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Institute of Applied Technology

Computer Courseware
CustomGuide, Inc. is independent from Certiport, Inc. and not affiliated with Certiport in any manner. This publication may be
used in assisting students to prepare for an INTERNET & COMPUTING CORE CERTIFICATION™ Exam. Neither Certiport,
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© 2005 by CustomGuide, Inc. 1502 Nicollet Avenue South, Suite 1; Minneapolis, MN 55403
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CustomGuide, Inc.
We make a sincere effort to ensure the accuracy of the material described herein; however, CustomGuide makes no warranty,
expressed or implied, with respect to the quality, correctness, reliability, accuracy, or freedom from error of this document or the
products it describes. Data used in examples and sample data files are intended to be fictional. Any resemblance to real
persons or companies is entirely coincidental.
The names of software products referred to in this manual are claimed as trademarks of their respective companies.
CustomGuide is a registered trademark of CustomGuide, Inc.
Table of Contents
Introduction ......................................................................................................................... 7
Chapter One: Computer Hardware ............................................................................ 11
Lesson 1-1: Introduction to Computers ...............................................................12
Lesson 1-2: Types of Computers ............................................................................14
Lesson 1-3: Central Processing Unit (CPU).........................................................16
Lesson 1-4: Measuring Memory ..............................................................................18
Lesson 1-5: RAM and ROM........................................................................................20
Lesson 1-6: Sharing Data, Files, Hardware and Software ............................22
Lesson 1-7: The Front of a Computer and Peripheral Devices....................24
Lesson 1-8: The Inside of a Computer .................................................................26
Lesson 1-9: Specialized Input Devices.................................................................28
Lesson 1-10: Specialized Output Devices ...........................................................30
Lesson 1-11: Hard Disk..............................................................................................32
Lesson 1-12: CD-ROM Drive.....................................................................................34
Lesson 1-13: DVD Drive.............................................................................................36
Lesson 1-14: Floppy Disks ........................................................................................38
Lesson 1-15: Zip and Jaz Drives.............................................................................39
Lesson 1-16: Other Storage Devices ....................................................................40
Lesson 1-17: Identifying Ports ................................................................................42
Lesson 1-18: Installing New Hardware ................................................................44
Lesson 1-19: Selecting a Personal Computer ....................................................45
Lesson 1-20: Computer Performance ...................................................................46
Lesson 1-21: Preventing Theft ................................................................................48
Lesson 1-22: Preventing Damage and other Hazards ....................................49
Lesson 1-23: Computer Maintenance ...................................................................50
Lesson 1-24: Identifying and Solving Computer-related Problems...........52
Chapter One Review ....................................................................................................53
Chapter Two: Computer Software ............................................................................. 59
Lesson 2-1: The Interaction of Hardware and Software................................60
Lesson 2-2: Software Development ......................................................................62
Lesson 2-3: Software Upgrades ..............................................................................63
Lesson 2-4: Word Processing ...................................................................................64
Lesson 2-5: Spreadsheets.........................................................................................65
Lesson 2-6: Databases ...............................................................................................66
Lesson 2-7: Presentation Software........................................................................68
Lesson 2-8: Accounting ..............................................................................................69
Lesson 2-9: Web Browsing........................................................................................70
Lesson 2-10: Web Authoring....................................................................................71
4 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-11: Graphic and Multimedia Programs ..............................................72


