Street Journal as he reviewed, quite favorably, Toshiba’s latest entry in the netbook market: The Toshiba Mini NB205-N310/BN Netbook. ($399.99 at TigerDirect).

I have long been a fan of Toshiba laptops which have offered unmatched features in their price range. I’m happy to see their netbooks continue that tradition.

On the positive side, Walter was very happy with the exceptional Mac-style keyboard on the Toshiba NB205-N310. He thought it had a “decent” array of ports and connectors such as 3 USB ports which he, like I, agreed were useful for charging cellphones among other things.


Toshiba Mini NB205-N210

He mentioned there was also the Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 Netbook which at 349.99 had a standard flat keyboard. He thought the N310’s keyboard was worth the extra $50.

He was also happy with the mouse touchpad and its buttons which he says are larger than those found on many other netbooks.

Walter was also very pleased with the battery life on the N310. Toshiba says the battery lasts over 9 hours. By Walter’s own battery test he believed that the battery would probably last over 8 hours.

The drawbacks he listed were slow boot speeds which he said took 30 seconds longer than many other netbooks. He compared it to his previous Acer Aspire One netbook. He also thought the speakers were “feeble, even for a netbook”.

Overall, it was a very positive review. I have been considering a new netbook purchase, and I think this may be the one.

Tech specs: Intel Atom N280 1.66GHz processor, 1GB DDR2 RAM (Memory), 160 GB hard disk drive, 10.1 inch WSVGA screen, webcam, with Windows XP Home edition. Dimensions were 2.9 pounds, 10.4 inches wide by 7.6 inches deep, and 1 inch thick “at its thinnest point”.

For myself I am curious if the new Windows 7 operating system will work well on this netbook. It appears to meet Microsoft’s minimum requirements.

You can also order the Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 Netbook ($349) and the Toshiba Mini NB205-N310/BN Netbook ($399)from CompUSA.

Dell mini 9 Netbook for $199 (Today Only)

Just a quickie notice today, that Dell is offering $50 off, today only, on the Dell mini 9 netbook. I know a lot of you want one, so here’s your chance to get one and save money, too! Offer good until midnight CST tonight.

One Day Only! Inspiron Mini 9 for only $199 after $50 off. Offer ends February 27, 2009.

Mini 9

Mini 9 in Obsidian Black

The base model for this price comes with the Ubuntu Linux operating system (version 8.04.1). Some people say, “Linux?! I don’t know Linux” which shouldn’t be an issue because many people get the netbook for Internet usage, and once you’re on the Internet the operating system doesn’t make much of a difference.

The base model also has an Obsidian Black finish (which can be changed to either Promise Pink [add $30 and Dell will donate $5.00 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure), Alpine White or Cherry Red [add $30], Stickers in Green, Black, or Blue, or The Muse in Purple or  Orange [either of the beforementioned for an added $50]. It also includes 1Yr Ltd Warranty and Mail-In Service, 512MB DDR2 RAM (Memory), 4GB Solid State Drive (no moving parts like the drive in your digital camera). It uses the Intel Atom Processor model N270 (technically that’s 1.6GHz clock speed, 533Mhz FSB (Front System Bus), and 512K cache memory space on the chip). The screen is a glossy 8.9 inch LED display (1024X600). Internet access is via a Wireless 802.11g Mini Card.



Available Upgrades

Some of the upgrades include 4 times the memory (2 GB) for $75 (that’s a good price), 4 different hard drive upgrades up to 64GB for $150, and a 250 GB external portable hard drive for $80 (another good deal), and last but not least an add-on integrated 1.3 MP webcam for $25.

Promise Pink (For the Cure)

Promise Pink (For the Cure)

Muse Orange

Muse Orange

Just a Quickie… Inspiron Mini Free Shipping Coupon Offer!

mini9Dell just sent me this coupon code, P8KJNT4LV44T9S, which can be used to get free shipping on select Dell Inspiron mini ultra-portable netbook PCs. If you check in here regularly, you’ve already seen my multiple posts on the Dell mini 9 and other netbooks in general. Us the link below to access Dell’s home page for the mini 9 and the mini 12, and then use the coupon code at checkout to get the savings.

