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The Indispensable PC Hardware Book (4th Edition) by Hans-Peter Messmer - Alibris



The Indispensable PC Hardware Book 4th Edition: A Comprehensive Guide for PC Enthusiasts




If you are a programmer who wants to access the hardware components of your personal computer, a professional or home-user who wants to understand the structure and functioning of your PC, a user who wants to upgrade your PC, or a dealer who wants to advise your customers, then you need a reliable and up-to-date resource that covers all aspects of PC hardware. That's where The Indispensable PC Hardware Book comes in handy. This book is a fully revised and popular reference that is now in its fourth edition and even more comprehensive than before. In this article, we will review what this book is about, what are its main features, and how you can use it effectively.




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What is The Indispensable PC Hardware Book?




The Indispensable PC Hardware Book is a hefty reference book that provides detailed information on the inner workings of a personal computer. It covers everything from CPU's, chipsets, memory systems, storage devices, graphic systems, buses, timers, interrupts, DMA, I/O programming, Windows and plug&play devices, and more. It also includes an extensive glossary that explains most of the terms and concepts related to PC hardware, as well as appendices that offer practical advice for programmers.


The author and his background




The author of this book is Hans-Peter Messmer, a physicist who has worked as a freelance consultant in the hardware and software industries for many years. He owns a software house in Quito, Ecuador. He has written several books on PC hardware and software topics, such as The Programmer's Technical Reference for MSDOS and the IBM PC, PC Intern System Programming, PC System Programming, and PC Underground. He has also contributed articles to various magazines and journals.


The scope and content of the book




The Indispensable PC Hardware Book covers all aspects of PC hardware from the 8086/8088 to the Pentium III and Athlon processors. It explains the real, protected, and virtual models of operation, as well as the CPU clones from all major manufacturers. It also describes the chipsets and support chips that control the various functions of the PC. It covers the timers, interrupts, and DMA that manage the timing and data transfer between devices. It explains how to program the I/O ports and the PCI bus that connect the devices to the CPU. It also discusses the AGP variants and graphic systems that enable high-performance graphics on PCs. It covers the universal serial bus that allows easy connection of peripherals to the PC. It also describes the local storage devices from the diskette to the DVD that store the data and programs on the PC. It covers the memory systems, such as SDRAM, EDO, flash, RAM bus, and modules that provide fast and reliable access to data and instructions.


The target audience and benefits of the book




The Indispensable PC Hardware Book is designed for anyone who wants to know more about the inner workings of a personal computer. It is especially useful for programmers who want to access the hardware components of their PC, professionals and home-users who want to understand the structure and functioning of their PC, users who want to upgrade their PC, and dealers who want to advise their customers. The book provides the following benefits:



  • It offers a comprehensive and up-to-date coverage of all aspects of PC hardware.



  • It provides detailed and clear explanations of the concepts and mechanisms of PC hardware.



  • It includes numerous diagrams, tables, charts, and code examples that illustrate the topics.



  • It offers practical tips and tricks for optimizing the performance and compatibility of PC hardware.



  • It helps you troubleshoot and solve common PC hardware problems.



What are the main features of the 4th edition?




The Indispensable PC Hardware Book has been revised and updated several times since its first edition in 1995. The 4th edition, published in 2001, is the latest and most comprehensive version of the book. It has the following main features:


Updated and expanded coverage of CPU's, chipsets, memory systems, and storage devices




The 4th edition covers the latest developments in CPU technology, such as the Pentium III and Athlon processors, as well as the CPU clones from all major manufacturers. It also covers the latest chipsets and support chips that control the various functions of the PC. It also covers the latest memory systems, such as SDRAM, EDO, flash, RAM bus, and modules that provide fast and reliable access to data and instructions. It also covers the latest storage devices, such as CD-RW, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, DVD-RW, DVD+RW, and DVD+R that store large amounts of data on optical discs.


New chapter on Pentium II and MMX technologies




The 4th edition includes a new chapter that explains the Pentium II and MMX technologies that enhance the performance and functionality of the CPU. It describes how the Pentium II integrates a second-level cache on a separate chip that speeds up data access. It also describes how the MMX technology adds new instructions and registers that improve multimedia processing.


Detailed explanations of Windows and plug&play devices, universal serial bus, AGP variants, and graphic systems




The 4th edition provides detailed explanations of how Windows and plug&play devices work on PCs. It explains how Windows detects and configures devices automatically using plug&play technology. It also explains how to install and manage plug&play devices using Device Manager. It also provides detailed explanations of how the universal serial bus (USB) works on PCs. It explains how USB allows easy connection of peripherals to the PC using a single cable. It also explains how to install and manage USB devices using USB Manager. It also provides detailed explanations of how AGP variants and graphic systems work on PCs. It explains how AGP variants enable high-performance graphics on PCs using different modes of operation. It also explains how graphic systems use different types of graphic cards, monitors, resolutions, color depths, refresh rates, and drivers to display images on PCs.


Extensive glossary and appendices with practical advice for programmers




How to use The Indispensable PC Hardware Book effectively?




