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A Glossary of Windows Terms – “M”

written by: Joli Ballew•edited by: Rebecca Scudder•updated: 12/31/2008

Windows terms that start with the letter “M” and are used often in the Bright Hub Windows channel.

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    MAC Address – The computer’s unique identification number for its network interface card.

    MAC OS – The operating system that runs on Macintosh (Apple) computers.

    Macro – A small program used for automating repetitive tasks. Macros can also be used to harm computers too, and can be malicious code.

    Malware – A program or file that can harm a computer, including viruses, worms, Trojan horses, and spyware. Malware is short for malicious software. You can protect your computer from malware in a variety of ways.

    Media Library – A folder on a computer hard drive that stores and organizes media. Media can include pictures, videos, recorded TV, and music, among other things. There are various ways to share your media library on a network, and thus avoid duplicating media.

    Megabit – One million bits. Often this measurement is used as megabits per second, and describes how many millions of bits of data can be transferred every second.

    Metadata – Data that includes keywords that are used to describe other data. Metadata for a picture can include the date the picture was taken, the camera used, and the image resolution, for example.

    Memory - RAM or Random Access Memory. Used to temporarily store data needed by an operating system. RAM is written to and read from all the time, and is used when an application is used, a photo is edited, a document is printed, and when an application must perform a task (like rendering a photo).

    Menu – A drop down list that appears after clicking with the mouse the menu heading. A menu heading of File for instance, might offer menu options including New, Open, Save, and Print.

    Messaging – The process of using a messaging program like MSN Messenger, Windows Live Messenger, or similar program to send short text messages to others with compatible devices. Much messaging these days occurs on cell phones, transmitting messages from one cell phone to another.

    Microsoft Office – A suite of applications offered by Microsoft for the purpose of creating, editing, and managing word documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and databases.

    Modem – A hardware device used to connect a computer to the Internet. Modems can be dial-up, DSL, cable/broadband, and satellite.

    Movie Maker – An application included with Windows XP and Vista that allows users to upload footage from a DV camera or import footage from recorded TV (and other sources) and then turn that footage into a movie. The movie can then be burned to a DVD for viewing on almost any DVD player.