Wetting Agent-Windows 95

Wetting Agent- Windows 95

Wetting Agent

A chemical which reduces surface tension in a liquid, motivating the liquid to spread more evenly on a surface.

Wetting Voltage

Wetting voltage is the voltage that is present in a local circuit waiting for a contact closure to pick up a relay. It is typically DC voltage not AC.

Wetware Exploits

  1. Human weaknesses that can be taken advantage of to hack or sabotage computer security systems. As in, "No system is immune to wetware exploits".

  2. Also a type of email- borne virus in which the user himself causes the destruction. A warning message tells the user to search out and remove a virus file. The file is usually a vital part of the Windows operating system. So its removal causes system damage.


Winchester Floppy Controller.


Wired For Management. Intel's umbrella term for a set of management standards supported by hardware vendors . WFM communicates with network management software to help PCs send inventory data, manage power and reboot remotely. According to InfoWorld, a standard WFM-compliant PC will include a sensor to detect intruders; DMI 2.0 in the firmware; Wake on LAN 2.0 in the Ethernet chip or an Ethernet network interface card; ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface) and on the system board with software hooks to the OS, hard disk modem and monitor; and PXE (Preboot Execution Environment) on the Ethernet chip or the NIC (Network Interface Card). The idea of WFW is to give administrators more flexibility to handle clients (i.e. PCs) remotely through a central console with protocols that are vendor independent.


Weighted Fair Queuing. A variation on the CBQ (Class-Based Queuing) queuing technique used in routers. As is the case with CBQ, WFQ queues traffic in separate queues, according to traffic class definition, guaranteeing each queue some portion of the total available bandwidth. As is also the case with CBQ, WFQ recognizes when a particular queue is not fully utilizing its allocated bandwidth and portions that capacity out to the other queues on a proportionate basis. WFQ takes queuing to yet another level, portioning out available bandwidth on the basis of individual information flows according to their message parameters. See also CBQ, FIFO, RED, and Router.


Windows For Workgroups. See Windows.


  1. An abbreviation for workstation, i.e., a computer on a desktop that isn't a server.

  2. Working Group. A term used by the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) and the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) for a formal group of people that work on standards recommendations. The IEEE sometimes breaks the work into tasks , which are assigned to Task Groups (TGs).


Worldwide Geodetic System 1984. A system of coordinates used by GPS (Global Positioning System).


Western Host.


See Wack.

Wheatstone Bridge

An instrument for measuring resistances.


How well does a computer work? Let's test it. The Whetstone benchmark program, developed in 1976, was designed to simulate arithmetic intensive programs used in scientific computing. It is applicable in CAD and other engineering areas where floating-point and trigonometric calculations are heavily used. The Whetstone program is completely CPU-bound and performs no I/O or system calls. The speed at which a system performs floating point operations is measured in units of Whetstones per second or floating point operations per second (flops). Whetstone I tests 32-bit, and Whetstone II tests 64-bit operations. See also Dhrystones.

While Running Backwards You'll Vomit


Whip Cable Construction

See Bundled Cable.


Whipsawing is an abuse of its dominant position by an incumbent telephone company operator in an unliberalised country. Here the incumbent uses its market power to insist on receiving a greater amount under the accounting rate system for receiving and terminating calls from an operator in a liberalised country than it pays to that operator for the same service in the other direction. This is harmful to consumers in the liberalised country because they pay more than they should do for calls. See also "One Way Bypass".

Whisper Coach

You're the supervisor at a call center. You need to train your agents on how to deal correctly with the customers calling in on the phone. So you listen in on several phone calls. When you hear something you don't like or when you want to help the agent with some information, you whisper. Only the agent hears your whisper. The customer doesn't hear anything. This is called whisper coaching.

Whisper Technology

A call comes into a call center. The voice response unit prompts the caller to the enter their account number. When the call is transferred to the agent, the VRU "whispers" the account number to the agent, who then manually types it into his computer. This technology is now obsolete, since VRUs can now transfer their account number directly into the agent's database and have the look up done automatically. And the call is transferred simultaneously .

Whistle Through

A feature that allows CAMA (Centralized Automatic Message Accounting) identification from a PBX trunk to be extended through a local central Office (public exchange) connection to an outgoing trunk to a tandem office. See also CAMA.

White Board

Also called a mushroom board or peg board. This is placed between termination blocks to support route crossing wire.

White Box

A device which is built of standard components , often customized to the requirements of the end user. The device is packaged in a white box, rather than in a fancy box with the name and logo of a manufacturer printed all over it. White boxes (i.e. custom-built PCs from local vendors) typically cost less than do those of name -brand manufacturers, although the warranty is only as good as is the local system integrator/retailer. See also Black Box and White Box Builder.

White Box Builder

Companies of any size who build no-name or off-brand personal computers and servers to compete with the major builders of PCs ” Compaq, Dell, Gateway, HP and IBM. According to John Dvorak, writing in PC Magazine, there are over 40,000 makers of PC white boxes. See White Box.