Lesson 2-12: Utility Programs..................................................................................73
Chapter Two Review .....................................................................................................74
Chapter Three: Using an Operating System..........................................................77
Lesson 3-1: Operating Systems ..............................................................................78
Lesson 3-2: Understanding Graphical User Interfaces ...................................80
Lesson 3-3: Understanding the Windows 2000 Screen..................................82
Lesson 3-4: Understanding the Parts of a Window..........................................84
Lesson 3-5: Maximizing, Minimizing, and Restoring a Window...................86
Lesson 3-6: Closing a Window .................................................................................88
Lesson 3-7: Moving a Window .................................................................................89
Lesson 3-8: Resizing a Window ...............................................................................90
Lesson 3-9: Shutting Down or Restarting the Computer ..............................92
Lesson 3-10: Using the Task Manager to Shut Down a Program ...............94
Lesson 3-11: Starting a Program............................................................................96
Lesson 3-12: Switching Between Open Windows.............................................98
Lesson 3-13: Adding a Shortcut to the Start Menu .......................................100
Lesson 3-14: Moving and Deleting Desktop Icons and Creating Shortcuts
...........................................................................................................................................102
Lesson 3-15: Understanding Drives, Folders, Files and Storage Devices
...........................................................................................................................................104
Lesson 3-16: Using My Computer ........................................................................106
Lesson 3-17: Navigating to a File or Folder ......................................................108
Lesson 3-18: Creating a Folder and Viewing Folder Details .......................110
Lesson 3-19: Common File Types.........................................................................112
Lesson 3-20: Counting Files in a Folder .............................................................114
Lesson 3-21: Changing File Status.......................................................................116
Lesson 3-22: Sorting Files.......................................................................................118
Lesson 3-23: Using File Extensions and Renaming Files and Folders.....120
Lesson 3-24: Selecting Files and Folders...........................................................122
Lesson 3-25: Duplicating and Moving Files and Folders ..............................124
Lesson 3-26: Using the Folders Pane ..................................................................126
Lesson 3-27: Deleting Files and Folders ............................................................128
Lesson 3-28: Restoring a Deleted File and Emptying the Recycle Bin ...130
Lesson 3-29: Finding a File .....................................................................................132
Lesson 3-30: Viewing Recently Used Files ........................................................134
Lesson 3-31: Formatting a Floppy Disk..............................................................136
Lesson 3-32: Common Problems Associated with Files ...............................137
Lesson 3-33: A Look at the Control Panel .........................................................138
Lesson 3-34: Changing the Date and Time ......................................................140
Lesson 3-35: Adding Wallpaper to the Desktop ..............................................142
Lesson 3-36: Changing Screen Colors ................................................................144
Lesson 3-37: Adjusting the Screen Resolution................................................146
Lesson 3-38: Adjusting the Screen Color Depth.............................................148
Lesson 3-39: Using a Screen Saver.....................................................................150
Lesson 3-40: Changing System and Program Sounds..................................152
Lesson 3-41: Adjusting the Mouse .......................................................................154
Lesson 3-42: Changing the Default Printer and Printer Settings .............156
Lesson 3-43: Installing New Software ................................................................158
Lesson 3-44: Removing Software.........................................................................160
Chapter Three Review ...............................................................................................162

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Introduction 5
Index................................................................................................................................... 175

Institute of Applied Technology


Introduction
Welcome to CustomGuide: Microsoft Word 2003. CustomGuide courseware allows
instructors to create and print manuals that contain the specific lessons that best meet their
students’ needs. In other words, this book was designed and printed just for you.
Unlike most other computer-training courseware, each CustomGuide manual is uniquely
designed to be three books in one:
• Step-by-step instructions make this manual great for use in an instructor-led class or as a
self-paced tutorial.
• Detailed descriptions, illustrated diagrams, informative tables, and an index make this
manual suitable as a reference guide when you want to learn more about a topic or
process.
• The handy Quick Reference box, found on the last page of each lesson, is great for when
you need to know how to do something quickly.
CustomGuide manuals are designed both for users who want to learn the basics of the
software and those who want to learn more advanced features.
Here’s how a CustomGuide manual is organized:

Chapters
Each manual is divided into several chapters. Aren’t sure if you’re ready for a chapter? Look
at the prerequisites that appear at the beginning of each chapter. They will tell you what you
should know before you start the chapter.

Lessons
Each chapter contains several lessons on related topics. Each lesson explains a new skill or
topic and contains a step-by-step exercise to give you hands-on-experience.