Free 3-5 day shipping on select Minis! Coupon Code: 1303GMTDC1CS3Q

laptop-inspiron-12-heroThe mini 9s start at $349, and the mini 12s start at $499.

What’s the difference?

The mini 9 is small with a screen size just under 9 inches, while the mini 12 is slightly larger with a 12 inch screen. The 12 also weighs about half a pound more. Most of the minis run on Linux or Windows XP, which is great if you’re Vista-phobic.

Here’s a little something extra for you too: 15% off select E&A with Coupon Code: P8KJNT4LV44T9S

Okay, that’s enough for one day. (I think). Check back tomorrow for one (or more) rare weekend posts.  At least one.  Have a great night and a great weekend!

Dell mini 9 Netbook (Hot! Hot! Hot!)


Did I say “Hot! Hot! Hot!” already?  Lemme look …. hmmm (looks up a little bit) …. yes … yes, I did. Okay.

The Dell mini 9 Netbook is one of the hot items for holiday shopping this year.  It’s not Cabbage Patch doll or a Wii.  (Who remembers the Cabbage Patch doll craze?)

Save $250 on the Inspiron 1525 laptop! Only $599 after Instant Savings!

The Dell mini 9 is a small — every dimension is under 10 inches — and incredible light at about 2 pounds. Yet very powerful computer.  My favorite part is the Flash, or solid state, drive. That’s where everything is stored.  The Flash drive has no moving parts so its fast and durable, and durable is what you need with a machine so small you can take it just about anywhere. That’s great if you getting one or more for your kids.

It’s also great for business people who need to travel light and fast. My friend, Evantz Saint-Gerard of Nationwide Equities Corp., tells me his business partner, Dean Graber, is crazy about his mini 9, and now Evantz can’t wait to get one, too. Tami Racaniello of It’s Time To Get Fit, is also considering getting one, too. I’ve been recommending this computer left and right.

I’m mentioning it again because if you act fast you can get one today from Dell for $299.  That’s after a special today only savings of $50.

The base unit — which is completely customizable when you order — is Alpine White, and runs on Linux (Ubuntu v8.04.1), 1Yr Ltd Warranty and Mail-In Service, 512MB RAM (Memory), 4GB Solid State Drive, an Intel® Atom Processor® N270 (1.6GHz/533Mhz FSB/512K cache), a glossy 8.9 inch LED display (1024X600), and a Wireless 802.11g Mini Card.

Save $250 on the Inspiron 1525 laptop! Only $599 after Instant Savings!

Want more deals? Okay, I know, who doesn’t.

Another “Today Only” special offer from Dell is a 1 terabyte, that’s 1,000 gigabytes, of external storage for only $189 after $80 in savings.  That is a really great deal, and I’m offering it to you through this link: Get the 1TB MyBook World Edition 2 Drive for only $189.99 after $80 Instant Savings!

Post Comments or Questions with the link below. Keep up-to-date with Skylarking: By Email or RSS Newsfeed or on Twitter. You can also send questions with my email form.


Great Gifts. Great Deals. Shop now at Dell Home!

Netbook Offers (Dell and ClubMac)

I’ve been getting a lot of questions about Netbooks lately. Netbooks are small, compact, lightweight computers that are very handy for travellers who need to have a computer handy.  They are great if your primary interest is Internet access while travelling. Most netbooks have built in WiFi for wireless Internet access — great at Internet cafes such as Starbucks, Borders, and some Barnes and Noble bookstores, among others. They can also be tethered to a cellphone for Internet access, too.

Some will say, “Isn’t this a laptop?”

Netbooks are much smaller and much lighter than laptops, and tend to use Flash memory cards like your digital camera, so netbooks have fewer moving parts than laptops. Netbooks also have less storage space, but most come with online storage or USB capability for thumb drives.

My top recommendations for netbooks include the Asus Eee PC and the Dell Inspiron mini 9. These two machines are expected to be hot items on Black Friday. That’s three days from today.

