With the proliferation of USB devices, it's easier to remove hardware than ever before - but unlike Windows 98, Windows 2000 sometimes resists separation. Removing storage devices, modems or network interface cards can cause problems for Windows applications that expect to access them - so Windows 2000 provides a safety warning when you try. Unplug a Zip or SuperDisk drive, for example, and a dialogue box will warn you of the dangers.
Fortunately, however, Windows 2000 provides an Unplug or Eject Hardware program, with an icon loaded in the system tray. It lists any critical hardware you attempt to remove. Before removing the hardware, run the Unplug or Eject Hard-ware applet and disable the item.