Chinese laptop

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by John Potter, Jun 8, 2004.

  1. John Potter

    John Potter Guest

    I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.

    I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.

    Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    them from time to time).

    Many thanks, John
    John Potter, Jun 8, 2004
    #1
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  2. John Potter

    Dogg Guest

    On Wed, 09 Jun 2004 10:28:04 +1200, John Potter
    <> wrote:

    >I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    >want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    >read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    >I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    >firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    >example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    >seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    >chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    >which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    >be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    >Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >
    >Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    >to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    >I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    >them from time to time).
    >
    >Many thanks, John


    Any laptop you buy these days is just "a smaller desktop". Nothing
    weird. Beware though, some maybe sold minus a battery and none have
    bags (unless they chuck one in where you're buying). As for the
    Chinese interface, XP has support for Chinese characters when it comes
    to looking at web pages written in Chinese. I would imagine you can
    enable a Chinese keyboard layout and maybe type in Chinese
    characters..? The OS itself is going to be English however unless you
    install an actual Chinese version of XP.
    Dogg, Jun 9, 2004
    #2
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  3. John Potter

    TmcT Guest

    Do they really need "chinese interface" ?
    And how they going to typing chinese?

    Here's some "add-on" programs for using Chinese under Windows (Eng).
    http://www.njstar.com/

    Some computer stores may selling Chinese Windows, such as, e-one, inc.

    Email me if help needed.


    Cheers


    "John Potter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    > I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >
    > Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > them from time to time).
    >
    > Many thanks, John
    TmcT, Jun 9, 2004
    #3
  4. John Potter

    John Potter Guest

    On Wed, 09 Jun 2004 11:14:16 +1200, Dogg <> wrote:

    >Any laptop you buy these days is just "a smaller desktop". Nothing
    >weird. Beware though, some maybe sold minus a battery and none have
    >bags (unless they chuck one in where you're buying). As for the
    >Chinese interface, XP has support for Chinese characters when it comes
    >to looking at web pages written in Chinese. I would imagine you can
    >enable a Chinese keyboard layout and maybe type in Chinese
    >characters..? The OS itself is going to be English however unless you
    >install an actual Chinese version of XP.


    Thanks. At the moment I'm trying to get a handle on what I need to
    know.

    John
    John Potter, Jun 9, 2004
    #4
  5. John Potter

    John Potter Guest

    On Wed, 9 Jun 2004 11:56:31 +1200, "TmcT" <>
    wrote:

    >Do they really need "chinese interface" ?

    He is 69, she 65. They were professional in Beijing, she a
    metallurgist, he an engineer so they are quite bright but their
    English is limited and they are not too familiar with computers. They
    will want to send Chinese language emails and maybe print letters to
    friends. The Chinese interface was their daughter's idea (she lives
    in Germany), but maybe it's not necessary.

    >And how they going to typing chinese?

    I think you can enable Chinese input on a US layout keyboard, they use
    multiple keys - but I know very little about it. I think the
    characters are 16 bits each rather than the 8 in western languages -
    there are 2-3000 characters in the Chinese script.

    >Here's some "add-on" programs for using Chinese under Windows (Eng).
    >http://www.njstar.com/
    >
    >Some computer stores may selling Chinese Windows, such as, e-one, inc.
    >
    >Email me if help needed.

    Thanks, I'll bear that in mind.

    >Cheers
    >
    >
    >"John Potter" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    >> want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    >> read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >>
    >> I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    >> firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    >> example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    >> seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    >> chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    >> which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    >> be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    >> Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >>
    >> Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    >> to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    >> I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    >> them from time to time).
    >>
    >> Many thanks, John

    >
    John Potter, Jun 9, 2004
    #5
  6. John Potter

    Rupert Guest

    You probably want to seek out a keyboard with chinese language characters on
    it though! Also make sure you get the right type, tradition vs simplified -
    that goes for the lang option in the OS too

    "John Potter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    > I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >
    > Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > them from time to time).
    >
    > Many thanks, John
    Rupert, Jun 9, 2004
    #6
  7. John Potter

    Robert Guest

    I have worked on a few of these with difficulty (I am only Enlish speaking)
    Keyboard is normal QWERTY but you have the chinese charactors also on the
    keys.
    OS is chinese.
    All the prompts are in the normal place and I can install the OS and get
    most drivers done as device manager is in its usual place.
    However for any errors or need to setup some smarts you will need some-one
    to read it to you

    If you know windows well you should be able to do all the basics - otherwise
    some of the local PC shops have asians that should be able to assist.

