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Question
Dear Ted:

Is it "IN my computer" or "ON my computer"?

If both are possible, do they have the same meaning?

If not, when should I use each of them?

Would you please give some examples?

As always, many, many thanks for your valuable help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

Is it "IN my computer" or "ON my computer"?

If both are possible, do they have the same meaning?

If not, when should I use each of them?

***

Almost always, the general computer user would choose "ON my computer."

I have many programs stored ON my computer.

Jack put the Power Point slide presentation ON his laptop.  He plans to use the slides in a meeting next week.

There were too many "startup programs" ON my computer, and they caused my e-mail to run very slowly.

****

A computer technician would probably use IN my computer, because he would be concerned with the CPU, where the technical aspects of the computer are stored.

In order to find the problem affecting my computer, the technician had to remove its outer cover and check IN [as in "inside"] the various drives.

The sudden upsurge of power caused several parts IN my computer to stop working.

A repair man replaced the damaged parts IN my computer, and now it is running properly.

Ted

General Writing and Grammar Help

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Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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