Computers For the Beginner by yaosaigeng


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The Complete Computers For Beginners

The Complete Computers For Beginners

Table of Contents
   1. Computer terms you should now             5 – 26
             Name/ Processor                    9, 11-14
             Memory/ Ram                        9, 15-16
             Hard Drive                         9, 17 – 18
             Modem/ Cable/ Network              19
             Keyboard                           20
             Mouse                              21
             Monitor                            22
             Printer                            23
             Other Sales Jargon Explained       24
             Preloaded Software                 25
   2. To Click or Double Click                  27 - 30
   3. What is windows and the windows desktop   31 – 40
             What is Windows                    33
             The Windows Desktop                34
             The Actual Window                  35 – 36
             The Windows Tour                   37
             Icons                              39
             Create a Folder                    39
             Rename a Folder                    39
             Move a Folder                      40
             Delete a Folder                    40
             Locating a File or Folder          40
   4. Helpful Tidbits                           41 – 46
             Tidbits                            43
             Backing Up                         43
             System Restore                     44 – 45
   5. Programs on Your Computer                 47 – 54
             Games                              49 – 51
             Playing Music                      52 - 53
   6. Cleaning Up Your Computer                 55 – 64
             Add Programs                       57
             Remove Programs                    57
             How to Clean Up Your Hard Drive    58 – 60
             Defragging                         61 - 63

The Complete Computers For Beginners

   7. Internet                                        65 – 92
              What is the Internet                    67 – 68
              Web Addresses                           69
              Hyperlinks                              70
              Search Engine                           71 – 73
              Returning to a website                  74 – 75
              Downloads – Where do they go            76 – 77
              Virus Information                       78 – 80
              Spyware – What is it?                   81
              Internet Terms                          82 - 93
   8. Control Panels                                  95 – 104
              Dress Up Your Desktop                   97 - 98
              To Work with Themes                     99 - 100
              Sound Options                           101
              Make Your Mouse Left-Handed             102
              Change the Look of Your Mouse Pointer   102
              Pin Programs to the Start Menu          103
              Add Shortcuts to Your Desktop           104
   9. Microsoft Office                                105 – 108
              Start and Open Microsoft Software       107
              Saving                                  108
              Closing                                 108


Computer Lingo-
Terms You Should
The Complete Computers For Beginners

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                     et us take the next couple of minutes to understand some of the
                     basics of a computer system. It is not that hard to understand if you
                     take the time to read the next couple of pages which will identify the
                     major components in your computer. The reason we need to do this
                     is very important and simple. In case something goes wrong with
                     your computer, you will start to understand what your local
                     computer tech is telling you!

         But before we actually begin, I suppose I should introduce myself. I am The
Computer Guy – Joe. I started off in selling computers and then I started teaching and
lastly fixing them. I know operate a small business out of my home offering computer
services to anyone who needs them. If you require assistance or would like to find out
more information about some of these services, please feel free to give me a call at
(414)852-9339. Enough about me, let’s start talking about this class.

         So this first chapter of our Complete Computers For Beginners guide is going to
cover the basic components found in every computer system. These are very basic terms
with some great analogies to help you remember them. In worst case scenario, you will
still have this guide to fall back upon. Providing you don’t lose it or use it for kindling in
your next fire of course. That was a joke by the way – another attempt at humor from you
friendly computer guy. Get used to it because it doesn’t get any better than this I am
afraid. Well….enough of the chatter, let us begin!

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                  A walk around the PC
   1. The Systems Unit, with the Processor; the Memory the Hard Disk; and the CD or
      DVD Drive.
   2. The Display, which shows the text and images that are created by your application
   3. The Speakers, to allow you to hear audio signals from the PC, to play music CDs
      and to listen to the audio on your DVDs.
   4. The Keyboard and the Mouse, which are used to enter information into the PC,
      and to select items and options.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

If you are using a Laptop PC, rather than a Desktop PC, all of the components will be
combined into the single Systems, Keyboard and Display unit, and the Mouse may be
replaced by a Touch Pad or a pressure sensitive Toggle Button.

If you are in the process of selecting a new system, you will need to work out what
features are essential, and what are merely nice to have. It depends on your particular
plans, but that are some general guidelines that you can follow:

The speed of the processor is measured in megahertz (MHz), or in gigahertz (GHz) which
are 1000MHz. Any processor in the range of 1-3GHz (that is, 1000 – 3000MHz) will be
suitable for most purposes. Avoid anything slower than this, especially if you expect to
work with video clips and digital photographs. (For more information, please refer to
pages 11-14)

The PC Memory is measured in megabytes (millions of bytes). Don’t choose less than
256MB, and go for 512MB or higher if possible, then you should be able to run any
application, without having to worry about the amount of memory you have available.
(For more information, please refer to pages 15-16)

Hard Disk:
You’ll need at least 10GB of hard disk space, for Windows XP and the applications. A
disk space of 40GB or more should be considered, if you plan to store music or
photographs. At today’s prices, the size of the disk drive ought not to be a limiting factor.
(For more information, please refer to pages 17-18)

The LCD flat panel display take sup the least amount of room but would be more
expensive than a CRT monitor. However the effective display area of say a 17‖ flat
screen is equivalent to the next size up in a CRT monitor, e.g. 19‖. These sizes should be
your first choice. (For more information, please refer to page 22)

The Complete Computers For Beginners

There are two main types of printers – the Inkjet Printer, which uses ink cartridges, and
the Laser Printer, which uses toner cartridges (like a photocopier). If you choose an inkjet
printer, make sure to select one that has a separate black ink cartridge. For the colored
inks that may be a single tricolor cartridge, which is suitable for limited color printing.
For serious color printing, such as digital photographs, it is better to choose a printer with
individual color cartridges. This allows you to change just the one cartridge when a single
color gets depleted – a much more economical proposition.

Laser printers are excellent for higher volumes of printing. They may be monochrome,
with black toner only. Color laser printers are becoming more common, but they are not
generally suitable for printing photographs. (For more information, please refer to page

This allows you to copy letters, documents and pictures, so you can store their images on
your hard disk. The scanner can also be used in conjunction with your printer, to give you
photocopier capabilities.

Digital Camera:
You can transfer the pictures from your digital camera to your PC. You may be able to
connect your digital camera directly to your PC, or you may have a card reader that
allows you to take the storage card from your digital camera and read the contents on
your PC. In either case, you can store the photographs as files on your hard disk, and for
there you can print them or send copies to your friends.

To learn more about these major components please keep reading, otherwise please
continue onto page number 26.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                         Name / Processor
        The Name of the computer (ie Dell, Gateway, Sony, Compaq, HP, etc.) is very
similar to car shopping. Everybody has their own preference based on what they have
heard, some statistical data and personal experience. So pick the computer with the
options that you want and not just the brand name.

               Dodge                         Ford                         Chevy
                                 Looks, Options and Power

         In case you are still into brand names, let me tell you another small fact that may
persuade you to shop by options and not just by name. All of the computers you see in
the store all use the same parts on the inside with a different style case on the outside. For
instance, most of the parts you may recognize like Intel or AMD are in every computer
on the market. Do you really think they would let some company put their name on the
case if the product was faulty? I think not! On to the next major component.

        The Processor is one of the most important pieces in the computer system. If I
had to make an analogy about the processor I would compare it to the brain. This small
chip tells the computer how to operate. There are two big names on the market right now.
You probably have either an Intel chip or you have the AMD chip. The difference
between these two chips is like the difference between the Manufactures of Chevy, Ford
and Dodge. People have a different opinion about each, but who is right? In my opinion,
there is no choice that is that much better than the other.

         As far as the name after Intel or AMD like Pentium, Celeron, Duron or Athlon;
this is another brand name much like the name Stratus, escort, caviler. This is where you
may need to spend a couple of minutes and analyze what you are going to use the
computer for before you decide on which way to go. Truth be told, most of us will not
use the potential of a Pentium class chip and will do just fine with a Celeron and save a
lot of money. If you are the person (or someone who is going to use the computer) who is
going to do multi-tasking (I.E. running the internet, burning DVD’s and typing up a paper
while listening to music) you may need a Pentium class chip. If you are going to be
surfing the internet and everyone once in a while burn a CD, Celeron is the way to go. If
you need help deciding, let me know and we will sit down and set you straight before you
make your next purchase.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

         The speed of the processor, the number before the MHz/ GHz is like a human IQ
level; the higher the number the faster the computer can manipulate problems or tasks
such as opening files, playing games or solving complicating math problems in Excel. In
a way, it is kind of like the difference between a V6 car engine and a V8. They will both
do the same things, however, one will get you there faster. Truth be told, you will
probably not notice the difference especially if you are going from a 2.0GHz to a

       In either case, I get one question in awful lot. That is, “What is it a good time to
purchase a computer?” and I must say (you may find this as a little smart) but my answer
is “When you can afford one.”

        The reason I say this is because of technology and the way it is produced there is
no real good time to purchase. Let me break it down even further for you. A computer
lasts on the sales floor for about 11 to 13 weeks. So basically it lasts about 3 months or so
from when it is brand spanking new and costs about $2000.00 by itself (meaning
computer only, no monitor) to when it is closed out below $1000.00 and it is in a package
with a monitor and printer.

       Special note – when we say CPU we are referring to the tower itself. Your CPU
(Central Processing Unit) controls everything that goes through your PC.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

          Manufacturer of Processors
Intel = Centrino, Xeon, Itanuim, Pentium, Celeron
AMD = Mobile Athlon 64, Athlon 64fx, Athlon XP, Opteron,

Intel Centrino/ AMD Mobile Athlon 64 – These processors are designed for mobile
performance and low power enhancements for sleeker, lighter designs.

Xeon – The Xeon is a processor that is designed mainly for server computers.

Itanuim – The Itanuim is a high end processor for businesses and other

Pentium – The Pentium chip is for the advanced user. This is the processor to go
with when you need performance.

Celeron – The Celeron chip is for the basic user. This processor is for the computer
users who check email and do basic operations.

        There is one other brand of Computer (CPU) that I have not mentioned yet. That
one is Apple or Macintosh computer systems. This computer system is prominently seen
in the elementary schools as well as in the graphic industry. The reason you see these
computers in the elementary schools is because of its ease of use for beginners as well as
the stability of the machines and operating platform. The reason you see these computers
in the graphic industry is because of the power that an apple processor has.

                                                 Unfortunately, there is a downside to the
                                        apple computers and that is cost, software and

                                              Cost – An apple computer does have two
                                      lines of computers. One is the imac, which is a
                                      lower costing unit. These are the ones you will
                                      see in some of the elementary school labs. They
                                      are not as powerful as the power macs, however,
                                      they are still very stable and easy to use. The
power macs are the powerful machines used in the graphic arts industry. The average cost
on a power mac is over a thousand without the monitor.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

        Software – Due to the limited use of the macs at this time, there is not a lot of
software available. There is the basics such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc. and there is
even a program available called PC anywhere that will simulate your computer to work
like a PC.

       Repairs – Well, in this area there are only two spots where you can even see a
mac without going on line of crossing over the border. Those two places are CompUSA
and the Apple Store. CompUSA as you may or may not know is located in Brookfield
and then the Apple Store is located in the Mayfair Mall.

