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Network Software

 

Operating Systems

 

Introduction

A workstation is a computer that is a member of a network. At homes and small businesses, some of the most regular operating systems are probably Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Microsoft Windows Vista Home Basic. Other regularly used operating systems from Microsoft are Microsoft Windows XP Professional, Microsoft Windows 9X, and Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional. On this site, we will mostly cover Microsoft Windows XP Professional.

When preparing to get or acquire your workstations, you may be in one of the following scenarios.

Using New Computers

If you get a contract to build a network for a small business or you are going to create a new network for a home, you may decide to purchase brand new computers. If you haven't bought the computer(s) but are planning to, refer to our section on purchasing or acquiring new computers in the Lesson 4.

Using Existing Computers

If you already have one or more computers that you plan to use as workstations, in the previous lesson, we reviewed how you can get it ready for Microsoft Windows XP Professional. Once the computer is ready with the appropriate hardware, you can prepare the operating system. Because Microsoft Windows 9X, Windows Me, and Windows XP Home Edition have only limited security, on this site, we will mostly consider only Microsoft Windows XP Professional. Based on this, if you have a computer with Microsoft Window 9X, Windows Me, or Windows XP Home Edition but plans to apply a good level of security in your network, you should upgrade it to either Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional or Windows XP Professional.

You can purchase the Microsoft Windows Windows XP Professional operating system in most computer stores or from a web store on the Internet. Here are a few links:

http://www.microsoft.com
http://www.tigerdirect.com
http://www.provantage.com
http://www.cdw.com
http://www.amazon.com
etc.

We will cover the installation later.

Using Barebone Computers

If you have built your own computer or you acquired a "barebone" computer, once it's ready with the necessary hardware parts, you must acquire the operating system. In our lessons, we will use Microsoft Windows Windows XP Professional, which you should acquire or purchase.

You can purchase the operating system from a computer store or one of the above links.

 

Support Software

 

Office Suite

An office suite is a series of software applications packaged as one that assists the users with their daily regular assignments. The suite typically includes a word processor, a spreadsheet application, a personal information manager (PIM), and a presentation software. These include the most regularly performed operations at work. In most cases, you should provide an office suite to the users.

The most popular office suite is, obviously, Microsoft Office. The other popular office suites are Corel WordPerfect and OpenOffice.org. The first two are commercial suites. You can purchase OpenOffice from Sun at a very low price or you can download it free from http://www.openoffice.org.

 

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