Ebook Win 7 Power Free

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Ebook Win 7 Power Free

  1. 1. 2Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.comFirst published in 2009 by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.comCopyright © Mike Halsey 2009The right of Mike Halsey to be identified as theauthor of this work has been asserted by him inaccordance with the Copyright, Designs andPatents Act 1988.All rights reserved. No part of this publicationmay be reproduced, stored in or introduced intoa retrieval system, or transmitted in any form orby any means, electronic, mechanical,photocopying, recording or otherwise, withoutthe prior written permission of the copyrightholder.Windows®, Windows XP®, Windows Vista®,Windows 7®, Office 2007® and Office 2010® areTrademarks of the Microsoft Corporation.ACKNOWLEDGEMENTSThe author would like to thank the followingpeople without whose help and support thisbook might not have been possible.Duncan BuchananRich GilbaneRichard Gough-ThomasLarry HallJames HalseyRachel HymansPhil SmithJake WebsterRory WebsterAnd Martin and Everton at Windows 7 News.comFinally a big thank you goes out to my mother,whose desire to find out more about howWindows works was all the prompting I neededto write this book.
  2. 2. TABLE OF CONTENTSStarting .......................................................................................5About this bookInstalling.....................................................................................7Installing and getting started with Windows 7Exploring ...................................................................................19Finding your way aroundWorking.....................................................................................37Get more done with Windows 7Searching ..................................................................................49Searching for files and dataConnecting ................................................................................57Communicating with our home and the outside worldSecuring ....................................................................................65Keeping your PC and your files safeConfiguring................................................................................75Get Windows 7 running at its bestPlaying ......................................................................................91Games and having fun and Windows 7Communicating .......................................................................101Connecting with your friends, family, work and homeGuaranteeing...........................................................................107Helping make sure the worst never happensMaintaining .............................................................................115Keeping Windows 7 running quickly and smoothlyDiagnosing ..............................................................................119Problem-solving and fixing problems in Windows 7Tweaking.................................................................................129Tweaks and tips to get even more out of Windows 7Upgrading................................................................................133Improving your PC and upgrading Windows 7Finishing............................................................................................................... 138Glossary and appendixes
  3. 3. 4Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com
  4. 4. Part 1Starting
  5. 5. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com6QUICK TIPThe benefits ofWindows 7over XP andVistaI have WindowsXP : Windows 7 isconsiderably moresecure and safer touse on the internetthan Windows XP.For this reasonalone you shouldconsider upgradingto Windows 7. Usethe upgrade checkeron the Microsoftwebsite to see ifyour PC will run it.I have WindowsVista : Windows 7fixes almost all ofthe performanceissues that causedWindows Vista torun slowly. Thesecurity system,User AccountControl (UAC) is alsonow considerablyless annoying. AnyPC runningWindows Vista willhappily runWindows 7.INTRODUCTIONMicrosoft Windows 7 offers agreat many advanced featuresand is highly configurable.There is a great deal you cando to customise your system,maintain it, simplify using itand make it a morepleasurable experience allround.This guide will take youthrough everything you needto know in easy steps withquick tips and step-by-stepguides.WHO IS THIS GUIDEFOR?This guide is for non-technical, casual, users ofWindows. If you use a PC athome for sending andreceiving email, browsing theweb and maybe odd jobs likewriting letters and editingdigital photographs then thisis the book for you.Any features foradvanced users willbe highlighted withthis logo.WHAT IS WINDOWS 7?Windows 7 is the latest in along line of different versionsof Microsoft‘s operatingsystem.Windows 7 builds on thesuccess of operating systemssuch as Windows XP and fixesmany of the problemsassociated with WindowsVista. You can find out moreat...www.windows7.comWINDOWS 7EDITIONSAs with all editions ofWindows, Windows 7 comesin different productversions. The ones you‘llencounter will be Starter,Home Premium, the mostcommon edition andProfessional for advancedsystems and businesses.Ultimate will contain everyfeature.Not all features areavailable in every productedition. In this guide I willdisplay icons to show whatversions features areavailable in.WHY SHOULD IINSTALL WINDOWS 7?Windows 7 makes greatleaps over previous versionsof Windows. It issignificantly more securethan Windows XP andWindows Vista.EASE OF ACCESS ANDDISABILITIES HELPLook for this iconwithin this book forinformation on howto use the ease ofaccess features.These are here to helppeople who may havetrouble using the Windows7 and software becausethey have trouble readingsmall text, listening forprompts or using akeyboard and mouse.
  6. 6. Part 2Installing
  7. 7. INSTALLINGWindows 7 versions ................................................................................9Will my PC run Windows 7?......................................................................9Clean install or Upgrade? .........................................................................9Upgrading from Windows XP ............................................................9Upgrading from Windows Vista .......................................................10Upgrading from other versions .......................................................10What is 64 bit Windows?................................................................10Upgrading from 32 to 64 bit...........................................................10Clean install from upgrade only key ................................................10Plug in and turn on your devices.............................................................11Windows Easy Transfer..........................................................................11Common Windows features by version ....................................................12Choosing a web browser (EU only)..........................................................13Help....................................................................................................13Getting Started ....................................................................................13Install anti-virus ...................................................................................13Step-by-step—Installing Windows 7 ................................................. 14-18QUICK TIPSWhat is the difference between a clean install and an upgrade? ....................932 or 64 bit? ........................................................................................10Always backup your files........................................................................11Missing drivers?....................................................................................13
  8. 8. 9QUICK TIPWINDOWS VERSIONSAs with all editions ofWindows, Windows 7 comesin different productversions. The ones you‘llencounter will be Starter,Home Premium, the mostcommon edition andProfessional for advancedsystems and businesses.Ultimate will contain everyfeature.In this guide I will displayicons for the differentfeatures to say in whichversions of Windows 7 theyare available.Each version of Windows 7contains more features thanthe editions below it, a su-perset of each one. HomeBasic lacks the glass aeroeffects and Media Centrebut is fine for low-powercomputers. Home Premiumwill contain all the featuresa home user needs.Each version of Windows 7contains more features thanthe one below it.Later in this chapter is a listof the most common fea-tures in Windows 7, brokendown by each edition of theoperating system.WILL MY PC RUNWINDOWS 7?You can find an upgradechecker to find this out fromMicrosoft for Windows 7 at..www.windows7.com...run this software underWindows XP or WindowsVista.CLEAN INSTALL ORUPGRADE?When you upgrade your copyof Windows all of your files,data and programs will remainintact. However not everyversion of Windows 7 willallow you to upgrade.You cannot upgrade fromany copy of Windows XPand you cannot upgrade froma copy of Windows Vista thatis a higher product edition tothe version of Windows 7 youare installing. For example,you cannot upgrade WindowsVista Ultimate to Windows 7Home Premium.The best advice is always tomake sure all your files anddata are backed up, see theGuaranteeing chapter of thisbook for how to do this, anddo a clean install. This willmake sure you get the fastest,least problematic installationpossible. Upgrading cancause any problems youcurrently have with your copyof Windows to also exist afterthe upgrade to Windows 7.UPGRADING FROMWINDOWS XPWindows 7 will not allow youperform an in-place upgradefrom any edition of WindowsXP, trying to do so will giveyou an error message.On the Windows 7 DVD is aprogram called Windows EasyTransfer that you can run inWindows XP (and Vista) toback up out files and settingsto another location, either anexternal hard disk or anotherpartition, that can later berestored after performing aclean installation of Windows7. Getting Started in theStart Menu has an option torestore this.What is thedifferencebetween aclean installand anupgradeIf you have files onyour computer thataren’t backed upthen you shouldopt for an upgrade.This will keep allyour files intact.However anyproblems that existon your PC may alsobe there afterinstalling Windows7.A clean install willdelete all the fileson your drive andyou will also have toreinstall all of yourprograms.Not every editionof Windows willallow you toupgrade, some willforce you to do aclean installIt is always a goodidea to back up allyour files and datafirst.