Chapter Reviews
A review is included at the end of each chapter to help you absorb and retain all that you have
learned. This review contains a brief recap of everything covered in the chapter’s lessons, a
quiz to assess how much you’ve learned (and which lessons you might want to look over
again), and a homework assignment where you can put your new skills into practice. If you’re
having problems with a homework exercise, you can always refer back to the lessons in the
chapter to get help.
8 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

How to Use the Lessons


Every topic is presented on two facing pages, so that you can concentrate on the lesson
without having to worry about turning the page. Since this is a hands-on course, each lesson
contains an exercise with step-by-step instructions for you to follow.
To make learning easier, every exercise follows certain conventions:
• Anything you’re supposed to click, drag, or press appears like this.
• Anything you’re supposed to type appears like this.
• This book never assumes you know where (or what) something is. The first time you’re
told to click something, a picture of what you’re supposed to click appears either in the
margin next to the step or in the illustrations at the beginning of the lesson.

Illustrations show what your


screen should look like as you 24 Microsoft Excel 2000
follow the lesson. They also 24 Microsoft Excel 2000
describe controls, dialog boxes,
and processes. Lesson
Lesson4-2:
4-2:Formatting
FormattingValues
Values
Figure 4-3
TheFigure
Numbers tab4-3
of the
Format
The Cells dialogtabbox.
Numbers of the Preview of the
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format
of the
selected number
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Select a number
Expense Report format
worksheet values Report
before category
The Expense
being formatted.
worksheet values before
Select a number
being formatted.
Figure 4-5 format
Select a number
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Expense Report
worksheet values Report
The Expense after being
formatted.
worksheet values after being
formatted.
An easy-to-understand
Figure 4-3
introduction explains the task or Figure 4-3
topic covered in the lesson and
what you’ll be doing in the
exercise.

Figure 4-4 Figure 4-5


Figure 4-4 Figure 4-5

In this lesson, you will learn how to apply number formats. Applying number formatting changes
You can also format howIn values are displayed—it
this lesson, you will learn doesn’t
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apply the actual
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by selectingtoolbar format
sign for you. currency (such as $548.67), Excel will automatically apply the currency number
to indicate
Format
or by → Cells
selecting format for you.
The Formatting toolbar has five buttons (Currency, Percent, Comma, Increase Decimal, and
from the menu
Format and
→ Cells The Formatting
Decrease Decimal)toolbar
you canhas usefive buttons apply
to quickly (Currency,
commonPercent, Comma,
number Increase
formats. If noneDecimal,
of these and
buttons
clicking
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Number tab. hasDecrease
what you’reDecimal)
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you to quickly apply
to use the common
Format Cellsnumber formats.
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formatting Cells
margin, showing you what to dialog
We’ll usebox
bothisn’t as fastinasthis
methods using the toolbar, but it gives you more precision and formatting options.
lesson.
We’ll use both methods in this lesson.
click or look for. 1. Select the cell range D5:D17 and click the Comma Style button on
Comma Style 1.theSelect the celltoolbar.
Formatting range D5:D17 and click the Comma Style button on
Comma
button Style theadds
Excel Formatting toolbar.(the comma) and two decimal places to the selected cell
a hundreds separator
button range.
Excel adds a hundreds separator (the comma) and two decimal places to the selected cell
Clear step-by-step instructions range.

guide you through the exercise.


Anything you need to click
appears like this.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Introduction 9

• When you see a keyboard instruction like “press <Ctrl> + <B>,” you should press and
hold the first key (<Ctrl> in this example) while you press the second key (<B> in this
example). Then, after you’ve pressed both keys, you can release them.
• There is usually more than one way to do something in Word. The exercise explains the
most common method of doing something, while the alternate methods appear in the
margin. Use whatever approach feels most comfortable for you.
• Important terms appear in italics the first time they’re presented.
• Whenever something is especially difficult or can easily go wrong, you’ll see a:
NOTE:
immediately after the step, warning you of pitfalls that you could encounter if you’re not
careful.
• Our exclusive Quick Reference box appears at the end of every lesson. You can use it to
review the skills you’ve learned in the lesson and as a handy reference—when you need
to know how to do something fast and don’t need to step through the sample exercises.

