Knowledge Base



Intel microprocessors are among the most commonly used processors worldwide. They are well-known for their advanced chip design and cutting-edge manufacturing. Even though Intel processors were originally known only to engineers and technologists, Intel’s advertising strategy and intelligent outreach towards the masses made it a household name in the ’90s. This is the time Pentium processors were developed. Let’s go down the memory lane and look at the different Intel processors that were developed in this era.



1993: Pentium P5, i586

In 1993, Intel introduced the original Pentium processor. The Pentium brand marks an important part of Intel’s history and a deviation from the processors of old, namely the 286, 386 and 486. The Pentium P5 was launched with 60 MHz of juice in 1993, while it was available with a maximum of 200 MHz (P54CS) in 1996. In 1997, Intel launched the P55C with multimedia extensions (MMX) and expanded the processor design to 4.5 million transistors and 233 MHz clock speed.


1995: Pentium Pro P6, i686


At its released, the Pentium Pro was believed to be a replacement for the P5. However, it was actually a precursor to the Pentium II Xeon. This Pentium processor was designed to deal with the workloads, standards for servers and workstations. The Pentium Pro had a different architecture when compared with other Pentium processors. It featured a 36-bit address bus and supported up to 64 GB memory.


1997: Pentium II, Pentium II Xeon

Developed on top of the sixth generation P6 architecture, the Pentium II was considered as a consumer-focused processor. It was the first Intel CPU that was delivered with the cartridge-like slot module. This processor was introduced with the 350 nm Klamath core (233 and 266 MHz).


1998: Celeron

In 1998, Intel introduced the low-end consumer processor Celeron as a variant of the Pentium II processor. The first Celeron series was based on the 250 nm Covington core for desktop computers. Similarly, the 250 nmMendocino core was created for notebooks. These processors were available from 266 to 300 MHz for desktop computers while they were available up to 500 MHz for the mobile variant.


1999: Pentium III, Pentium Xeon

In 1999, Intel launched the Pentium III that became its contender in the Gigahertz race with AMD. Initially, thechip was equipped with the 250 nm Katmai core and was scaled down to 180 nm with Coppermine, Coppermine T and 130 nm with the Tualatin core.


2000: Pentium 4

The Pentium 4, undoubtedly led to the most dramatic transformation of Intel processors. It was launched in 2000 with 180 nm Willamette core 42 million transistors. This chip used Netburst architecture that was designed to scale with clock speed.


2001: Itanium

The Itanium followed the idea of i860 and iAPX432 and survived over a longer period of time. It was Intel’s first 64-bit processor and was launched with the 180 nm Merced core in 2001. Itanium was considered as a mainframe processor with 733 MHz and 800 MHz clock speed and 320 million transistors.


2003: Pentium M

The Pentium M 700 series targeted mobile computers. It was launched with a 130 nm Banias core in 2003. The Banias core dropped its clock speed from 900 MHz to 1.7 GHz which is comparatively lower than the Pentium 4 Mobile processor.


2005: Pentium D

The Pentium D was Intel’s first dual core processor. It is based on Netburst and comes with 90 nm Smithfield core. This processor was launched as the Pentium D 800 series


2006: Core 2 Duo

Intel’s Core 2 Duo was its strike back against its competitors, AMD’s Athlon X2 and Opteron processors. Intel launched the Core micro architecture with the 65 nm Conroe on the desktop computers, Merom on the mobile side and Woodcrest for the servers.


2008: Core i-series

Intel’s Core i3, i5 and i7 processors were introduced with the Nehalem micro architecture in 2008. Its architecture was scaled to 32 nm in 2010. This provided the foundation for Intel processors like Celeron, Pentium Core and Xeon.


2008: Atom

Another processor was launched in 2008 in the form of Atom. This processor was designed to power mobile Internet devices and nettops. The current Atom generation for desktop and netbook applications is the 32nm Cedarview generation.


Even with its rivalry with another big name, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Intel has managed to become the biggest chip manufacturer in the world. Since the 1990s, Intel has launched technological innovations in processors that have changed the face of the semiconductor industry.


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Related article: 3 Reasons to Migrate from Windows XP to Windows 8


If you have a wireless network at your home, it is likely that you use it for a single purpose, such as accessing the internet from your laptop without the hassle of a cable connection.


Technology has rapidly advanced in the recent years, and various new devices can now use a Wi-Fi network for connectivity. These devices include smartphones, tablets, printers, gaming consoles, eBook readers, media players and even televisions that can now stream media directly from the internet by connecting to your home’s Wi-Fi network.