    "John Potter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    > I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >
    > Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > them from time to time).
    >
    > Many thanks, John
    Robert, Jun 9, 2004
    #7
  8. John Potter

    -{-astrae-}- Guest

    > You probably want to seek out a keyboard with chinese language characters
    on
    > it though! Also make sure you get the right type, tradition vs

    simplified -
    > that goes for the lang option in the OS too


    Cant say I ever saw a keyboard with chinese characters on it while I was in
    china. As far as Im aware they dont use them. They type using pinyin.
    (think thats wot its called) All chinese characters are typed by how they
    sound eg. chan, le etc..

    I've installed chinese windows on several machines. Its a piece of cake if
    you know all the prompts.

    I'd say your friends will be able to sort out the software for typing, and
    chinese windows is available on every shop corner in china...
    -{-astrae-}-, Jun 9, 2004
    #8
  9. John Potter

    Craig Sutton Guest

    "John Potter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    > I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >
    > Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > them from time to time).
    >

    I am sure you can buy an external USB Chinese keyboard..any asian pc dealer
    shop should be able to source one.
    Craig Sutton, Jun 9, 2004
    #9
  10. John Potter

    steve Guest

    TmcT wrote:
    > Do they really need "chinese interface" ?
    > And how they going to typing chinese?


    It's usually done with software that supports "Big-5" or
    similar....where up to 5 key-strokes are required to compose a single
    Chinese character.

    The PC/Laptop would need to have double-byte character set support built
    in....I think.
    steve, Jun 9, 2004
    #10
  11. In article <>,
    says...
    > On Wed, 09 Jun 2004 10:28:04 +1200, John Potter
    > <> wrote:
    >
    > >I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > >want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > >read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    > >
    > >I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > >firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > >example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > >seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > >chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > >which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > >be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > >Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    > >
    > >Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > >to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > >I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > >them from time to time).
    > >
    > >Many thanks, John

    >
    > Any laptop you buy these days is just "a smaller desktop". Nothing
    > weird.


    Only in software terms. In hardware they often use proprietary designs
    and components.
    Patrick Dunford, Jun 9, 2004
    #11
  12. In article <>,
    says...
    > I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    > I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > chips. Is this a common setup?


    Compaq and some others use it instead of a full Bios chip.
    Patrick Dunford, Jun 9, 2004
    #12
  13. John Potter

    TmcT Guest

    I see.

    A "Simplified Chinese" Windows should suit them best.
    (Or "Traditional Chinese" version if they prefered.)

    If MS Office needed, again chinese version should provide better
    compatibility.

    Regard to typing chinese you may have a look this page:
    http://matt.3rdlife.net/site/content/tutorials/type_chinese_in_windows.php

    And here:
    http://www.fi.muni.cz/usr/wong/teaching/chinese/notes/node8.html

    They should able to use "Pinyin" to input chinese. Maybe a little help but
    should be fine.
    The best is no special requirement on the keyboard and built-in with Cinese
    Windows.
    (I use T. C. Win2k Pro, not sure what bundle with Eng. Windows)

    There're tons of "Chinese patch" available online free for apply on Eng.
    apps, changing them to Chinese interface.
    Most of them are in Simplified Chinese website, just Email me if needed.

    Cheers



    "John Potter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > On Wed, 9 Jun 2004 11:56:31 +1200, "TmcT" <>
    > wrote:
    >
    > >Do they really need "chinese interface" ?