  9. 9. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com10QUICK TIPUPGRADING FROMWINDOWS VISTAYou can perform an in-placeupgrade from Windows Vista.The following versions willallow an upgrade dependingon what editions of Vista andWindows 7 you are upgradingfrom and to...UPGRADING FROMOTHER VERSIONSWindows 7 will not allowupgrading from other versionsof Windows. This includes allversions before Windows XP(Windows ME, Windows 98etc.) and all versions ofWindows Server.WHAT IS 64 BITWINDOWS?Each edition of Windows 7comes in two flavours, 32 bitand 64 bit. The edition youhave will be printed on yourinstall DVD. Most new PCsnow come with the 64 bitversion of the operatingsystem pre-installed, howeverthere can be a downside.While the 64 bit versions ofWindows offer better securityand stability, there is stillhardware and software thatwon‘t run on it.If you have thechoice of whichversion to buy thenopt for the 32 bitversion. You shouldonly buy the 64 bitversion of Windows 7at this stage if it hasbeen pre-installed onyour PC.32 or 64 bit?The differencebetween 32 and 64bit software is thesize of the numbersthe PC can docalculations on.64 bit operatingsystems are slightlyfaster because ofthis.Windows 7 alsoincludes additionalsecurityfunctionality thatmakes the 64 bitversion of theoperating systemmore secure.On the downsideolder hardware andsoftware might notbe supported. Forbest results run theWindows 7 upgradechecker and checkwith amanufacturer’swebsite for yourhardware to see if64 bit drivers exist.This is the best way toensure that all yourhardware and programs willwork properly.UPGRADING FROM 32TO 64 BITWindows won‘t allow you toupgrade in-place from a 32bit version of Windows to a64 bit version, nor will itallow you to perform anupgrade the other wayaround. To changebetween these versions youwill have to perform a cleaninstall.CLEAN INSTALL FROMUPGRADE ONLYPRODUCT KEYIt is possible to perform aclean install of Windows 7with a product key that willonly allow you to upgradeit.To do this do a clean installWindows once withoutentering a product key, itwill allow you to do this.Now run the installer againand perform an upgradeover the clean install youhave just done. Yourproduct key will now beaccepted as valid forinstallation.Windows Vista Windows 7Home Basic Home Basic, HomePremium, Professional,UltimateHome Premium Home Premium,Professional, UltimateBusiness Professional, UltimateUltimate Ultimate
  10. 10. 11QUICK TIPPLUG IN AND TURNON YOUR DEVICESYou will have a muchhappier installationexperience if all yourhardware is plugged in andswitched on when you areinstalling Windows. Thisgreatly increases thechance that Windows willinstall the drivers for allyour hardware and that itwill all work when theinstallation is complete.This includes printers,scanners, mp3 players etc.WINDOWS EASYTRANSFERAvailable in every versionof Windows since WindowsXP, Windows Easy Transferis a way to transfer all yourdocuments, email, internetfavourites and more toyour new PC.The wizard in your ―old PC‖will guide you through makinga backup.You can transfer files toy ournew PC through am EasyTransfer Cable available fromsome PC and electronicsstores, across a network orvia an external hard disk orUSB flash drive.Bear in mind that the size ofthe backup the Windows EasyTransfer wizard makes onyour old operating systemcould be very substantial asall your music, documents,video, pictures and photos willbe copied.If you do not have a storagemedium onto which you canmake the backup, or cannotconnect the two PCs directlyvia a cable or across anetwork, you should back upall your data and settings(see the chapterGuaranteeing for how to dothis) onto removable mediasuch as CD, DVD or BluRayDisc.Always backupyour filesRemember that allsorts of things canpotentially gowrong when you’reinstalling a newversion of Windowsfrom a hardwarefailure to a simplepower cut. All ofthese can lose yourvaluabledocuments , photosand music.Always back upyour data beforeinstalling Windows7.For information onhow to do this referto chapterGuaranteeing.To find out how toback up your files inWindows XP orVista follow thelinks on page 7 ofthis guide.
  11. 11. Windows Basic UIWindows Aero Glass UIAero PeekAero SnapAero ShakeAero BackgroundWindows FlipWindows Flip 3DLive Taskbar PreviewsExplorer File PreviewJumplistsWindows SearchAction CentreCOMMON WINDOWS FEATURES BY VERSIONBasic GamesPremium GamesCalculatorPaintSnipping ToolSticky NotesWindows JournalWordpadWindows Photo ViewerWindows Media PlayerWindows Media CentreDVD PlayerWindows DVD MakerWindows UpdateWindows FirewallWindows DefenderWindows BackupCreate System ImageAdvanced BackupEncrypted File SystemBitlocker Drive EncryptionBitlocker To GoAutomatic DiskDefragmenterWindows ReadyBoostPrevious VersionsParental ControlsMulti-Touch / Tablet PCSync CentreOffline FilesWindows Mobility CentreWindows SideshowHomeGroup sharing JoinLocation Aware printingRemote DesktopRemote Desktop HostJoin a domainConnect to a projector
  12. 12. 13QUICK TIPCHOOSING A WEBBROWSER (EU ONLY)If you live in the EuropeanUnion the InternetExplorer web browser isnot installed by default inWindows 7. The browserballot screen will let youchoose and install abrowser.More information on thisas and when the EU gettheir fact together!HELPHelp is alwaysavailable inWindows 7 byselecting Helpand Supportfrom the StartMenu.GETTING STARTEDYou can open Getting Startedfrom the Start Menu. Hereyou can personalise Windows,transfer files from your oldcomputer or add users to yourPC.INSTALL ANTI-VIRUSThe new Action Centre in thesystem tray will highlight it‘swarning flag with a red crossto alert you that you will needto install anti-virus software.Missing drivers?If the drivers for anyhardware have notbeen installed inWindows it’s easierthat in previousversions ofWindows to installthem.Find out how to dothis in the chapterConfiguring.
  13. 13. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com14STEP BY STEP—INSTALLING WINDOWS 7Your experience installing Windows 7 will change slightly depending on whetheryou are upgrading orperforming a clean install.Your install experiencetherefore may not include all the stepsshown this guide.If you are upgrading from within yourexisting copy of Windows you will beasked if you want to ―go online to get thelatest updates‖. Doing this can make for asmoother installation experience andensure more of your hardware works fromthe moment Windows is installed.If you are performing aclean install you will beasked what country youlive in and what language you wantWindows 7 installed in.Choose these and Press Next.When prompted at the nextscreen, press the Install Nowbutton to begin yourinstallation.
  14. 14. 15At the next screen,depending on whether youare performing an upgradeor a clean install, you will be askedwhich version of Windows 7 you areinstalling. Choose the version for whichyou have a valid licence and click Next.The next step is to accept thelicence agreement. You willneed to pick a tick inthe I agree box andclick Next to proceed.At this point you mustchoose whether you wish toupgrade your existing copyof Windows, if you have oneinstalled, or perform a clean install.Performing a clean install will giveyou a better, faster copy ofWindows but you will need to makesure you have backed up all of yourfiles first as it will wipe them.The next few stepsonly apply todoing a cleaninstall. First Windows willask on which disk or partition youwant to install Windows (see theglossary for more informationon what these are) [step continues onnext page]
  15. 15. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com16You may want to wipe the drive or partitionbefore installing Windows. This deletes allfiles and data on the disk so you can startwith a clean drive. You can click on Driveoptions (advanced) to get to this featureand then choose Format.Be very careful to only format the drive onwhich you want to install Windows 7.Click Next to start the installation.Windows will nowbegin the installationprocess. Yourcomputer will restart once ortwice during this process but youwill not need to do anything elseuntil it completes.This can take 20 to 30 minutes fora clean install or up to severalhours for an upgrade.When installation iscomplete you will be askedfor your name, this will bethe name for the mainadministrator [master] account onthe PC and your name for the PCitself.You might like Bob or Mary and Janeas the account name and the name ofyour PC could be Study or Phil’s PC.You can set these to be anything youwant.You will then be asked if youwant to set up apassword for thisaccount. If you do notwant to do this just leave theboxes blank and press Next.If you plan on using the parentalcontrols in Windows 7 to helpdetermine what games your childrencan play and when they can use thePC, you will need to set a password.
  16. 16. 17Windows will now ask you toenter your product key. This isthe 25 character code thatcame with your copy ofWindows. You will find it on a stickeron the case for your PC or inside the boxyour Windows 7 install DVD came in.You can proceed without entering a productkey if, for instance, you are just evaluatingthe features in a version of Windows 7before choosing which one is best for you tobuy.Windows update is thesystem that helps keepyour copy of Windowssecure and up-to-date withthe latest patches. You will be askedif / how you want Windows to updateitself. I recommend you select userecommended settings and click Next.We‘re almost done. The onlysteps left are to set a fewsettings particular to yourlocation and preferences.This screen will ask for your time-zone andfor you to confirm the current time anddate.If you have a wireless wi-finetwork set up andWindows has recognisedthe drivers, you will be asked whattype of network this is. Select theoption that best describes your wi-finetwork and click Next. Windows willnow set your internet securityaccordingly.
  17. 17. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com18Windows may nowask you if you wantto set up a HomeGroup. This will enable youto share files, photos, music andvideo with other PCs runningWindows 7 in your home.You can skip this step bypressing Cancel as this featurecan be set up later. We willcover this in the chapterConnecting.We‘re finished!You will now seethe Windows 7desktop and can getstarted using Windows.
