Home / Microsoft Windows

Microsoft Windows

INTRODUCTION TO WINDOWS

2.0 WINDOWS 7 DESKTOP FEATURES.
It is important to understand the various features available in Windows 7.
Windows 7 is a user friendly operating system. It is based on Windows 7
Professional and is said to be more reliable, efficient, secure, and easy to use.

2.1 THE WINDOWS DESKTOP
This refers to your workspace on the computer screen. The Windows desktop
imitates a typical desktop as closely as possible; not only in the way it looks, but
also in the way you work with it.
Task
Any activity being handled by Windows is known as a ‗task‘. A running program is
an example of a task and is displayed on the Taskbar.
Windows 7 Desktop
Taskbar
If there is a program running, it is shown on the Taskbar. The Taskbar displays all
the activities that are currently taking place in the computer.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 21

Icon
An icon is a pictorial representation of a command. Icons represent ―tools of the
trade‖ such as the Recycle Bin, My Computer etc. Double-clicking on an icon on
the Windows desktop starts that particular program you double clicked.
Taskbar Grouping
The taskbar grouping feature reduces taskbar clutter. This is a situation where
you have opened quite a number of windows in one session, and they tend to fill
up the taskbar. The taskbar grouping feature groups multiple documents together
that are created by the same program, so that only one button is displayed on the
toolbar for that program:
Grouped documents
Taskbar Notification area:
The Taskbar notification area displays the current time and Windows Messenger
program by default and hides inactive icons to avoid clutter. The notification area
also displays icons for active and urgent modifications.
2.2 RUNNING APPLICATIONS IN WINDOWS 7.
To enable the user to get access to an application(s).
To load a program e.g. WordPad
Step by Step.
1. Click the Start Button on the Taskbar.
2. Select Programs.
3. On the resulting menu select Accessories and click on program WordPad.
Note:
This will depend on the program group that your application is found in. A
program group is a set of related applications e.g. WordPad is in the program
group Accessories. You tell a program group by the presence of an arrow next to
the name of the group.
Taskbar Notification area
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 22

2.3 MOUSE TERMINOLOGIES USED
 Point: To point the mouse is to move it until the pointer is on the target
(The Program you want to start).
 Menu: A list of options or Commands from where you can choose any
one.
 Click: Pointing the mouse on the icon you want and tapping the left mouse
button once.
 Drag: Holding down the mouse button without releasing it until a specific
action is completed e.g. moving a Window to a different location on the
screen.
 Right click: Pointing the mouse on the icon you want and tapping the right
mouse button once.
 Double click: tapping the left mouse button twice
To be able to start the computer, consider the following;
Step by Step.
Locate and press the Power-on button on the System Unit. The Windows 7
screen appears. Windows 7 offers a bright new visual design. The Start menu,
taskbar, and other desktop elements all have new looks. The new features in
Windows 7 keep the Desktop and Taskbar less cluttered and the Start menu
personalized to your Preferences. A new Feature to Windows 7 is the
Welcome screen with an available user account.
To log on:
 Type your Password. A Password is only known by you, it prevents other
people from using your computer. As you type the password it appears in
dot format (……….) to ensure no one reads what you are typing.
 Tap on Enter on the Keyboard.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 23

To log off:
Logging off does not Shut down your Computer. When you log off, all open
Programs are closed.
 Click Start, Point at the Shutdown Button and Choose Log Off.
 This opens a Log off Windows Dialog box.
 Click Log Off
Switching Between Users:
When you switch between users, all programs keep running and the computer
switches to another user. When you return to your user account, your open
programs are exactly as you left them.
Step by Step
Click Start, point at the shutdown button and choose Switch user.
Restarting the Computer:
Click Start, point at the shutdown But
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 24

