Upgrading Your Computer - 4 Books

COMPUTER BOOK REVIEW  

629 words

Title: Rescued by Upgrading Your PC: Kris Jamsa; 
Jamsa Press; ISBN 1-884133-04-5; paperback; 
252 pages; US$22.95, CAN$29.95.

Title: Upgrading Your PC: Allen Wyatt; Que Corporation; 
ISBN 1-56529-666-4; US$24.99, CAN$31.95.

Title: Upgrading and Repairing PCs: 4th Edition; Scott 
Mueller; Que Corporation; ISBN 1-56529-932-9; paperback; 
1568 pages; US$39.95, CAN$53.99; 

Title: Upgrading and Repairing PCs Quick Reference: 
Scott Mueller; Que Corporation; ISBN 1-56529-736-9; 
559 pages; US$19.99, CAN$26.95

Reviewer: A.T.Connellan, "There are too many books on 
the market on this subject, but here is a choice array that 
won't lead you astray. These are books crowded with 
common sense, technical manuals for the everyman."  

 The Upgraders Eldorado

This is the era of the computer upgrade. The industry 
leaders IBM and Apple are strolling down the aisle 
arm-in-arm to a union of interchangeable architecture. 
Software giant Microsoft, stuck in neutral on its release 
of Chicago/ Windows4/Windows95, is indicating that 
this new program will require mega-memory. Component 
prices are plummeting. There has never been a better 
time to move your present system forward in speed, 
capacity and features. 

Two of the hottest subjects in the computer field today 
are The Internet and Multimedia, and equipping your 
present system for both can be a do-it-yourself exercise 
with just a handful of tools. The question in planning a 
system renovation or upgrade is what to do, who does 
it, how much will it cost, and how to avoid creating an 
overpriced "Frankenstein?" 

There are too many books on the market on this subject, 
but here is a choice array that won't lead you astray.

Upgrading Your Pc, from Jamsa [say as in James not jam] 
Press is labelled "For All Users," and follows the successful 
Jamsa formula, using colored panels, clearly understandable 
illustrations, set out in 4 sections containing 36 lessons that 
build sequentially on each other to allow people like you 
and me to go where angels fear to tread, and achieve 
satisfactory results. 

Kris Jamsa provides a helpful 7 point check list that is an 
eye opener to the need for system upgrade, and 6 fine-tuning 
steps as a pre-start double check. From that point on the 
exercise becomes a follow-the-bouncing-ball procedure. 

Allen Wyatt's "Upgrading Your PC" is directed at the same 
level of user [beginner and intermediate], and covers much 
of the same country with photographs to guide the process 
that would do a coffee table book proud. His directions are 
explicit, and understandable. Any terms the reader doesn't 
understand can be quickly found in the excellent glossary 
and index. 

Your choice between these two may be the flip of a coin, 
or better yet pick the one that communicates to you most 
clearly. Either is full value.

Scott Mueller is an internationally recognized authority 
in deciphering technical information. His client list includes 
governments and Fortune 500 companies. He conveys 
his knowledge cogently and understandably, qualities 
not always found in technical manuals. 

"Upgrading and Repairing PCs" is widely viewed as the 
"upgrading bible." Major content additions to this 4th edition 
cover sections on CD-ROM, Optical Drives, Audio Devices, 
Networking, Operating Systems, and Communication Services.

The author acknowledges that all PCs are children of IBM, 
legitimate and otherwise, so he defines the genealogy and 
uses it to springboard to relevant information on the "clones, 
or compatibles." Of particular help to system purchasers 
is the 19 point system compatibility check list. 

Exhaustively complete and featuring IBM's painfully precise 
drawings with their exploded detail sections, it covers every 
conceivable exercise of disassembly, reassembly, 
maintenance, and repair of all PCs. In this 1,568 page 
monster there are over 170 pages of Appendixes. It would 
be very difficult to argue with those who claim "...it is simply 
the most comprehensive PC support around!" 

The companion "Quick Reference" is not a digest although 
there are duplicates of some of the tables from its' big 
brother. It provides a handy, at the bench, quicker access 
to the essential information, codes, tables, specifications, 
etc. Most users will probably buy the pair. 
                            
You may not wish to get into the subject this deeply, but 
if you do, there is no better gateway. The Mueller books 
are meant for computer users with some level of knowledge 
and a strong interest, but won't disappoint the less 
experienced. These are books crowded with common 
sense, technical manuals for the everyman. 


Back to Computer Book Reviews index

Back to Home page