  18. 18. Part 3Exploring
  19. 19. EXPLORINGThe Windows 7 Desktop ........................................................................ 22The taskbar ................................................................................. 22The notification area ..................................................................... 22The Start Menu .................................................................................... 23Pinning start menu items............................................................... 23Getting started............................................................................. 23Using the taskbar ................................................................................. 24Live thumbnails............................................................................ 24Show desktop .............................................................................. 24Notification area ........................................................................... 24Taskbar jumplists ......................................................................... 25Pinning items to jumplists.............................................................. 25Pinning programs to the taskbar..................................................... 25The action centre.......................................................................... 26Windows Explorer................................................................................. 27Navigation Pane ........................................................................... 27The Breadcrumb Bar ..................................................................... 28Previous locations......................................................................... 28Choosing how to view files............................................................. 28Sorting and Grouping Files............................................................. 29Previewing Files............................................................................ 29Collapsing groups ......................................................................... 29Working with folders ..................................................................... 29The details pane........................................................................... 30The menu bar .............................................................................. 30Hiding picture and photo names ............................................................. 31Switching between windows................................................................... 31Flip 3D ........................................................................................ 31Step-by-step—Changing the default view in Windows Explorer................. 32Remembering windows sizes.................................................................. 33Moving your files away from Windows..................................................... 33Step-by-step—Moving your files for data security .............................. 34-36Part 1—Creating a new partition..................................................... 34Part 2—Moving your files ............................................................... 36
  20. 20. QUICK TIPSA call to action ..................................................................................... 22Jumplists in the Start Menu ................................................................... 23Pin items to the Start Menu ................................................................... 23Using thumbnails to organise Windows.................................................... 24Running two instances of a program from the Taskbar .............................. 25Where have all the notification area icons gone? ...................................... 26Customise your favourite links ............................................................... 27Change the default explorer view ........................................................... 28Sorting and grouping by more criteria..................................................... 29Different Views in different folders.......................................................... 29Use the details pane ............................................................................. 30Want more detail on files? ..................................................................... 30Hide the names of all your pictures......................................................... 31Keep your documents safe..................................................................... 33
  21. 21. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com22QUICK TIPTHE WINDOWS 7DESKTOPThere have been some changesmade to the desktop withWindows 7. Some of thesechanges may be familiar toyou, especially if you‘ve beenusing Windows Vista, othersare completely new.THE TASKBARSometimes called the superbarthis is completely redesigned inWindows 7. You can read moreabout the new taskbar and howit works later in this chapterbut it is now a place fromwhich you can both launch andmanage running and non-running programs andapplications.It isessentially amerging ofthe oldtaskbar andquick launcharea.THE NOTIFICATIONAREAOne of the criticisms inprevious versions ofWindows was how annoyingthe notification area became.This is the area on the rightside of the taskbar that filledup with icons and alertballoons, telling you aboutthings happening on yourPC.I will talk at more lengthabout the new notificationarea later in this chapter.A call to ActionThe new flag in thenotification area,the far right of thetaskbar, is now theonly place you needto go to , to receivenotifications aboutWindows and othersoftware (includinganti-virus software).The flag willhighlight with across when there’s amessage for you.
  22. 22. 23QUICK TIPTHE START MENUThe Start Menu hasn‘tchanged much sinceWindows Vista but nowincludes jumplists whichwill pop out when youclick the arrow on theright side of some StartMenu items.There is also a searchbox you canuse to findprograms andfiles.PINNING STARTMENU ITEMSYou can pin programsto the Start Menu sothey alwaysappear there.You can do this byright clicking withyour mouse andselecting Pin totaskbar. You canalso pin items tothe taskbar thisway and unpinitems.GETTING STARTEDThe first item in theStart Menu is calledGetting Started.You can click onthis to open it init‘s own window oropen its jumplist.Here you canperform post-installduties such aspersonalising yourdesktop and addingmore users.Jumplists in theStart MenuSome Start Menuitems have a smallarrow to their right.Clicking this willbring out a list ofoptions or recentfiles / disk locations.This can simplifyaccess to commonfiles and featureswithin programs.Pin items tothe Start MenuIf you pin a programto the Start Menu itwill always appearin the Start Menuwhenever you pressthe Windows key.Right click theprogram with yourmouse and selectpin / unpin to StartMenu to do this.
  23. 23. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com24QUICK TIPUSING THE TASKBARThe new taskbar is the mainplace from which to launchprograms and manage runningprograms.You can pin programs to thetaskbar in the same way aspinning them to the StartMenu (see Pinning Start MenuItems) on the previous page.LIVE THUMBNAILSThe live thumbnails have beenimproved since Windows Vista.Rolling over an icon on thetaskbar will show youthumbnails of the program. Inthe case (above) there are twotabs open in Internet Explorerand it will show you both tabs.Rolling your mouse over athumbnail will show you theWindow full size, making allother windows transparent.This will also work forminimised windows, it willrestore them for you.SHOW DESKTOPAt the very bottom right ofyour screen (the far right ofthe taskbar) is a smallbutton which will show youyour desktop.Rolling your mouse over thisbutton will make all thewindows on your desktop gotransparent. Clicking it willminimise every window. Ifyou click this button againevery window will berestored to its full-size.NOTIFICATION AREABy default Windows 7 showsthree icons in thenotification area. The flag isthe new action centre, moreon that in a bit. Next isyour network connection,either wired or wireless.The icon for wi-ficonnections will showconnectivity and signalstrength. The final icon isfor sound. Clicking on itwill bring up the volumecontrol.Usingthumbnails toorganisewindowsIf you have a lot ofwindows open onyour desktop youcan use the livethumbnails toorganise them.Hovering over athumbnail on thetaskbar will make allother windowstransparent andshow you theselected window,even if that windowis minimised.
  24. 24. 25QUICK TIPTASKBARJUMPLISTSThe new Taskbaralso has jumplistsfor manyprograms. Youcan access theseeither by rightclicking on theicon with your mouseor by left clicking withyour mouse andpushing the mouseupwards, away fromthe icon.These jumplists can showyou recent files and disklocations. They can alsocontain features within aprogram you may want toaccess easily.PINNING ITEMS TOJUMPLISTSYou may want to pinitems to jumplists onthe taskbar.You can do this by rightclicking on the jumplistitem and selecting pin /unpin to this list.This can be used to gainquick access to documentsor disk locations you useregularly, such as a homefinance spreadsheet.PINNING PROGRAMSTO THE TASKBARIf you want to pin aprogram to the newtaskbar you can eitherright click on it in theStart Menu and selectPin to Taskbar or rightclick on it‘s icon when it isrunning and do the same.Running twoinstances of aprogram fromthe taskbarIf a program is openclicking it’s taskbaricon will onlyminimise andmaximise it. Thereare two ways toopen a newinstance of theprogram (say, twoexplorer windows).1) right click the iconand click on thename of theprogram to open asecond instance ofit.2) click the scrollwheel between thebuttons on yourmouse (if you haveone) which will alsoopen a secondinstance of theprogram
  25. 25. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com26QUICK TIPTHE ACTION CENTREClicking on the flag in the notificationarea will bring up the action centre.This is where all the alert messages,informing you about thingshappening with your computer are tobe found.If there is a message this flag withchange from plain white to a flagwith a red cross on it.The first alert you will see afterinstalling Windows 7 is one advisingyou to install anti-virussoftware. You can click onthe message to find out moreabout it or click on openaction centre to see the actioncentre full size.It‘s in the full action centrethat you have control overwhat alerts you choose tosee. You can follow step-though guides to fix commonproblems and also viewarchived messages.The action centre is yourfirst port of call to diagnoseand fix problems withWindows 7.There are options here toTroubleshoot problemswith Windows or useRecovery tools if Windowsneeds repairing.Alerts will be colour-codedred, yellow or greendepending how seriousWindows believes they are.Where have allthe notificationarea icons goneIcons that the newnotification areahides by default canbe displayed byclicking a small uparrow that appearsnext to the actioncentre flag.Clicking thecustomise link in thewindow thatappears will allowyou to setprograms, such asanti-virus software,to always display inthe notificationarea.
  26. 26. 27QUICK TIPWINDOWS EXPLORERAs with previous versionsof Windows, WindowsExplorer is the main wayyou access and organiseyour files and folders. It‘snot changed much sinceWindows Vista, but thereare important changesnone the less.By default now, startingWindows Explorer willshow you the newLibraries. I‘ll write aboutthese more later in thischapter. The toolbar alongthe top of the screen nowhas handy text labels thatwill change depending onthe content you‘re lookingat. These commands willallow you to do things fromcreating folders to burningfiles to CD or DVD.The Breadcrumb bar alsostill sits at the top ofWindows Explorer and I‘lltalk about this more in amoment.The biggest change is theNavigation pane along theleft side of the window.NAVIGATION PANEThe new navigation pane onthe left side of explorerwindows allows quick accessto Libraries, drives and yournetwork.Each section is collapsible andfolds out into a full tree. Inaddition you can view yourHomegroup(more on thisin the chapterConnecting)There is also anew Favouritessection intowhich you candrag and dropfolders, drivesand otherlocations forquick andeasy accessto them.It‘s wellworthspendingsome timeputting yourmostcommonlyused placesinto theFavouritessection asit‘s anenormoustime saver.Customise yourfavourite linksCustomising thefavourite links in theNavigation Pane onthe left side ofexplorer windowscan be atremendous timesaver.Here you can dragand drop yourfavourite and mostcommonly accessedfolders and drives,either on your ownPC or on a localnetwork.It’s well worthspending some timesetting this up.
  27. 27. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com28QUICK TIPTHE BREADCRUMB BARAs with Windows Vista thebreadcrumb bar is your mainway of navigating WindowsExplorer through the drivesand folders on your PC.Each section (folder) isseparated by an arrow.Clicking this arrow will displaya drop-down menu that willallow you to instantly move toany other branch in that pointof the tree.For instance, in the image(above) you can see we‘re onthe Windows 7 (C:) drive, inthe Users folder and then inthe Mike and Contacts folders,both sub-folders of that.PREVIOUS LOCATIONSIn the top left of explorerwindows are left and rightarrows to take you to backand forward between thefolders and disks you‘velooked at.You can alsojump directlyto anywhereyou‘verecently beenby clickingthe downarrowbetweenthese buttonsand thebreadcrumbbar.CHOOSING HOW TOVIEW FILESThe default way of viewingfiles and folders is by nomeans the only way of doingso.In the topright ofexplorerwindowsare twoicons tochange the view you can see.Clicking the first icon willbring up a slider control youcan use to change thethumbnail and icon sizefor files and folders inthat explorer view. Youcan also select otherviews here including List,Details and my personalfavourites, the veryinteresting and helpfulTiles and Content.Change thedefaultexplorer viewBy default,Windows Explorerwill just show youan alphabetical listof a folder’scontents.It’s worthcustomising thisview to anotherthat is more helpfuland better suitsyour personalneeds.Follow my step-by-step guide on howto do this later inthis chapter.