Formatting a Worksheet 25
Formatting a Worksheet 25

2. Click cell A4 and type Annual Sales.


2. Click cell A4inand
The numbers type Annual
this column Sales. as currency.
should be formatted Anything you need to type
The numbers in this column should be formatted as currency.
3. Press <Enter> to confirm your entry and overwrite the existing appears like this.
3. Press <Enter> to confirm your entry and overwrite the existing
information.
information.
4. Select the cell range G5:G17 and click the Currency Style button on
4. Select the cell range
the Formatting G5:G17 and click the Currency Style button on
toolbar. Currency Style
theA Formatting
dollar sign and toolbar.
two decimal places are added to the values in the selected cell range.
Currency Style
button
A dollar sign and two decimal places are added to the values in the selected cell range. Otherbutton
Ways to Apply Whenever there is more than
5. Select the cell range F5:F17 and click the Percent Style button on Currency
Other Ways to Formatting:
Apply
5. Select the cell range
the Formatting F5:F17 and click the Percent Style button on
toolbar. Currency
• Type theFormatting:
dollar sign ($) one way to do something, the
theExcel
Formatting toolbar. • Typebefore you enter
the dollar a number.
sign ($)
applies percentage style number formatting to the information in the Tax column. before you enter a number. most common method is
Notice
Excel therepercentage
applies isn’t a decimal place—Excel
style number rounds
formatting to any decimal places
the information to the
in the Taxnearest
column.whole
number.
Notice thereThat
isn’tisn’t suitable
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rounds a decimal
any decimal placesplace tonearest
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whole presented in the exercise and
number. Thattax
the exact isn’t suitable here—you want to include a decimal place to accurately show
rate.
the exact tax rate. the alternate methods are
6. With the Tax cell range still selected, click the Increase Decimal
6. With the Tax
button cellFormatting
on the range still toolbar.
selected, click the Increase Decimal presented in the margin.
button on the
Excel adds Formatting
one decimal place totoolbar.
the information in the tax rate column.
Excel adds
Next, youone decimal
want placethe
to change to date
the information
format in thein date
the tax rate column.
column. There isn’t a “Format Date”
button
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want change thetoolbar, so you
date format inwill havecolumn.
the date to format the date
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Date”
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Format Cells dialogtoolbar
The Formatting box. is great for quickly applying the most common formatting options to
Thecells, but it doesn’t
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by either the shortcut menu.Cells from the menu or right-clicking
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and selecting Format Cells from the shortcut menu.
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7. With
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menu, cell range still from
4-Mar-97 selected, select
the Type Format
list → click
box and Cells OK.
from Quick Reference
Quick Reference
the menu, select 4-Mar-97 from the Type list box and click OK. To Apply Number shortcuts covered in the lesson.
That’s all there is to formatting values–not as difficult as you thought it would be, was it? The To Formatting:
Apply Number
following
That’s table
all there lists
is to the five buttons
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values–not Formatting
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youthe appropriate
want number
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Table 4-2: Number Formatting Buttons on the Formatting Toolbar the formatting
appropriatebutton(s)
number on the
Table 4-2:
Button Number Formatting
Name Example Buttons
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formatting toolbar.
button(s) on the
Button Name Example Formatting
Or... toolbar.
Currency $1,000.00 Formatting
Adds a dollar sign, comma, and two decimal places.
Currency $1,000.00 Adds a dollar sign, comma, and two decimal places.
Or...• Select the cell or cell range you CustomGuide’s exclusive Quick
100% Displays the value as a percentage with no decimal places. • Select
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or cell rangeFormat
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Comma 1,000 Separates thousands with a comma. the to apply.formatting you want
number
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1000.00
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Increases the number of digits after the decimal point by one
toOr...
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Institute of Applied Technology


Chapter One:
Computer Hardware
Chapter Objectives: ; Prerequisites
• Learn the basic functions of various parts of a computer • A desire to learn about
computers.
• Discover the various types of computers and their roles
• Understand what a CPU does
• Learn how memory is measured
• See what’s on the front, back, and inside of a computer
• Learn about specialized input and output devices
• Understand the types and purposes of storage media
• Learn about the various ports on a computer
• Understand how hardware devices are installed on a
computer
• Understand what determines a computer’s performance
• What you can do to prevent theft or damage
• Routine maintenance that can be performed by the user