White Chips

In poker, the blue chips are worth a lot and are thus worth having. That's why high priced shares are often called blue chips. The white chips, on the other hand, are worth very little. Most professional gamblers leave the white chips as tips.

White Collar Worker

The term originated in the fact that, in years gone by, such folks wore white shirts with white collars as evidence of the fact that they didn't do the kind of "dirty" work that would soil a shirt. Blue collar workers, on the other hand, wore blue shirts with blue collars that didn't show dirt quite so readily. A white collar was a real status symbol, like a European luxury car. People dress much less formally these days.

White Facsimile Transmission

In an amplitude-modulated facsimile system, that form of transmission in which the maximum transmitted power corresponds to the minimum density of the subject copy. In a frequency-modulated system, that form of transmission in which the lowest transmitted frequency corresponds to the minimum density of the subject copy.

White Hats

These guys are the good hackers. They don't ever cause damage to a system and they don't steal information, but instead they contact the administrator/web-master and tell them what they did and how they did it so that steps can be taken to fix any networking or site vulnerabilities.

White Line Skip

A facsimile transmission technique used to speed up the transmission time by bypassing redundant areas such as white space. (Also known as skip scan.)

White List

A list of items that are meant to be spam and virus proof ” hence white list. To place a name, e-mail address, Web site address, or program on a list of items that are deemed spam- or virus-free. The verb is to whitelist, namely to do the act of placing the item on the list. A white list is clearly the opposite of a black list, which is a list of people or things that are deemed unsafe or undesirable. The verb form (meaning to place on a black list) first showed up in the early 1700s. The verb to black ball comes from voting practices, most common in private clubs. A wooden box would contain two compartments. One containing many balls. These are the balls which have not been voted by the members. The other, typically a covered compartment . contains the balls voted by the members. Members vote anonymously by transferring a ball from one chamber to the other. If they approve of the proposed new member, they transfer a white ball. If they don't, they transfer a black. It only requires one black ball to be transferred and the proposed member is denied admittance. Under this method, no one ever knows who the person is who voted against admitting the applicant .

White Noise

Undesirable electrical energy introduced in a communications system, principally generated by the random motion of electrons in conductors and semiconductors. The name comes from the first observation of it in the mid 1920s. Oscilloscopes of the time, which had white traces, displayed the noise as a broad band of white across the screen. In communications systems, the term is imprecise, because white noise theoretically has an infinite bandwidth (and hence infinite power), whilst all communications systems have definite limits to their bandwidths. White noise is also called Johnson noise, in honor of the Bell Labs physicist who first observed it.

White noise results from the random motion of electrons in electronic materials as an electromagnetic signal passes through a conductor. For example, electricity passing through a copper conductor causes the electrons in the copper to vibrate. In fact, the conduction of the electrical signal really is due to that vibration . Copper often is the preferred medium, as it is distinguished by a large number of free electrons. As vibration of the electrons causes the transfer of some electromagnetic energy to heat, or thermal energy, "white noise" sometimes is called "thermal noise." White noise is uniformly distributed among all frequencies within a frequency band of interest. Seldom occurring in nature, white noise is a useful tool for theoretical research. White noise is also used less scientifically to simply mean background noise. When the first digital PBXs came out, their intercom circuits were so "clean," they spooked users out who were used to some hissing noise on the line. And some PBX manufacturers added a little "white noise" to their PBXs. White noise is also known as "average white Gaussian noise," after Karl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855), the German mathematician who is generally recognized as the father of the mathematical theory of electricity.

White Pages

  1. In many countries , including the U.S., Canada and Australia, the phone company publishes two types of telephone directories. One called the "White Pages" lists all the subscribers in alphabetical order. The other, called the Yellow Pages, lists businesses by industry. On the Internet, the White Pages are the lists of Internet users that are accessible through the Internet.

White Paper

Imagine an 8 1/2" x 11" stapled small booklet of 16 to 32 pages. Imagine that the paper is the quality of plain-paper photocopier paper, i.e. non-glossy and weighing in at 20lb to 24lb. Imagine that the paper is printed plainly in black ink, looks "honest" (i.e. not slick and glossy) and discusses technical issues, or contains case studies of user installations. Bingo, now you have something called a White Paper. Companies write them and distribute them to prospective customers in the hopes that the "knowl- edge" the White Papers contain will turn the customers more favorably to the company's products and ideas. Companies issue White Papers as part of their marketing and sales programs. But it's the "subtle" part of their programs. Done correctly, White Papers can actually be useful, explaining how complex things work and what benefits they deliver. Done incorrectly, they look like bad marketing and turn potential customers off.

White Peak

The maximum excursion of the video signal in the white direction at the time of observation.

White Signal

In facsimile, the signal resulting from the scanning of a minimum-density area of the subject copy.