       On a side/ personal note about the recent development in Apple computers is the
way they are starting to become more like PC’s as the months go by and how PC’s are
becoming more like Apple computers. It almost makes me think that they will eventually

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                         Memory / Ram
       Memory is yet another important component to the inside of your computer that
people often get confused as to what it actually does.

                      RAM - This stands for Random Access Memory.

                                                        RAM is like your desk (At home
                                                or office) size. The more RAM you
                                                have, the bigger your desk is. This
                                                means the more files you can open and
                                                work on at one time. For example, let
say that you are working on a report in Microsoft Excel and you are also working on
typing up a summary in Word.

         You will need to
have both programs open at
the same time and switch
between them. This takes
up RAM. To see how much
RAM your system has, go
into Start/Settings/ Control
Panel/ System. In this area,
it will show you your
operating system, the type
of processor as well as the
amount of Ram installed on
your CPU. Please refer to
the picture to the right.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

       Also, try this one. Hit Alt + Ctrl +Delete at the same time but just hit them once.
You should get a menu that is titled “Close program.” This menu will show you all the
programs that are currently running and you may not even have a program open! When
looking at this window, you will notice a lot of background programs. These programs
are needed in order to operate your system and hopefully there is a couple in there to also
help you protect your system. The picture below is an example of your task manager. All
the ones that state “System” under username are for the most part, important processes
needed by your computer to operate. The ones with your name next to them, in this case
“Joseph” are processes that are not necessarily needed to run the computer, but they are
needed to run a particular function or program on your computer.

         Special Note - Virtual memory - When you run out of RAM to store currently
used files, Windows will use something called a swap file, or virtual memory. The swap
file is stored on your hard drive, and therefore it not as fast as RAM.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                               Hard Drive
                                                          You probably know it best as the
                                                  C: drive. This crucial letter holds all of
                                                  your programs, games, documents, and
                                                  other vital data. Basically it is a filing

                                                        Geek Talk - The hard disk is the
                                                  medium that holds your data on it's
                                                  magnetic skin.

                                                          Translation – Basically it is a
                                                  record player with a thin needle that runs
                                                  across it and records the information. Kind
                                                  of like a tape recorder. This is also like the
                                                  CD-Recorders, which we will talk about

                 Storage Comparisons Simple And Easy
               1kb                            =                                 1mb
               1000mb                         =                                 1gb

               Take a look at the next page to see all the different storage devices that
you can use to store information on.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

            Different Storage Devices
          Name                Capacity           Description
          Hard Drive          10 GB - 200 GB +   Usually a non-
                                                 removable drive
          Disk Drive          1.44 MB            The disk drive itself
                                                 is non-removable,
                                                 however the media
                                                 (disk) is. Relatively
                                                 small but makes it
                                                 easy to save
          Zip Drive           100 MB             Quick storage once
                                                 again. Both as a
                                                 non-removable and
                                                 removable formats
          CD Drive            650 MB             This is also a disk
                                                 drive that reads
                                                 information. It can
                                                 be found as a non-
                                                 removable as well
                                                 as removable
          CD-R                650 MB             With this media,
                                                 you may record
                                                 information once
                                                 onto a CD
          CD-RW               650 MB             With this media,
                                                 you may record
                                                 multiple times.
                                                 Works great with
          DVD                 -                  This is a media in
                                                 which you can
                                                 watch movies in
                                                 high quality
          DVD-R               4.7 GB             Great for creating
                                                 home movies, photo
                                                 discs or music.
                                                 Record only once.
          DVD-RW              4.7 GB             Same as above
                                                 except you have the
                                                 ability to reuse
          Flash Keys/         64mb - 2GB         Easy and fast
          Jump Drive                             reusable storage

The Complete Computers For Beginners

            Modem/ Cable/ Network
        Another group of devices that I will talk about here is the modem, cable and/or
network. A modem is a device that you will hook up your telephone line to, to connect
to the Internet to check your email and surf the Internet. Your telephone line would be
considered a low bandwidth speed. A cable modem is an actual cable (looks like the same
cable you would hook up to your TV) that hooks up to a special box which in turn gets
connected to your computer. This type of connection is considered a high bandwidth

        Modem – capable of speeds around 56 kilobits per second. Your basic pricing
will begin from free - $24.95. Your basic providers may include businesses such as AOL,
Earthlink, NetZero, etc.

       DSL – capable of speeds around 200 kbps. Your basic pricing will begin around
$14.95 and go up to $20.00. This one you will need to contact SBC.

        Cable – capable of speeds around 300 kbps. You only have one option with this
one and the price is pretty consistent. You are going to be paying around $50 a month for
this and need to contact you cable provider (Road Runner).

        A networking card is a particular device that has the ability to connect two or
more computers in your house together. This will allow you to have two computers that
can talk to each other to play games, use software and add additional space to store
information. You will also need a network card if you are going to be using DSL or cable
internet service. There are adapters, however, for the price of a network card and less
hassle, it may be worth it.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                          The Keyboard
        The two devices that we will be talking about next are the most important tools to
get to know. They are the gateway to access your computer. The keyboard is one of the
easiest ways.

        The keyboard is set up almost the same way as the ―old‖ typewriters. For instance
the layout of the keys (alphabet) is going to be the same and serve the same purpose. The
tab, caps lock and shift keys will also be the same and serve the same purpose. Keys like
the ―return‖ or ―enter‖ key will be slightly different in the way that they act.

        When dealing with the keyboard there are only a couple of groups that you will
use on a regular basis. The Numerical pad is used for exactly what you are thinking. Just
like a calculator.

         The letters in the middle of the keyboard are for your basic typing as well as the
shift, caps lock, tab, return (enter) keys. The numbers at the top are the same as the
numerical pad on the left as well as having the special characters by using the shift key.

        The Escape key in the top left of the keyboard is a special key that is not used as
often as you think. It usually works while using a software program to back out of it. For
instance, if you are playing a game of some sort and hit the escape key, it will back you
out into the menu screen.

       The ―F‖ keys are keys that also have special features but it depends on the
program to determine what their use actually is. This is the basics of the keyboard.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

       Now with the mouse it is a little easier. The left mouse button is the button that
you will use the most. Keep in mind, some mice will be different then others.

       A single click with the left mouse button will highlight items. For instance, on
your desktop you will have basic icons. If you were to click once on the icon it will not
open or activate the icon but it will select it.

       A double click with the left mouse button will activate the icon, or start the
program. Basically like hitting the enter key on the keyboard.

       A single left click and hold is how you will move icons, folders and files.

        The right mouse button is not used as frequently as the left mouse button but still
serves a purpose. Usually this purpose is to give you the user a short cut menu. For each
program it may differ slightly and everything that is in the short cut menu is in the drop
down menus at the top of the screen.

        Below are pictures of some of the different mice that you can purchase. Each one
does the same type of thing, but in a different way. For instance, you have the track ball
on the far left. Rather than move your entire hand you rotate the small ball. This does
take some getting used to and can be a little hard on the fingers.

        We also show you two mice that are the same, the only difference between them
is one is cordless. The cordless unit is nice, but it does run on batteries and there is a cord
connected from the computer to a head unit. The mouse needs to be able to see the head
unit in order to operate. So, on a smaller desk, the cordless is really no big benefit.

       The last mouse, not shown, looks identical to the two on the right however, the
mouse has a ball at the bottom of it rather than the laser eye. The biggest difference
between a ball and laser is the fact that with a ball you will need to clean it more often.
Take a look at your mouse. Which kind do you have?

       Track ball                      Cordless                        Cord

The Complete Computers For Beginners

       There are several types of monitors out on the market. You have the tube type of
screens in sizes from 15" - 21". Keep in mind when we talk about size, that is a ―class‖.
The actual viewable size is usually 1" smaller then what is listed. These monitors have
come down quite a bit in price because of technology.

       There are several types of monitors. The different types include; LCD – Liquid
Crystal Display, LED – Light Emitting Diode and lastly CRT – Cathode Ray Tube.

        One of the biggest difference between a CRT monitor and a LCD monitor, other
than price, is size. Actually depth. Other than that you can find a high quality monitor in
both types.

        You will hear terms such as resolution and dot pitch. Both of these numbers are a
quality assurance. A typical monitor now-a-days is at least capable of handling 1024 x
768 resolution. Resolution is the number of pixels in the screen. 1024 means that there is
1,024 pixels going across the screen with 768 pixels going down the screen. The higher
this number, the more detailed your image will be. However, it will also become smaller.

      Dot pitch is a measure of millimeters of how large the pixels are. The smaller the
number the better quality you will have in your monitor. Usually a dot pitch of .30mm -
.25mm is good.

       When shopping for a monitor, here are a couple of quick shopping tips to help
you decide what to get.

    Display technology - Currently, the choices are mainly between CRT and LCD
    Cable technology - VGA and DVI (for LCD) are the two most common.
    Viewable area (usually measured diagonally)
    Aspect ratio and orientation (landscape or portrait)
    Maximum resolution
    Dot pitch
    Refresh rate
    Color depth
    Amount of power consumption

The Complete Computers For Beginners

        There are several different types of printers that are available for you to choose
from. Most of them these days are going to be inkjet printers. These are quiet machines
that use ink to spray against the paper. Depending on the quality of the paper depends on
the overall quality of picture.

       There is also a printer called laser jet, which is more expensive and usually prints
black and white, unless you really want to pay the big bucks to get color.

         The big difference between these printers is quality (measured in dpi), speed and
         Printer Types
              Laser Jet – Black and White / Color
                            Higher cost on purchase
                            Speed ppm (pages per minute)
                            B&W or Color
                            Toner

             Ink Jet
                              Lower cost on purchase
                              Lower speeds ppm (pages per minute)
                              B&W or Color
                              Ink rather than toner

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    Other Sales Jargon Explained
High-speed wireless communication for PCs and other computing devices including
mobile phones.

Gigahertz, GHz:
Billions of cycles per second, a measure of the processor speed, typically 1 – 3 GHz for a
multimedia PC.

Integrated Graphics Adapter:
Some PCs have an integrated graphics adapter on the system board (motherboard), that
shares the computer memory. However, if you are planning to do extensive photo editing,
or play 3-D games, you might prefer a separate graphics adapter.

The device or program that allows your computer to transmit computer data over the
telephone line.

A compressed audio file format, used for music, much smaller than the equivalent wave
file, but still high quality.

Picture cell, the basics element of a computer screen or printed image. More pixels mean
higher image quality.

Virus Protection:
This is software that protects the computer from viruses and worms. It must be updated
regularly, via downloads from the Internet, to cope with the latest threats.

Wireless networking, allowing you to connect computers and devices and shared data,
without have to string cables.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

We need to talk about one more thing before moving on and that is about the term
software. Just as important as the equipment that makes your PC, are the items of
software that have been included with it. The primary element is the operating system, to
provide the working environment. This will normally be Microsoft Windows. There are
several versions, including Windows 98 and Windows ME, but in this handout we will
assume that you have Windows XP installed.