Hardware is any physical part of a computer that you can see or touch. A computer’s monitor,
CD-ROM or DVD drive, mouse, keyboard, and printer are all different types of hardware.
This chapter takes a closer look at the physical parts that constitute a computer.
This chapter is broken up into several sections, since there are several different categories of
hardware devices. First we’ll learn the basic functions of various parts of the computer and
examine processing devices, such as computer’s CPU and memory. You’ll finally understand
what those technical sounding words megahertz and gigabyte mean. From there we’ll take a
good hard look at a computer from the front, back, and yes, even inside. Then we’ll move on
to input devices, such as the keyboard and mouse, and output devices, such as the monitor and
printer. The last part of this chapter discusses storage devices, such as hard drives and CD-
ROM drives, and basic information regarding computer performance and routine maintenance
that you can perform to keep your computer running in tip-tip shape.
That’s a lot of material to cover, so let’s get started!
12 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-1: Introduction to


Computers
Figure 1-1
A typical computer setup.

Figure 1-1

Your desk probably contains a jumble of equipment commonly known as a computer. But
what is all that stuff? What does a computer do? Unlike many other tools or appliances that
have limited purposes, a computer can do any number of things:
• Write letters
• Browse the Internet
• Send e-mail messages to people around the world
• Play games
• Help you balance your budget
…and that’s just the beginning of what you can do with a computer!
Two basic components make up a computer: hardware and software. You simply can’t have
one without the other. All computer parts that you can physically see or touch are called
Your computer setup
hardware. Hardware includes the computer’s monitor, case, keyboard, mouse, and printer.
may differ from the Computer programs that tell hardware how to operate are called software. We will learn more
one shown in Figure about software in the next chapter.
1-1. For example,
you might have a Figure 1-1 shows an example of a typical computer setup and its components, but don’t worry
computer case that if your setup is different. More than likely, you have all the parts that you need, and those
is tall and skinny parts are properly connected. In any case, Table 1-1: Parts of a Computer provides more
(tower case) or a flat details about each individual component.
screen monitor. IT, short for Information Technology, is the broad subject related to computers and managing
and processing information, especially within large organizations. Many large companies
have departments full of computer experts called IT departments.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 13

Table 1-1: Parts of a Computer


Component Description
Case or System The main computer box, technically known as the system unit, is the most
Unit important part of a computer. It contains the guts and brains of the computer—
something we’ll talk about later. The system unit contains a lot of holes or ports
where you plug in the rest of the computer system.
Monitor The monitor resembles a television set, and is where the computer displays
information.
Keyboard The keyboard is the thing you type on to tell your computer what to do.
Mouse Like the keyboard, the mouse is another input device that you use to
communicate with your computer.
Speakers Most computers can make sounds, just like a stereo system. In fact, you can
even listen to audio CD’s on most computers or watch DVDs.
Printer A printer is where a computer writes down information or output, onto paper, or
a hardcopy.

Quick
Reference
A Typical Computer
Includes the Following:
• System unit
• Monitor
• Keyboard
• Mouse
• Speakers
• Printer
Hardware:
• A computer item you can
physically see or touch.
Software:
• A computer program that
tells computer hardware
how to operate.
Information Technology
(IT):
• Information Technology is
the broad subject related
to computers and
managing and processing
information.

Institute of Applied Technology


14 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-2: Types of


Computers
L IC3 There are several different types of computer systems out there. Here's a very brief description
Objective: 1.1.1.1, 1.1.1.2, of the most common ones…
1.1.1.3, and 1.1.1.9
Req. File: None Table 1-1: Types of Computers
Computer Description
A supercomputer is the most powerful computer available at a given time.
Capacity: Gargantuan – the largest in the world
Speed: Extremely fast – the fastest supercomputer is the Earth Simulator,
located at the Yokohama Institute for Earth Sciences in Japan.
Supercomputer
Cost: Extremely expensive – tens of millions of dollars
Users: Only used by very large organizations that need their immense
calculating power – weather forecasting and climate research are two of the
most common uses of supercomputers
A mainframe is a big, powerful, expensive computer that can support many
users at the same time. Large systems such as these centralize data
processing and storage.
Capacity: Enormous - the capacity of several hundred or even thousands of
PCs
Speed: Very fast - much, much faster than a PC
Mainframe Cost: Very, very expensive - can usually only be afforded by large
organizations
Users: Only used by large businesses and organizations
Minicomputers are mid-sized, multi-user computers that are smaller and less
powerful than mainframe computers. Minicomputers are commonly used as
servers in a network.