A device which lets you share images, text and data simultaneously as you speak on the phone with someone else. That someone might be in the next office. Or that someone might be 3,000 miles away. The transport mechanism might be a local area network or an analog phone line running a special modem designed for whiteboarding or it might be an ISDN digital line running special PC software and hardware. The concept of whiteboarding is new; there are no standards. As a result to do whiteboarding successfully, you typically need the same equipment (hardware and software) on either end. Whiteboarding has the potential to be one of the most successful "multimedia" applications around. Whiteboarding is a document-conferencing function that lets multiple users simultaneously view and annotate a document with pens, highlighters , and drawing tools. More advanced whiteboard programs handle multi-page documents and provide tools for delivering them as presentations.

Who-Are-You Code

WRU. A control character which operates the answerback unit in a terminal (typically a telex terminal) for identification of sending and receiving stations in a network.


None of the kids who live in your house.


  1. A command on some systems that reveals the user's name, based on that person's network username.

  2. Whois is a way of looking up names in a remote database. Used initially as an aid for finding e-mail addresses for people at large institutions or companies. It is now a tool of the InterNIC DNS (Domain Name Server). Whois allows anyone to query a database of people and other Internet entities, such as domains, network, and hosts . The data includes company/individual name, address, phone number and electronic mail address. If you have your own domain and thought your personal information was hidden from view, you are in for a shock . Don't believe me, check out www.internic.net. See also InterNIC and RWhois.

Whole Nine Yards

The term "the whole 9 yards" came from World War fighter pilots in the Pacific. When arming their airplanes on the ground, the .50 caliber machine gun ammo belts measured exactly 27 feet, before being loaded into the fuselage. If the pilots fired all their ammo at a target, it got "the whole 9 yards."

Whole Person Paradigm

This is one of the more fascinating telecom concepts in a while. General Magic created it as some sort of psychological basis for the product/s it is producing. Here's General Magic's definition:

A psychological or behavior model of needs that all people experience. This paradigm is the design center for General Magic's personal intelligent communication products and services. It consists of three elements.

  1. Remember - managing your internal agenda, such as things to do and people to see.

  2. Communicate - maintaining relationships with your friends , family, and associates .

  3. Know - getting information about the world.

Wholesale Access Lines

End-user access lines owned by the ILEC but served by another local carrier. Total service resale, UNE-P, and UNE-L are examples of wholesale access lines.

Wholesale Customer

A Verizon definition. A wholesale customer purchases products and services under Verizon Wholesale Tariffs.


Wireless Fidelity, Another name for a wireless network running under the 802.11b standard. My research shows that Wi-Fi and WiFi are used pretty well equally. I personally prefer WiFi.Wi-Fi 5 is the term used for 802.11a systems operating in the 5 MHz band. See also 802.11a, 802.11b and WiFi.

Wi-Fi 5

A new version of Wi-Fi that's even faster, with a maximum speed of 54 megabits per second. Also called 802.11a. See also Wi-Fi and WiFi.


Wireless Institute of Australia. The peak body representing the amateur radiocommunications community in Australia. It is the organization to which the Australian Communications Authority (ACA) has delegated responsibility for conducting examinations for amateur radio operators.


WAN Interface Card.


Wireless Integration/Interface Device. Also referred to as a "Proctor" box (name of the vendor), Cell Trace Box (US West's name for it), and protocol converter. One of its functions is helping convert older cellular phone systems which support only old-style 911 service (i.e. no location transmitting) to the newer E911 service which will transmit the cellphone user's location to the correct public safety people. www.proctorinc.com

Wide Area Network

See WAN.

Wide Area Service Identifier

WASI. Unique identifier for a business grouping of licensed facilities-based cellular service providers of Cellular Digital Packet Data (CDPD). It is used within CDPD for access control decisions.

Wide Area Telecommunications Service

WATS. WATS permits customers to make (OUTWATS) or receive (INWATS) long-distance calls and to have them billed on a bulk rather than individual call basis. The service is provided within selected service areas, or bands, originally by means of dedicated WATS Access Lines (WAL) directly connected to the public telephone network at WATS-billing equipped central offices. The dedicated access line operation permits inward or outward service, but not both. Recent evolution permits WATS connection via regular user local PSTN dial lines.

Wide Area Telephone Service

  1. A service provided by telephone companies in the United States that permits a customer to make calls to or from telephones in specific zones, with a discounted monthly charge based upon call volume.

  2. See WATS and 800 Service.

Wide Band

See Wideband.

Wide Band Frequency Hopping


Wide Center

The local company's serving central office for a customer or an interex- change carrier.

Wide Characters

16-bit characters. See Unicode.

Wide Frequency Tolerant Power Plant

PBX power facilities are provided that will operate from AC energy sources which are not as closely regulated as commercial AC power. The wide tolerant plant will tolerate average frequency deviations of up to plus or minus 3 Hz or voltage variations of -15% to +10% as long as both of the conditions do not occur simultaneously. This feature permits operation with customer provided emergency power generating equipment.


A type of SCSI that uses a 16- or 32- bit bus. It can transmit twice as much information as narrow SCSI.