The Indispensable PC Hardware Book is a valuable resource for anyone who wants to know more about the inner workings of a personal computer. However, to use it effectively, you need to know how to find the information you need and how to apply it to your specific situation. Here are some tips on how to use this book effectively:


How to access the hardware components of your PC




If you want to access the hardware components of your PC, you need to open the case and locate the devices inside. However, before you do that, you need to take some precautions to avoid damaging your PC or yourself. Here are some precautions you should take:



  • Turn off your PC and unplug it from the power source.



  • Wear an anti-static wrist strap or touch a grounded metal object to discharge any static electricity from your body.



  • Avoid touching any exposed wires or components inside the case.



  • Use a screwdriver or a tool kit designed for PC repair to open the case and remove any screws or clips that hold it together.



  • Keep track of where each screw or clip goes and how each device is connected to avoid confusion when reassembling your PC.



Once you have opened the case, you can access the hardware components of your PC. You can identify them by their shape, size, color, label, or connector. You can also refer to the diagrams and tables in this book that show the layout and configuration of various PC models. You can also use a multimeter or a diagnostic tool to test the voltage, current, resistance, or functionality of each component.


How to understand the structure and functioning of your PC




If you want to understand the structure and functioning of your PC, you need to learn how each hardware component works and how they interact with each other. You can use this book as a guide to learn about the concepts and mechanisms of PC hardware. You can start with the introduction chapter that gives an overview of the PC architecture and operation. Then you can follow the chapters that cover each aspect of PC hardware in detail. You can also use the glossary and appendices to look up any term or concept you are not familiar with. You can also use the code examples and exercises in this book to practice your programming skills and test your understanding of PC hardware.


How to upgrade your PC and advise your customers




If you want to upgrade your PC or advise your customers on how to do so, you need to know what are the best options and alternatives for each hardware component. You can use this book as a reference to compare the features, specifications, performance, compatibility, and price of different hardware components. You can also use this book as a source of tips and tricks on how to optimize the performance and compatibility of PC hardware. You can also use this book as a troubleshooting guide to diagnose and solve common PC hardware problems.


How to find more information and resources on PC hardware




If you want to find more information and resources on PC hardware, you can use this book as a starting point. This book provides references and links to various sources of information and resources on PC hardware, such as websites, magazines, journals, books, forums, blogs, podcasts, videos, courses, workshops, conferences, events, organizations, vendors, manufacturers, distributors, retailers, service providers, and experts. You can also use search engines like Bing or Google to find more information and resources on PC hardware.


Conclusion




The Indispensable PC Hardware Book 4th Edition is a comprehensive guide for anyone who wants to know more about the inner workings of a personal computer. It covers all aspects of PC hardware from the 8086/8088 to the Pentium III and Athlon processors. It provides detailed and clear explanations of the concepts and mechanisms of PC hardware. It includes numerous diagrams, tables, charts, and code examples that illustrate the topics. It offers practical tips and tricks for optimizing the performance and compatibility of PC hardware. It helps you troubleshoot and solve common PC hardware problems. It also includes an extensive glossary and appendices with practical advice for programmers.


If you are interested in learning more about PC hardware or improving your skills in programming or repairing PCs, then you should get a copy of this book. It will be indispensable for you. You can order it online from Amazon or other online retailers, or you can find it in your local bookstore or library. You can also visit the author's website at www.hpmessmer.com for more information and resources on PC hardware.


Thank you for reading this article. I hope you found it useful and informative. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me. I would love to hear from you.


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions and answers about The Indispensable PC Hardware Book 4th Edition:



  • Q: How much does the book cost?



  • A: The book costs $5.00 for the hardcover edition and $19.98 for the paperback edition on Amazon.



  • Q: How long is the book?



  • A: The book is 1296 pages long.



  • Q: What is the difference between the 4th edition and the previous editions?



  • A: The 4th edition is updated and expanded with new chapters, topics, and features. It covers the latest developments in CPU technology, such as the Pentium III and Athlon processors, as well as the CPU clones from all major manufacturers. It also covers the latest chipsets and support chips that control the various functions of the PC. It also covers the latest memory systems, such as SDRAM, EDO, flash, RAM bus, and modules that provide fast and reliable access to data and instructions. It also covers the latest storage devices, such as CD-RW, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, DVD-RW, DVD+RW, and DVD+R that store large amounts of data on optical discs. It also covers the latest technologies, such as Windows and plug&play devices, universal serial bus, AGP variants, and graphic systems.



  • Q: Who is the author of the book?



  • A: The author of the book is Hans-Peter Messmer, a physicist who has worked as a freelance consultant in the hardware and software industries for many years. He owns a software house in Quito, Ecuador.



  • Q: Where can I find more information and resources on PC hardware?



  • A: You can find more information and resources on PC hardware by using this book as a starting point. This book provides references and links to various sources of information and resources on PC hardware, such as websites, magazines, journals, books, forums, blogs, podcasts, videos, courses, workshops, conferences, events, organizations, vendors, manufacturers, distributors, retailers, service providers, and experts. You can also use search engines like Bing or Google to find more information and resources on PC hardware.



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