  28. 28. 29QUICK TIPSORTING ANDGROUPING FILESBy default the standardview of files and folders inWindows Explorer isn‘t veryhelpful, being just a simplealphabetical list. You canchange this as per previousversions of Windows easilythough.Right clicking anywhere in ablank space in theexplorer window willbring up a contextmenu that will allowyou to sort andgroup files bydifferent criteriasuch as when theywere last modified,how big they areor, my personalfavourite, whattype of file they are.Sorting files by acriteria will keep themas one large list. Groupingthem will separate theminto groups determined bythe criteria you have set.PREVIEWING FILESJust next to the help buttonin the top right of explorerwindows is a button totoggle the preview pane.This will open up at the sideof the window and will giveyou a large preview ofmany file types when youclick onthem.COLLAPSING GROUPSWhen you are viewing filesand folders organised bygroups you can collapse somegroups to make it easier tosee and get access to the filesyou want.At the left side of each groupis a small arrow you can clickto collapse and restore thegroup.WORKING WITHFOLDERSWhile the Favourites in theNavigation Pane and theBreadcrumb bar make it easyto navigate through your filesand folders, if you have lots offiles sitting together in yourdocuments folder, creatingadditional folders you canmove some files into can helpmake things easier to find andorganise.The New Folder button on theexplorer toolbar will allow youto do this.Sorting andGrouping bymore criteriaThere are morethan just thestandard criteria forsorting andgrouping files.Clicking on More...Will bring up a longlist of manydifferent criteriayou can sort filesand folders by.These include Exifdata from a digitalcamera and artistand composerdetails for musicfiles.Different viewsin differentfoldersThe view you set foran individual folderwill not affect anyothers, so you canset different sets offolders to displayfiles differently.
  29. 29. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com30QUICK TIPTHE DETAILS PANEAlong the bottom of explorerwindows sits the details pane.Clicking on a file will bring upinformation about that filehere. This information couldinclude the date the file wascreated, it‘s size, tags orratings (for information ontags and ratings see thechapter Searching).This can be especially usefulwith digital photographs wherethe details pane can showwhat camera the photo(s)were taken with, the resolutionof the photograph andadditional information.You can change the size ofthe details pane by rightclicking in it whenno file is selectedand choosing howbig you wantfrom the sizecontext menuthat appears.The bigger it isthe moreinformation it will display.THE MENU BARAlong the top of everyexplorer window is the menubar. The menu items willchange depending on thecontent the window isdisplaying but can includeoptions from sharing files toburning them to disc.Use the detailspaneThe details panealong the bottom ofexplorer windows isinteractive, you canuse it to add andupdate informationabout a file, such asits Tags or Rating(see the chapterSearching for oreinformation onthese).Want moredetail on files?If you want moredetails about thefiles you click ondisplayed in thedetails pane you canright click in thedetails pane whenno file is selectedand change its size.The bigger it is, themore information itwill display.
  30. 30. 31QUICK TIPHIDING PICTURE ANDPHOTO NAMESWith most photos fromdigital cameras namedDSC123 we don‘t reallyneed to know what thenames of the photos are.Fortunately we can turnthis feature off whenlooking at a folder ofpictures.Right clickanywhere ina blankspace and inthe contextmenu thatappearsselect Viewand thenHide filenames. Youwill now onlyseethumbnailsof thepictures inthat folder.SWITCHING BETWEENWINDOWSThere are two ways toswitch between openwindows. Hold down theAlt key on your keyboardwhile pressing the Tab keywill bring up each windowin a panel ofthumbnails across themiddle of your screen.FLIP 3DA more attractive way toswitch between windows is tohold down the Windows keywhile also pressing the Tabkey will bring up Flip 3D. Thiswill show all your windows inan attractive three-dimensional way.You can cycle through theseby pressing the Windows key+ Tab or by using the scrollwheel on your mouse.Hide thenames of allyour picturesYou might want tohide the names ofall your pictures,especially if all theimages on your PCtend to be digitalphotographs.To do this right clickin any folderdisplaying imagesand select View andHide file names.Then click on theOrganise button inthe top left of theexplorer windowand Folder andSearch options fromthe menu thatappears.In the window thatpops up click on theView tab and pressthe Apply to foldersbutton.
  31. 31. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com32Click on the Change your viewbutton near the top right of anyexplorer window.Here you can select the view you like. Mypreference is Tiles.Right click anywhere in ablack space in theexplorer window andselect Sort by or Group by andthen select a criteria.My preference is so group by Type.This will separate files and folders intotheir file type.Click the Organise button inthe top left of the explorerwindow and select Folder andSearch options.In the window that appears, click on the Viewtab and press the button Apple to Folders. Allyour documents folders will not take on thisappearance.CHANGING THE DEFAULT VIEW IN WINDOWS EXPLORER
  32. 32. 33QUICK TIPREMEMBERINGWINDOWS SIZESBy default all Explorerwindows will always open atthe same size, but this sizemay not suit you. The goodnews is that this is easilychanged.You can resize the windowby dragging and dropping itfrom a corner. When youhave it the size you wanthold down the ctrl key whileclosing it. The next timeyou open that windows itwill be the size you want.MOVING YOURDOCUMENTS AWAYFROM WINDOWSYour hard drive is a bigblock of storage space, abit like a garage. In thisspace is installed your copyof Windows 7 and also kepthere are all yourdocuments, photographs,music and video.Windows 7 is extremelystable but disasters dounfortunately happen.Should your copy ofWindows 7 become corruptand need a fresh install,those files could be wiped.You can back up your filesand restore them from thatbut how recent will yourbackup be? Will you stilllose files?A simpler way is to moveyour files to another harddisk or partition. When youpartition your hard drive,you divide it into severalsections using software,each of which is treated asits own drive. So if one ofthose partitions needs to bewiped, the others won‘t be.DRIVE LETTERS ANDFILE EXTENSIONS INWINDOWS 7Why do we need to see driveletters (C:, D: etc) and fileextensions (.doc, .pdf) inWindows? Fortunately they‘reeasily turned off.Click the Organise button inthe top left of an explorerwindow and select Format andsearch options. Under theview tab you can untick Showdrive letters and toggle Hideextensions for known filetypes, which will be on bydefault.Keep yourdocuments safeBy default all yourdocuments arestored in the sameplace as Windowsstores all its files.This means that ifdisaster strikes andWindows 7 needs aclean install, allthose documentswill be wiped.You can use asecond hard disk orcreate a newpartition on whichto keep your filessafely. Follow thestep-by-step guidelater in this chapterfor details on howto do this and keepyour documents,photographs andvideos safe.
  33. 33. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com34MOVING YOUR FILES FOR DATA SECURITYMoving your documents away from the drive Windows 7 is installed on can remove anychance that your files will be lost if there is a serious problem with the operatingsystem.If you have two separate hard disks on your PC, or your hard disk is already partitionedinto separate drives you can ignore steps 1 to 9 and go straight to step 10.Always back up your files before doingthis. If you can move them to an externaldisk while you partition your disk you will beable to shrink your Windows 7 disk more.PART 1—CREATING A NEW PARTITIONFirstly, make sure all your files are backed up.Changing anything with the partition structure onyour computer can occasionally result in disaster!Open the Start Menu and type computerinto the search box there. WhenComputer Management appears, click torun it.If you already have third-party partitioning toolsyou can also use those.In the window thatappears click on DiskManagement in the leftcolumn.Next right click on yourWindows 7 drive and inthe context menu thatappears select Shrink Volume.
  34. 34. 35Windows will then tell youhow much space it canshrink the drive to. Selectthe amount you want.You should leave your Windows 7 driveas a minimum of 50Gb ideally, butmake sure you will have plenty of roomleft for your files.The shrinking process might take sometime so be patient. Press Shrink whenyou are ready to start.You will now see some diskspace that is marked asunallocated. Right click inthis space and select New SimpleVolume.The New Simple VolumeWizard will now appear and walkyou through creating a newpartition. It will ask what size youwant it to be, use the maximum spaceit offers, and what drive letter youwant to give it.Finally it will ask if you want to format thedisk. Select NTFS and format it. You willnot be able to write files to the newpartition. [step continued on next page]
  35. 35. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com36You now have a fresh partition. The next stepis to move your document folders to it.PART 2—MOVING YOUR FILESOpen the Start Menu andclick on your name at thetop right to open youruser folder.Select all the folders in theuser folder (exceptDesktop whichdoesn‘t like beingmoved). You can do thisby holding down the CTRLkey and clicking each folder.Right Click on one ofthem when they arehighlighted and selectCut.Use the NavigationPane to find the newempty partition you havecreated. In any blankspace right click and selectPaste from the context menuthat appears.You user folders will now bemoved to the new drive orpartition.
