How to Use a Laptop to Weigh Items

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If you frequently need to weigh items for your office or small business, connecting a scale to a computer will help to automate many tasks. For example, if you frequently weigh postage or charge for inventory, a computer-connected scale will allow you to calculate rates and fees automatically when used in conjunction with appropriate software. Connecting a scale to a laptop, instead of a desktop, computer will also help you save space and even make the setup portable.

Things You'll Need

  • USB, serial or parallel port digital scale
  • USB-to-serial adapter cable (optional)
  • USB-to-parallel adapter cable (optional)
  • Digital scale installation CD
  • Shut down the laptop.

  • Insert the small end of the USB cable into the data or USB port on the digital scale. Alternatively, plug the serial or parallel adapter cable into the appropriate port if the digital scale does not support USB connectivity.

  • Connect the USB or adapter cable to the laptop. Power on the laptop and allow it to boot into Windows. Plug the electrical cord for the scale into an available outlet if it has one.

  • Insert the installation CD for the digital scale into the CD/DVD drive. Click the "Install Device Drivers" or "Setup" option to set up the device in Windows. Restart the computer if prompted to do so.

  • Install the application software from the CD. Again, restart the computer if prompted to do so.

  • Press the "Power" button on the digital scale. Wait for the unit to initialize. After the scale initializes, the screen on the front the scale should display "zero" (0.0).

  • Double-click the desktop icon for the scale application on your Windows desktop to launch the program. Alternatively, click "Start," "All Programs" and then the program link for the application.

  • Place an object on the digital scale. Read the display on the front of the scale or the reading on the laptop screen to view the object's weight in pounds or ounces.

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