Turn on Your Pavilion: You're All Set to Go!
In this Chapter
Taking a tour of your Pavilion with Victor
Seeing what you can do with your keyboard
Turning your Pavilion off
With your HP Pavilion home PC, after the plugs are plugged in and the power is switched on, you're good to go. However, because so much comes with your computer, it's worth taking a few minutes to explore before you get to work.
There's a wealth of preinstalled software, such as the Corel WordPerfect software suite, which includes a word processor, spreadsheet program, and more. You'll discover utilities such as McAfee VirusScan antivirus software and PC Doctor for Windows XP, which help to keep your computer in shape. Then, there are programs designed to help you find your way around and to provide help getting started, such as the HP Tour Guide. The list just goes on and on. Maybe it's time to just take a look.
Don't forget the keyboard that comes with your Pavilion. It offers you far more than an alphabet soup of keys. With it, you can get instant access to your email, Internet shopping, and CD/DVD controls.
A Bounty of Computer Productivity
Starting up your HP Pavilion is like opening a treasure box filled with some very cool things. There are programs you can use to play music, write documents, calculate, and play games. You'll find media samples from music to video that you can get creative with. There are Web browsers and email programs and multimedia players. To help you discover all those programs, here's somebody you should know . . .
Meet the HP Tour Guide
When you first turn on your HP Pavilion, the Windows XP desktop appears. Windows XP is what drives all the programs on your computer, and the desktop is Windows' home base. Icons on the desktop (see Figure 3.1) represent shortcuts to often-used programs (and you can add more, which you'll learn about in the next chapter). There's a little Recycle Bin, which is where deleted files go. There's also a Start menu, which you can use to access computer controls, software programs, and documents you create.
Figure 3.1 The Windows XP desktop can use any picture you like as its background, bringing cheer to your computing day.
The first time you use your new Pavilion you are likely to be greeted by a little fellow who walks through a door on the desktop and greets you. This professorial-looking chap is Victor, the HP Tour Guide, and he provides an interesting introductory tour of all your HP Pavilion has to offer. The Tour Guide covers four main areas:
How to use the Tour Guide
What the Windows desktop is
How to contact HP support
How to use Internet and email
You can also invite the Tour Guide to visit at any time by clicking the HP Tour Guide icon on the Windows desktop, or by selecting Start, All Programs, HP Tools, HP Tour Guide.
You can interact with Victor at any time to tell him what to do (for example, run a specific tour or exit your desktop) through a menu of choices he displays. To move him around the screen, click anywhere on the guide with your left mouse button and drag him where you want him to go. To stop him in midcomment, just click him with your mouse. You can use the menu to start him up again at any time, switch to a different tutorial, or send him packing.
If you're new to Windows XP, it's a good idea to take the Tell Me About the Desktop tour when you first start up your Pavilion. The guide points out features of Windows XP on the desktop and shows you how to use the Start menu, Recycle Bin, and computer clock. When you're ready to connect to the Internet, the Tell Me About the Internet and E-mail tour is useful. Also, any time that you need help, the guide will be glad to provide support options in the Tell Me About Contacting HP Support tour.
Finding the Support You Need
Although the HP Tour Guide offers a nice overview of many features of Windows and your HP Pavilion, he's pretty much preprogrammed, so you can't ask him questions. For that, you should visit the Help and Support Center by clicking the Help and Support icon on the desktop or selecting Start, Help and Support. The Help and Support Center appears (Figure 3.2). From this area, you can find a Windows Glossary, Windows keyboard shortcuts, and information about customizing your computer.
Figure 3.2 You can enter a word in the Search feature on any Help and Support window to find what you need.
Although this is based on a Microsoft help center, it also contains specific information about your HP Pavilion and a wealth of tools such as interactive tutorials. By using Instant Support with your Internet connection, you can send requests for help using email and keep an archive of help answers you receive.
Here's how to use Help:
Click a topic in the Help and Support main window; you'll be taken to a window offering different items related to that topic.
Click one of the subtopics that's displayed; you'll be taken to more and more specific tasks. In Figure 3.3, for example, you'll see the third level of detail when you look for information on printing.
Figure 3.3 If you want an index of all topics, just click the Index button on any Help and Support window.
When you reach the task you want help with, click it; the system displays step-by-step directions for that task.
Click the X in the upper right-hand corner of the Help and Support window to close it when you're done. You return to the Windows desktop.
Do you want to build your own help manual for features you use most often? If you like, you can save help topics you've found useful in your Favorites folder for future reference. Just click the TIP Favorites button on the Help and Support Center toolbar with the page you want displayed.