Wide Wavelength Division Multiplexing



The original definition for a channel wider in bandwidth than a voice-grade channel. Then it became a channel wider than 12 voice channels. Now, it means a transmission facility providing capacity greater than narrowband (T-1 at 1.544 Mbps), e.g. T-3 at 45 Mbps. many rich folks in Silicon Valley now have T-1 circuits into their home. This makes surfing the Internet and accessing the Web more pleasurable. But George Lucas, the renowned filmmaker, has a T-3 in his house. He clearly is wideband. See also Bandwidth. Contrast with Narrowband and Broadband.

Wideband Modem

A modem whose modulated output signal can have an essential frequency spectrum that is broader than that which can be wholly contained within a voice channel with a nominal 4-kHz bandwidth. A modem whose bandwidth capability is greater than that of a narrow band modem.

Wideband Packet Transport

Transmission of addressed, digitized message fragments (packets) interleaved among the addressed fragments of other messages at a rate high enough to support general purpose telecommunications services.

Wideband Switch

Switch capable of handling channels wider in bandwidth than voice-grade lines. Radio and TV switches are examples of wideband switches.


See WiFi.


Wireless Fidelity, much like the term Hi-Fi (High Fidelity) used to describe audio equipment. Wi-Fi is another name for a wireless local area network (LAN) running under the 802.11b standard in the 2.4-GHz range. See also 802.11.b and Wi-Fi5.

WiFi Switching

WiFi switching is a new architecture for wireless local area networks that combines gigabit Ethernet switching, Wi-Fi and smart antenna design. Wi-Fi switches send and receive multiple transmissions simultaneously and extend the range of Wi-Fi from meters to kilometers.


Wireless Fidelity 5, much like the term Hi-Fi (High Fidelity) is used to describe audio equipment. Wi-Fi5 is another name for a wireless locla area network (LAN) running under the 802.11a standard in the 5-GHz range. See also 802.11 and Wi-Fi.


A generic name for 802.11a and 802.11b. When you see WiFi-x chipset, you know it means a chipset that will handle both the slower and faster WiFi connections. See also 802.11a and 802.11b.


Queen ELizabeth I of England was completely bald. She lost her hair after suffering from smallpox at the age of 29. To disguise her loss she always wore a wig, thus creating a vogue for wigs in Europe that lasted several hundred years and giving new meaning to that incredibly bad pun about hair today, gone tomorrow.

Wild Line

Any incoming copper loop that is running outside of the PBX. Typically a wild line is an alarm, fax or modem line that you don't want running through the telephone switch. Many installers like to differentiate between these "wild lines" and the stuff that gets punched down and run to the phone switch.

Wildcard Mask

A 32-bit quantity used in conjunction with an IP address to determine which bits in an IP address should be ignored when comparing that address with another IP address. A wildcard mask is specified when setting up access lists.


Special characters you use to represent one or more characters in an MSDOS filename. An asterisk (*) represents several characters and a question mark (?) represents a single character. For example, the command


would erase all the files with the suffix "BAK."

The command


would erase all the files with "A" as the middle letter in a three-letter suffix.


A satellite transmission of a TV show or other broadcast that isn't meant for public viewing. Wildfeeds are raw transmissions of TV shows, sporting events or news reports sent via satellite. It's how American networks send shows to their affiliate stations and Canadian broadcasters, and how TV news reporters feed live reports home. Some of those feeds are listed on Web sites or in a satellite listings guide, but true wildfeeders prefer to go it alone: "It's got to be up there some place," says a typical wildfeeder, "If you've got a big enough dish you can find it."


The all-hearing, all-doing computer telephony slave from a company called Wildfire Communications, Lexington MA. The product uses very sophisticated voice recognition software so that its "master" (i.e. the user) can get Wildfire to take messages, find him, connect his calls, transfer his calls and act as a super intelligent on-line, computerized, 24- hour a day, never resting, all obedient secretary. Wildfire was a real breakthrough product, first introduced in the fall of 1994 and deserving of its own definition in this illustrious dictionary. Unfortunately Wildfire never caught on bigtime. It used too much processing power and consequently was too expensive. However, several computer telephony companies tried to copy it and the jury is still out. The demonstration on www.Wildfire.com is very impressive and worth listening to.


Wireless hackers (aka whackers) search neighborhoods for leaky 802.11b networks to exploit. Most wireless LANs don't enable encryption, but probably should.

Willful Violation

The act of knowingly committing a violation of the federal safety and health standards. A willful violation is the most serious finable offence.


