Basic Introduction to Windows 7 Features
Basic Introduction to Windows 7 Features


There are Many Useful New Features in Windows 7, here are some of the Basics

This tutorial will be useful for those who are new to Windows 7, or have had Windows 7 for a while, but want to get the most out of the new features on offer.  Alternatively you may be thinking about going to Windows 7, but what to know a little bit about the new features before you make your decision.  This tutorial is divided up into short sections, which are easy to read and full of screen prints to show you first hand the great some of the time saving features of Windows 7.

Tutorial Sections:
- Quick Launch -
A Quick and Easy Way to Open Frequently Used Programs
- Jump Lists - A Quick Way to Choose Options Associated with a Program
- Peek - Quick Easy Way to Preview and Select Documents which are Open
- Customising the Start Menu
- Customising Notifications
- Flip -
A Quick and  Easy Way to Scroll Through and Select Open Documents
- Desktop Icons - Customising Your Desktop
- Desktop Gadgets - How to Add a Gadget and Customise
- Customising Desktop Theme's

Quick Launch - A Quick and Easy Way to Open Frequently Used Programs

Today, we will start with the ‘Quick Launch Programs' and then we will move on to ‘Pinning and Unpinning' feature. By default, Windows 7 comes with 3 quick launch programs pinned to the taskbar, Internet Explorer, Windows Explorer and Windows Media Player. In Windows 7, you can add programs to the taskbar as you please, by the ‘pinning and unpinning' process.

‘Quick Launch Programs' are programs that are pinned to the taskbar for easy, one-click access. With a fresh installation of Windows 7, the Quick Launch Programs that are pinned to the taskbar are Internet Explorer, Windows Explorer and Windows Media Player, as shown below:

02Win7Intro1.jpg

Now we will move on to Pinning a program to the taskbar. Pinning is a very easy process; you simply right click on the program's icon, and click Pin to taskbar, as indicated in the screen shot below with the red arrow.  Once you have clicked ‘Pin to Taskbar', you will be able to see the icon on your taskbar in the bottom left hand corner of your screen.

Screen 2

To Unpin a program from your taskbar, it's essentially the same process. Right click on the icon on the task bar , and click ‘Unpin this program from taskbar'.

Screen 3

 

Jump Lists - A Quick Way to Choose Options Associated with a Program

Another feature on Windows 7 is ‘Jump Lists'. Jump Lists are also controlled by the right click. Jump Lists are features of each program pinned to the taskbar. To bring up the jump list, simply right click on the Quick Launch program pinned to the taskbar and it will come up with several options for features of that program. For example, if Internet Explorer is pinned to the taskbar, right click on it and it comes up with several program related options such as ‘Frequent' browsed pages and ‘Tasks'.

Screen 5

 

Peek - Quick Easy Way to Preview and Select Documents which are Open

Now for a Windows 7 feature which is rather useful, ‘Peek'. Peek is a feature which allows you to preview the pages you have open, and select which one you would like to view. To utilise Peek, simply hover your cursor over the icon of a program you have open in the taskbar and it will pop up with a small window of what is open in the program which can help you select which you would like to open. In this example, we have two Internet Explorer windows open, MSN and Hotmail. Peek allows you to preview each page in a small window and select which one you would like to open.

Screen 6

 

Customising the Start Menu

Customising the Start Bar is an option for people who don't like to have their taskbar cluttered with icons, or just for ease of access.. When customising the start bar, the most simple way is to ‘Pin to Start Menu'. Pinning to Start Menu makes it easy to access your most frequently used programs without having a cluttered taskbar. To Pin to Start Menu, simply find the program you would like to pin to the start menu, right click on it and click ‘Pin to Start Menu'.

Screen 7

Once you have clicked ‘Pin to Start Menu' it will come up at the top of the Start Menu.

Screen 8

To unpin from the start menu, right click on the program, and click ‘Unpin from Start Menu'.

Screen 9

 

Customising Notifications

In the bottom right hand corner of your screen, there is a little section for icons called ‘notifications', as highlighted in red below:

Screen 10

To customise what shows in the ‘notification area', on the left hand side of the icons is a little arrow pointing upwards, click on this arrow, then click ‘Customize'.

Screen 11

Once you have clicked ‘Customize' a window will come up with all the icons you have down there and what you would like them to do.

Screen 12

In this area, you can choose whether you would like to have it only show the icon, or have it only show notifications. Notifications are when something happens with the program and some text pops up letting you know exactly what is happening. To change these settings, refer to the below screenshot.

Screen 13

 

Flip - A Quick and  Easy Way to Scroll Through and Select Open Documents

To use the Windows 7 ‘Flip' feature, hold down the windows key on your keyboard which is located between the ‘Windows' and ‘Tab' keys on the bottom left hand side of your keyboard and simultaneously hold down the ‘Tab' key, located on the left side of your keyboard.

Screen 14

First you press the Windows key, and then the Tab key. Once you are holding down these two keys on your keyboard, it will come up with a screen that looks like this:

Screen 15

Once that screen is up, to change programs, simply continue holding down the Windows key and tap the Tab key until you find the one you want. Once you have found the one you want, let go of both keys and it will bring that Window up on to your monitor.

 

Desktop Icons - Customising Your Desktop

Now we'll move on to desktop icons. Your ‘Desktop' is the screen which comes up when you first load Windows 7. The Desktop should look something like this:

Screen 16

Desktop icons can be used to access your programs. The most common icons on the desktop are My Documents, Computer, Network, Recycle Bin and Control Panel. Desktop icons are completely customisable. To add extra icons to the Desktop, just drag the icon from wherever it is and place it on the Desktop.

Screen 17

 

Desktop Gadgets - How to Add a Gadget and Customise

Desktop Gadgets, a feature implemented in the Windows Vista series, has also been used in Windows 7. Desktop gadgets are features which are customisable which can be placed on your desktop, several default Windows 7 gadgets are a clock, the weather and currency monitor.

To choose a gadget you would like to add to the desktop, right click on the desktop and click Gadgets.

Screen 18

Once you have clicked on Gadgets, it will give you a selection of all the gadgets which are currently available to you.

Screen 19

When you have chosen which gadget you would like to use, double click it. Once you have double clicked the gadget, it will show up on your desktop. In this example, I will use the ‘Weather' gadget.

Screen 20

When you first add a gadget to the desktop, it will come up with the default settings. To change these settings, right click on the gadget and click options.

Screen 21

With the ‘Weather' gadget, the default weather location is Canberra, AUS. To change this, just type your city and country into the text box. For Brisbane, it would be Brisbane, AUS.

Screen 22

Once you have typed your location in, click OK. It will retrieve the weather details for you and then update your gadget.  Click OK again, and it will take you back to your desktop and you will be able to see that the gadget has been updated.

Screen 24

 

Customising Desktop Theme's

Now for desktop themes. Windows 7 comes with several desktop themes. To change these desktop themes, right click on the desktop and click ‘Personalize'.

Screen 25

Once you have clicked ‘Personalize' it will come up with a screen. The Windows 7 themes are all there. To select a theme, simply click the one you would like to use once and you are ready to go.

Screen 26

This concludes the basic introduction to Windows 7 features.

 

 

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