  36. 36. Part 4Working
  37. 37. WORKINGManaging windows ............................................................................... 40Aero Snap ................................................................................... 40Aero Shake.................................................................................. 40Turning off Aero Snap and Shake ................................................... 40Accessibility......................................................................................... 41Magnifier ..................................................................................... 41Ease of Access Centre ................................................................... 41Scaling your desktop screen........................................................... 42More on Windows Accessibility ....................................................... 42Desktop Gadgets.................................................................................. 43Calculator............................................................................................ 43Paint................................................................................................... 43Snipping tool ....................................................................................... 43XPS Viewer.......................................................................................... 43WordPad ............................................................................................. 44Sticky notes......................................................................................... 44Other tools .......................................................................................... 44Touch control....................................................................................... 44Multi-Touch gestures..................................................................... 44Multi-touch software ..................................................................... 45Tablet PC Input Panel.................................................................... 45On-Screen Keyboard ..................................................................... 45Windows Journal .......................................................................... 45Maths Input Panel......................................................................... 45Speech Recognition .............................................................................. 45Media Player and Photo Viewer............................................................... 46Windows Live Essentials ................................................................ 46Zune Player ................................................................................. 46Sideshow............................................................................................. 46Windows Mobility Centre ....................................................................... 47Using a projector.................................................................................. 47Multiple displays................................................................................... 47Uninstalling and repairing programs........................................................ 48Windows components ........................................................................... 48Compatibility mode............................................................................... 48
  38. 38. QUICK TIPSWorking on two windows side-by-side..................................................... 40Make accessibility easy ......................................................................... 41Scaling the desktop .............................................................................. 42The calculator ...................................................................................... 43Press and tap = Right mouse click .......................................................... 44Windows touch features availability ........................................................ 45Parental control and Windows Live Essentials........................................... 46Work longer when you‘re mobile ............................................................ 47Repair your programs ........................................................................... 48APPENDIXESWindows keyboard shortcuts......................................................Appendix B
  39. 39. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com40QUICK TIPMANAGING WINDOWSIn part 2, Installing, I wroteabout some of the new andimproved desktop features inWindows 7. These included thenew show desktop button andimproved thumbnails on thetaskbar. There are yet moreenhancements to the Windows7 desktop to aid productivity.AERO SNAPAero snap is a new way toquickly use and arrangewindows on your screen. Aerosnap works in two ways.If you drag a window to the topof the screen it will maximiseto fill your entire screen.Dragging it back from the topwill restore it to its original sizeAlternatively if you drag awindow to one side of thescreen it will expand to fillexactly 50% of your screen,either left or right, dependingon what side of the screen youdragged it to. This can beextremely useful when workingwith, for example, two explorerwindows to move or comparedocuments.Dragging a window back fromthe side of the screen willreturn it to its previous size.AERO SHAKEAero shake is a good way toget rid of all the windows onthe screen except the oneyou are working on.If you grab a window andshake it with your mouse allthe other open windows onyour screen will beautomatically minimised.If you shake the windowagain the windows will berestored to the desktop.TURNING OFF AEROSNAP AND SHAKEAero Snap and AeroShake can causeinconvenience forpeople with motorproblems. Go to the Ease ofAccess centre in the StartMenu and click on Make themouse easier to use you cantick Prevent windows frombeing automaticallyarranged... to turn it off.Working ontwo windowsside-by-sideIt’s easy to work ontwo windows side-by-side in Windows7 using Aero Snap.Just drag onewindow to the farleft of your screenand the other to thefar right. They willexpand to fillexactly half of yourscreen on each sideso both can be seenat once.
  40. 40. 41QUICK TIPACCESSIBILITYOver the yearsMicrosoft has gone togreat lengths to makeWindows as easy touse as possible, and withWindows 7, things havebeen further improved. TheGetting Started panel, whichis the first thing to appear inthe Start Menu afterinstalling Windows 7, givesyou the option to change thetext size on the screen.More about this later.MAGNIFIERShortly after installingWindows theMagnifier will arrear inthe Start Menu. Thisis an excellent tool if you arefinding your way around,and finding access to theEase of Access Centredifficult. It will increase thesize of everything on thescreen and moves with yourmouse, making it easy toget around the desktop.EASE OF ACCESSCENTREOpening the StartMenu and typing Easeinto the search boxwill bring up resultsfor the Ease of AccessCentre and associatedfeatures.One especially useful featureis called Let Windows suggestEase of Access Settings.This is a short questionnairethat will recommend thesettings you should changeand take you directly to them,all on one page for easymanagement.The Ease of Access Centre isthe control panel for everyonewho might have problems withtheir sight, hearing, motorcontrol and concentration.Everything in the Ease ofAccess Centre is automaticallyread out to you, if you havespeakers connected to yourPC.If more than one person usesyour PC, clicking ChangeAdministrative Settings in theleft hand pane will allow youto also set these settings forthe log-on screen.MakeaccessibilityeasyOpen the StartMenu and type easeinto the search boxthere. The optionLet Windowssuggest ease ofaccess settings willappear.This is a wizard witha shortquestionnaire tohelp determinewhat ease of accesssettings will be bestfor you.When thequestionnaire iscomplete theappropriate settingswill be displayed foryou, so you canswitch them on ifyou wish.
  41. 41. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com42QUICK TIPSCALING YOURDESKTOP SCREENA new feature withWindows 7, and by farone of the best is theability to scale thedesktop by up to 150%.This increases the size ofeverything on the screenwithout making your picturefuzzy.Until now the only way to dothis was to reduce theresolution on your screen.This doesn‘t work well on flatscreen monitors as the picturedistorts. The new scalingoptions get around this andthe effects are very sharp.There are two ways to get tothis setting.In the Start Menu, open theGetting Started panel andclick on Change Text Size (inthe Getting Started jumplist)or Change the size of thetext on your screen (in thefull window).Alternatively right click inblank space on your desktopand select Screen Resolutionfrom the menu that appears.In the Window that opensclick the link Make text andother items larger orsmaller.MORE ON WINDOWSACCESSIBILITYYou can find outmore about theaccessibilityoptions inWindows 7, and seedemonstrations at...www.microsoft.com/enableScaling thedesktopMany people canfind text and conshard to see ontoday’s highresolutionscreens.Opening theDisplay settingsfrom the controlpanel, rightclicking in anyempty desktopspace or fromwithin the GettingStarted window youcan select Changethe size of text onyour screen.This will scaleeverything o yourscreen by up to150% withoutblurring it, makingthings considerablyeasier to read.
  42. 42. 43QUICK TIPDESKTOP GADGETSRight clicking anywhere in ablank space on yourdesktop will bring up acontext menu from whichyou can select Gadgets.These are the same utilitiesformerly seen in WindowsVista‘s now defunct Sidebar.You can drag and dropthese gadgets anywhereinto your desktop and clickthe link Get more gadgetsonline to download morefrom the Microsoft website.CALCULATORThe calculator has beensignificantly improved inWindows 7. Clicking theView menu in it now bringsup a host of new featuresincluding unit (length,weight, volume etc.) anddate conversion andmortgage calculations.PAINTWindows Paint is anotherapplication thathas had a majormakeover cannow includesimage croppingand scalingfeatures. As abasic graphicspackage it‘s nowreasonablypowerful andfeatures theuseful ribboninterface first seen in MicrosoftOffice 2007.SNIPPING TOOLTyping snipping into thesearch box in the Start Menuwill bring up the snipping tool.This can be used to captureareas of the screen as graphicimages.XPS VIEWERAdobe‘s PDF may stillbe the format ofchoice for portabledocuments butMicrosoft‘s XPS is stillwith us. Windows 7includes a built-in XPSviewer so you can viewthese files.The CalculatorThe Windowscalculator has longbeen a forgottenfeature, but inWindows 7 it hasbeen considerablyimproved and nowincludes conversionutilities, severalpanel layouts andadditional featuressuch as mileage andmortgagecalculators.
  43. 43. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com44QUICK TIPWORDPADWordpad has had asignificant updatewith Windows 7 andnow not only uses thehelpful ribboninterface first seen inMicrosoft Office 2007but also will openWord 2007 and opendocument formatfiles.STICKY NOTESFormerly a Windows VistaSidebar gadget (but stillavailable to download as adesktop gadget if you want),Sticky Notes are now anapplication of their own. Youcan pin these to the desktopand resize them to the size yourequire.OTHER TOOLSAdditional tools such asNotepad, Sound Recorder, Faxand Scan and DVD Maker areall still in Windows 7 and haveall been improved with thisedition.TOUCH CONTROLOne completely newfeature in Windows 7 istouch screen and multi-finger touch screensupport on compatiblehardware you can use touchand gestures to use Windows.These gestures are applicableto both one and two-handedoperation.MULTI-TOUCHGESTURESThere are two typesof single fingergesture, a tap and aflick. A tap will act asa mouse click, so tapping abutton will press the buttonand double tapping an iconwill open it for you.Two finger gestures extendto software such asWindows Photo Viewer,Word, Internet Explorer andGoogle Earth.Taking hold of a picture ordocument and draggingyour fingers apart will zoominwards. Conversely,moving your fingers closertogether will zoom out. Youcan also rotate images byrotating your fingers on thescreen.Press and tap =right mouseclickThere is away tosimulate theright mouse clickwith Windows 7multi-touch.If you press thescreen with onefinger and then tapit with the other,this will bring upcontext menus inthe same way as aright mouse clickwould.