In addition to the operational software, you’ll find that various applications are included
as part of Windows XP:
       Wordpad, Notepad (Create text documents)
       Windows Explorer (view contents of your disk drives)
       Internet Explorer (access Internet websites)
       Outlook Express (send and receive email messages)
       Windows Media Player (play music and videos)
       Microsoft Paint (create pictures and graphics)
       Calculator (carry out mathematical calculations)
       Freecell, Hearts etc (to help you get used to the PC)

Many PCs come with Microsoft Office or Works software which are integrated
applications. These provide a broad range of facilities you need to carry out tasks such as:
      Word processing (writing formatted documents)
      Spreadsheet (financial and other calculations)
      Email (send and receive electronic messages)
      Calendar (manage meetings and appointments)
      Publishing (create cards, flyers and newsletters)
      Database (keep track of data lists and registers)

If you have Microsoft Works Suite, this includes five complete applications in addition to
Microsoft Works itself:
       Microsoft Word (for more extensive word processing)
       Encarta (a full encyclopedia)
       Money (a complete financial management system)
       Photo Editing (correct and enhance photos)
       AutoRoute or Streets & Trips (travel directions)

All right! Now we are ready to begin with the computer itself! Let us turn on these
magical devices! With most computer systems you will need to turn on 2 different power
buttons, one for the monitor and one for the computer. You will notice the picture below
of what you would be looking for. Please find these switches and push them in now.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

The Complete Computers For Beginners


To Click or Double
Click…..                        That is the question.

The Complete Computers For Beginners

The Complete Computers For Beginners

         One of the questions that I am most often asked is when to click and when to double
click. I will hope to answer this question very quickly but it will take time and patience to
remember it.

          When you click on a button it will be a single click. For instance:

         When you click on ―Start‖ button – it will be a single click.

         When you click anywhere on the internet, it will be a single

         When you are working in a program you will be single clicking

         When you are working on your computer’s desktop you will be double clicking

         When you need a shortcut menu, you will right click

Windows XP is designed to make your PC easy to use, but the initial setup may not suit you
perfectly. Here are some of the things you can do to make your PC match your particular
needs. If you would like, take a couple of minutes and play with the mouse to see if it is set up
right for you. Also, if you have chosen to switch to Classic View in the Control panel, then
you double-click the Mouse icon to display the Mouse Properties.

      1. Select Start, Control Panel and click Printers and Other Hardware.

      2. Click the Mouse icon to open the Mouse Properties, and click the Buttons tab.

      3. If you are left-handed, click the Button Configuration box to switch primary and
         secondary mouse buttons.

      4. Use the folder icon to test the double-click setting. If the folder doesn’t open or close,
         click and drag the slider to a slower setting, and click OK when you are happy with
         the action.

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You can also check out the other pointer options which will help with mouse speed.

   1. Display the Mouse Properties (see above steps) and click the Pointer Options tab.

   2. Move the slider to adjust the relative speed of the pointer.

   3. Select Snap To, to have the pointer move to the most likely choice, OK for example
      when you open a new window.

   4. Locate the pointer easily by choosing to display a pointer trail, or by setting the Ctrl
      key to highlight the current pointer position.

We will get more into the mouse options in a bit. For now thought, let us talk about the screen
you are looking at now which is called the desktop.

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        What is Windows
        and the Windows

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The Complete Computers For Beginners

                    What is Windows?
        Windows is the operating platform that the computer operates off of. There are
several versions out on the market today, some of them you may have heard of before
such as:

Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows 2000, Windows XP,
Windows NT

       Let me back up for a minute to help you out with what windows actual is. You
see, when personal computers came out they used a platform that was called DOS. Disk
Operating System. It was the software that ran the computer that controls all the functions
and how your desktop (screen) looks. Below is a picture of some of the DOS functions.

                                                        One of the problems with DOS
                                                 was that it was confusing to work with.
                                                 You really had to study a book before
                                                 you could turn on a computer. Before
                                                 windows came out, you had to know
                                                 commands to open files and execute

                                                          Then windows came along to help
                                                 with DOS. Basically, you can look at it
                                                 like this. Windows is like the automatic
                                                 shifter in your car and DOS is like the
                                                 manual shift. In any case, Windows made
                                                 things a lot easier by creating the drop
                                                 and drag, pull down menus and graphical

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                 The Windows Desktop
        The picture below is an example of what a "Desktop" looks like. It is from the
desktop where you choose what you would like to do. You can choose any program from
either the start menu or from the desktop. We will be working on the desktop for the next

                                   Above picture is of a Desktop

                                 On the windows desktop, there is a start button, usually
                          located on the bottom left of your screen. This is where you can
                          choose a program to open and begin to use them.
Start Menu which is usually
 located in the lower right
 of your computer screen

        Another term to know is what we call a task bar. This is located right next to the
start button. It will show you all of the programs that you have open at one time. This
way you can change easily from one program to another. You can also check out all of
the background activities that are going on in the right hand corner next to the time.

                                                            The above picture is usually located in
                                                             the lower right corner of your screen.

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The Actual Window
      Most windows that pop up on your screen are resizable. They will also have 3
symbols in the upper right hand corner. These symbols will look like this:

                           This screen shot is from Microsoft Word XP

        The minimize button looks like a minus sign. Clicking on this button, you will
minimize your window. You did not lose it but it is down on the task bar. To get it back,
all you need to do is click on the program name on the task bar and it will restore it self
back to the original position.

        The maximize button will increase the size of a window to fill the entire screen.
Hitting this button again will move it back to its smaller size so you can manual adjust it
by grabbing the lower right hand corner.

        The close button will look like an X and closes a window completely. Be careful
with this one, because what was on the screen will no longer be there if you hit that X.

        One last thing about windows and pull down menus. If you take a look at the
picture below, you will notice I clicked on Insert and a pull down menu appears. You
may also notice the highlighted area which has a double down arrow on it. This means
that there are more options in this menu. If you keep you mouse over the menu, it will
enlarge (like on the next page) or if you click on the double arrow, it will do the same

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                                            This menu is the same view as
                                            the previous image except I
                                            clicked on the double down

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The Windows Tour

The Windows Tour comes with every version of Windows. It is a simple tutorial that uses
sound and animation, and is an easy way to get to know the capabilities of your pc. To
view this tour, follow the steps listed below.
   1. Single-click the Start Button on the Taskbar at the foot of
       the Windows desktop.
   2. Move the mouse to All Programs and wait. You don’t
       need to click with the mouse. A second level of menu will appear.
   3. Move the mouse across to the middle of the new menu and move it up to
       Accessories. You will see the blue highlight bar move with the mouse.
   4. Hold the mouse on Accessories and a third level of menu will appear. Move the
       mouse across to the new menu, being careful to stay on Accessories.
   5. Move the mouse downwards to the Windows Tour and then click the left mouse
       button once. The Windows Tour should start up.
   6. The Welcome to Windows Tour window is automatically set to display the
       animated version of the tour, but you can change it if you wish. Click on the Next
       button to start the introduction.
   7. Once the Introduction has finished you can follow the Tour by just letting it run,
       or you can choose your own path. You can replay any topic or exit the Tour at any

Let us take a second and watch the tour. If you are at home, please follow above steps

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                                             When dealing with the average window, you
                                    will need to now how to navigate. The easiest way
                                    is to recognize the image to the left. You will notice
                                    that there are two arrows, one at the top and one at
                                    the bottom. You can simply left click on the arrow
                                    in the direction you wish to go.

                                            So if you would like to move the window so
                                    you can go up, click on the up arrow, if you would
                                    like to go down, click on the down arrow.

                                            You may also left click hold and drag the
                                    vertical bar either up or down. And lastly, you may
                                    use the scroll wheel on your mouse.

                                              To resize your window, you may take your
                                    mouse over the lower right corner, left click hold
                                    and drag either in or out depending on how big or
                                    small you would like to make the window. Keep in
                                    mind, this will only work when the window is in the
                                    restored down phase. How you can tell what phase
                                    it is in is if you look at the upper right corner of the
                                    window. If you see one box, like in the picture, you
                                    can change the size of the window.

        To change the way you see the
folders in your window, just click up
where it says ―View‖ and then choose
the view you would like to see.

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                   An icon is a picture of the application or program.
                   When you click on this an ―icon‖ you will then
                   open that application. The one pictured is an icon
                   of the hard drive. When I double click on it I will
open the hard drive file. To the right is another example of an icon or folder.

             How to Create a Folder
   Click on the biggest blank area. This ensures that you have no current items selected.
   Right click once with the mouse. This will open your shortcut menu.
   Move your mouse over the word ―New‖. A new series of options will appear. Move
    your mouse over to the word ―Folder‖, single click, and a new folder will appear on
    your screen.
   The folder that you have created should have a name of ―New Folder‖ and it will be
    highlighted. You may simply type in your new name on the keyboard and hit ―Enter‖.

         Now we have just named the file. Following the steps below please rename the
file to your last name.

                    Renaming a Folder
   Click on the biggest blank area. This ensures that you have no current items selected.
   Left click once on the file(icon) that you wish to rename to select that file.
   Without moving the mouse right click once to open your shortcut menu.
   Move your mouse over the word ―Rename‖ and left click once.
   Type in your new name of the folder.

    Option 2 for Renaming a Folder
   Click on the biggest blank area. This ensures that you have no current items selected.
   Left click once on the file(icon) that you wish to rename to select that file.
   Move mouse over the text (which is under the icon) and left click once.
   Type in your new name of the folder.

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               How to Move a Folder
   Click on the biggest blank area. This ensures that you have no current items selected.
   Left click once and hold, on the file that you wish to move to select that file.
   Drag the file to the desired location. (Helpful Hint – If you would like to move the
    file to somewhere on your hard drive, open that window up first then drag from your
    desktop into the hard drive.

             How to Delete a Folder
   Click on the biggest blank area. This ensures that you have no current items selected.
   Left click once on the file that you wish to rename to select that file.
   Without moving your mouse right click once to open your shortcut menu.
   Move your mouse over the word ―Delete‖ and single left click.
   A message will pop up asking you if you are sure. If you are sure, move your mouse
    over the word ―Yes‖ and single left click.

    Option 2 for Deleting a Folder
   Click on the biggest blank area. This ensures that you have no current items selected.
   Left click once on the file that you wish to rename to select that file.
   Using your keyboard, press the ―Delete‖ key.
   A message will pop up asking you if you are sure you wish to delete this folder
    (icon). If you are sure, move your mouse over the word ―Yes‖ and single left click.

Now, I have gotten many a person confused at this point, and I hope you are not one of
them, however I feel the need to go over what the difference between a Folder and a File.
A Folder is simply this; it is what you store your files in. Just like your filing cabinet
which is your hard drive. That is it! How simple is that? Now a file can be just about
anything such as a word document, a music file, and image, etc.

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Helpful Tidbits

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The Complete Computers For Beginners

        Here is one of the ―Big Myths‖ resolved for you. People will try to tell you that
leaving your computer on will open you up to power surges and electrical disasters that
will "fry" your computer. This is true, but your computer is susceptible to power surges
even if it is off! A power surge travels over electrical wires, and surges don't care if the
appliance is on or off. Therefore, if you want to be careful, you should purchase a good
surge protector or UPS (uninterruptible power source). Or, for the paranoid, you should
unplug your computer altogether when it is not in use.

       A couple more helpful hints that I can offer you is:

    Keep your computer off of the carpet. If you do have a carpet environment, make
     sure you touch something metal before turning on your computer.

    Keep your computer in an open environment. The computer does generate a lot of
     heat. Although the computer does have some cooling fans on it, they are simply
     the bare bones for basic units. This means, over time, the computer may burn out.
     If you do have an enclosure for it, you can simply remove the cover of the unit.
     This may help in improving circulation to keep your computer cool.

