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Q&A

Q1:How do I know whether I have Plug and Play?
A1: You have Windows XP, which means that installing hardware should be easier than with previous operating systems and earlier versions of Windows. Perhaps the best way to see whether you have Plug and Play is to plug the next device you get for your computer into the computer, power on your machine, and see what happens. Of course, you should read the new hardware's installation instructions to learn the correct way to install the device.

If you turn on your computer and the computer responds to the new device properly, you have, for all intents and purposes, all the plug-and-play compatibility you need. You have Plug and Play, at least, for that one device. Just because Windows and your BIOS are compatible with Plug and Play, however, does not mean that the hardware you install will also be compatible with Plug and Play.

Q2:I don't want to buy and install a network in my house, but how do I easily connect my laptop to my desktop to share files between them?
A2: Use Windows XP's direct cable connection. Connect a parallel cable to both parallel ports. Your laptop will be able to access the desktop's shared files. As simple as the direct cable connection is, if your laptop contains an infrared port, you'll learn in Hour 18 how to share files between the laptop and another device without cables.


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