Minicomputer Capacity: Less than a mainframe computer, but greater than a microcomputer
Speed: Slower than a mainframe computer, faster than a microcomputer
Cost: $18,000 - $500,000
Users: Only organizations that cannot afford or do not need the processing
power of a mainframe system
A network is a group of computers that are connected so that they can share
equipment and information. Most people on a network use workstations, which
are simply PCs that are connected to the network. A server is a central
computer where users on the network can save their files and information.
Capacity: (Workstation) Same as a PC, only needs a network card
(Server) Greater than a PC, often more than 100 GE
Speed: (Workstation) Same as a PC
Networked (Server) Generally faster than a PC, may use multiple CPUs
Computer Cost: (Workstation) Same as a PC
(Server) More expensive than a PC but not as costly as a mainframe
Users: (Workstation) People in a networked office or organization
(Server) Generally a network administrator or engineer

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 15

Computer Description
A microcomputer is a small, single-user computer with a microprocessor as its
CPU. Desktop computers, laptop computers, tablet PCs, and many types of
Microcomputer
handheld devices are all types of microcomputers. See Table 1-2: Types of
Microcomputers for more information.

Table 1-2: Types of Microcomputers


Computer Description
A PC is a personal computer, originally designed by IBM way back in 1981.
Many different companies make PCs, but all of them are IBM-compatible.
What this means, according to Bill Gates, is that they will all run Microsoft
Windows.
Capacity: Average hard disk size is 20 GB to 80 GB
PC Speed: Fast. Average speed is from 1 GHz to 3 GHz
Cost: Fairly inexpensive - under $1,000 - and getting cheaper every day!
Users: Just about everyone uses a PC! Homes, offices, schools…

Developed by Apple, a Macintosh is a computer, but it is NOT a PC. Macs


have a different operating system and use their own software and hardware.
Capacity: Average hard disk size is 20 GB to 80 GB
Speed: Fast. Average speed is from 500 MHz to 2 GHz
Mac Cost: Fairly inexpensive, but usually more than an equivalent PC
Users: Just about everyone, especially in the education and design fields
Quick
A laptop, or notebook, is a lighter and more portable version of a PC or Mac Reference
that can run on batteries.
Different Types of
Capacity: Average hard disk size is 10 GB to 40 GB Computers Include:
Speed: Fast, but slightly less than a PC. Average speed is from 700 MHz to 2 • Supercomputers
Laptop GHz • Mainframes
Cost: Fairly inexpensive, but more than an equivalent PC
Users: People on the move, especially business people and students • Minicomputers
• Networked computers
A PDA, or Personal Data Assistant, is a handheld computer that is generally (Workstations, Servers)
used to keep track of appointments and addresses.
• Microcomputers (PCs,
Capacity: Much smaller than a PC - 8 MB to 64 MB of storage space
Macs, Laptops,
Speed: Much slower than a PC - 8 MHz to 266 MHz
Handhelds/PDAs)
Handheld/PDA Cost: Expensive when compared to the capacities of a PC
Users: Business people and others who need to be organized Other Types of Devices
that Contain a
In addition to computers, there are also many other types of electronic devices that contain a Microprocessor Include:
microprocessor. Interactive books, cellular phones, and even calculators are all examples of • Interactive books
computing devices that have been designed for specific purposes. Various types of non-
computer equipment, such as mechanical devices and industrial equipment, contain • Cellular phones
microprocessors and memory as well, allowing them to process information in order to work • Calculators
more effectively and efficiently. • Mechanical devices
(clocks, etc.)
• Industrial equipment
(engines, etc.)

Institute of Applied Technology


16 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-3: Central


Processing Unit (CPU)
Figure 1-2
The Intel Pentium 4 is the
fastest and most recent
CPU available.
Figure 1-3 Central
Processing
The CPU can get hot! Unit (CPU)
Most CPUs have a built-in
fan to keep them from
burning out.