A name Motorola uses for its Wireless Local Loop (WiLL) product, which was developed to serve the basic telephony needs of people in urban and difficult to reach rural areas. Cellular based, WiLL technology is intended to provide fixed telephony services in areas with little or no existing wireline telephone service or as a supplement to the existing wireline service. It uses very few cellular transmit/receivers ” often just one at the end of the landline . The WiLL system provides three major benefits to the telecom operator looking to expand their service area: more rapid deployment of telephone service; lower cost alternative to copper wire installation, and increased flexibility in system implementation and design. A WiLL system can be operational in weeks, compared to the huge amounts of time it would take to lay and install copper wire from an end office to each of the subscriber points in a typical local loop. Although WiLL is cellular-based, the system does not require a cellular switch. This makes the WiLL system a lower cost alternative to using "typical" cellular systems for fixed telephony applications because the total system outlay costs as well as associated backhaul and maintenance costs are reduced. WiLL has three elements: the WiLL System Controller (WiSC), a Digital Loop Concentrator (DLC), and a Motorola cellular base station. It interfaces directly to the central office switch via 2-wire analog subscriber loops .

Willful Intercept

The act of intercepting messages intended for a station experiencing a line or equipment malfunction.


The term Willy-Nilly was coined during the summer of 1914 to describe the litany of correspondence traversing Europe between Kaiser Wilhelm (Willy) of Germany and Czar Nicholas (Nilly) of Russia, as the two sought a means to avoid the collapse of Europe into a world war while maintaining their respective travel schedules on state business, and in the Kaiser's case ” on vacation. Their efforts failed, along with the work of many others to find a political solution to the crisis, and the destruction that ensued eclipsed all wars prior and all wars since, including WWII.


WiMAX, now also known as IEEE 802.16, is a group of broadband wireless communications standards for metropolitan area networks (MANs) developed by a working group of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). The original 802.16 standard, published in December 2001, specified fixed point-to-multipoint broadband wireless systems operating in the 10-66 GHz licensed spectrum. An amendment, 802.16a, approved in January 2003, specified non-line-of-sight extensions in the 2-11 GHz spectrum, delivering up to 70 Mbps at distances up to 31 miles. Officially called the WirelessMANT specification, 802.16 standards are expected to enable multimedia applications with wireless connection and, with a range of up to 30 miles, provide a viable last mile technology. An earlier group of IEEE standards, the 802.11 specifications, provide a wireless alternative to Ethernet LANs (local area networks); 802.16 standards are expected to complement these by enabling a wireless alternative to expensive T-1 links connecting offices to each other and the Internet. Although the first amendments to the standard are only for fixed wireless connections, a further amendment, 802.16e, is expected to enable connections for mobile devices. A coalition of wireless industry companies, including Intel, Proxim and Nokia, banded together in April 2001 to form WiMAX, an 802.16 advocacy group. The organization's purpose is to actively promote and certify compatibility and interoperability of devices based on the 802.16 specification, and to develop such devices for the marketplace . According to the WiMAX Forum, the first products based on 802.16 technology are expected to hit in 2004.

WiMedia Alliance

The WiMedia Alliance is an industry association formed to promote personal-area range wireless connectivity and interoperability among multimedia devices in a networked environment. The Alliance develops and adopts standards-based specifications for connecting wireless multimedia devices. See also IEEE, 802.15.3.

WIMP Interface

Stands for Windows, Icons, Mouse and Pointing Device or Pull-down menus . A derogatory reference to GUI. Some people think WIMP is on the way out. See also Graphical User Interface.


  1. Wireless In-building Network. WIN is a technology from Motorola which uses microwaves to replace local area network cabling.

  2. WIN services are services that use Wireless Intelligent Network (WIN) functionalities, synonymous to AIN for the wireline services. The WIN is a standard, destined to become the successor to both IS-41 and GSM. IS-41 "Rev. D" is often used interchangeably with WIN.

WIN Services

See WIN.


Warfighter Information Network-Tactical. The U.S. Army has a strategy known as Objective Force. It is intended to make soldiers more agile, so that they can deploy more quickly, adapt more readily to changes on the battlefield and strike more lethally. WIN-T is a tactical intranet being developed by the US Army that will use commercial technologies for wired and wireless voice, data and video communications to provide networking for troops on the go. WIN-T will be mobile, secure and survivable and will integrate ground, airborne and satellite-based capabilities into a network infrastructure and will support the army's Future Combat System (FCS), which is envisioned to create an integrated battle- space, where a network of information and communications systems provide a competitive edge to soldiers in the field and commanders in the control room. With WIN-T, Army officials plan to create a mobile network environment that will enable soldiers to send and receive critical information on the fly. The Warfighter Information Network-Tactical will enable troops and their commanders to have continuous access to the information they need, even when they are in transit. WIN-T will provide planning and communications support to warfighters in fortified locations. While warfighters are en route, they will use airborne communications systems to conduct mission planning and rehearsal. WIN-T will enable commanders, staff and other users to simultaneously exchange voice, data and video information between the sustaining base and the deployed area of operation. Through the WIN-T infrastructure, warfighters will have access to specialized services such as Mobile Satellite Services, the Defense Message System, Global Broadcast Service and interfaces to joint, allied and coalition forces.


An updated version of Windows 2000, replete with a new interface and alleged more reliability.


A deal in which all parties come out better, or at least appear to, or at least feel they all came out better. Marriage, for example, is meant to be a win-win deal. And for some people, me included, it is.


Windows 2000, an updated version of Windows NT.