    Leave your computer on, turn off the monitor. It truly is a personal preference. I
     leave my machines on all the time. The only time I shutdown the machine is for a
     simple reboot because one of the programs may stop responding for some
     unknown reason. I simply turn off the monitor. You may also choose just to put
     your monitor to sleep by using the power options in the control panel.

    Defrag on a monthly basis. Defraging your computer will improve the
     performance of your computer by keeping it organized. You will learn more about
     this technique in a later chapter.

    Do spyware checks at least once a week. Spyware is a sad reality. Everyone is
     watching where you go on the internet and if you are not careful, ―things‖ may
     start to happen. Keep a close eye on your money!

    Do a virus scan at least once a week. Just like going to the doctor. You need to
     keep your system clean unless you would like your computer to go haywire.

    Do a backup at least once a month. It only takes one time for you to lose all of
     your information on a computer to realize backups are important.

    Keep your computer, in general, in the family room. I know that it may not look
     the best, but during those mischievous teenager years (even pre teen) you may
     want the computer in the open. This will help detour your children from visiting
     the not-so-children-friendly sites.

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        Alright, let me back up and try to explain some of the things we just talked about
in the previous tidbits. We are going to begin with backing up your computer system.

         Believe it or not, this is a basic thing that any computer user should at the very
least…know about. It is not a hard thing to do at all, but it is something that we need to at
least try to remember to do it. I will admit, I am not the first one to remember and when I
do, I still put it off, even though the process takes all of a couple of minutes.

        So, how do we back up our precious data? Well, first and foremost, you will need
a computer program (Software) that will help us do this. There are several of them out
there and most a very easy to use. If you buy an external hard drive, it may come with its
own back up software, or you can purchase Norton Ghost ($70), Syncback($25),
Nero(Comes free with most DVD/ CD Burners/ $80) and the list goes on. The one I
finally broke down and purchased was Norton Ghost.

        What this program will do is make an image of your computer either once a
month, once a week or once a day. If something were to happen to your computer you
could simply restore your computer to the last back up and everything is perfect again.
This is why in all of my new computer systems that I build, they have dual hard drives.
One drive is for the operating system and saved files, and the other is for backing up,
and/or saved files.

        Now, I suppose rather than back up your computer, you can use Windows XP’s
System Restore. HOWEVER, you will need to do regular checkpoints. In case you are
not sure what I am referring to let me show you. This is also very important yet basic
stuff when it comes to using a computer.

       To get to the system restore you will need to click on
           Start>All Programs>Accessories>System Tools>System Restore

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        Now, to create a restore point, which should be done anytime you are about to
change one of your computer settings or install any software or hardware, you will need
to place a mark in front of Create a Restore Point. Click next to continue and you will get
the next screen that will look like the one below.

      Next, you will need to type in a quick description. It can be as simple as a
―Regular Schedule‖. Once you have named it, please click on ―Create‖ to complete the
checkpoint. It will then finish up with the checkpoint and you can click on close to

       You have successfully created a checkpoint. Now, if something software related
happens to your computer, you can easily follow the same procedure and roll back the
hand of time and be able to help yourself once again and save yourself a small headache.

       Now, keep in mind, there is one huge difference between a System Restore Point
and backing up your system. If you system crashes, you should have a backup on either a
DVD, CD or another hard drive. A system restore cannot help you if your hard drive

The Complete Computers For Beginners

The Complete Computers For Beginners


Programs on Your

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The Complete Computers For Beginners

Windows comes with a variety of accessories, some of which are popular card games that
you may well recognize. Playing these games will introduce you to some standard
Windows features and let you gain confidence while enjoying yourself.

    1. Press the Windows logo key or click the Start button. Select All Programs, Games
        and then Solitaire.
    2. The Solitaire window has the same layout as most windows. At the top is the blue
        Title bar, identifying the game. To the right of the Title bar are the Minimize,
        Maximize and the close control buttons. (We covered this already so it should be
        a review of page 34).

   3. Below the Title bar is the Menu bar. In Solitaire it has just two items – Game and
      Help, but you will find that in other programs that programs there more options.
      Click with the mouse on Help, Contents to get a brief description of the game.
   4. When you open the program a game is dealt for you. The object of the game is to
      build all the suits in sequence, starting with the aces, on the spaces at the top right
      of the playing area.
   5. Start by sequencing the face cards in descending order and alternating color. Click
      on the required card, hold down the left mouse button and drag and drop it where

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   6. Click on the back of a card to reveal it. Double-click aces to make them move to
      the designated spaces. When an ace is in place, you can double-click on its two to
      add that to the stack and so on.
   7. The remaining cards, which are not used in laying out the game, are in a stack at
      the top left of the screen. These are revealed by single-clicking on the back to turn
      them over. They are then used as a pool of cards to play the game out.
   8. When you can no longer move any cards to reveal those hidden, or take any from
      the pool, the game is finished. Click on Game, Deal or F2 to start again.
   9. Close using the Close button at the top right of the Title bar.

More Card Games
Windows gives you two other solitaire type games – Freecell and Spider Solitaire. While
both of these games are more challenging, with more complex rules, they also give you
the opportunity to develop a degree of skill in the game.

   1. When you open Freecell you must click on Game to get started. You can then
       choose a New Game, or Select Game. The games are numbered 1 to 10000000, so
       you can continue to repeat a game until you succeed.
   2. Monitor your success rate using the Statistics feature. It is suggested, although not
       proven, that all Freecell games can be won.

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Spider Solitaire
This is the most complicated of the solitaire games provided. You can choose your level
of difficulty by choosing to play with one, two or four suits. Open the Help window and
click on Spider to access Strategies and tips. Be warned that not every game of Spider
Solitaire can be won.

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Play Music
Microsoft includes a Media Player with Windows. With this software, you can use your
computer to play regular CDs. As long as you have not initiated any changes to your
setup, all you simply need to do is insert your CD.
    1. The computer will acknowledge the CD by showing a disc attached to the mouse
    2. It will recognize the media type and request an action.
    3. Click OK to open Media Player. The music will start immediately.
    4. The music rhythm will be ―Visualized‖ in the central panel.

There may be times when your CD player doesn’t start automatically, if for example, you
have left the CD in and it is still in the drive when you turn the computer on. You could
remove the CD and reinsert it, or you could locate the disc drive in My Computer and
start the CD from there.
    1. Click Start, My Computer and double-click on the CD Drive. If it contains an
         audio or DVD disc it will open Windows Media Player and begin playing. It will
         open Windows Explorer for other discs, allowing you to view their contents.

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Store music on your PC

       Windows Media Player has a copy facility whereby you can copy CDs or
individual tracks from a CD onto your computer. You won’t then always need to have the
CD to hand or the CD drive itself in use. You can select tracks from several CDs to make
your own compilation.

        The above window is a screen shot of Windows Media Player 10. You will notice
there is a button in the upper right that says ―Rip Music‖. This would be the process of
copying the music (or ripping) off of the CD and onto your computer.

   1. With Media Player open and the CD in the drive click on Rip. The new window
      shows the CD contents with checkboxes already ticked down the left side.
   2. Click in the check boxes to deselect tracks you don’t want.
   3. Click on Rip Music. When finished, a new folder with the artist’s name will be
      created in My Music, and a subfolder with the individual album name. Adding
      another album from the same artist will create another subfolder.

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The Complete Computers For Beginners


Cleaning Up Your

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The Complete Computers For Beginners

                           Add Programs
         Note: Be sure to insert the CD or 1st Floppy Disk of the program you want to
install. Some CDs may have the Install program start up automatically when the CD is
placed into your computer.
1. Click the Start button, point to Settings, and click Control Panel from the menu that
2. Double-click the "Add/Remove" programs icon from the window that appears.
3. Click the Install... button.
4. Click the "Next" button from the window that appears.
5. Windows will now search the CD-ROM drive and the Floppy Disk drive for the install
program of the software you want to install.
6. If it is found, a file name will appear in the next screen. If not, type the path to the
install program. (Refer to the software installation manual for this path, as all programs
have different paths to their installation programs.)
7. Click Finish.
8. The installer of the program you want to install will now begin the installation
9. Follow the Wizard screens to install your software product.

                     Remove Programs
1. Click Start, point to Settings, and click Control Panel from the menu that appears.
2. Double-click the "Add/Remove" programs icon from the window that appears.
3. From the list, select the program you want to uninstall (remove) from your computer.
4. Click the Add/Remove button.
The program's uninstaller program will now begin and uninstall the program and any
other files that go with it.

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              How to Clean Up Your
                  Hard Drive!
       Is your C: drive running out of space? If you have a new, multi-Gigabyte hard
drive you may never have to worry about too little space. Let us spend a couple of
minutes and clean them up!

                                WINDOWS XP USERS

Step 1 - Left click once on the start button. Highlight all programs with your cursor. Now
move your mouse over Accessories, then highlight System Tools and lastly click on Disk

The computer will now calculate how much free space it can obtain by doing this disk
cleanup. Your window should look like this one below:

Once it is done, you will get another window that will look like the one below. Let us
take a minute to go over the window. It is on the next page.

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As you can see, there are quite a few areas that may contain space. If you click on the
different options in the window, such as Temporary Internet Files, you will notice there
will be a description in the lower gray box that will tell you more about the files before
you delete them. I have listed them right below.

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                                        Disk Cleanup
                                                  Downloaded Program Files are ActiveX
                                                  controls and Java applets downloaded
                                                  automatically from the Internet when
Downloaded Program Files
                                                  you view certain pages. They are
                                                  temporarily stored in the Downloaded
                                                  Program Files Folder on your hard disk.
                                                  The Temporary Internet Files folder
                                                  contains Web pages stored on your hard
Temporary Internet Files                          disk for quick viewing. Your
                                                  personalized settings for Web pages will
                                                  be left intact.
                                                  The Recycle Bin contains files you have
                                                  deleted from your computer. These files
Recycle Bin
                                                  are not permanetly removed until you
                                                  empty the Recycle Bin.
Setup Log Files                                   Files created by Windows
                                                  Programs sometimes store temporary
                                                  information in a TEMP folder. Before a
                                                  program closes, it usually deletes this
Temporary Files
                                                  You can safely delete temporary files
                                                  that have not been modified in over a
                                                  Windows can compress files that you
                                                  haven't accessed in a while.
                                                  Compressing the files will save disk
                                                  space while still enabling you to access
Compress old files
                                                  them. No files will be deleted. Becuase
                                                  files compress at different rates, the
                                                  displayed amount of disk space you will
                                                  gain is approximate.
                                                  The Indexing Service speeds up and
                                                  enriches file searches by maintaining an
                                                  index of the files on this disk. These
Catalog files for the Content Indexer
                                                  files are left over from a previous
                                                  indexing operation and can be deleted

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        Many computer magazines throw around the term "defrag your hard drive" when
they talk about preventive maintenance for your computer. When your computer starts to
act sluggish, the defragging of your hard drive is an easy way to make your computer
more responsive. Frequent defrags will keep your hard drive in tiptop shape, so you can
avoid data loss down the road. A defrag program is a small application that comes with
most operating systems, including Windows 95/98/ME, Windows 2000, and Windows
XP. The defragging program moves all the data on your hard drive so that your hard
drive space is used most efficiently, and it reconstructs your programs from all the
        It's as if the Jacksons decided to clean the closet, taking everything out and
starting from scratch. Each item is put back in, but in a more orderly fashion, optimizing
the closet's available space. Plus, LaToya can find her books much more easily since
they're all grouped together now.