    > He is 69, she 65. They were professional in Beijing, she a
    > metallurgist, he an engineer so they are quite bright but their
    > English is limited and they are not too familiar with computers. They
    > will want to send Chinese language emails and maybe print letters to
    > friends. The Chinese interface was their daughter's idea (she lives
    > in Germany), but maybe it's not necessary.
    >
    > >And how they going to typing chinese?

    > I think you can enable Chinese input on a US layout keyboard, they use
    > multiple keys - but I know very little about it. I think the
    > characters are 16 bits each rather than the 8 in western languages -
    > there are 2-3000 characters in the Chinese script.
    >
    > >Here's some "add-on" programs for using Chinese under Windows (Eng).
    > >http://www.njstar.com/
    > >
    > >Some computer stores may selling Chinese Windows, such as, e-one, inc.
    > >
    > >Email me if help needed.

    > Thanks, I'll bear that in mind.
    >
    > >Cheers
    > >
    > >
    > >"John Potter" <> wrote in message
    > >news:...
    > >> I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > >> want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > >> read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    > >>
    > >> I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > >> firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > >> example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > >> seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > >> chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > >> which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > >> be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > >> Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    > >>
    > >> Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > >> to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > >> I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > >> them from time to time).
    > >>
    > >> Many thanks, John

    > >

    >
    TmcT, Jun 9, 2004
    #13
  14. John Potter

    Dogg Guest

    On Wed, 9 Jun 2004 23:07:12 +1200, Patrick Dunford
    <> wrote:

    <snip>
    >>
    >> Any laptop you buy these days is just "a smaller desktop". Nothing
    >> weird.

    >
    >Only in software terms. In hardware they often use proprietary designs
    >and components.


    Yes, I was just trying to keep it simple.
    Dogg, Jun 10, 2004
    #14
  15. John Potter

    John Potter Guest

    When I bought my desktop I got a cd with the motherboard, another one
    with the cd writer and a third one with windows on it. The HP
    pavillion I looked at today had a disk set with everything (I think) -
    and nothing with Microsoft's logo on it. So HP have made a complete
    install disk including drivers. I wouldn't be able to do a clean
    install with another os because I wouldn't have the drivers, but I
    could use partition magic to partition into 3 partitions after
    install, use the second for my docs, the third for ghost images of the
    boot partition. Then when it all turns to custard I could recover the
    boot partition from a saved image file no problem? (I know this
    doesn't protect from h/d crash)

    Thanks John

    On Thu, 10 Jun 2004 13:23:21 +1200, Dogg <> wrote:

    >On Wed, 9 Jun 2004 23:07:12 +1200, Patrick Dunford
    ><> wrote:
    >
    ><snip>
    >>>
    >>> Any laptop you buy these days is just "a smaller desktop". Nothing
    >>> weird.

    >>
    >>Only in software terms. In hardware they often use proprietary designs
    >>and components.

    >
    >Yes, I was just trying to keep it simple.
    John Potter, Jun 10, 2004
    #15
  16. John Potter

    John Potter Guest

    On Thu, 10 Jun 2004 05:08:58 +1200, "TmcT" <>
    wrote:

    Thanks Thomas

    It's good to know how it works even if I'm not going to be typing
    Chinese myself.

    John

    >I see.
    >
    >A "Simplified Chinese" Windows should suit them best.
    >(Or "Traditional Chinese" version if they prefered.)
    >
    >If MS Office needed, again chinese version should provide better
    >compatibility.
    >
    >Regard to typing chinese you may have a look this page:
    >http://matt.3rdlife.net/site/content/tutorials/type_chinese_in_windows.php
    >
    >And here:
    >http://www.fi.muni.cz/usr/wong/teaching/chinese/notes/node8.html
    >
    >They should able to use "Pinyin" to input chinese. Maybe a little help but
    >should be fine.
    >The best is no special requirement on the keyboard and built-in with Cinese
    >Windows.
    >(I use T. C. Win2k Pro, not sure what bundle with Eng. Windows)
    >
    >There're tons of "Chinese patch" available online free for apply on Eng.
    >apps, changing them to Chinese interface.
    >Most of them are in Simplified Chinese website, just Email me if needed.
    >
    >Cheers
    >
    >
    >
    >"John Potter" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Wed, 9 Jun 2004 11:56:31 +1200, "TmcT" <>
    >> wrote:
    >>
    >> >Do they really need "chinese interface" ?