Now the question arises, can your Wi-Fi network handle the rising demand of all these devices? If you have had a wireless router for a few years now, it is highly unlikely that it is equipped to handle this increasing demand. This is because the old Wi-Fi routers work on 802.11g/b technology that is not capable of keeping up with so many Wi-Fi enabled devices. However, modern-day routers work on 802.11n technology (compared to the older 802.11g/b) that offers faster speeds and is ideal for streaming. This is useful if you use Wi-Fi at your home to stream videos and play multi-player games on video game systems.

  Also Read: We help you buy the perfect external hard drive


Some latest Wi-Fi routers also feature two or more antennae— sometimes known as dual band—to efficiently handle multiple wireless devices at one time. So what does the new crop of 80.11n Wi-Fi routers have to offer? These devices provide a wider range, are easy to set up and offer better security. You can also lock them with a password and keep your information safe.However, new technology does not necessarily mean a high price tag. You will find several reasonably priced routers, which offer good features even on a budget. D-link wireless routers and Belkin wireless routers start at low prices, and even the entry-level models offer decent speed.


In a nutshell, here are the top 5 reasons why it is time to consider swapping your old G Wi-Fi router for a new and advanced N wireless router.


  • Firstly, you get faster speeds than ever before. These new 80.11n Wi-Fi routers can stream high definition video and support multi-player games. They are designed in a way that they can handle multiple Wi-Fi enabled media devices at one time.
  • The new 80.11n Wi-Fi routers offer a wider range, which means that you can access the internet in any corner of your home. You can relax in your backyard deck or sit on your porch and enjoy internet access at a longer distance.
  • N routers support more wireless devices so you can easily connect multiple devices to your Wi-Fi network without experiencing much of a slowdown in the speed.
  • These new routers offer better security. Thanks to the new technology, you now have access to more and better ways to protect your wireless network and information. If uninvited guests use your wireless network, it will not only slow down your connection but also make your data highly vulnerable to misuse. You can prevent this by securing your wireless connection with WPA, WEP or WPA2.
  • Last but not the least, N routers can be set up quickly. With easy to understand questions, users can get their way through the process in no time.

Hope this article will clear the air around wireless routers and you’re convinced that it’s time to upgrade. If you liked the article, do share it with your friends.

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Avid computer users constantly face a never ending problem– the issue of diminishing storage space. For same amount of money you can add a terabyte of storage space to your PC or Mac, laptop or desktop. A terabyte (TB) is enough to store roughly 750,000 MP3s or photos, or over 230 DVD-sized movies. Nowadays, hard drives have great features such as multiple input/output ports, to connect multiple hard disks and auxiliary storage to back up your system files.


Hard Drive Types


There are two types of external hard disks. Desktop-style drives, with 3.5-inch mechanisms inside that require external power supply. Desktop drives are designed to stay stationary, usually for home and office applications. Active users of heavy data driven applications such as video or lots of file transfers should look for a model with a built-in fan, as the extra cooling extends the hard drive’s life expectancy. Notebook-class hard drives (popularly known as pocket or portable hard disks) are usually 2.5-inch mechanisms powered through the connector cable which draw power from the connected host.


Desktop-style drives or powered hard disks are more commonly found in 1TB, 2TB and 3TB ranges. Portable hard drives come in capacities of up to 2TB. However, the 500GB and 1TB are more common.


External solid-state drives (SSDs) are found mostly in high end laptops as they are expensive in terms of cost per gigabyte. They offer exceptional transfer rate, speed and stability. Currently they are available in smaller storage variants ranging from 64GB up to 512GB and are recommended for internal use only.


Input options and connectors.


External hard drives connect to PCs and Macs via their external connectors. USB 2.0/3.0 ports are the most widely used; others can include FireWire (400 and 800), eSATA, or more futuristic connectors like Wireless USB or iSCSI. USB 3.0 is becoming the most favoured port of choice as it provides faster transfer speed, no fuss and amazing compatibility since almost all desktops and laptops come with USB ports. FireWire ports offer greater transfer speed however they are less common. Many Mac users prefer FireWire due to the features it offers. However, other OS users should steer clear from FireWire to minimize fuss and compatibility issues.



Thunderbolt and Lightning


The newest interconnect technology is Thunderbolt (formerly known as Light Peak). This technology was developed by Intel, and mastered by Apple. Originally designed as a speedy optical link using fibre optics it soon found its way in to storage solutions and other interfacing requirements. Thunderbolt has super fast transfer speeds (up to 20GB per second some claim), versatility and endless application possibilities. While Apple has completely adopted this technology and HP has braved into this direction with some models, other manufactures are still hesitant.