  44. 44. 45QUICK TIPMULTI-TOUCHSOFTWAREMulti-touch technology isstill very new, but as morePCs support it, moresoftware will be released totake advantage of it.Windows 7 includes someuseful touch-based utilities.TABLET PC INPUTPANELFormerly in WindowsVista but nowimproved, this willenable you to usehandwriting directly withWindows 7 and itsapplications.Typing Handwriting into thesearch box in the StartMenu will bring up theoption to personalise thehandwriting recognition toteach Windows 7 how youwrite and minimise errors.ON SCREENKEYBOARDSimilar tothe TabletPC InputPanel thiswill enable you totype directly onto the PC‘sscreen with your fingers ormouse.WINDOWS JOURNALWindows Journal is anew notepad thatwill allow you towrite directly onto itusing handwriting (either afinger or stylus).MATH INPUT PANELThe new Math Input Panel(note the US English spelling ifyou‘re searching for it) is auseful new tool for usingtouch to solve mathematicalproblems and equations or forwriting equations and complexalgebra into other documents,such as Word.SPEECH RECOGNITIONYou can also nowdictate text to Windows7 and it‘s applicationsdirectly and a wizard isavailable to help you train thesoftware to recognise yourvoice.Windows touchfeaturesavailabilityThe new Windowstouch features areexciting and will beof great use tosome people. Makesure you buy thecorrect edition ofWindows however.Touch and multi-touch controls areonly available inWindows 7 HomePremium, Windows7 Professional andWindows 7Ultimate.
  45. 45. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com46QUICK TIPMEDIA PLAYER ANDPHOTO VIEWERWindows Media Player andWindows Photo Viewer are stillpart of Windows 7, but I won‘tgo into these in too muchdetail because of theavailability of...WINDOWS LIVEESSENTIALSSeveral programssuch as WindowsMail and WindowsMovie Maker havebeen removed fromWindows 7 and arenow instead part ofthe separateWindows LiveEssentials. You candownload thisfrom...download.live.com...or by clicking GetWindows LiveEssentials in theGetting Startedpanel from the Start Menu.This is an excellent suite offree software with Mail andPhoto Gallery deservingparticular praise.ZUNE PLAYERMicrosoft‘s Zune MP3player, sadly onlyavailable in the US andCanada (at the time ofWindows 7‘s launch) isaccompanied by anexcellent media playerthat you don‘t need toown a Zune to use. You candownload the Zune mediaplayer from...download.zune.netSIDESHOWWindows sideshow is autility that allowscompatible devices todisplay interactive contenton an external screen (suchas on the lid of a laptop)even when the PC issleeping. You can accessSideshow gadgets in theControl Panel from the StartMenu.ParentalControls andWindows LiveEssentialsUnder Windows 7you will not need todownload andinstall Family Safetywith the WindowsLive Essentials suite,as Windows 7already has fullparental controlsbuilt-in to theoperating system.
  46. 46. 47QUICK TIPMOBILITY CENTREOn laptops and netbooksyou can access the MobilityCentre from the ControlPanel or Start Menu.This panel provides quickaccess to the major power-saving settings that canextend the battery life onyour device when you‘reout and about.It also provides access to anew facility allowing you toconnect your PC to aremote or networkprojector.USING A PROJECTORWindows 7 makes it easy touse a projector, eitherconnected directly to your PC,or located through a network.With Connect to a projectorand Connect to a networkprojector in the Start Menu.MULTIPLE DISPLAYSThe same interface thathandles attached projectorsalso helps you managemultiple monitors. Press theWindows key and P.Work longerwhen you’remobileThe mobility centreis a great way tosqueeze more lifeout of the batteryon your laptop ornetbook.It can help youmaximise batterylife bys witching offfeatures you mightnot need such assound, and byreducing the overallpower consumptionof components suchas your screen.
  47. 47. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com48QUICK TIPUNINSTALLING ANDREPAIRING PROGRAMSAccessed from the ControlPanel or a Start Menu search,Programs and Features is yourcentral location to remove andrepair programs.Clicking on a program willbring up either just an optionto Uninstall it in the toolbar, orother options such as Changeand Repair.The repair option can be veryuseful if a program ismisbehaving.WINDOWSCOMPONENTSClicking on Turn Windowsfeatures on or off in the leftpane of this window will bringup a full list of Windows 7‘scomponents that can beswitch on or off.If there are any featureswithin Windows you don‘twant, or if there is anythingthat is not current availableand you would like to switchon, you can find it here. Youdo not need your Windowsinstall DVD to perform theseactions.COMPATIBILITYMODESome programs won‘t runnormally because they weredesigned for an earlierversion of Windows and areincompatible with Windows7.You can run theseprograms incompatibility modefor an earlier version ofWindows.Right click on theprogram in theStart Menu andfrom the contextmenu thatappears selectProperties.Under the Compatibility tabtick Run this program incompatibility mode for andselect from the drop downthe version of Windows yourequire.Repair yourprogramsIf a program ismisbehaving it mayhave a repairoption.Open Programsand Features fromthe Control Paneland click on theoffending program.A series of optionswill appear in theblue toolbar aboveit. Repair might besupported by thisprogram.
  48. 48. Part 5Searching
  49. 49. SEARCHINGSearch is everywhere............................................................................ 51Searching in context ..................................................................... 51Start Menu search ........................................................................ 51Explorer search ............................................................................ 51Other programs............................................................................ 51Indexing.............................................................................................. 52Saved Searches ................................................................................... 52Advanced searching.............................................................................. 53Search filters ....................................................................................... 53Basic search terms ....................................................................... 53Libraries.............................................................................................. 54Organising libraries....................................................................... 54Creating a library..................................................................... 54-55Tags ................................................................................................... 56Ratings ............................................................................................... 56QUICK TIPSSearch from the Start Menu................................................................... 51Contextualised search ........................................................................... 51Controlling indexed locations ................................................................. 52Power searches .................................................................................... 53Build yourself custom libraries ............................................................... 54Add more locations to libraries ............................................................... 55Add Tags and Ratings ........................................................................... 56APPENDIXESAdvanced search query syntax...................................................Appendix C
  50. 50. 51QUICK TIPSEARCH ISEVERYWHERESearch is built into everyaspect of Windows 7, andas we get more and morefiles, documents, photos,music and videos in ourpersonal libraries it canbecome harder to findthings, especially if wehaven‘t looked at them ina while.SEARCHING INCONTEXTSearch in Windows 7 worksin a contextual waydepending on what you‘researching in. For instance,search in the Start Menuwill prioritise Start Menuitems and programs, searchin Explorer will prioritisedocuments and pictures,search in Internet Explorerwill prioritise Favouritewebsites and browsinghistory and so on.START MENUSEARCHWhen you open theStart Menu you canstart typing in thesearch box therewithout having toclick in it. Anythingyou type willautomatically bethere.Any search resultswill appear in theStart Menu itself.Searching here willprioritise Start Menuitems, programs,Control Panel itemsand system settings.However files anddocuments should alsoappear.EXPLORER SEARCHThe search box in explorerwindows is always in the topright. Searching here will firstprioritise the folder you‘relooking at and then yourdocuments, photos, picturesand music.OTHER PROGRAMSSearch boxes in otherprograms such as WindowsMedia Player, Zune player andInternet Explorer will all befound in the same place, inthe top right of the window.Searching in these programswill prioritise searches too, sosearching in Windows MediaPlayer will prioritise music.Search fromthe Start MenuJust hitting the StartButton willinstantlybring up asearch box.You won’t thenneed to click in it.The ‘focus’ isautomatically takenby the search box soyou can start typingstraight away.ContextualisedsearchDepending onwhere you’researching from, theresults you get willchange. Searchingfrom the StartMenu will prioritiseprograms andcontrol panel items,from within apictures or photosview will prioritiseimages and so on.
  51. 51. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com52QUICK TIPINDEXINGInstant search ispossible in Windows 7because the operatingsystem constantlymanages andmaintains an index ofall the files on yourdisk(s).You can access thecontrols for this bysearching in the StartMenu for Indexing orOpening IndexingOptions in the ControlPanel.If you are finding thatsome files and foldersaren‘t displaying insearches, it may bebecause thoselocations aren‘t in theindex.To add a location in the index, openIndexing Options and press theModify button in the window thatappears then Show all locations.You can now tick and untick locationsyou do and don‘t want indexed.SAVED SEARCHESWhen you perform asearch you have theoption to save it. Whenyou save a search it willbe automatically savedto a Searches folder inyour Documentshowever you have theoption to save itelsewhere if you wish.Reopening a savesearch will automaticallyupdate it with the latestinformation, so yoursaved searches willalways be up to date.ControllingindexedlocationsIf you find thatitems you wouldexpect to appear insearches aremissing check theindex.This is where all thelocations areincluded in searchesare listed. Get to itthrough IndexingOptions in thecontrol panel.If a folder is missingform the index youcan add it bypressing the Modifybutton then Showall Locations.Finally you just tickand untick thefolder locations youdo and don’t wantincluded.
  52. 52. 53QUICK TIPADVANCEDSEARCHINGAlas, gone is the simplesearch of previous versionsof Windows to be replacedby a more text-basedsearch. When you start asearch a drop down will askif you want to add a searchfilter.There and a great many ofthese which I shall detailbut the basic ones Name:and Type: for file name andfile type respectively wouldbe used in the format...Type: pdf...if you were looking forAdobe Acrobat files. This isa way to help narrow downsearches.SEARCH FILTERSThere are, as I have said, agreat many search filters.The full list from Microsoftcan be found at...http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/desktopsearch/technicalresources/advquery.mspx...however I have includeda full list in Appendix C.BASIC SEARCH TERMSA full list of search syntax isavailable in Appendix Chowever some of the mostcommon are...Kind: used to search theproperties of a document typeKind:emailKind:tasksKind:notesKind:docsKind:musicKind:songKind:foldersKind:programsDatemodified: to search bythe date a file was modifiedDatemodified:22/10/2008Datemodified:22/10/08Datemodified:yesterdayDatemodified:lastweekDatemodified:pastmonthDatemodified:27/03/03..1/4/08Type: to search by file typeType:imageType:.docType:.pdfName: searching by file nameor by a property name for afileName:holidayName:weddingUnfortunately the searchsyntax doesn‘t let you double-up on search terms. Forinstance typingtype:.docx,.pdf won‘tbring up searchresults for allWord and PDFfiles.Power searchesThe new search inWindows 7, whilenowhere near asfriendly on thesurface as inprevious versions ofWindows, isincredibly powerful.The search termslisted on this pageare just a smallsample of thoseavailable.For a full list of allthe search termsavailable inWindows 7 seeAppendix C.Note: These searchterms also apply toWindows Desktopsearch on WindowsXP and otherproducts.
  53. 53. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com54QUICK TIPLIBRARIESA new feature in Windows iscalled Libraries and opening anexplorer window will displayyour libraries by default.Libraries are, in essence,aggregated storage for all yourfiles, regardless of what folderor disk drive they are locatedin.By default there are fourlibraries set up for Documents,Music, Pictures and Videos. Allthe appropriate documents inyour Documents, Music,Pictures or Videos folders willappear in these libraries as alist of all available files. Thefolder structure for those fileswill be ignored.Libraries have their limitations,for instance you can‘t create alibrary of all the Excelspreadsheets on yourcomputer, but they are stillvery powerful.ORGANISINGLIBRARIESIn the top right of everylibrary is an Arrange by:option. This will give youthe option to sort the files inthe library by a variety ofmethods depending on thecontent.CREATING A LIBRARYYou can create additionallibraries easily, I for instancehave one just for myphotographs. In the mainlibraries view click the NewLibrary button and give it aname.Build yourselfcustomlibrariesLibraries are anextremely usefulway of finding filesthat are scatteredacross your harddisk.You can createcustom librariesthat are displayedexactly how youwant.For example, thecustom libraryshown (left) isdisplaying all thephotos on mycomputer arrangedby tag.This means that, nomatter where a fileis, I can instantlysee all the photos ofDusseldorf or mydog Jed.
  54. 54. 55QUICK TIPYou will nowbe taken intoyour newLibrary andinvited to addfolder to it.The contentsof that foldercan be addedto the Library.You can addas manyfolders as youlike to aLibrary orremove themat any time, and the Librarywill be automaticallyupdated.Clicking the Includes: 1location link under thelibrary name in the top leftof the explorer pane thatdisplays the library contentswill bring up a windowallowing you to do this easilyand quickly.Note: It can take Windows alittle time after installation toindex your files, librariesmay seem incomplete untilthis is done.Add morelocations tolibrariesYou can add asmany drives andfolders to librariesas you like, thoughyou cannot addremovable storagesuch as USB pendrives.Adding andremoving folderlocations inLibraries is easy, justclick the Includes: 1location (thenumber may bedifferent) to bringup a wizard that willeasily help you addand remove folderlocations.
  55. 55. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com56QUICK TIPTAGSOne way to make search easieris to add tags to your files.Tags are words that arerelated to the file, a goodexample is the informationaccompanying music files.Each music files will containthe following information,Track name, Artist, SupportingArtist, Album, Track number,Composer among many others.In Windows 7 you can add tagsto every kind of file, from Wordand Excel documents topictures, photos and morebesides.You can add tagsto a file (ormultiple filestogether) inWindows Explorerby selecting thefile(s). In theDetails pane willappearinformation aboutthe file(s)including anycurrent Tags.Clicking next toTags in the DetailsPane will let youadd or updatethem.You can also usesoftware such asWindows LivePhoto Gallery tomake adding tagseasy.The Import Photos andVideos wizard will also allowyou add tags when you plugin your digital camera ofcamcorder.RATINGSMany file types, includingmusic, photos and video willallow you to add Ratings.These are star ratings fromzero to five stars.Adding ratings to mark yourfavourite files can also makesearching for files muchfaster and simpler.Add tags andRatingsThis can be a chorethe first timearound but it’s oneof those jobs thatonly ever needsdoing once.Adding Tags andRatings to yourdocuments, music,photos and videocan make searchingyour filesconsiderably fasterand easier.You can selectmultiple files fortagging by selectingthem all with yourmouse, clicking thefirst one andholding down theSHIFT key whileselecting the lastone or by holdingdown the CTRL keywhile selectingmultiple files withyour mouse.
  56. 56. Part 6Connecting
  57. 57. CONNECTINGGetting online ...................................................................................... 59Network and Sharing Centre .................................................................. 59Sharing files, folders and media ............................................................. 60Homegroups ........................................................................................ 61Windows Mobile Device Centre............................................................... 62Device Stage ....................................................................................... 62Location-aware printing......................................................................... 63Connecting across a network ................................................................. 63Maintaining network devices .................................................................. 63QUICK TIPSCan‘t get online? .................................................................................. 59Sharing security ................................................................................... 60Better sharing at home ......................................................................... 60Consider Wireless N.............................................................................. 61Device Stage notes............................................................................... 62Do you have a work laptop you use at home? .......................................... 63
  58. 58. 59QUICK TIPGETTING ONLINEThe first things anybody isgoing to want to do afterinstalling Windows 7 is getonline.If your PC is connecteddirectly to your router orphone line by a cable youwill immediately be onlineunless Windows 7 has failedto recognise your networkhardware (see the chapterDiagnosing for what to do ifthis happens).If you connect to theinternet via a wi-ficonnection then this issimpler to use thanprevious Windowsversions.In the system tray on thefar right of the taskbar isthe new wi-fi icon, aseries of rising whitebars. Click this icon onceand a window will appearshowing all the availablenetworks in your area. Youcan connect to any with asingle click.NETWORK ANDSHARING CENTREAlso from this window or fromthe Control Panel you canopen the Network and SharingCentre. This will show you ata glance the status of yournetwork and internetconnection, and other devicesand computers your PC cansee on the network and it willallow you to modify andtroubleshoot problems or setup a new connection.The new Troubleshootproblems tool automatesmany of the steps involved infinding problems with yournetwork or internetconnection. This tool will tryand diagnose problems andautomatically implementsolutions for you.Can’t getonline?Opening theNetwork andSharing Centre fromthe system tray orControl Panel canbring up thenetwork trouble-shooter.First see if yournetwork is active. Ifit is not selectConnect to anetwork orTroubleshootproblems.
  59. 59. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com60QUICK TIPSHARING FILES,FOLDERS ANDMEDIAThe Network and SharingCentre also allows you tocontrol what you sharewith other computersand how you share it.You can share youinternet connection,printer(s) and files. Thesettings here allow youto set what‘s shared andwho can see it.You can also sharefolders by Right Clickingon one or more in WindowsExplorer and selecting Sharewith in the context menu thatappears.You can choose from users onyour PC and network who thefolder is shared with, or youcan share a folder with yourHomegroup.SharingsecurityIf you want to sharedocuments, photos,video and musicwithin your homeuse the Networkand Sharing Centreto check yoursecurity settings areset right.The security optionsare clear and easyto understand withplain Englishdescriptionsthroughout.Better homesharingHomegroups are anexcellent way toshare documents,photos, music andvideo around yourhome, offeringmuch bettersecurity than simplefile and foldersharing.
  60. 60. 61QUICK TIPHOMEGROUPSYou if you have morethan one PC in yourhome runningWindows 7 you canshare documents,pictures, music, videosand printers easily bysetting up aHomegroup.When you first installWindows 7 at home itwill ask you if youwant to set one up.A wizard will askwhat you want toshare and then in asingle step will setup everything foryou and give you apassword, don‘t losethis.Any other PC in yourhome runningWindows 7 will beable to log into yourHomegroup usingthis password.Once the Homegroupis set up you canchange its settings atany point, adding orremoving things toshare. You can alsoshare individualfolders (see theguide on theprevious page).One useful additionalfeature is theability to streammedia to otherPCs and devices.This will meanmusic and videocontent can startplaying on theother devicewithout beingcopied across tothat device. Itplays on the PC it‘s sat onand can be seen and heardon the other.Considerwireless NIf you use a wi-finetwork in yourhome and want tostream and sharevideo considerupgrading your wi-firouter from the802.11b or 802.11gto 802.11n standard.These codes areclearly labelled onproducts either atonline stores on inthe shops. WirelessN offers muchgreater bandwidththan previousstandards.This means thatvideo can be sent toother PCs on yournetwork withoutany worries about itstuttering duringplayback.
  61. 61. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com62QUICK TIPWINDOWS MOBILEDEVICE CENTREAny device running WindowsMobile, which includes manymobile phones, now has muchbetter integration withWindows 7.The new Windows MobileDevice Centre isexcellent atautomatically detectingthese devices and hassimple and easy to useoptions for synchronisingthem with your PC.DEVICE STAGEA new feature forWindows 7, DeviceStage can provide easy accessto features in, and service andproduct updates for your third-party hardware.Accessed through Devices andPrinters in the StartMenu. Many devicesyou can plug into yourcomputer such as digitalcameras, mobile phonesand MP3 players can, ifthe manufacturersupports it, appearhere. Opening the iconwill open a new windowwhere you can do morewith your device.Depending on the deviceyou can use this panel tobuy supplies, get updates,download manuals and alsoaccess all the features andfunctionality of the device.These options are alsoavailable from a jumplist onthe Taskbar when theDevice Stage for a device isopen.Device StagenotesNot every deviceyou plug into yourPC will besupported by DeviceStage. It entirelydepends onwhether themanufacturer ofthat devicesupports it.If they do there areall sorts ofadditional servicesyou can get throughthis featureincluding being ableto easily buyconsumables, getfixes and firmwareupdates and helpand support.
  62. 62. 63QUICK TIPLOCATION-AWAREPRINTINGThe Enterprise andUltimate editions ofWindows 7 contain afeature that‘s very usefulfor people who use a laptopboth at home and at work.Location-aware printingallows you to set a defaultprinter for both locations.Windows 7 will determinewhich printer you want toprint to automatically bydetermining which networkyou are attached to and willchange the default printerfor that session accordingly.CONNECTING ACROSSA NETWORKWindows 7 makes it easy toconnect with computersand network-attachedstorage inyour home orwork network.OpeningWindowsExplorer youwill seeNetwork listedat the bottomof theNavigationPane.Clicking onthis will bringup details ofany othercomputer anddevice yourcomputer cansee.You can open these to viewany files the they aresharing or drag and dropthem into your Favouritesto provide quick and easyaccess in the future.MAINTAININGNETWORK DEVICESYou can also get quick accessto the administrativeinterfaces of hardware such asrouters and network-attachedstorage in this view.Right click on theicon for the devicewill bring up acontext menuincluding optionssuch as Viewdevice webpagewhich will allow youquick and easy access to itsadministrative settings.Another way to access these isto open the Network andSharing Centre and click onView Full Map. Here again youcan right click on a device tobring up Management URLwhich is quick and easy accessto the device‘s managementinterface.Do you have awork laptopyou use athome?If you have a worklaptop runningWindows 7Enterprise thisversion alsofeatures location-aware printing.You can use thisfeature to makesure that wheneveryou press the printbutton the correctprinter will beautomaticallyselected for you byWindows.
  63. 63. 64Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com
  64. 64. Part 7Securing
  65. 65. SECURINGHow secure is Windows 7?..................................................................... 67Anti-virus software ............................................................................... 67Windows Firewall.................................................................................. 68Third-party firewall ....................................................................... 68Windows Defender................................................................................ 68User Account Control ............................................................................ 69Phishing and Spam ............................................................................... 69Internet threats ................................................................................... 70Domain highlighting.............................................................................. 70In-Private browsing .............................................................................. 70Credential Manager............................................................................... 71Windows Update .................................................................................. 71Security glossary.................................................................................. 71Advanced Firewall................................................................................. 72Firewall Exceptions ....................................................................... 72Windows Firewall with Advanced Security ........................................ 72Bitlocker.............................................................................................. 73Bitlocker to go.............................................................................. 73QUICK TIPSWorst case scenario.............................................................................. 67Protect your PC from Spyware ............................................................... 68Don‘t switch off UAC! ............................................................................ 69Look for the padlock ............................................................................. 70Beware the soft squishy thing ................................................................ 71Get Safe Online.................................................................................... 72Removing Bitlocker from a drive............................................................. 73GLOSSARYDownloads...............................................................................Appendix E
  66. 66. 67QUICK TIPHOW SECURE ISWINDOWS 7?Microsoft Windows hascome under fire over theyears for being insecure.The simple fact is thatWindows is now one of themost secure operatingsystems you can buy.For example, if the firstyear and a half after thelaunch of Windows XPthere were six or so majorsecurity flaws highlightedby the world‘s press. Inthe same period afterWindows Vista launched,there was only one,compared to two for AppleMac OS X in the sameperiod.Windows 7 is even moresecure but to guaranteesafety and security it can‘tdo it without some helpfrom you.ANTI-VIRUSSOFTWAREWidows 7 doesn‘t comewith anit-virus software butfor the first time will helpyou to get it. When youfirst install Windows 7 theAction Centre will alert youto download anti-virussoftware and will take youto a screen where you canchoose one to downloadand install if you do nothave one already.This screen will take youdirectly to the website for theanti-virus vendor you choose.My two personalrecommendations areMicrosoft SecurityEssentials and AVG anti-virus, both of which are freealthough AVG also offer apaid-for security suite thathas additional functionality.The Action Centre will alertyou if there are any problemswith your anti-virus software,such as it needs updating andhasn‘t done so automatically.You should always keep youranti-virus software up to dateand running properly as it‘sthe most essential line ofdefence against attacks fromthe outside world.Worst casescenarioMany things canhappen if you donot have up to dateanti-virus softwarefrom your filesbeing deleted andlost to your PCbecoming unusableas chips on yourmotherboard arerewritten.In the worst cases,criminals can gainaccess to your bankaccounts and stealyour identity,running upthousands ofpounds of bills inyour name.Do not take riskswith your PCsecurity.
  67. 67. Windows 7 Power Users Guide by Mike Halseywww.thelongclimb.com68QUICK TIPWINDOWS FIREWALLBuilt into Windows 7 is thefirewall. This is muchimproved from previousversions and, if you‘re carefulwith your PC security, shouldbe adequate for day to dayuse.By default it will be set toprovide the protection youneed.THIRD-PARTY FIREWALLYou might additionally want toinstall a third-party firewallfrom a vendor such as CheckPoint or Kaspersky.This will not affect theWindows Firewall and will runhappily along-side it.You may also wish to buy afull security suite such as AVGInternet Security which willinclude anti-virus, firewall andanti-spam software amongothers. These suites are avery good idea.WINDOWS DEFENDERThe first line of defence inWindows 7 against spywareand Trojans, though notviruses, is WindowsDefender. Accessed throughthe Start Menu, thisprogram will alert youthrough the Action Centrewhen it needs updating orwhen a scan should be run.Windows Defender has asimple interface that allowsnovice user to quickly asimply update it and searchtheir computers forSpyware.You can also use third-partyspyware removal tools suchas Spyware Terminatorwithout affecting theperformance of WindowsDefender.Protect yourPC fromspywareWindows Defendershould not be theonly software pack-age on your PC pro-tecting you fromSpyware, Trojansand other internetnasties.In the appendices,you will find myrecommendationsfor the best freeand paid-for inter-net protection soft-ware available.
  68. 68. 69QUICK TIPUSER ACCOUNTCONTROLUAC is a security featurethat was first seen inWindows Vista to help keepyour PC secure.This feature takesyour computerinto a protectedmode, darkeningthe screen andasking you forpermission tocontinue,whenever itdetects a potentialthreat to yourcomputer.It is possible tochange how UserAccount Control protectsyour computer from theAction Centre. The fouravailable settings are...Never Notify me when:programs to try to installsoftware or make changesto my PC, or when I makechanges to Widows settingsNotify me only whenprograms try to makechanges to me computer(do not dim my desktop)and don‘t notify me when Imake changes to WindowssettingsDefault—Notify me onlywhen programs try tomake changes to mycomputer and don‘t notifyme when I make changesto Windows settingsAlways notify me whenprograms try to installsoftware or make changesto my computer or when Imake changes to Windowssettings.It is not recommended thatyou change UAC from thedefault setting as this willprovide you with the bestprotection while not beinganywhere near as annoying asUAC was in Windows Vista.PHISHING AND SPAMYour web browser isn‘t theonly place you can sufferattacks online. They can alsoarrive in your email inbox.Spam emails are morenuisance than a worry unlessyou click on the link containedin them.Phishing emails are moreserious however. These areemails, purporting to be fromyour bank, building society orfrom a reputable website suchas PayPal, eBay or Amazon,that ask you to log in toconfirm your account details.Note: These companies andbanks will never send youemails like this. If youreceive one then you canguarantee it is a fake.Don’t switch offUAC!Many people criti-cised User AccountControl (UAC) whenit first appeared inWindows Vista forbeing, frankly, an-noying.With Windows 7 it’smuch improved, youshould hardly eversee prompts.You should makesure though thatyou never switch itoff. It performs anextremely importantrole on your PC,protecting you andyour system from alltypes of attack.

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