    >> He is 69, she 65. They were professional in Beijing, she a
    >> metallurgist, he an engineer so they are quite bright but their
    >> English is limited and they are not too familiar with computers. They
    >> will want to send Chinese language emails and maybe print letters to
    >> friends. The Chinese interface was their daughter's idea (she lives
    >> in Germany), but maybe it's not necessary.
    >>
    >> >And how they going to typing chinese?

    >> I think you can enable Chinese input on a US layout keyboard, they use
    >> multiple keys - but I know very little about it. I think the
    >> characters are 16 bits each rather than the 8 in western languages -
    >> there are 2-3000 characters in the Chinese script.
    >>
    >> >Here's some "add-on" programs for using Chinese under Windows (Eng).
    >> >http://www.njstar.com/
    >> >
    >> >Some computer stores may selling Chinese Windows, such as, e-one, inc.
    >> >
    >> >Email me if help needed.

    >> Thanks, I'll bear that in mind.
    >>
    >> >Cheers
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >"John Potter" <> wrote in message
    >> >news:...
    >> >> I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    >> >> want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    >> >> read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >> >>
    >> >> I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    >> >> firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    >> >> example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    >> >> seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    >> >> chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    >> >> which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    >> >> be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    >> >> Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >> >>
    >> >> Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    >> >> to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    >> >> I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    >> >> them from time to time).
    >> >>
    >> >> Many thanks, John
    >> >

    >>

    >
    John Potter, Jun 10, 2004
    #16
  17. John Potter

    AT Guest

    the easiest way is buy themself a chinese version (simply chinese version
    instead of Traditional chinese) of laptop or get the Window XP version with
    the language kit CD. There are quite a few chinese pc retailer in NZ ask
    them for details.

    In reality if they are in their 50's or 60's its hard for them to learn how
    to input chinese in computer.
    These days you can buy them a small tablet which can do chinese handwriting
    All they have to do is learn how to use the computer and dont have to bother
    the input method etc.
    hope this help


    "John Potter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I am about to buy a laptop (windows) computer for Chinese friends who
    > want Chinese character interface. They will use it for email and to
    > read Chinese newspapers, probably not much else.
    >
    > I haven't owned a laptop but am familiar with desktop machines, so
    > firstly I would appreciate any comments on the differences. For
    > example I did once see a laptop which had a small partition with what
    > seemed like routines which on a desktop would be found in the bios
    > chips. Is this a common setup? Are there any other issues like this
    > which might trip up a person used to working with destop PCs? I will
    > be buying a new or not too old secondhand machine, I want to use
    > Norton Ghost on a separate partition in case of monumental suffup.
    >
    > Secondly, about the Chinese interface. Is this something added only
    > to windows, or does it have to be installed for each application? Can
    > I easily switch back to the western character set (I will be helping
    > them from time to time).
    >
    > Many thanks, John
    AT, Jun 11, 2004
    #17
  18. John Potter

    John Potter Guest

    That's a good thought. This was going to be a surprise for them but
    it might be better to talk to them, I don't know much about what
    they're used to. They have friends in western countries too, I'll
    talk to a retailer first.

    John

    On Fri, 11 Jun 2004 11:06:14 +1200, "AT" <> wrote:

    >the easiest way is buy themself a chinese version (simply chinese version
    >instead of Traditional chinese) of laptop or get the Window XP version with
    >the language kit CD. There are quite a few chinese pc retailer in NZ ask
    >them for details.
    >
    >In reality if they are in their 50's or 60's its hard for them to learn how
    >to input chinese in computer.
    >These days you can buy them a small tablet which can do chinese handwriting
    >All they have to do is learn how to use the computer and dont have to bother
    >the input method etc.
    >hope this help
    John Potter, Jun 11, 2004
    #18
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