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* To modify the color profile that a scanner or camera uses, select the device, click Properties, and click the Color Management tab.
* To have Windows XP load one or more pictures from a digital camera, you can simply click the device in the Scanners and Cameras folder. You can then save the image or images (the default location is the My Pictures folder, which now resides at the same hierarchical level as My Documents).
* To make a just-scanned document load into a specified application program automatically: Select the device, click Properties, click the Events tab, choose the application, and click Send to This Application.
Windows XP doesn't directly support parallel-port still image devices or those on a network. That's not to say that those devices don't work, but you'll probably need third-party drivers for them.
Getting on the Universal Serial Bus
The Universal Serial Bus, or USB, is a popular choice for adding low- to medium-speed peripherals to a Windows XP PC. (Windows 98 supports USB natively, and Windows NT 4 never successfully supported USB.)
The data transfer speed of the USB depends on whether it's operating in isochronous or asynchronous mode. Both modes can't be active simultaneously.
* In isochronous mode, data transfers occur at a fixed, guaranteed level of 12 Mbps (megabits per second).
Speakers, modems, and monitors typically use this mode.
* In asynchronous mode, data transfers occur at 1.5 Mbps.
Keyboards and mice typically use this mode.
Remember Remember these basic facts about USB for the test, which is highly likely to ask you at least one USB-related question:
* USB is an external bus.
You can use a single port (and interrupt) to daisy-chain up to 127 devices, such as mice, keyboards, speakers, and monitors.
* You may not exceed five tiers on the USB bus.
* USB is a Plug and Play bus that supports hot swapping (nothing to do with experimental marriages), so you can add and remove devices without powering down the computer.
* Unlike devices on other buses, USB devices typically don't have resource settings that can cause device failure.
* You may have to enable your USB controller in the PC's BIOS for USB devices to work. Windows XP doesn't even show the controller in Device Manager if the BIOS doesn't enable it.
* Bus-powered hubs (as opposed to self-powered hubs with their own power supply) can support a maximum of four downstream ports.
* The bus fails if devices on a bus-powered hub draw too much power. 'Too much' is determined by checking the milliamp rating on the root hub's property sheet in Device Manager; look at the Power tab. Generally, self-powered hubs provide 500mA of power per port, and bus-powered hubs provide 100mA per port.
* You can suppress USB error messages on the USB controller's property sheet in the Advanced tab, but as a general rule, you shouldn't.
* Hubs provide device connection points, power management, and device detection services. USB devices can be no more than five meters from the hub to which they connect. The USB host (usually a circuit on the PC's motherboard but may be an add-in adapter) is also called the root hub.
* Don't connect a bus-powered hub to another bus-powered hub.
Tip Older PCs that support USB 1.0 generally don't work well with modern USB peripherals.
Instant Answer If the PC's BIOS enables the USB bus but Windows XP still has problems finding devices on the bus, try removing the bus host controller in Device Manager and rebooting. That lets Windows redetect the controller and every USB device connected to it.
FireWire: USB Plus Caffeine
FireWire, or IEEE 1394 (which isn't nearly as much fun to say but which you should memorize anyway), is yet another new hardware bus that Windows XP supports. This bus is suitable for high-bandwidth devices, such as digital camcorders and VCRs, video teleconferencing equipment, and so on. FireWire hardware support may be built in to a given PC's system board, or added via an adapter. Windows XP Professional provides the system-level support.
Time Shaver FireWire is a lot like the Universal Serial Bus (Plug and Play, external bus, daisy-chain design, asynchronous and isochronous modes, and so on), but bigger and faster.
* FireWire supports up to 63 devices on a single bus, and you can connect up to 1023 buses together, for a total number of devices that is ... well, let's just say a lot.
* FireWire supports data transfer rates of 100, 200, and even 400 Mbps (megabits per second), compared to the 12 Mbps maximum for USB. Although you can put devices having different speeds on the same bus, the maximum bus speed is limited by the slowest device.
* FireWire components come in four flavors: devices, splitters, bridges, and repeaters. Don't learn any more detail than this for the exam. Learn a lot more detail if you plan to set up a large net of FireWire components.
Microsoft is working hard to conquer the handheld device market with its Windows CE operating system. Therefore, don't be surprised if the exam throws out a question on palmtop device connectivity. Here are the basic facts you should know: