Understanding Microsoft Windows XP
In this chapter
- What Windows Isand What It Does
- Different Versions of Windows
- Working Your Way Around the Desktop
- Important Windows Operations
- Using the Start Menu
- Understanding Files and Folders
- All the Other Things in Windows
- Getting Help in Windows
As you learned back in Chapter 1, "Understanding Your Computer Hardware," it's the software and operating system that make your hardware work. The operating system for most personal computers is Microsoft Windows, and you need to know how to use Windows to use your PC system.
This chapter gives you a brief overview of what Windows does and how it works and tells you a little bit about software programs in the bargain.
What Windows Isand What It Does
Before you can use your computer to do anything, you need to know how to use Windows. This is because Windows pretty much runs your computer for you; if you don't know your way around Windows, you won't be able to do much of anything on your new PC.
Windows is a piece of software called an operating system. An operating system does what its name impliesit operates your computer system, working in the background every time you turn on your PC.
Equally important, Windows is what you see when you first turn on your computer, after everything turns on and boots up. The "desktop" that fills your screen is part of Windows, as is the taskbar at the bottom of the screen and the big menu that pops up when you click the Start button.