                                                                      You should
                                                             definitely defragment your
                                                             hard drive every few
                                                             months, just to make sure
                                                             that your hard drive is
                                                             working at peak efficiency.
                                                             A complete defrag of a large
                                                             hard drive can take hours, so
                                                             this is a program that you
                                                             can start at night before you
                                                             go to bed, and leave it
                                                             running all night long,
                                                             letting the defrag program
                                                             work its magic.

                                                                     To defrag your hard
                                                             drive using Windows, click
                                                             on the Start button and
                                                             choose Programs. Click on
                                                             Accessories and then click
                                                             on System Tools. You'll see
                                                             an icon there for Disk
                                                             Defragmenter. Click on it!

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        Disk Defragmenter will first ask you to select a drive. You can select any of the
disk drives on your system, although for now, let's stick with the C: Drive. Click on OK.
(Click the Defragment button if you use Windows 2000/XP).

                                                                        The program will
                                                                now show a status
                                                                indicator, so you will know
                                                                how far along it is. Like I
                                                                said earlier, this may take a
                                                                few hours, so let it go on its
                                                                own. It is very important
                                                                that you do not use the
                                                                computer while it is
                                                                defragging, or the entire
                                                                defragging process will
                                                                start completely over again.

                                                                       You will also notice
                                                              a button marked Show
                                                              Details. If you click on it, it
will show you a visual representation of your hard drive data as it is moved and

       When it is done, the data on your hard drive will be stored more efficiently, and
programs that work together are stored together. This means faster access times to your
programs and your files, and better performance overall. If you have never defragged
your hard drive, we strongly encourage you to do so -- it cannot hurt, and it could
improve your computer's performance significantly. It just takes time. And while you're
waiting, you might as well go clean out your hall closet!

             Disk Defragmenter Tips
--As mentioned above, don't do anything while Disk Defragmenter is running. Just let it
do its work. If you try to do other tasks while Disk Defragmenter is running, you will
slow down the process of Disk Defragmenter.
--If you receive errors (or you get crashes), try disabling your virus scanning software. It
usually shouldn't be a problem, but at times it may cause problems.

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                    The Jackson Drive
         To illustrate the point of fragmentation, we're going to take the example of a
family closet. This family, the Jacksons, needs to fill up their closet with all the stuff
collected by the various family members. When the Jacksons first start to load up the
closet, they are very organized. The boxes are stacked neatly, the books have their own
place near the back, the sports equipment is placed neatly, yet securely, on top of the
whole pile. It looks pretty neat.

       Your hard drive is the same way when you first get it. Because you are starting
with an empty disk, the programs you load on it place themselves neatly, in order.
Windows takes up a large chunk at the beginning of the disk. Office95 takes up most of
the middle, and you have some games scattered about, but neatly.

       As the Jacksons fill up the closet, they soon realize that they are going to run out
of space. Dilemma! So, they decide that Tito's drum set is going to have to come out so
that Michael's box of clothes and Jermaine's computer can fit. So the drum set is taken
out and the space is filled with the new additions. The new additions don't fit perfectly,
and the space isn't used well, but it'll do for now.

         To continue the analogy, your hard drive will start to fill up as well. Suddenly that
great game from last year isn't so great anymore, according to the kids. And there's a new
game they bought that you need to install. As with the van, the new game won't fit
exactly into the space created by the uninstallation of the old game, so your hard drive
isn't as efficient as it once was.

        Uh-Oh! Now Michael wants to put his birdcage in the closet! Out comes the
computer and LaToya's box of new-age books, and the birdcage is smashed in. LaToya
really wants her books in the closet, though, so she opens the box and squeezes individual
books between all the other stuff in the closet, filling every nook she can with books.

        Well, your hard drive will start to look just like the Jacksons' closet as you install
and un-install programs. You bought Microsoft Office97 to replace your old Office95.
You UN-install Office95, but the free, continuous space left isn't big enough to fit the
bloated new version. So your hard drive with squeeze as much of Office97 as it can into
the vacated space, and then chop the rest up into fragments and scatter it throughout your
hard drive, wherever it can find some free space, just like LaToya did with her books.

        Your hard drive will start to look like a mess, with pieces of data here, there,
everywhere! It takes longer to load Office97, because your hard drive has to find all the
individual fragments that are scattered about. Just as it would take LaToya a LONG time
if she were looking for one particular book. She would have to check behind every nook
in the closet! This mess in your hard drive is called fragmentation. And the way to fix it
is to defrag (short for defragment) your hard drive.

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The Complete Computers For Beginners



The Complete Computers For Beginners

The Complete Computers For Beginners

                What is the Internet?
The Internet is made up of millions of computers across the world that use a common
data and communications standard and cooperate with each other to exchange
information. The computer may belong to governments, universities, businesses or
private individuals. Through the shard information exchange that this creates, Internet
users can:

      Connect via ordinary PCs and local phone numbers
      Exchange email with friends and colleagues
      Post and update information for others to access
      Access text, sound, photographic images and video
      Get a world-wide perspective on what’s happening

The data standard that makes the Internet as we see it today is HperText Transfer
Protocol (HTTP). This is a means of defining and electronic document know as a Web
page that can be displayed on a PC monitor. It contains Hyperlinks to associated web
pages (forming a local website) and to other web pages and websites on computers across
the Internet. These websites are collectively referred to as the World Wide Web, or the
Web for short.

You access the websites, display the webs pages and follow the hyperlinks using a web
browser such as Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, as provided with Windows XP.

Your PC must have a connection to the Internet. This requires an account with an Internet
Service Provider, and a modem or router to connect to the telephone or cable system.
Your PC supplier may already have set this up for you, or may have provided CDs and
information for you to set up your own account with one of the popular ISPs such as
AOL, MSN, Earth Link, TDS, SBC and Road Runner.

To open your browser:
   1. Select Start, and click the Internet Explorer icon at the top of the menu, just
      beneath your username. You may also have a different web browser other than
      Internet Explorer. As you can see below, Mozilla Firefox is also a web browser.

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   2. You may see the connection panel, if you have dial up or DSL type connection.

   3. The browser opens, then retrieves and displays the default web page, which is
      called a home page.

Web browser - a program used to view HTML documents

Top web browsers:
   1. Mozilla Firefox
   2. Internet Explorer
   3. Netscape
   4. Opera
   5. AOL
   6. SBC

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                        Web addresses
When you visit a web page using your internet browser, the Address bar shows the web
address. For example, the web address for the Franklin Recreation Department is:

http:// - Means Hyper-Text Transfer Protocol. This code tells the web browser what type
of page it will be. There are three big ones; HTTP, HTTPS, FTP.

www. – Means world-wide-web

yahoo. – This is the actual name or address of the website.

Com – This is the domain type. There are several domain types;
             .com – company or commercial organization (most common)
             .org – organization (usually non-profit)
             .edu – education
             .mil – military
             .net – network
             .gov – government

To visit a web page, click in the Address bar and type the address. You needn’t type the
http:// since Internet Explorer assumes web pages by default.

To visit the home page for a website, just type the server or website name, leaving out the
folder path and the web page name. You can even leave out the www. For example,
you’d enter to visit the home page of our site.

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Hyperlinks are used in several ways to help you move around a website and across the

                                  **Special Notes**
      The Hand pointer appears when you move the mouse over a hyperlink, and the
       destination is shown in the Status Bar.
      Hyperlinks are usually underlined, and they will change color when you point at
      Images can also be used as hyperlinks.

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                     Search Engine?!?!
        First and foremost, what is a search engine? The best way that I can explain this is
by you closing your eyes and thinking. WAIT!!! Not yet. You have to finish reading first.
(Sorry, my humor is running away with me today!). A search engine is like a card catalog
that you would see in a library. When you are at a search engine, you can type in any
keyword and search for a topic. Whether it be by subject, title and/ or author.

       With dozens of search engines out there, which one do you use?

Before you can follow hyperlinks, you need a web page to start from. This is called your
home page. If you don’t have a specific website in mind, or if you are unsure of the
address, you can search for websites that might meet your needs. There are numerous
search sites on the Internet, but the one most often used is the Google search site.

           1. Enter the web address to display the global USA version
              of the search site.

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         2. Click the link on the bottom of the page to make it your home page, and
            then click Yes to confirm.

         3. Type some key words related to information you want, and click Google
            Search. I’m Feeling Lucky will automatically take you to the most popular
            website based on your key word search.

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           4. For a general search topic such as Information for Seniors, you will get
              many web pages found – 2.6 million.

       The results on the very top in the highlighted area and on the left hand side of the
screen are Sponsored Links, which have paid for prominent positions. These are strictly
commercial in nature, so view them with caution.

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               Returning to a website
         1. To go back to the previous web page or the results list, click the Back
            button. Click the down arrow to display the list of prior web pages.

         2. Click the down arrow on the Address bar to display addresses you have
            recently typed in, and select one you wish to visit.

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         3. When you’ve found a website you
            might visit often, you can save it as
            one of your favorites. Select
            Favorites from the menu bar and
            click Add to Favorites.

         4. Internet Explorer suggests a name
            for the web page. Change this if
            desired, then click OK to add the
            web page to your list.

         5. To visit a web page, select Favorites, and click an entry.

         6. To display the list continually, click the Favorites button.

         7. Click the History button to show recently visited websites.

                                 **Special Notes**
      PDF – Portable Data File. PDF is the file format for representing documents in a
       manner that is independent of the original application software, hardware, and
       operating system used to create those documents. A PDF file can describe
       documents containing any combination of text, graphics, and images in a
       device-independent and resolution independent format. These documents can be
       one page or thousands of pages, very simple or extremely complex with a rich
       use of fonts, graphics, colour, and images.

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Downloads –
Where do they go once you download?

        Transferring data (usually a file) from a another computer to the computer your
are using. The opposite of upload.

       Downloads are usually put, as a default, in the ―My Documents‖ folder unless you
are an AOL user, in which case it maybe in the ―AOL Downloads‖ folder. In either case,
you are usually always granted the opportunity to choose a place on your computer to
download to.

       When you are downloading from a website, you should get this type of screen:

        As you can see, you automatically have an option of opening the file with a
particular program, or you have the option to save the download to a disk. I would
recommend that you save the document first. When you choose ―Save to Disk‖, you
should receive a window that looks like this: (this is the same as the ―Save As‖ window)

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        You will notice that there is a ―Save in:‖ with a drop down box. If you choose to
save in anything other folder, you may do so by clicking on the drop down arrow. Choose
the appropriate folder and then hit save in the lower right.

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                        I Have a Virus --
                           Am I Sick?
        No, you are not sick; your computer is. A computer virus isn't a disease. It's not
the plague, and your computer parts won't fall apart if you happen to get one. A virus is
just a piece of software, just like Microsoft Word or Quicken. It runs on your hard drive,
and it can't hurt your computer when your computer is turned off.

        A virus is usually a very small program, so small that you won't even notice it if
you aren't looking for it. Most viruses attach themselves to other bits of data on your
computer. For example, viruses can attach themselves to word-processing documents,
spreadsheets, the program files themselves, or they can even hide themselves in special
parts of your hard drive.