Get a Friend to Help
Want help from a flesh-and-blood person? Try Remote Assistance (Start, All Programs, Remote Assistance). You can use this feature to send an invitation using the Internet and Windows Messenger asking for help. When your friend receives the message you can begin to hold an online conversation. He or she can even view your computer screen to help diagnose your problem and to take control of your computer remotely to make fixes from a distance. Learn more about this feature in Chapter 19.
Get Going Fast with Pre-installed Software
Software tells your computer how to perform certain sets of activities, such as drawing or entering text. Different kinds of software enable you to perform different types of activities. Software is also referred to as a program or an application.
In Part III of this book, you'll learn the basics of using some of the software that comes preloaded on your HP Pavilion. For now, let me introduce you to the kinds of software you'll find when you first turn on your computer.
Take a moment to look at what's available on your computer:
Click the Start menu on the Windows desktop.
Click All Programs. A list of available programs pops up.
By scanning this list, you'll see that HP Pavilion computers come packed with software. Move your mouse around this list, and you'll see that some of these items contain submenus that list even more programs.
To give you an overview of the types of programs that are available, I've broken them into categories for you. Your Pavilion has the following:
Productivity softwareI call this productivity software because it's the kind of software you use to write and design documents, keep track of your finances, and manage data, in other words, to get work done. In this category of software your Pavilion has included Corel WordPerfect Productivity Pack, an integrated suite of applications that includes a word processor, calendar, presentation, and spreadsheet program. Another productivity application included is a program to manage your finances: Quicken from Intuit and Money from Microsoft. Note that if you have an older Pavilion model (prior to fall of 2002), you may have Microsoft Works (Figure 3.4) as your productivity suite and Microsoft Money as a second financial package.
Figure 3.4 Works is a great suite of products if you like to be led through the process of creating a new document.
Internet software and connectionsIf you have an Internet account, you'll be glad to see that HP has already placed files for major Internet service providers on your Pavilion that are ready to install. Included are America Online (AOL), MSN Explorer, Earthlink, and CompuServe. If you don't have an Internet account, you can use the Easy Internet Sign Up item on the Programs menu, which helps you sign up for an account and get connected (you'll learn more about this in Chapter 13). An email program from Microsoft called Outlook Express also comes loaded on your Pavilion. Use it to retrieve, manage, and send out email and attached files. Finally, the popular Web browser, Internet Explorer, is all set up to help you find what you need online as soon as you connect.
GamesWindows XP itself includes 11 games, from Hearts to Pinball, and even some Internet games that match you with an online player to play the game in real time through Zone.com.
MultimediaThis is the category in which your Pavilion really takes center stage. What multimedia programs come with your HP computer? Well, depending on the model you purchased, there's InterVideo WinDVD, KazooStudio, Funhouse, My Movies, My Photo Center, Sonic Foundry, HP Record Now, Greeting Card Creator, MusicMatch Jukebox, Real Player, and Music Store. Some of these programs are media players (a player is a computer version of the equipment you'd use to play a CD or a video in your own home). Other programs help you organize multimedia into libraries or to download music or photos from the Internet. Still others allow you to edit or create multimedia files, such as Kazoo Studio (see Figure 3.5) for working with Three-Dimensional (3D) photo images. Note that several of these programs are trial or limited versions of the full programs. Typically, you can use them for about 30 days before you'll be asked to purchase the software. It's great to be able to play with these programs so that you can find the ones you like best before installing the full versions.
Figure 3.5 Kazoo Studio is a fun way to create 3D pictures with drag-and-drop ease.
EducationalMany people today are buying home computers as a great tool for kids to do research and complete homework or other educational projects. You and your children will certainly get a lot out of the one year's subscription to Encarta Online Deluxe or Britannica that comes with various models of HP Pavilion. Encarta and Britannica are an online encyclopedias, but they're much more. There's a dictionary, atlas, and thesauras. Click the HP Learning Adventure icon on your desktop, and you'll have access to more than 500 software programs from The Learning Company. Their programs are already installed on your computer, ready for you to purchase and activate, and, as an HP Pavilion owner, you get one program for free.
UtilitiesUtilities are the handymen of the computing world. They root out computer viruses, make backup copies of files, protect your information, and restore your computer if you have a serious problem. Some utilities that come with your HP Pavilion are McAfee VirusScan for protection from computer viruses, Zero Knowledge Freedom security software, HP Application Recovery and PC System Recovery to help you if you have a serious problem with your software or hardware, and PC Doctor for Windows XP to diagnose problems with your computer operating system.