Drive Speed


Most hard drives carry their drive speed information measured in RPM (revolutions per minute) which is nothing but speed of their drive mechanism. While some may ignore it as some technical jargon it is essential to be aware this information. Hard drives are commonly available in two speeds 5,400rpm and 7200rpm. A hard disk with 7200rpm is technically faster than a 5400rpm but actual transfer rates depend on a host of factors including the interfacing connector being used, speed of the computer and finally the budget.


Apart from the technical aspects, it is very important to consider the warranty. Portable hard disks are prone to failure especially if you plan to travel with it. Hard disks from good manufacturers offer up to five years of warranty and also data recovery at an extra cost. Remember you are looking at buying a hard disk as you have data that you can’t part with. Don’t be hesitant to spend a little extra.


Do share your thoughts on this article. Check out the range of Hard Disks available at Croma.

  • Computer Accessories

As data is becoming more and more digitized, it is becoming more susceptible to major data breaches. Even though USB flash memory sticks and other portable storage devices are convenient to use, they are susceptible to data breaches. In addition to the danger of data misuse, these devices can also cause negative publicity.Choosing secure portable devices may seem a complex task, but they are actually within the reach of small businesses. Listed here are a few techniques that you can adopt to secure your important data.


Encrypt your data

Many businesses don’t realize that it is easy to recover the deleted files with the help of off-the-shelf recovery software from mechanical storage devices like USB drives. Also, the benefits of encrypting data on portable storage devices are not known to many organizations. The process of encrypting data requires the original credentials or a copy of the decryption key. An encrypted storage device with a decryption key that has been erased serves as a good protection against malicious data recovery. Another ideal protection would be an encrypted storage device with a good authentication pass-phrase.


Also read: We help you buy the perfect external hard drive


BitLocker to Go for Windows 7 and 8

The BitLocker To Go is the simplest method for encrypting an entire USB portable storage device. This USB protection feature appeared first with the Windows 7. It is initialised at the disk-volume level of a removable storage device. This feature protects the drive’s unencrypted data with a password and automatically encrypts the data as it is copied over. ‘BitLocker To Go’ can be accessed with all versions of Windows 7. However, it is essential toinitialise this feature from Windows 7 Enterprise, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 8 Pro or, Windows 8 Enterprise. ‘BitLocker To Go’ is a robust encryption USB locker that provides a seamless experience for Windows-only computers.


Encrypting File System for Windows XP and Vista

Another method to encrypt data on a removable hard disk drive is the encrypting file system (EFS). This software has been around for a long time and can work well on the older versions of Windows XP Professional, Vista Business, Enterprise and Ultimate. It is simple to enable the EFS system. All you need to do is select “Encrypt contents to secure data” option from the general properties of a folder or file. It can automatically encrypt data whenever files are copied into its EFS folder.


Mac: 256-bit AES Encryption

Apple Mac requires different USB protection software or USB locker than that used on Windows systems. The Apple Macs provide you with the facility to create a password-protected and encrypted disk image. This image is up to 256-bit AES encryption, which can be used on Mac OS 10.5 or later. With this encryption, you will get a .dmg file that can be put into the Finder to get file access. This software also expands automatically based on the data that is added. The generated disk image file acts like a regular file and allows you to copy it on a portable storage device.


Mixing encryption hardware and software

It is seen that several business-centric products use a combination of proprietary encryption hardware and custom software. For instance, the Defender series of encrypted flash drives is designed for both small businesses and enterprises. This USB lock software stores data on the Defender USB flash drives and encrypts it with 256-bit AES encryption automatically. It plays a dual role by synchronizing with a back-end server for the latest device policies. These policies include password expiration, maximum password attempts and minimum password complexity.


Even though these techniques prove useful in keeping the data protected in a USB locker, there can be instances when the data may get lost or locked in the USB drive. This is because, like all the password-protected technology, device encryption also includes the risk of users forgetting their passwords. So, it is preferable to keep a backup copy of data and ensure that this copy is also kept securely. Since there are various options available to secure portable storage devices, it is preferable to choose a convenient and versatile solution for USB data protection.


It goes without saying that a lot of us use memory sticks to keep important data. Do share this article with your friends to let them know how to protect USB drives.

  • Computer Accessories

Data storage is a vital aspect of computing and other related activities. Technological experts or even amateurs need to store a lot of data. Data storage options such as cloud storage and external hard drives are popular options.


Cloud storage is a service model that manages, maintains and backs up the data remotely and makes it available to users over a network – typically the Internet. Whereas, an external hard drive is a portable and compact storage device that can be attached to a computer via USB or wirelessly. They have high storage capacities and are used as computer backup or serve as a network drive. With the current war between cloud storage and external hard drive, let’s take a look at the cost-effectiveness of these storage devices.