         Once they hide or burrow into another file, they wait. They wait for some sort of
event to occur, and that is when they strike. What kind of event do they wait for? Well, it
could wait for a certain time, like 12:00 midnight. Or it could wait for a particular date
(one famous virus only attacks on Michelangelo's birthday). Or it could wait until you
start a particular program, or open up a particular document. Basically, thy can strike at
any time.

        What they do once they strike is different from virus to virus. Some are harmless:
they will display a message from the person who wrote the virus, or they will play a tune
on your computer speakers. Others are much more dangerous. Some viruses will corrupt
your word-processing documents, changing letters and inserting random words. Some
will slowly corrupt your programs so that you cannot run them anymore. And some will
go so far as to ERASE the data on your hard drive. You could lose everything!

        In the early days, virus-programmers were disgruntled engineers, hoping to throw
a kink in their former companies computer system. But true engineers have forgone this
petty and simple attack. Nowadays, viruses are written by pathetic guys in their teens and
twenties. Some programmers try to write a virus just to see if they can -- these viruses are
usually not malicious in nature. But many others do it maliciously, hoping to gain some
notoriety and excitement in their otherwise dull existence.

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                      The One Step to Foolproof Virus Protection

       So you are afraid of losing data to these little monsters, huh? Do you have
important data on your hard drive that you can't afford to lose? Letters, budgets, e-mail,
even last year's tax data! Well, if you cannot afford to lose it, there's one thing you can do
to make sure you keep it: make extra copies! That's right, BACKUP!

        Make three or four copies of your data and store it in a safe place. Heck, store the
different copies in SEVERAL different places. Even a bank safety deposit box isn't too
extreme. This is your personal and financial data, remember?

                                Avoidance: The Best Cure

       There are a lot of conflicting stories about how you can get a virus. But here, I'll
give you a straight answer.

                           You can only get viruses from a diskette,
                       or a file that you save on your hard drive.

       That's all. There's a popular hoax going around the Internet that preys on the
unknowing. It's called "Join The Crew", and it may be the oldest Internet hoax still alive.
An e-mail is sent around to a bunch of people, telling them not to open any e-mails with
the subject "Join the Crew". It says that the "Join the Crew" e-mail is a virus, and that it
will wipe out your entire hard drive. It's a hoax. Here's why:

               You cannot get a virus just by reading an e-mail message.

         However, viruses CAN travel through e-mail. Here's how: some people attach
files to their e-mail; these files are called attachments and are an excellent way to share
information. If I wrote a budget analysis and I wanted to send it to my boss, I could
simply write an e-mail and attach the budget file. Let's say the budget file has a virus in
it. When my boss receives my e-mail and reads it, he is in no danger. But when he opens
up my attachment, his computer will contract the virus.

           You CAN, and often will, get a virus from an e-mail attachment.

       E-Mail attachments are popular these days, with Christmas cards and little
animated games being sent left and right over the Internet. Many of these have viruses, so
be very careful. To avoid viruses, follow these steps:

   Never let a diskette be used on your machine unless you are sure it is virus-free
   Never run those silly attachments that people get through e-mail -- you don't know
    where it has been. If you must run an attachment, make certain that it is coming from
    a reliable source

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                                  Getting Healthy Again

         What if you already have a virus? Or if you want to find out if you have one? The
best way is to purchase a virus protection program. We will rank the best ones in another
article, however, most of the popular virus protection programs are available free for a
short evaluation period. I urge everyone to download one of these "trial versions" from
the sites on our sidebar. Find out which one you like best and buy it. It will likely save
you lots of heartache in the future. (And you may want to get flash-flood insurance, too!)

        The next step in protecting your computer from viruses is to be sure that you
update your virus scan software's virus files every month. You can usually find
information on how to update your virus scan files by reading your virus scanner's
manual. Why should you take the time to update your virus scanning program? More
than 200 viruses are found each month! Without updating your virus scanning software,
your virus scan program will not know about these viruses, and will not be able to
diagnose them. Listed below would be the top 4 antivirus protection programs in no
particular order:

   AVG
   Bit Defender
   Avast
   McAfee
   Norton Antivirus
   Trend Micro

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What is Spyware?
        In the field of computing, the term spyware refers to a broad category of
malicious software designed to intercept or take partial control of a computer's operation
without the informed consent of that machine's owner or legitimate user. While the term
taken literally suggests software that surreptitiously monitors the user, it has come to
refer more broadly to software that subverts the computer's operation for the benefit of a
third party.
        In simpler terms, spyware is a type of program that watches what users do with
their computer and then sends that information over the internet. Spyware can collect
many different types of information about a user. More benign programs can attempt to
track what types of websites a user visits and send this information to an advertisement
agency. More malicious versions can try to record what a user types to try to intercept
passwords or credit card numbers. Yet other versions simply launch popup
       Spyware differs from viruses and worms in that it does not usually self-replicate.
Like many recent viruses, however, spyware — by design — exploits infected computers
for commercial gain. Typical tactics furthering this goal include delivery of unsolicited
pop-up advertisements; theft of personal information (including financial information
such as credit card numbers); monitoring of Web-browsing activity for marketing
purposes; or routing of HTTP requests to advertising sites.
        As of 2006, spyware has become one of the preeminent security threats to
computer-systems running Microsoft Windows operating-systems (and especially to
users of Internet Explorer because of that browser's collaboration with the Windows
operating system). In an estimate based on customer sent scan logs, Webroot Software,
makers of Spy Sweeper, said that 9 out of 10 computers connected to the internet are
infected and 86% of those surveyed suffered a monetary loss due to spyware.

        Ad-Aware SE
        Spyware Blaster
        Spybot Search & Destroy
        Mozilla Firefox

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                                     Internet Terms

       A small Java program that can be embedded in an HTML page. Applets differ
from full-fledged Java applications in that they are not allowed to access certain
resources on the local computer, such as files and serial devices (modems, printers, etc.),
and are prohibited from communicating with most other computers across a network. The
common rule is that an applet can only make an Internet connection to the computer from
which the applet was sent.

       How much stuff you can send through a connection. Usually measured in bits-
per-second. A full page of English text is about 16,000 bits. A fast modem can move
about 57,000 bits in one second. Full-motion full-screen video would require roughly
10,000,000 bits-per-second, depending on compression.

        In common usage the baud rate of a modem is how many bitsit can send or
receive per second. Technically, baud is the number of times per second that the carrier
signal shifts value - for example a 1200 bit-per-second modem actually runs at 300 baud,
but it moves 4 bits per baud (4 x 300= 1200 bits per second).

Certificate Authority
       An issuer of Security Certificates used in SSL connections.

        The most common meaning of "Cookie" on the Internet refers to a piece of
information sent by a Web Server to a Web Browser that the Browser software is
expected to save and to send back to the Server whenever the browser makes additional
requests from the Server.
        Depending on the type of Cookie used, and the Browsers' settings, the Browser
may accept or not accept the Cookie, and may save the Cookie for either a short time or a
long time.
        Cookies might contain information such as login or registration information,
online "shopping cart" information, user preferences, etc.
        When a Server receives a request from a Browser that includes a Cookie, the
Server is able to use the information stored in the Cookie. For example, the Server might
customize what is sent back to the user, or keep a log of particular users' requests.

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       Cookies are usually set to expire after a predetermined amount of time and are
usually saved in memory until the Browser software is closed down, at which time they
may be saved to disk if their "expire time" has not been reached.
       Cookies do not read your hard drive and send your life story to the CIA, but they
can be used to gather more information about a user than would be possible without

       Term originated by author William Gibson in his novel Neuromancer the word
Cyberspace is currently used to describe the whole range of information resources
available through computer networks.

Domain Name
         The unique name that identifies an Internet site. Domain Names always have 2 or
more parts, separated by dots. The part on the left is the most specific, and the part on the
right is the most general. A given machine may have more than one Domain Name but a
given Domain Name points to only one machine. For example, the domain names:,, can all refer to the same machine, but
each domain name can refer to no more than one machine.
         Usually, all of the machines on a given Network will have the same thing as the
right-hand portion of their Domain Names ( in the examples above). It is also
possible for a Domain Name to exist but not be connected to an actual machine. This is
often done so that a group or business can have an Internet e-mail address without having
to establish a real Internet site. In these cases, some real Internet machine must handle the
mail on behalf of the listed Domain Name.

        Transferring data (usually a file) from a another computer to the computer your
are using. The opposite of upload.

DSL -- (Digital Subscriber Line)
         A method for moving data over regular phone lines. A DSL circuit is much faster
than a regular phone connection, and the wires coming into the subscriber's premises are
the same (copper) wires used for regular phone service. A DSL circuit must be
configured to connect two specific locations, similar to a leased line (howeverr a DSL
circuit is not a leased line.
         A common configuration of DSL allows downloads at speeds of up to 1.544
megabits (not megabytes) per second, and uploads at speeds of 128 kilobits per second.
This arrangement is called ADSL: Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line.
         Another common configuration is symmetrical: 384 Kilobits per second in both

       In theory ADSL allows download speeds of up to 9 megabits per second and
upload speeds of up to 640 kilobits per second.
       DSL is now a popular alternative to Leased Lines and ISDN, being faster than
ISDN and less costly than traditional Leased Lines.

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Email -- (Electronic Mail)
        Messages, usually text, sent from one person to another via computer. E-mail can
also be sent automatically to a large number of addresses.

  A very common method of networking computers in a LAN. There is more than one
type of Ethernet. By 2001 the standard type was "100-BaseT" which can handle up to
about 100,000,000 bits-per-second and can be used with almost any kind of computer.

        An intranet that is accessible to computers that are not physically part of a
companies' own private network, but that is not accessible to the general public, for
example to allow vendors and business partners to access a company web site. Often an
intranet will make use of a Virtual Private Network. (VPN.)

FAQ -- (Frequently Asked Questions)
        FAQs are documents that list and answer the most common questions on a
particular subject. There are hundreds of FAQs on subjects as diverse as Pet Grooming
and Cryptography. FAQs are usually written by people who have tired of answering the
same question over and over.

Fire Wall
      A combination of hardware and software that separates a Network into two or
more parts for security purposes.

FTP -- (File Transfer Protocol)
         A very common method of moving files between two Internet sites. FTP is a way
to login to another Internet site for the purposes of retrieving and/or sending files. There
are many Internet sites that have established publicly accessible repositories of material
that can be obtained using FTP, by logging in using the account name "anonymous", thus
these sites are called "anonymous ftp servers".
        FTP was invented and in wide use long before the advent of the World Wide Web
and originally was always used from a text-only interface.

       The technical meaning is a hardware or software set-up that translates between
two dissimilar protocols, for example America Online has a gateway that translates
between its internal, proprietary e-mail format and Internet e-mail format. Another,
sloppier meaning of gateway is to describe any mechanism for providing access to
another system, e.g. AOL might be called a gateway to the Internet.

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GIF -- (Graphic Interchange Format)
        A common format for image files, especially suitable for images containing large
areas of the same color. GIF format files of simple images are often smaller than the
same file would be if stored in JPEG format, but GIF format does not store photographic
images as well as JPEG.

      1000 Megabytes

       As used in reference to the World Wide Web, ?hit? means a single request from a
web browser for a single item from a web server; thus in order for a web browser to
display a page that contains 3 graphics, 4 ?hits? would occur at the server: 1 for the
HTML page, and one for each of the 3 graphics.

