Mobile Computer Hardware

Windows 2000 obviously provides support for mobile computing. In this section we’ll explore mobile hardware profiles, APM, ACPI, and other power related options.

Windows 2000 still supports the use of hardware profiles to control which hardware drivers and services are loaded when Windows 2000 boots, such as when you are either on or off the network. If you have more than one hardware profile, you will be prompted to choose one when the system boots. The default hardware profile includes networking support, but if the machine is a laptop, you should also create an ‘off the network’ profile. Specify that a profile is for a laptop by choosing ‘This is a portable computer’ in the properties of the profile. Windows 2000 will automatically attempt to determine whether or not the computer is docked. If you want the profile to be used exclusively in a docked or undocked mode, you should choose the appropriate of option.

If Windows 2000 detects a docking station, you will find an Eject PC button on the Start menu that you can use to dock or undock without a reboot. Windows 2000 also supports changing PC Cards, drives, and external hardware (such as USB or parallel devices) without a reboot. However, you should notify the system that you are planning to unplug a device by using the Unplug option in Add/Remove hardware, or the Unplug/Eject taskbar icon.

Author: Dan DiNicolo

Dan DiNicolo is a freelance author, consultant, trainer, and the managing editor of He is the author of the CCNA Study Guide found on this site, as well as many books including the PC Magazine titles Windows XP Security Solutions and Windows Vista Security Solutions. Click here to contact Dan.