A 32-bit application programming interface for the Windows family of operating systems. It updates earlier versions of the Windows API with sophisticated operating system capabilities, security, and API routines for displaying text-based applications in a window.


See Windows 95.


See Windows 98.


An acronym for Windows CE, the portable Microsoft Windows for palm top computers.


A machine for pulling cable into conduit (in the street or in the building) or duct liner. A winch has a rotating drum that winds up the pulling line.

Winchester Disk

A sealed hard disk. The Winchester magnetic storage device was pioneered by IBM for use in its 3030 disk system. It was called Winchester because "Winchester" was IBM's code name for the secret research project that led to its invention. A Winchester hard disk drive consists of several "platters" of metal stacked on top of each other. Each of the platter's surfaces is coated with magnetic material and is "read" and "written" to by "heads" which float across (but don't touch) the surface. The whole system works roughly like the old-style Wurlitzer jukebox. There are several advantages to a Winchester disk system:

  1. It can store, read and write enormous quantities of information. Some Winchesters have a capacity of over 100 megabits;

  2. You can access information on a Winchester faster than on most computer storage medium (RAM and ROM are obviously faster); and

  3. Winchesters are reliable and relatively inexpensive. There are also disadvantages:

    • They are very sensitive to rough handling (they hate being moved);

    • They are very sensitive to the organization of their directory track (lose that and you're in big trouble); and

    • When Winchesters "crash" (i.e. the heads touch the surface of the rotating platters), you can lose an enormous amount of precious data.


Coils of wire usually found in transformers and used to boost inductance.


  1. A band, or range, of wavelengths at which an optical fiber is sufficiently transparent for practical use in communications applications. Each window roughly corresponds to a visible color of light in the overall light spectrum. See also DWDM, Lambda, SONET and WDM.

  2. A flow-control mechanism in data communications, the size of which is equal to the number of frames , packets or messages that can be sent from a transmitter to a receiver before any reverse acknowledgment is required. It's called a pacing group in IBM's SNA.

  3. A box on the CRT ( cathode ray tube) of your personal computer or terminal. A software program is running inside the box. It's possible with new "windows" software to run several programs simultaneously, each accessible and visible through the "window" on your CRT.

  4. A technique of displaying information on a screen in which the viewer sees what appears to be several sheets of paper much as they would appear on a desktop. The viewer can shift and shuffle the sheets on the screen. Windowing can show two files simultaneously. For example, in one window you might have a letter you're writing to someone and in another window, you might have a boilerplate letter from which you can take a paragraph or two and drop it in your present letter. Being able to see the two letters on the screen makes writing the new letter easier.

  5. Video containing information or allowing information entry, keyed into the video monitor output for viewing on the monitor CRT. A window dub is a copy of a videotape with time code numbers keyed into the picture.

  6. A video test signal consisting of a pulse and bar. When viewed on a monitor, the window signal produces a large white square in the center of the picture.

Window Control

A credit or token scheme in which a limited number of messages or calls are allowed into the system.

Window Dressing

Window dressing, a Wall Street term, happens at the end of each quarter when managers of institutions that manage other peoples' money ” like mutual funds ” buy and sell stocks in order to end up on the last day of quarter owning those shares that will look the best for people who might give them money to manage. The idea is to weed out the losers and fill in with winners so when the financial period's holdings are printed, that list looks and smells like roses.

Window Segment Size

A parameter used to control the flow of data across a connection. A wireless term.

Window Size

The minimum number of data packets that can be transmitted without additional authorization from the receiver.

Window Treatment

You take the world's most beautiful window and you screw it up with expensive stuff you affix around it. Paula Friesen invented the term.


  1. A technique of running several programs simultaneously ” each in running a separate window. For example, in one window you might run a word processing program. In another, you might be calculating a spreadsheet. In a third, you might be picking up your electronic mail.

  2. A technique in (mostly PC) data communications protocols that permits the sender to run ahead in transmission, backing up to resend if the receiver signals an error in a recently-sent block; closely akin to "Go Back N" in IBM's SDLC.


A Microsoft operating system that hides the cryptic DOS system of typed commands behind a graphical facade (also called a Graphical User Interface, GUI). Windows let you issue commands (i.e. run programs and complete tasks within programs) by pointing (with or without a mouse) at symbols or menu items and clicking, or hitting "Enter." Most Windows programs have the same "look and feel" to them. So issuing commands becomes almost intuitive. The idea is that "use one Windows program, you can use them all." Sort of. See the next few definitions.

Windows 2000

An updated form of Windows NT.

Windows 95

Windows 95 is an operating system from Microsoft which first shipped on August 24, 1995. The August, 1995 issue of our Computer Telephony Magazine said the following about Windows 95:

Win95 is the first Windows operating system designed for communications. It does for modems and phones (of all sorts ” from single line analog to proprietary ISDN phones) what Windows did for printing ” insulate the suffering user from the idiocies of device drivers. Win95 does wonders for fax, for sending color pictures of the kids to Grandma and for making the world one gigantic personal local area network. And, for the first time ever, an operating system is treating voice as it should be treated ” another media stream no different, no more complex than printing a pretty document.