Home Page (or Homepage)
        Several meanings. Originally, the web page that your browser is set to use when it
starts up. The more common meaning refers to the main web page for a business,
organization, person or simply the main page out of a collection of web pages, e.g.
"Check out so-and-so's new Home Page."

       Any computer on a network that is a repository for services available to other
computers on the network. It is quite common to have one host machine provide several
services, such as SMTP (email) and HTTP (web).

HTML -- (HyperText Markup Language)
       The coding language used to create Hypertext documents for use on the World
Wide Web. HTML looks a lot like old-fashioned typesetting code, where you surround a
block of text with codes that indicate how it should appear.
       The "hyper" in Hypertext comes from the fact that in HTML you can specify that
a block of text, or an image, is linked to another file on the Internet. HTML files are
meant to be viewed using a "Web Browser".

HTTP -- (HyperText Transfer Protocol)
        The protocol for moving hypertextfiles across the Internet. Requires a HTTP
client program on one end, and an HTTP server program on the other end. HTTP is the
most important protocol used in the World Wide Web (WWW).

        Generally, any text that contains links to other documents - words or phrases in
the document that can be chosen by a reader and which cause another document to be
retrieved and displayed.

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internet (Lower case i)
        Any time you connect 2 or more networks together, you have an internet - as in
inter-national or inter-state.

Internet (Upper case I)
        The vast collection of inter-connected networks that are connected using the
TCP/IP protocols and that evolved from the ARPANET of the late 60's and early 70's.
        The Internet connects tens of thousands of independent networks into a vast
global internet and is probably the largest Wide Area Network in the world.

IP Number -- (Internet Protocol Number)
       Sometimes called a dotted quad. A unique number consisting of 4 parts separated
by dots.


        Every machine that is on the Internet has a unique IP number - if a machine does
not have an IP number, it is not really on the Internet. Many machines (especially
servers) also have one or more Domain Names that are easier for people to remember.

ISDN -- (Integrated Services Digital Network)
        Basically a way to move more data over existing regular phone lines. ISDN is
available too much of the USA and in most markets it is priced very comparably to
standard analog phone circuits. It can provide speeds of roughly 128,000 bits-per-second
over regular phone lines. In practice, most people will be limited to 56,000or 64,000 bits-
        Unlike DSL, ISDN can be used to connect to many different locations, one at a
time, just like a regular telephone call, as long the other location also has ISDN.

ISP -- (Internet Service Provider)
        An institution that provides access to the Internet in some form, usually for

        Java is a network-friendly programming language invented by Sun Microsystems.
Java is often used to build large, complex systems that involve several different
computers interacting across networks, for example transaction processing systems.
        Java is also becoming popular for creating programs that run in small electronic
deviews, such as mobile telephones.
        A very common use of Java is to create programs that can be safely downloaded
to your computer through the Internet and immediately run without fear of viruses or
other harm to your computer or files. Using small Java programs (called "Applets"), Web
pages can include functions such as animations, calculators, and other fancy tricks.

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        JavaScript is a programming language that is mostly used in web pages, usually to
add features that make the web page more interactive. When JavaScript is included in an
HTML file it relies upon the browser to interpret the JavaScript. When JavaScript is
combined with Cascading Style Sheets(CSS), and later versions of HTML (4.0 and later)
the result is often called DHTML.

JPEG -- (Joint Photographic Experts Group)
        JPEG is most commonly mentioned as a format for image files. JPEG format is
preferred to the GIF format for photographic images as opposed to line art or simple logo

      A thousand bytes. Actually, usually 1024 (210) bytes.

LAN -- (Local Area Network)
        A computer network limited to the immediate area, usually the same building or
floor of a building.

        Noun: The account name used to gain access to a computer system. Not a secret
(contrast with Password).
        Verb: the act of connecting to a computer system by giving your credentials
(usually your "username" and "password")

        (or Mailing List) A (usually automated) system that allows people to send e-mail
to one address, whereupon their message is copied and sent to all of the other subscribers
to the maillist. In this way, people who have many different kinds of e-mail access can
participate in discussions together.

     A million bytes. Actually, technically, 1024 kilobytes.

 MIME -- (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions)
        Originally a standard for defining the types of files attached to standard Internet
mail messages. The MIME standard has come to be used in many situations where one
computer programs needs to communicate with another program about what kind of file
is being sent.
        For example, HTML files have a MIME-type of text/html, JPEG files are
image/jpeg, etc.

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Modem -- (MOdulator, DEModulator)
       A device that connects a computer to a phone line. A telephone for a computer. A
modem allows a computer to talk to other computers through the phone system.
Basically, modems do for computers what a telephone does for humans.

        A WWW Browser and the name of a company. The Netscape (tm) browser was
originally based on the Mosaic program developed at the National Center for
Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).

       Any time you connect 2 or more computers together so that they can share
resources, you have a computer network. Connect 2 or more networks together and you
have an internet.

NIC -- (Network Information Center)
        Generally, any office that handles information for a network. The most famous of
these on the Internet was the InterNIC, which was where most new domain names were
registered until that process was decentralized to a number of private companies. Also
means "Network Interface card", which is the card in a computer that you plug a network
cable into.

         A code used to gain access (login) to a locked system. Good passwords contain
letters and non-letters and are not simple combinations such as virtue7. A good password
might be: 5%df(29) , but don't use that one!

      To check if a server is running. From the sound that a sonar systems makes in
movies, you know, when they are searching for a submarine.

       A (usually small) piece of software that adds features to a larger piece of
software. Common examples are plug-ins for the Netscape® browser and web server.
Adobe Photoshop® also uses plug-ins.

PNG -- (Portable Network Graphics)
       PNG is a graphics format specifically designed for use on the World Wide Web.
PNG enable compression of images without any loss of quality, including high-resolution
images. Another important feature of PNG is that anyone may create software that works
with PNG images without paying any fees - the PNG standard is free of any licensing

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POP -- (Point of Presence, also Post Office Protocol)
        Two commonly used meanings: Point of Presence and Post Office Protocol. A
Point of Presence usually means a city or location where a network can be connected to,
often with dial up phone lines. So if an Internet company says they will soon have a POP
in Belgrade, it means that they will soon have a local phone number in Belgrade and/or a
place where leased lines can connect to their network.
        A second meaning, Post Office Protocol refers to a way that e-mail client software
such as Eudora gets mail from a mail server. When you obtain an account from an
Internet Service Provider (ISP) you almost always get a POP account with it, and it is this
POP account that you tell your e-mail software to use to get your mail. Another protocol
called IMAP is replacing POP for email.

        This has 3 meanings. First and most generally, a place where information goes
into or out of a computer, or both. For example, the serial port on a personal computer is
where a modem would be connected.
        On the Internet port often refers to a number that is part of a URL, appearing after
a colon (:) right after the domain name. Every service on an Internet server listens on a
particular port number on that server. Most services have standard port numbers, e.g.
Web servers normally listen on port 80. Services can also listen on non-standard ports, in
which case the port number must be specified in a URL when accessing the server, so
you might see a URL of the form: gopher:// This shows a gopher
server running on a non-standard port (the standard gopher port is 70).
        Finally, port also refers to translating a piece of software to bring it from one type
of computer system to another, e.g. to translate a Windows program so that is will run on
a Macintosh.

        Usually used as a marketing term to described a Web site that is or is intended to
be the first place people see when using the Web. Typically a "Portal site" has a catalog
of web sites, a search engine, or both. A Portal site may also offer email and other service
to entice people to use that site as their main "point of entry" (hence "portal") to the Web.

       A single message entered into a network communications system.

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Proxy Server
        A Proxy Server sits in between a Client and the "real" Server that a Client is
trying to use. Client's are sometimes configured to use a Proxy Server, usually an HTTP
server. The clients makes all of it's requests from the Proxy Server, which then makes
requests from the "real" server and passes the result back to the Client. Sometimes the
Proxy server will store the results and give a stored result instead of making a new one
(to reduce use of a Network). Proxy servers are commonly established on Local Area

        A special-purpose computer (or software package) that handles the connection
between 2 or more Packet-Switched networks. Routers spend all their time looking at the
source and destination addresses of the packets passing through them and deciding which
route to send them on.

SDSL -- (Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line)
      A version of DSL where the upload speeds and download speeds are the same.

Search Engine
        A (usually web-based) system for searching the information available on the Web.
Some search engines work by automatically searching the contents of other systems and
creating a database of the results. Other search engines contains only material manually
approved for inclusion in a database, and some combine the two approaches.

Security Certificate
       A chunk of information (often stored as a text file) that is used by the SSL
protocol to establish a secure connection.

        A computer, or a software package, that provides a specific kind of service to
client software running on other computers. The term can refer to a particular piece of
software, such as a WWW server, or to the machine on which the software is running,
e.g. "Our mail server is down today, that's why e-mail isn't getting out."
        A single server machine can (and often does) have several different server
software packages running on it, thus providing many different servers to clients on the
        Sometimes server software is designed so that additional capabilities can be added
to the main program by adding small programs known as servlets.

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SMTP -- (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)
        The main protocol used to send electronic mail from server to server on the
Internet. SMTP is defined in RFC 821 and modified by many later RFC's

Spam (or Spamming)
       An inappropriate attempt to use a mailing list, or USENET or other networked
communications facility as if it was a broadcast medium (which it is not) by sending the
same message to a large number of people who didn?t ask for it. The term probably
comes from a famous Monty Python skit which featured the word spam repeated over
and over. The term may also have come from someone?s low opinion of the food product
with the same name, which is generally perceived as a generic content-free waste of
resources. (Spam® is a registered trademark of Hormel Corporation, for its processed
meat product.)

SQL -- (Structured Query Language)
       A specialized language for sending queries to databases. Most industrial-strength
and many smaller database applications can be addressed using SQL. Each specific
application will have its own slightly different version of SQL implementing features
unique to that application, but all SQL-capable databases support a common subset of
SQL. An example of a SQL statement is:

SELECT name,email FROM people_table WHERE contry='uk'

SSL -- (Secure Socket Layer)
       A protocol designed by Netscape Communications to enable encrypted,
authenticated communications across the Internet.

        A leased-line connection capable of carrying data at 1,544,000 bits-per-second. At
maximum theoretical capacity, a T-1 line could move a megabyte in less than 10 seconds.
That is still not fast enough for full-screen, full-motion video, for which you need at least
10,000,000 bits-per-second. T-1 lines are commonly used to connect large LANs to the

        A leased-line connection capable of carrying data at 44,736,000 bits-per-second.
This is more than enough to do full-screen, full-motion video.

TCP/IP -- (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol)
       This is the suite of protocols that defines the Internet. Originally designed for the
UNIX operating system, TCP/IP software is now included with every major kind of
computer operating system. To be truly on the Internet, your computer must have TCP/IP

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      1000 gigabytes.

       A device that allows you to send commands to a computer somewhere else. At a
minimum, this usually means a keyboard and a display screen and some simple circuitry.
Usually you will use terminal software in a personal computer - the software pretends to
be (emulates) a physical terminal and allows you to type commands to a computer
somewhere else.