External hard disks have a linear price structure as compared to cloud storage. Storage price is decreasing at a fast pace. You can find external hard drives at a comfortable price. If your storage needs to be increased, you can just buy another external hard drive or replace your old one with a model that has more storage. That makes it a flexible and affordable solution. Simply put, the more storage capacity you need, the more you pay. So, in the end, the storage decides the cost-effectiveness of the device and it is wise to buy external disks.


The biggest disadvantage of cloud storage is the limited bandwidth. If the internet connection is slow or unstable, you might have trouble accessing or sharing the files. Organisations that need a large amount of storage may also find it unaffordable as the cost will increase significantly.


Whether you are a consumer or business organisation, cost is always the king. In the price war between cloud and external hard drive storage, the latter always wins. External hard drives are economical and have the benefit of one-time upfront cost. Whereas, if you want to explore the complete potential of cloud storage services, then you need to subscribe for the same. This implies that you will incur the ongoing storage costs. Also, the risk of hacking is the maximum with cloud storage. It comes with a recurring subscription, bandwidth usage fees, and unsafe file transfer. On the contrary, hard drives are safe and free from hacking. They give you the flexibility to encrypt your files and secure them as you want them to be. Also, you are the only person who has the access to your data, which is not the case with the cloud storage service.


External hard drives are a one-time investment that support a limited budget. With high speed and file transfer, they can backup your HD video collection or a huge photo album. The regular monthly sign-ups for the service is not required. Buy from an extensive range of external hard drives online with varied storage capacities and prices that suit your pocket and preference.


Also Read : We help you buy the perfect external hard drive


People are often confused between a flash drive and cloud storage facility. DO share this article with your friends and family to help them make an informed choice.

  • Computer Accessories

Canon presents a new all-in-one Inkjet printer that not only does printing but also provides the benefit of copying and scanning tasks. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 is the newest product by Canon recently that makes it easy to do everyday tasks. It has the Auto Duplex printing that makes it easier to print on both sides of the paper at the same time. The Fast Front feature of this printer enables users to load paper from the front and replace ink cartridges very easily. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 printer also has the Wi-Fi connectivity that has multi-user feature. Apart from these amazing features, it also lets users to create artistic effects such as Fish-Eye, Miniature, Toy, Soft Focus, Blur Background and many more.MG3170-Wine-Red-1024x624.jpg


The Canon PIXMA MG3170 has a compact design and is very cost-effective to purchase. The Fast Front feature of this printer enables users to easily replace the ink cartridges and load paper in no time. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 also allows Auto Duplex printing that helps in saving resources. It also offers the Wi-Fi connectivity which enables more than one user to give commands to the printer at the same time. This printer lets users improve an ordinary image by using the artistic effects. The five fun effects it provides are Fish-Eye, Miniature, Toy, Soft Focus and Blur Background. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 has 4800×1200 vertical dpi which is the maximum printing resolution that any printer can provide. It is powered on the Inkjet technology and has a 7 segment LED display.135513339238451.jpg


The Canon PIXMA MG3170 is a colour inkjet printer model with multiple functions of printing, scanning and copying. It also provides the facility to print the tasks wirelessly by using the Wi-Fi connectivity feature. Apart from this, the Canon PIXMA MG3170 offers the facility of two-sided printing that is done automatically. The Wi-Fi connection it offers is not limited to a particular device, so users can connect their laptops, phones, tablets etc. to print files using the Canon PIXMA MG3170 printer. The drivers for the Canon PIXMA MG3170 printer are installed effortlessly by turning it on and setting some options on the system as PIXMA MG3170. This will install the wireless printing feature without the need to install any additional drivers separately. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 gives excellent results while printing black and white documents in high mode or a diaphragm or even sharp quality writing. The colour print test of diagrams, drawings and so on in high mode gives very impressive results.MG3170-White-1024x602.jpg

Apart from the high quality prints that the high mode offers, the Canon PIXMA MG3170 also provides the fast and standard mode that print quickly and save ink as well. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 supports a maximum resolution of up to 600 dpi that produces amazingly sharp and detailed pictures with all the colours intact. This excellent feature-packed Canon PIXMA MG3170 printer that provides great printing quality is quite affordable as well.


Wrap up
The Canon PIXMA MG3170 is an all-purpose printer that lets users to print, scan as well as copy files. This printer is one of the best printers currently available in the market. Even though the Canon PIXMA MG3170 printer does have a few drawbacks, the features it provides cover-up these few limitations. The Canon PIXMA MG3170 printer is quite affordable and provides excellent features.