Dell Inspiron Mini 9 Laptop Computer


Dell Inspiron Mini 9 Laptop Computer

Staring at $399 this version of the mini 9 comes with Windows® XP Home Edition (yes, XP, not Vista). It’s covered by a 1 year limited warranty with Mail-In Service. It has an adequate 1 GB of RAM (memory), 8 GB Solid State Drive (storage), an integrated 0.3M Pixel Webcam. The processor is an Intel® Atom Processor® N270 (1.6GHz/533Mhz FSB/512K cache). The hi-res LED screen measures 8.9 inches, and is backed by an Intel Graphics Media Accelerator (GMA). It also has a wireless 802.11g Mini Card, a long lasting 32WHr Battery, Adobe® Acrobat® Reader 8.1, Microsoft Works 9 without MS Word.

New orders can get a 3G upgrade for $125.

Click to take a better look, customize, and buy from Dell:
Dell Inspiron Mini 9 Laptop Computer

For you Linux OS fans out there, there is a $349 Ubuntu Unix version starting at $349:
Dell Inspiron Mini 9 Laptop Computer


Eee PC 901 12G – XP Home – Pearl White – Intel ATOM Processor

Also starting at $399 from ClubMac is the Asus Eee PC. It’s about the same as the mini 9, but it comes with 12 GB of storage plus 20 GB of online storage. Click to view and buy from Club Mac:
Eee PC 901 12G – XP Home – Pearl White – Intel ATOM Processor

Update: Watchout for netbooks using HDD (hard disk drives) versus SSD (solid-state drives). I prefer the SSD units because they have no moving parts and are more durable and more shock resistant than standard hard drive (HDD) technology. SSDs are smaller, and cost more, but their durability makes up for it. This is very important with a small portable computer which is more prone to shocks.




Post Comments or Questions with the link below. Keep up-to-date with Skylarking: By Email or RSS Newsfeed or on Twitter. You can also send questions with my email form.

Back To School NoteBook PC for Kids

If you still need a computer for your kids as they return to or enter into grade school, then you might want to take a look at the lightweight and inexpensive Dell Mini 9 Notebook.

First off, it runs on XP.  Yes, that’s Windows XP.  Didn’t think you’d see that for a new computer, did you? It weighs less than 2.5 pounds, and all it’s dimensions are under 10 inches. Just look at the picture at right.

It also has a solid state hard drive instead of a traditional hard drive, so there are fewer moving parts to get damaged by not-so-careful kids.

On the hard drive you get Microsoft Works which allows your kids to do some typing for school.

The starting price for this computer is $349 though you can add a larger hard drive for an additional charge. Just remind yourself that the computer is for them to take to school and do their homework, and with all that moving around you don’t want to worry about it getting smashed, or being so fancy that some other kid takes a liking to it. Plus you don’t have to worry about the kids wasting time playing games on it because the unit wasn’t built with that in mind.

Other features include wireless (WiFi) Internet capability, three USB 2.0 ports, a VGA out (to connect to a larger monitor at home or in the classroom), an Ethernet port (for wired Cable or DSL internet access), an SD Card slot for working with music or photo files, and headphone and mic jacks. Bluetooth and a 1.3-megapixel Webcam are extra-cost options.

For more information just check out the Dell web site: Introducing the new Inspiron Mini 9 starting at only $349!

Post Comments or Questions with the link below. Keep up-to-date with Skylarking: By Email or RSS Newsfeed or on Twitter. You can also send questions with my email form. I’m looking forward to hearing from you.


New Computers for K-12, pt. 2

In yesterday’s post I started discussing some new ultra-mobile PCs (UMPCs) for K-12 students as many school districts across the nation attempt to increase access to computers and the research sources on the Internet. In 2003, the U>S> Census bureau revealed that 5% of high school juniors and seniors hadn’t used a computer, while 20% hadn’t used the Internet. (See the report)

Yesterday, I showed you two UMPCs: the Intel Classmate and the Asus Eee PC series. Today, I have two more computers which are being used in one-to-one computer ownersehip programs in school districts across the nation: the HP Mini-Notebook, and the Everex Cloudbook.

HP 2133 Mini-Notebook (www.hp.com, Product page)

Hewlett-Packard has 5 models in the UMPC line priced from $499 to $849.They weigh in at about 2.5 pounds and are just slightly more than an inch thick. The screens are 9 inches wide with a good sized keyboard, two USB ports; connections for microphone, headphone, and external monitor; with wired and wireless Internet (WiFi). Most models use a standard hard drive (moving parts), but the $499 model uses a Flash drive (no moving parts). The higher priced models are suitable for older students and non-students alike.HP Services includes a one-year standard parts and labor warranty, pick-up or carry-in, and toll-free 7 x 24 hardware technical phone support (depending on model). On-site service and warranty upgrades are also available.