Computer Telephony (voice, fax, e-mail) is a major focus of Windows 95. It will have a revolutionary impact on computer telephony's desktop interface and CT-enabling hardware, from simple off-the-shelf SOHO apps built on inexpensive multimedia modems to full- blown unified-messaging systems humming on the LAN. One of the key improvements of Win95 over Windows 3.xx is the replacement of the latter's monolithic communications driver (COMM.DRV) with a far more flexible communications architecture that splits communication tasks into three primary areas: Win32 communications APIs and TAPI; the universal modem driver; and comm port drivers.

VCOMM is the new communications device driver. It protect-modes services and lets Windows apps and drivers use ports and modems. To conserve system resources, comm drivers are loaded into memory only when in use by an app. VCOMM also uses new Plug and Play services in Windows 95 to help configure and install comm devices. The Win32 communications APIs provide an interface for using modems and comm devices in a device- independent fashion. Applications call the Win32 APIs to configure modems and perform data I/O through them. Through TAPI, meantime, apps can control modems or other telephony devices.

The universal modem driver (Unimodem) is a layer that provides services for data and fax modems and voice so that users and app developers don't have to learn or maintain difficult modem AT commands to dial, answer and configure modems. Rather, Unimodem does these tasks automatically by using mini-drivers written by modem vendors. Unimodem is both a VCOMM device driver and a TAPI service provider. Other service providers (like those supporting things such as an ISDN adapter, a proprietary PBX phone or an AT-command modem) can also be used with TAPI. Port drivers are specifically responsible for communicating with I/O ports, which are accessed through the VCOMM driver. Port drivers provide a layered approach to device communications.

For example, Win95 provides a port driver to communicate with serial communications and parallel ports, and other vendors can provide port drivers to communicate with their own hardware adapters, such as multiport voice and fax cards. With the port driver model in Win95, it's not necessary for vendors to replace the communications subsystem as they did in Windows 3.xx, whose COMM.DRV forced people to completely replace the comm driver if something new was needed by a hardware device. The Win95 driver means we no longer have to be "hard wired" to a 16550 UART. Previous versions of Windows assumed this type of port hardware. This means new ports like USB (Universal Serial Bus) can be slipped in with full apps compatibility.

Besides this strong attempt at "virtualizing" many of the communications hardware interface problems that plagued Windows developers in the past, Win95 also strengthens itself considerably by acknowledging voice as a data type, filtered into its Plug and Play world of communication device compatibility via the Windows Telephony API (TAPI). TAPI- aware apps, for example, no longer need to provide their own modem support list because interaction with a modem is now centralized by the OS. All comm services provided with Win95 use these services. (The analogy is printing under Windows 3.xx.)

TAPI provides a standard way for communications apps to control telephony functions for data, fax and voice calls. It manages all signaling between a computer and phone network, including basic functions such as dialing, answering and hanging up a call. It also includes supplementary call-handling things such as hold, transfer, conference and call park that are often found in PBXs, Centrex, ISDN and other phone systems. In general, TAPI services arbitrate requests from apps to share comm ports and devices. Win32-based apps can use TAPI to make outgoing calls while others are waiting for incoming calls. Of course, only one call can be performed at a time, but users no longer have to close apps that are using the comm port.

TAPI does not need local hardware. It can also use drivers that work on a LAN, which support multiple systems today (e.g. Genesys, Dialogic's CT Connect, Nortel Networks' Tmap, etc.) Microsoft is making the client side ubiquitous and is planning on dropping the server side in (i.e. Windows 2000 Server) shortly.

MODEMING: Windows lets you install and configure a modem once to work for all communications apps, just as you do for a printer. Benefits: Centralized modem and COMM port configuration through the "modems" option in the control panel for all comm apps created for Windows 95; Support for hundreds of modems, including automating the detection of them (again, just like Windows did with printers); Modem connections and configuration using point-and-click options rather than annoying AT commands.

The Windows OS includes three tools here:

  1. HyperTerminal. This lets you connect two computers through a modem and TAPI for transferring files. It also automatically detects data bits, stop bits and parity.

  2. Phone Dialer. This lets you use your computer to dial numbers for voice calls. It includes a phone dialpad, user-programmable speed dials and a call log.

  3. Microsoft File Transfer. This lets you send and receive files while talking on the phone. This works with VoiceView-enabled modems.

E-MAILING: Also in Windows is its included Microsoft Exchange client capability. Exchange is a messaging app that retrieves messages into one inbox from many kinds of messaging service providers, including, Microsoft Mail, The Microsoft Network and Microsoft Fax. With Microsoft Exchange client, you can: send or receive e-mail in a Win95 workgroup; include files and objects created in other apps as part of messages; use multiple fonts, font sizes, colors and text alignments in messages (via an included OLE-compatible text editor); create a personal address book or use books from multiple service providers; and create folders for storing related messages, files and other items.