Terminal Server
        A special purpose computer that has places to plug in many modems on one side,
and a connection to a LAN or host machine on the other side. Thus the terminal server
does the work of answering the calls and passes the connections on to the appropriate
node. Most terminal servers can provide PPP or SLIP services if connected to the

Trojan Horse
        A computer program is either hidden inside another program or that masquerades
as something it is not in order to trick potential users into running it. For example a
program that appears to be a game or image file but in reality performs some other
function. The term "Trojan Horse" comes from a possibly mythical ruse of war used by
the Greeks sometime between 1500 and 1200 B.C. A Trojan Horse computer program
may spread itself by sending copies of itself from the host computer to other computers,
but unlike a virus it will (usually) not infect other programs.

       A computer operating system (the basic software running on a computer,
underneath things like word processors and spreadsheets). Unix is designed to be used by
many people at the same time (it is multi-user) and has TCP/IP built-in. It is the most
common operating system for servers on the Internet. Apple computers' Macintosh
operating system, as of version 10, is based on Unix.

      Transferring data (usually a file) from the computer you are using to another
computer. The opposite of download.

URL -- (Uniform Resource Locator)
       The term URL is basically synonymous with URI. URI has replaced URL in
technical specifications.

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       A chunk of computer programming code that makes copies of itself without any
conscious human intervention. Some viruses do more than simply replicate themselves,
they might display messages, install other software or files, delete software of files, etc.
A virus requires the presence of some other program to replicate itself. Typically viruses
spread by attaching themselves to programs and in some cases files, for example the file
formats for Microsoft word processor and spreadsheet programs allow the inclusion of
programs called "macros" which can in some cases be a breeding ground for viruses.

WAN -- (Wide Area Network)
      Any internet or network that covers an area larger than a single building or

        Short for "World Wide Web."

Web page
     A document designed for viewing in a web browser. Typically written in HTML.

       A worm is a virus that does not infect other programs. It makes copies of itself,
and infects additional computers (typically by making use of network connections) but
does not attach itself to additional programs; however a worm might alter, install, or
destroy files and programs.

WWW -- (World Wide Web)
        World Wide Web (or simply Web for short) is a term frequently used
(incorrectly) when referring to "The Internet", WWW has two major meanings:
        First, loosely used: the whole constellation of resources that can be accessed using
Gopher, FTP, HTTP, telnet, USENET, WAIS and some other tools.
        Second, the universe of hypertext servers (HTTP servers), more commonly called
"web servers", which are the servers that serve web pages to web browsers.

XML -- (eXtensible Markup Language)
        A widely used system for defining data formats. XML provides a very rich system
to define complex documents and data structures such as invoices, molecular data, news
feeds, glossaries, inventory descriptions, real estate properties, etc.
        As long as a programmer has the XML definition for a collection of data (often
called a "schema") then they can create a program to reliably process any data formatted
according to those rules.

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Control Panels

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Dressing up your desktop
It's easy to customize your desktop background. You can repaint it any color of the
rainbow, or fill it with a pattern, image, or favorite photo. Windows XP contains a
selection of backgrounds to choose from. You can also capture photos and other graphics
on the Web. Here's how to give your desktop a fresh look:
 1.       Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.       Click Appearance and Themes.
 3.       Under Pick a task, click Change the desktop background.

 4.       On the Desktop tab, do one or more of the following:
         In the Color box, select a color.
         In the Background list, click a background picture. In the Position list, click
          Center, Tile, or Stretch to define how your picture will be displayed.
         Click Browse to search for a background picture in other folders or on other
          drives. You can use files with the following extensions: .bmp, .gif, .jpg, .dib,
          .png, or .htm. In the Position list, click Center, Tile, or Stretch to define how
          your picture will be displayed, and then click OK or Apply.
         If you want to use a picture from a Web site, go to the site and right-click the
          image, then click Set as Desktop Background.
To see a colored background you must select none from the Background drop-down
menu. Also, if you choose an .htm document as your background picture, the Position
options are unavailable; instead, the .htm document automatically stretches to fill the
entire background.

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Brighten your work area when your computer is idle by adding a colorful screen saver.
Windows XP contains a large selection. To choose the one you like:
 1.     Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.     Click Appearance and Themes.
 3.     Under Pick a task, click Choose a screen saver.
 4.    On the Screen Saver tab, in the Screen saver list, click the screen saver you

 5.     Click Preview to view the screen saver for a few seconds (move your mouse or
        press any key to end the preview), and then click Settings to customize its
 6.     When you are satisfied with your choice, click OK.

      Want a screen saver with extra personality? Choose My Pictures Slideshow from
the drop-down menu, and then click Settings to add favorite photos from your hard disk.
Or display a favorite saying by choosing Marquee. Click Settings to enter text and
customize behavior
        Easier than you thought to change your desktop background or add a screen
saver? It’s also easy to change the look of other desktop elements such as text boxes, title
bars, and selected items. Windows XP contains a range of color-coordinated themes. If
you prefer, you can customize each element individually.

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To work with themes
 1.   Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.   Click Appearance and Themes.
 3.   Under Pick a task, click Change the desktop background to go to the Display
      Properties dialog box.
 4.   On the Themes tab, in the Theme list, click the theme you want, and then click

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        Screen resolution settings determine the amount of information your monitor
displays. At low settings, screen contents appear as if viewed through a close-up camera
lens—you see a relatively small amount of information (only part of a spreadsheet or
Web page, for example), but the items themselves (text, pictures, etc.) appear relatively
large. High-resolution settings provide a bird's-eye view—more information is visible but
the items on the screen appear smaller. In Windows XP, changing screen resolution
settings to suit your preferences is easy.

 1.      Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.      Click Appearance and Themes.
 3.      Under Pick a task, click Change the screen resolution.

      4. On the Settings tab, under Screen resolution, drag the slider to the resolution you
         want, and then click Apply.

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        The customizing features of Windows XP offer more than just visual tweaks. You
can also add sound effects—silly or sensible—to orchestrate any move, from opening and
closing folders to emptying the Recycle Bin. Sound effects are a perfect complement to
any customized desktop and a great way to express your personality. Adding them is
easy, too. Here's how:

 1.    Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.    Click Sounds, Speech, and Audio Devices.
 3.    Under Pick a task, click Change the sound scheme.
 4.    On the Sounds tab, under Program events, click the event to which you want to
       apply a sound.
 5.    In the Sounds list, click the sound you want to link to the event.
 6.    To hear the sound, click the Play button to the right of the Sounds list. If you are
       satisfied with your choice, click OK. Repeat steps 4 and 5 until you have linked
       sounds to as many program events as you want.
 7.    To save your settings into a personalized sound scheme, click Save As. Type a
       name for the sound scheme, and then click OK.
 8.    Click OK to complete the procedure and save your sound scheme.

     While Windows XP contains
many sound effects to choose from,
you can create your own by copying
them from other sources, such as
CDs or the Internet, and storing them
on your hard drive.

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                       Make Your Mouse
If you’re left-handed and you'd like to change your mouse to work the way you do, you
can change the setting so your mouse is also left-handed.
To make your mouse left-handed
 1.       Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.       Click Appearance and Themes.
 3.       Under See Also, click Mouse Pointers.
 4.       On the Buttons tab, under Button configuration, select the Switch primary and
          secondary buttons check box.
 5.       Click OK.

 Change the Look of Your Mouse
Windows XP offers a lot of flexibility if you'd like to use mouse pointers other than the
standard arrow or hourglass. You can switch all your pointers at once, or you can switch
them one a time.
To change the look of your mouse pointer
 1.       Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
 2.       Click Appearance and Themes.
 3.       Under See Also, click Mouse Pointers.
 4.       On the Pointers tab, do one of the following:
          Switch all of your pointers at once, using the Scheme drop-down list box to
           make your choice.
          To change pointers one at a time, click the pointers you want to change in the
           Customize list. After each selection, click Browse, click the pointer image you
           want to assign as a replacement (a preview of the image displays in the lower
           left-hand corner), and then click Open.
 5.       Click Apply and OK to complete the procedure

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                 Pin Programs to the
                             Start Menu
       Want to keep the programs you like to use within easy reach? Windows XP lets
you customize the Start menu, taskbar, and desktop so you can launch your favorite
programs more quickly, without having to search for them. Here are three ways Windows
XP makes it easier for you to stay focused on your work, instead of on your computer.
       You can easily pin, or assign, programs to the Start menu.
To pin programs to the Start menu
(In our example, we’ll pin the Windows XP Calculator program to the Start menu.)
 1.    Click Start, and then click All Programs.
 2.    Click Accessories and point to Calculator.
                                                3.     Right-click Calculator and click
                                                     Pin to Start menu.

                                                4.     Click anywhere on the desktop to
                                                     quit the Start menu.

                                              That's all there is to it. The above works
                                              for any program on your computer, putting
                                              those programs on the Start menu until you
                                              decide to remove them. By the way,
                                              removing programs from the Start menu is
                                              even easier.
                                              To remove programs from the Start
                                                1.     Click Start, and then point to the
                                                     program you want to remove (in this
                                                     case, Calculator).
                                                2.    Right-click Calculator and click
                                                     Unpin from Start menu.
                                                3.     Click anywhere on the desktop to
                                                     quit the Start menu.

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                       Add Shortcuts to
                           Your Desktop
Another quick way to start your programs is to place a shortcut icon on the

To place a shortcut icon on your desktop
 1.     Right-click Start, and then click Explore.
 2.     Locate the folder, file, or program for which you want to create a shortcut, and
      then click the item to open it.
 3.     Click the icon representing the item.
 4.     Click File on the toolbar, and then Create Shortcut on the drop-down menu that
 5.     Right-click on the shortcut icon that is created.
Choose Send To from the drop-down menu, and then click Desktop (create shortcut) on
the submenu that appears.

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Microsoft Office

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                            Microsoft Word
The nice thing about learning a program is, that you can take all of the basics and apply it
to any other software program. They all rely on the same principals.

Starting the Program…

       When your computer is on you should be at the starting point that we refer to as
your desktop. On your desktop, there              may be a shortcut icon that has a
picture of a big ―W‖ with the words               Microsoft Word below it. Please take
your mouse and place the cursor over              the icon and double left click. You
have opened the program and are ready             to begin.

       If you do not have the shortcut on your desktop, please move your cursor over the
   word “Start”,           which is usually located at the bottom of the page. Please left
   click once on the “Start” button. Move your mouse over the word “Programs” and
   then slide your cursor over to the right. You should now see the program labeled
   “Microsoft Word”. Please left click on this word once. You have opened the program
   and ready to begin

Opening an existing file…

       To open a file that you have already saved you can simply move your mouse over

the       open icon and left click, or you can move your mouse over the word ―File‖ up at
the top of the screen and left click once to open the drop down menu. Then move your
mouse over the word open as you see

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        A new window will appear and look like the one below. You will then have to
find the correct folder that you have saved the document in. If this sounds a little
confusing, you will be practicing this later, so don’t get frustrated just yet. Choose your
file and hit the open button in the lower right hand corner.


      You must save your files if you wish to recall them later. Before you can save,
you must give your file a name. To save your file follow the instructions below:

   Click on File.
   Highlight Save As. Press Enter.
   Specify the correct folder in the Save In box.
   Name your file by typing in the file name of your document into the File Name box.
   Click on Save.

To Close the Program…

        So let us begin by closing all windows so we can start all over. Just use the ―x‖ in
the top right corner until you are back to the desktop.

You can also single left click on the word ―File‖ at the top of the page. Then move your
mouse over the word ―Quit‖ and single left click.


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