  • Model KR922UT for $499: Linux operating system (OS) (instead of Windows), 4 GB storage, 512 MB RAM (memory) with digital camera.
  • Model KX868AT for $599: (Shown in video at right) Windows Vista Home Basic operating system (OS), 120 GB storage, 1 GB RAM (memory), integrated camera.
  • Model KR939UT for $729: Same as KX868AT above, but with Windows Vista Business OS (or downgrade to Windows XP Pro), and Bluetooth connectivity.
  • Model KR945UT for $749: Same as above with slightly faster processor.
  • Model KR948UT for $789: Same as KR939UT, but with 2 GB of RAM (memory), and 160 GB hard drive (storage). Weight: 2.6 pounds.

HP 2133 (KX868) – $629
Click image for more info or to buy

HP 2133 (KX870) – $849
Click image for more info or to buy
Other models available direct from HP

Everex Cloudbook (www.everex.com)

The Cloudbook has a 7 inch screen, weighs only 2 pounds, has a 5 hour battery life for surfing the web, sending email, blogging, IM, Skype, and computing. Based on the latest gOS Rocket operating system, the ultra-mobile Everex PC comes with popular applications from Google, Mozilla, Skype, OpenOffice.org and more. Also 512MB RAM (memory), 30GB Hard Disk (storage), wired and wireless (WiFi) Internet, 2 USB ports, 4-in1 Media Card Reader, webcam, headphone/line-out and microphone/line-in connections, and stereo speaker. Price: $349 at Walmart.com.

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New Computers for K-12, pt. 1

A 2003 U.S. Census survey found that among school children, ages 3 to 17, 14% didn’t have computer access at home or at school, and similarly 44% didn’t have Internet access. Among students ages 15 to 17, 5% hadn’t used a computer, and 20% hadn’t used the Internet.


Since then, more schools have adopted one to one computing programs to provide each student with their own portable computer for use at home and school.

The computer of choice for function, portability, and low cost has been the “ultra-mobile pc” platform. Ultra-mobile PCs began appearing in 2006. These PCs are:

  • about the size of a large paperback book
  • smaller than the typical laptop
  • screens are 7 to 9 inches wide
  • weighs less than 3 pounds
  • shockproof to withstand drops and bumps

In January 2008, the third generation of ultra-mobile PCs began to appear. Many of these run on either Windows or Linux, have wireless Internet access, and word processing and spreadsheet applications (like Excel). Many sell for less than $390.

Intel Classmate
(www.classmatepc.com)

This computer is designed with students up to age 14 in mind. It has WiFi (wireless Internet), a water-resistant keyboard, a built in microphone, and an optional digital camera. It also has a special feature called “mesh networking” that allows it to connect to other Classmate PCs within 300 feet. This allows students to work together on projects and share information. Price: About $350. View photo gallery

Asus Eee PC (usa.asus.com)

Asus’s entry into the ultra-mobile PC market is available in 5 different models ranging from $300 to $550. This shock-proof device has a screen that measures 7 inches wide, and it is preloaded with either Windows or Linux, WiFi, 3 USB ports, built-in card reader, speakers, and microphone. Some models include a camera. Available in white, blue, black, pink, and green.

Linux models:

  • 2G Surf: 7 inch screen, wireless and wired Internet, 512 MB RAM (memory), 2 GB storage, weighs 2 pounds with battery.
  • 4G: Same as the 4G Surf below, plus a webcam.
  • 4G Surf: Same as 2G Surf with 4 GB storage.
  • PC 900: 8.9 inch screen, 1 GB RAM (memory), 20 GB storage, webcam, and weighs 2.18 pounds with battery.

Windows models include the PC 900, and the 4G with specifications as shown above.

Check back in the next few days for additional information and models in the ultra-mobile PC line. All the models discussed are ideal for school students. As always, comment or ask questions with the links below, and subscribe by email or RSS news feed.


Asus Eee PC 900
Windows, Black

Asus Eee PC 900
Windows, White

Asus Eee PC 900
Linux, White

Asus Eee PC 900
Linux, Black