Figure 1-2
Figure 1-3

L IC3 Inside the computer case, hidden amongst all the wiring and gizmos, is a particularly
Objective: 1.1.1.4, 1.1.1.5, important part of the computer known as the central processing unit (or CPU, for short). The
and 1.1.2.2 CPU is also known as the computer chip (because that’s what it is) or the microprocessor (or
Req. File: None processor, for short).
Some say the CPU is the “brain” of the computer while others describe it as the heart. In any
case, it’s the thing that makes your computer a computer. The CPU does all the work: It
calculates, it processes, and it keeps things running smoothly. You might think of it as a
talented stage manager. When it does its behind-the-scenes job well, you don’t notice it; you
simply enjoy the performance.
Originally, CPUs were given wildly inventive names like 8088. The next few names in the
series—the 286, the 386, and the 486—were actually just shortened names for 80286, 80386,
and 80486. Then, what would have been the 586 was dubbed the Pentium. After that, the
A CPU’s speed is
names became rather mysterious: Pentium Pro and Pentium MMX. Finally, the names
returned to a semi-ordered numbering system (albeit a mix of Roman and Arabic numerals):
measured in
Pentium II, Pentium III, and Pentium 4. And that’s where we are at the moment. Both the
megahertz (MHz) or
Pentium III and the Pentium 4 are still quite common.
gigahertz (GHz).
Intel makes most CPUs. In fact, Intel is the company that came up with the name Pentium.
However, AMD and VIA Technologies are two other well-known CPU manufacturers. Their
CPUs are less expensive and use a different naming system (such as the AMD Athlon and the
AMD Duron). Intel actually makes a less expensive version of the Pentium as well, which it
calls the Celeron. The Celeron does what the Pentium does, but not as quickly.
Speaking of which, speed is what the CPU is all about, and each successive version of the
CPU gets progressively faster. A CPU’s speed is measured in megahertz (MHz) or, for newer
models, in gigahertz (GHz). A megahertz equals millions of cycles per second; a gigahertz
equals billions of cycles per second. Higher numbers equate to higher speeds. You might see
an Intel Pentium 4 at 3.06 GHz, a Pentium III at 1.40 GHz, and a Celeron at 2.20 GHz.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 17

Another common measure of a CPU is how many bits it can handle at a time. A bit is the
tiniest piece of information processed by a computer. Eight bits make up one byte, and one
byte equals one character. Computers used to only be able to handle 8 or 16 bits; now they’re
up to 32 and 64 at a time. Don’t worry if all of this seems a bit confusing—we’ll cover bits
and bytes in greater detail in a later lesson.

Table 1-3: Common CPUs


CPU Speed Description
1 GHz to Intel Pentium 4 Processor
3 GHz The Pentium 4 is Intel’s most recent and fastest generation of CPUs,
with processing speeds over 3 GHz.

450 MHz to Intel Pentium III Processor


1 GHz Launched in 1999, Pentium III CPUs are still found in some new
computers.

1.06 to Intel Celeron Processor


2 GHz Intel’s Celeron CPU is an inexpensive processor designed for people
on a budget. Celeron processors are very similar to Pentium
processors, but they have less built-in memory.
500 MHz to Intel Xeon Processor
3 GHz Don’t expect to see any Xeon-based computers at your local computer
store—it’s designed for high-end servers.

850 MHz to AMD Athlon Processor


2.2 GHz The Athlon processor is equivalent to Pentium processors—only it’s
less expensive.
1.5 GHz to AMD Sempron Processor
1.8 GHz The Sempron CPU is AMD’s answer to Intel’s Celeron processor. It has
less built-in memory and is designed for people on a budget.
Quick
Reference
Older Here’s a summary of the other most common—and obsolete—
Processors processors out there: • The CPU, or Central
Processing Unit, is the
Processor Release Date Average Speed computer’s main chip. It
Pentium II 1997 266 MHz calculates and processes
Pentium 1993 133 MHz information.
486 1989 66 MHz
386 1985 25 MHz CPU Speed is Measured
286 1982 12.5 MHz In:
8088 1979 8 MHz • Megahertz (MHz)
• Gigahertz (GHz)
CPU Speed is Measured
In:
• Intel Pentium 4
• Intel Pentium III
• Intel Celeron
• AMD Athlon
• AMD Sempron

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18 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-4: Measuring Memory


Figure 1-4
A hard drive might have
60GB of memory.
Figure 1-5
A recordable CD (CD-R)
can have up to 700MB of
memory.
Figure 1-6 Figure 1-5
Figure 1-4
A memory chip might have
512MB of memory.
Figure 1-7
A zip disk can have
between 100MB and
250MB of memory.