According to Microsoft, Exchange client will work with any electronic mail system or unified messaging app that has a MAPI service provider, which architects very similar to the TAPI schematic. The MAPI service provider specifies all the connections and addressing settings needed to talk with a mail server on one end and with the Exchange client on the other.

MAPI is a set of API functions and OLE interface that lets messaging clients, such as Microsoft Exchange, interact with various message service providers, such as Microsoft Mail, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft Fax and various computer telephony servers running under Windows NT server. Overall, MAPI helps Exchange manage stored messages and defines the purpose and content of messages ” with the objective that most end users will never know or care about it.

FAXING: As part of Windows 95, Microsoft included a new technology called Microsoft Fax. With this embedded Group 3-compatible software, users with modems and running Microsoft Fax can exchange faxes and editable files (pictures, binary files, *.EXE software, etc.) as easily as printing a document or sending an electronic mail message. To use it, you must install Microsoft Exchange. Microsoft integrated the two as a messaging application programming interface (MAPI) service provider. All faxes sent to Microsoft Fax are received in the Exchange universal inbox. You can send a fax by composing a Microsoft Exchange message or by using the Send option on the File menu of a MAPI-compatible application (such as Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Word). In addition, Microsoft Fax includes a fax printer driver so that users can "print to fax" from within any Windows-based application.

Key features: 1. Delivery By Address Type. The MAPI service provider architecture lets you mix different types of recipients in the same message. For example, it's possible to send a message simultaneously to destination addresses in Microsoft Mail, CompuServe, Internet, normal fax and Microsoft Fax as long as profiles for these destinations have been defined within Microsoft Exchange. A recipient's fax address can be selected from the Microsoft Exchange Personal Address Book or the fax can be addressed by using an address that you use just once, such as [fax:555-1212].

  1. Binary File Transfer (BFT). Microsoft Fax supports Microsoft At Work BFT, which makes it possible to attach an editable document to a Microsoft Exchange mail message. These editable documents can be sent to users of Windows 95, Windows for Workgroups 3.11, and other Microsoft FAX BFT enabled platforms.

  2. Security. Microsoft Fax lets you securely exchange confidential documents by using public key encryption or digital signatures. Any security specified by user is applied before the message is passed to the modem or connected fax device.

  3. Network Fax Service. You can install a fax device in one computer and share it with other users within a workgroup. Individual computers can have their own fax devices installed and still use the shared fax device.

  4. Microsoft Fax Viewer. The Microsoft Fax Viewer displays outgoing fax messages that have been queued to a local fax modem or to a Microsoft Fax network fax that are queued for transmission. You can also browse multipage faxes in thumbnail or full-page views.

  5. Connecting to Fax Information Services. Microsoft Fax can connect to fax-on-demand systems by using a built-in, poll-retrieve feature that allows you to retrieve rendered faxes or editable documents from a fax information service.

  6. "Best Available" Fax Format. When you make a fax connection in Windows 95, Microsoft Fax queries and exchanges its fax capabilities with the recipient. This exchange of capabilities determines whether the recipient is a traditional Group 3 fax machine, which can only receive rendered faxes, or if the recipient has Microsoft Fax capabilities, and can receive editable files. Windows 95, Windows for Workgroups 3.11 and Microsoft At Work fax platforms are all capable of receiving binary files and traditional faxes. Perks:

If the receiving fax device supports Microsoft Fax capabilities and an editable document is attached to a Microsoft Exchange message, then the file is transferred in its native format. If the receiving fax device is a traditional Group 3 fax machine, then Microsoft fax converts the document to the most compressed type of fax supported by the machine (MH, MR or MMR compression type) and transmits the image by using the best available communications protocol supported by the mutual connection (that is, V.17, V.29 or V.27). If Microsoft Fax sends a noneditable fax to another Microsoft Fax user, then the fax is transmitted by using the Microsoft At Work rendered fax format. This special format is much more compressed, on average, than Group 3 MMR. Therefore, the exchange of noneditable faxes between Microsoft Fax users is always faster than between Group 3 fax machines.

Overall, you can send faxes either by using the mail client or the Microsoft Fax printer driver. In each case, the message is sent to the Microsoft Fax service provider by using MAPI. If you sent the message from a mail client, it might contain text, embedded OLE formats and attachment to the mail message. MAPI allows messages to be preprocessed based on the transport protocol used to send them. The transport protocol chooses the correct modem connection, uses TAPI to create a dial string and sends the message into a fax form to be printed by a fax machine. The rendered format is attached to the original message as a message property and is deleted either when the message is sent or when the transport protocol tries to send the message but determines it cannot.

If the message does not have to be rendered, the message is converted from its original binary format to a line image (also called a linearized form), and then it is compressed. After the message is submitted, the transport protocol determines what type of recipient the message is intended for through TAPI subkey values.

Newton[ap]s Telecom Dictionary
Newton[ap]s Telecom Dictionary
ISBN: 979387345
Year: 2004
Pages: 133

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