What You Can Upgrade For Your Laptop or Notebook

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Laptops or Notebooks have very few upgradable parts in comparison with desktop PCs or computers. Unlike the PC, the laptop is made up of smaller components designed to fit the layout of the case or chassis.
Luckily most manufacturers make a couple of parts accessible for us to upgrade or replace if necessary.
Usually on the underside of the laptop there are one or two access panels they enable the memory to be upgraded and also to allow access to the hard disk drive. They are normally open by removing a couple of screws. Be sure to read your manual before removing anything on your laptop.
If you do not have access panels on the underside of your laptop then it may be that the hard disk drive is accessed on the side of the device and the memory is accessed by removing the keyboard first. Always consult your manuals to find out and understand how these parts are removed or upgraded.

Laptop Memory
laptop memory
When upgrading the laptop memory ensure you know what type of memory your laptop requires. Check its maximum capacity and also check how much your machine has installed. Do this by viewing your existing specifications on screen via your operating system and physically look at the memory installed to see how it is configured.
Your laptop may only have two memory slots to hold the memory. The maximum capacity may be 4Gb. The existing configuration may be 2Gb made up of two 1Gb memory banks. If this is the case then you would need to buy two 2Gb memory banks to upgrade and obtain the desired 4Gb. You may find that you have one 2Gb installed in which case you only require one 1Gb to reach the maximum.

Hard Disk Drive
hard disk drive
There is only one hard disk drive installed in a laptop so replacing or upgrading it will require a full operating system install. Make sure you have all the required disks before attempting an upgrade.
Your motherboard manual should confirm the type, size and specification of hard disk drives that are compatible with your system.

Processor or CPU

Although it is possible to upgrade the CPU or processor in a laptop, the author does not advise it unless your laptop manual describes how it can be done or you are very competent at laptop builds. Usually the processor can only be upgraded by dismantling a considerable amount of the laptop.
Expanding Your Laptops Functionality
So as you can probably see, there isn't much in the way of upgrades for laptops. You can however expand the functionality with hardware and software.
There are many USB devices available that can be connected to your laptop or notebook. There are digital TV receivers, soundcards, video capture devices etc that can be connected and increase the functionality and productivity of the existing system. Obviously these devices make the laptop less portable but if using at home they are a welcome addition.
When working at home a docking station can be used. These devices are either connected via USB or a dedicated port on the underside of the Laptop. They enable other devices to be connected to them such as keyboard, mouse, display / monitor, printers and any other devices you may have. When the laptop is connected to the docking station all the other devices are connected to your laptop. These are extremely useful if your laptop is your main computing device and you use it at home and on the move. It removes the need for connecting and disconnecting all those external devices.
Upgrading laptops may be limited compared to desktop PCs but memory upgrades are the most noticeable upgrade that affects performance. For major upgrades unfortunately buying a new laptop is the only option.
The author takes no responsibility for the outcome of upgrading your PC or computer. The article is written as advice only. Always use anti-static equipment when handling computer components or opening up a desktop pc. Be sure that all electrical items are disconnected from the power source.

Source: http://ezinearticles.com/?How-Can-You-Upgrade-Your-Laptop-or-Notebook?&id=6766148


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