 The Title Bar.
The Title Bar shows which program is running in the active window. It is always at
the top of the program window. We can move the window to a new position by
dragging the Title Bar.
 The Menu Bar.
The Menu Bar gives options or commands that can be used when the program is
running. To select a command we point at an option on the Menu and click. This
will give more options listed in what is known as a ―drop down menu‖. If the option
you want is in this menu, just click on it to select it.
 Toolbar.
This represents commands in the form of icons. It is a shortcut to the menu
commands.
 Typing area/Working area
This is the area where all manner of typing is done in a word processor screen.
 Minimize Button.
When we click on the Minimize button the program window loses focus i.e. it
runs in the background. All minimized programs are shown on the Taskbar and
can be made active by simply clicking on their icons on the Taskbar.
 Maximize Button.
We ‗maximize‘ an application when we want it to occupy the whole of our
computer screen. A maximized application has all our focus i.e. it is the only one
we can see and work on. A maximized application is restored back to its original
size using the same button
 Close or Cancel Button.
When we finish using a program, we need to close it. The Close button enables
us to safely close down a program. To use the program again we need to restart
it.
 Borders.
When we manually want to resize a window to either smaller or larger size, we
point at the border till the pointer becomes double headed. This enables us to
drag inwards or outwards as required.
 Restore Button.
Once a program has been maximized the Maximize button changes to Restore
button. We click on the Restore button to restore the program window to the size
it was before we maximized.
Other Terminologies used in Windows.
Window.
When a program is running it occupies a space on the screen called a window
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 25

Drag and Drop.
Drag and drop is a method used to move an object to a new position. In
Windows, we drag and drop by pointing at the object, then clicking and holding
the mouse button and finally moving it to a new position.
Command Buttons.
In Windows, the buttons represent commands. If we point at these buttons and
click once, the command is carried out for us. For example, in Calculator, to add
two numbers we type the first number and then click on the + (add) button. We
then type the second number. To see the result we click on the = (result) button.
Available Commands.
Commands that appear colored and when clicked on will execute the command.
Unavailable Commands.
Commands that look faint in color and pushed in. When clicked on they will not
respond at all.
2.5 WORKING WITH SEVERAL APPLICATIONS.
This enables us to be able to manage many applications running simultaneously.
Windows Multitasking.
One of the biggest advantages of Windows is its ability to run many programs at
the same time. This is referred to as multitasking. To start another program all we
do is to click on the Start button, locate the program and double on it. We can run
as many programs as our computer can allow.
Available
command
s
Unavailable
commands
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 26

Switching Between Tasks
 Using the Taskbar.
All running applications are shown on the Taskbar. If you point at any and click
you are switched over to that application.
 Using ALT + Tab keys.
Holding down the ALT key and pressing on the Tab key brings up the Task
manager. Pressing on the Tab key once more will take you to the next running
application. Once you have located the application you want to switch to, you
release both keys and you are switched over to it.
Arranging Program Windows on the Desktop.
From the Taskbar, we can also arrange all running programs in several ways. If
you point at the Taskbar and click the right mouse button, you will be given a
shortcut menu with the following options.
Tile Horizontally
This arranges all running programs one below the other across the screen. The
program ―in focus‖ will always have its Title bar highlighted e.g. in blue. To switch
to another program you simply click on it and its Title bar will be highlighted.
Programs Tiled Horizontally
Tile Vertically.
Programs are arranged down the screen with programs to the right of each other.
The active program will have it highlighted.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 27

Programs Tiled Vertically
Cascade.
Cascading arranges the running programs one behind the other with only the
Title bars showing.
Cascaded Programs
2.6 CUSTOMIZE THE WINDOWS 7 DESKTOP.
You can personalize your Desktop by displaying Pictures, Patterns, or even
scanned photographs as your wallpaper i.e. the Background of your Desktop.
You can also change items such as icons on your desktop, the colors of
individual windows (the appearance), and the size of objects on your screen; or
even set up a Screen saver.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 28

Step by Step.
 Position your pointer on a blank area of the desktop away from the
Taskbar.
 Click on the right mouse button. A shortcut menu like the one below
appears.
 Click on Personalize.
 The Window below appears.
Dialog Boxes
When a Computer cannot execute a command without the user providing
information, it displays a dialog box. The window shown above is a dialog box.
The computer could not carry out the Properties command selected from the
shortcut menu without more information from the user. It needs to know what
exactly is to be customized: Background, Screen Saver, Appearance or Settings.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 29

