Article in front of hardware or software

Subject: Article in front of hardware or software
From: SB <sylvia -dot- braunstein -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2008 22:09:47 +0300

It was always my impression that when referring to a product XYZ in a
sentence, you use the article "the". Configure *the* XYZ Switch as

However, with software, you omit it. For example: Use Microsoft Word
to author your documentation. Then again, you could say use the XYZ Switch

Is there a grammatical rule for this?



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