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This chapter is from the book

Finding Your Way Around Windows

When it comes to finding your way around Windows 10, it’s all about learning the different parts of the desktop.

Use the Start Menu

You access all the software programs and utilities on your computer via the Windows Start menu. Your most frequently used programs and basic Windows tools are listed on the left side of the Start menu; your favorite programs are “pinned” as tiles to the right side. To open a specific program, just click the icon or tile.

1circ.jpg Click the Start button (or press the Windows key on your keyboard) to open the Start menu.

2circ.jpg Icons for basic operations (Power, Settings, Pictures, Documents, and your account) are listed on the far left of the Start menu.

3circ.jpg To expand the left section to display icon labels, click the Expand button at the top of the Start menu.

4circ.jpg All applications are listed in the middle portion of the Start menu. You see Recently Added and Most Used apps first, then a complete list of all installed apps, in alphabetical order. Scroll down to view additional apps; click an app to open it. (Some apps are organized in folders by publisher or type of application; click a folder to view its contents.)

5circ.jpg Favorite programs are “pinned” to the right of the main Start menu in tiles. To launch an application, click an item with your mouse, or move to that item using the arrow keys and press Enter on your keyboard.

Use the Taskbar

The taskbar is that area at the bottom of the Windows desktop. Icons on the taskbar can represent frequently used programs, open programs, or open documents.

1circ.jpg Open an application from the taskbar by clicking the application’s icon.

2circ.jpg Search your computer for files and apps, or the Web for additional information, by clicking within the Search box (“Type here to search”), by typing your query, and then pressing the Enter key.

3circ.jpg View all open applications in thumbnail form by clicking the Task View button.

4circ.jpg Open File Explorer by clicking the File Explorer icon.

5circ.jpg The far-right side of the taskbar is called the notification area, and it displays icons for essential Windows operations—sound, networking, power, time and date, and so forth. View more details about any item displayed in this area by clicking that item’s icon.

6circ.jpg Click the up arrow to view icons for more items, normally hidden.

7circ.jpg Open the Windows Action Center, which includes system notifications and key actions, by clicking the Notifications icon.

8circ.jpg Minimize all open applications by clicking the slim Peek button at the far right of the taskbar.

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