2.7 SETTING THE BACKGROUND
The background refers to any pictures, patterns or photographs that appear on
the Desktop as wallpaper.
Step by Step.
 Right Click on a free space on the Desktop
 Click personalize
 Dialogue box below appears
 Choose your favorite desktop background
 Click inside the Desktop Background window and use the up and down
arrows to select Background.
 Click on save changes.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 30

Setting a Screen Saver.
You set a screen saver when you want to:
 Protect your screen from destruction caused by leaving it on for too long.
 Keep information away from prying eyes.
 Entertain yourself.
Step by Step.
 Right Click on a free space on the Desktop
 Click personalize
 Click screen saver
 Dialogue box below appears
 Click on the Down arrow for Screen Saver Options.
 In the Screen Saver list area, click the Screen Saver you want to use. The
effect of the Screen Saver you choose is displayed on the Preview Screen.
 To customize the Screen Saver, click on Settings. A dialog box like the one
below appears.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 31

NB: The dialog box you get depends on the Screen Saver you have chosen
 Click on OK. This takes you back to the Display Properties dialog window.
 The Screen Saver starts if your computer is idle
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 32

 To change color, Click on the down arrow on the Color Box and choose
your favorite color.
 Click on Apply.
To Change your Desktop Theme
 Click Start, Select Control Panel, and then Click Display.
 Click on Personalization Link.
 Use the up and down arrows to choose which Theme you want.
 Double click on your Choice.
 Close the display Window.
The elements that you can modify when creating a desktop theme include the
desktop background, screen saver, window appearance, pointers and sounds.
You can also create a new theme by saving your changes to an existing theme
under a new name.
2.8 SET TIME, DATE AND CURRENCY.
Each time we save a file in our computers, Windows records the Date and time
this was done. We refer to this as the ‗Date and Time stamp‘. This information is
useful in letting us know the most current version of a file or even what to discard.
But we cannot do this unless the date and time shown are the correct ones.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 33

Step by Step.
-Click on the Start Button, select Control Panel

Click on Date and Time from the Submenu displayed.
-Click on Change date and time.
 To change the month, click on the down arrow button next to the Month box
and select the month you want.
 Click on the Year button to change the year. Click on the Spin Buttons (arrow
next to the year) to either increase or reduce the year.
 To set the hour, click on the hour position in the Time Box. Similarly to change
the minutes or seconds, click on the Minutes or seconds position respectively
in the Time Box.
 Click on the Spin Buttons to change the hour or the minutes.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 34

 Click on Apply to effect the changes.
NB: The clock stops moving when you change the hour or the minutes until you
click on the Apply Button.
To Change Time Zones
Click on change Time zones under the Date and time Window.
You can change your time zone by clicking on the Location tab, and selecting
the desired place or time zone.
Setting Mouse Controls.
The Mouse icon in the Control Panel enables us to set mouse controls for such
things as speed, pointer shapes, double c
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 35

To Change Double Clicking Speed
Step by Step.
1. Under Double-click Speed section, drag the scroll button and select a speed
on the scale shown.
2. Double click on the Test area till the folder icon opens.
3. Move the Scroll Button to adjust the speed each time clicking on the Test
Area until you reach your comfort level.
4. Click on the Apply Button.
To Change Mouse Pointers
Step by Step.
1. Double click on the Mouse icon from control panel window.
2. Click on the Pointers tab and select the pointer option you want to change.
3. Click on Browse and double click on the pointer option you want.
4. Click on the Apply button.
To Change Pointer Speed
Step by Step.
Repeat Step 1 above.
Click on the Pointer Options Tab.
Drag the Scroll Button towards slow or fast as you wish.
Click on the Apply button.
NB. When you want to do installation of a mouse, click on the Hardware tab then
properties.
Setting Keyboard Options.
It is Possible to Change Keyboard Settings such as speed, input language and
method.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 36

To Change Keyboard Speed
Step-by-Step.
 Click on the Keyboard from the Control Panel. The Keyboard Properties
Dialog box appears.
 Click on the Speed tab.
 Under Character Repeat, drag the scroll button on the scale shown and set
the repeat rate to slow or fast.
 Place the cursor in the click here and hold down a key to test repeat rate area
and press and hold any character key on the keyboard.
 Under cursor blink rate, drag the scroll button on the scale shown and set the
blink rate to slow or fast.
 Click on the Apply button.
 Click OK.
To Change Keyboard Language
 In the Printers and Other Hardware Screen Click on back to go back to the
Control Panel.
 From the Control Panel Click on Region and Language
 Click on Keyboards and Languages
 Click on change Keyboards under Keyboards and other input Languages

Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 37

The following Dialog Box appears.






 From the Default Input Language drop-down list select your language of
choice.
Note: If your language of choice is not found in the drop-down list, you can
add it by doing the following:
a. Under Installed services click on the Add button.
b. Select your language of choice from the Input Language drop-down list
c. Click OK.
Note: This adds your language of choice on the Default Input Language dropdown
list. You can now select it
Click OK.
2.9 CREATING FOLDERS
Folders, also referred to as directories in earlier versions of Windows and DOS,
are helpful when organizing files. They serve as an organized storage area for
programs, files, documents, etc. Folders can also have other folders inside them.
After installation of Windows 7, some folders are created by default, namely:
 Computer
 Network
 Recycle Bin
 Control Panel
 My Documents (With the Name of the User Account Currently in use)
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 38

Program icons created after installing Windows 7 include:
To Create a Folder on the Desktop
1. Minimize all the Windows currently opened.
2. Position your mouse pointer on an empty area of the Desktop and click on the
right mouse button.
3. Point at New, and from the sub-menu that appears click on Folder. The folder
icon appears on the Desktop as shown below.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 39

Note:
By default the folder is given the name ―New Folder‖. To change the name,
select it and type in a name e.g. ―My Folder‖
4. Type in the name of the New Folder and press Enter.
To Create a Folder within a Folder
Double click on the folder that will hold the subfolder.
From the menu bar click on File option, select New and click on Folder from the
submenu as shown below.
Enter the name of the new folder and press Enter.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 40

Creating a folder using Windows explorer
-Load the Windows Explorer from the Accessories group.
-Click on the parent folder or drive where you want to create a folder or a subfolder.
-From the File menu, select New, then Folder or click on the New Folder
button.
A new folder appears in the location you selected with a default name
―New Folder‖.
-Type a name for the new folder, and then press Enter

Note:
To get relevant options easily you can use the Shortcut Menu (also known as the
Quick menu). To get the shortcut menu, right click with the cursor inside the
Window.
.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 41

2.9.0 RECYCLE BIN
Purpose
In Windows if you no longer need a file, folder, object or program you simply
delete it. But what if your action was a mistake? Anything that is deleted is stored
in the Recycle Bin and we can recover it from here if we made a mistake.
To open the Recycle Bin
Double click on the Recycle Bin icon from the Desktop.
The Recycle Bin window appears as shown:
All the files deleted previously are stored in the Recycle Bin.
To restore files to their original location
On the pane on the left hand side of the Recycle Bin dialog box, click on Restore
all items. This method will restore all the files in the Recycle Bin. To select the
files(s) to restore, use the method described below.
Select the file to restore by clicking on it.
From the File menu bar click on Restore.
Compaq College www.compaqtechnologies.co.ke Page 42

Note:
If you had chosen Delete from the options above only the selected item would
have been erased while Empty Recycle Bin would cause all the items held by the
Recycle Bin to be completely erased.
To Empty the Recycle Bin
To get rid of all the items in the Recycle Bin, click on the Empty the Recycle bin
button.
To delete selected files from the Recycle Bin
1. To delete an individual file or selected files from the Recycle Bin, first
select the files you want to delete.
2. From the File menu bar click on

Top