Figure 1-7

L IC3 Figure 1-6

Objective: 1.1.1.6, 1.1.1.7


Most people know that a computer has memory. But what does that really mean? You often
Req. File: None hear techies toss around numbers like “60GB hard drive.” Okay, that sounds impressive, but
what does it tell you? This lesson breaks memory into measurable units.
The first thing you need to know is that, at its most basic level, a computer only understands
the concept of “on and off.” On is represented by the number one (1); off is represented by the
number zero (0). Everything that a computer does is based on this combination of ones and
zeros, which is known as the binary system. These ones and zeros are digits, known as bits,
which are the smallest memory unit. The term bit is short for binary digit.
The second thing you need to know is that a computer saves information in bytes, not bits. So
what is a byte? The term byte is short for binary digits eight. So one byte is made up of eight
bits. And a byte is the equivalent of a character, which can be a letter, a number, or a symbol.
So let’s say that you’re a self-involved poet whose latest creation is simply titled “I.” That
one-word title would equal one byte.
Of course, it would be fairly tedious if a computer stored everything in single bytes. The next
largest unit is the kilobyte. A kilobyte (abbreviated K or KB) equals 1,024 bytes or characters.
Now let’s say you’re a short-story writer. The one-page, double-spaced masterpiece you
Everything that a
submit to your editor would be the equivalent of a kilobyte.
computer does is After the kilobyte, the next largest unit is the megabyte. A megabyte (abbreviated M or MB)
based on a equals 1,048,576 bytes or characters. If you were a novelist, your latest bestseller would equal
combination of ones a megabyte.
and zeros, which is
known as the binary
system.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 19

The next unit after the megabyte is the gigabyte. A gigabyte (abbreviated G or GB) equals
1,073,741,824 bytes or characters. Let’s pretend you are a researcher. A whole shelf of books
devoted to your favorite subject would be the equivalent of a gigabyte.
Finally, after the gigabyte comes the terabyte. A terabyte (abbreviated T or TB) equals
1,099,511,627,776 bytes or characters. Let’s imagine that you’re an egomaniac who owns an MB is an
entire bookstore filled only with books by authors you like. Such a single-minded store would abbreviation for
be the equivalent of a terabyte. megabyte. GB is an
abbreviation for
Okay, let’s review. The following table summarizes all the units of memory.
gigabyte.

Table 1-4: Bits and Bytes


Unit Abbreviation Size Example Equivalent
Bit — — — An atom or speck, the
smallest unit of
memory.

Byte — 8 bits A single letter, a Quick


number, or a symbol. Reference
Computers Function
based on the Binary
System:
Kilobyte K or KB 1,024 bytes A one-page, double-
spaced letter. • On is represented by a
one (1).
• Off is represented by a
zero (0).
Megabyte M or MB 1,048,576 bytes A best-selling novel. • Ones and zeros are
digits, known as bits.
Bit:
• Short for binary digit.
Gigabyte G or GB 1,073,741,824 bytes An encyclopedia set. • Smallest memory unit.
• Eight bits equal one byte.
Byte:
• Short for binary digits
eight.
Terabyte T or TB 1,099, 511,627,776 A bookstore.
bytes • One byte equals one
character (letter, number,
or symbol).
Kilobyte (K or KB):
• 1,024 bytes
Megabyte (M or MB):
• 1,048,576 bytes
Gigabyte (G or GB):
• 1,073,741,824 bytes
Terabyte (T or TB):
• 1,099, 511,627,776 bytes

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20 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-5: RAM and ROM


Figure 1-8
RAM, or random-access
memory, works like a
notepad; you can read
from it and write to it.
Figure 1-9
ROM, or read-only
memory, works like a
novel, you can read from it
but not write to it.

Figure 1-8 Figure 1-9

L IC3 So now you know that computer memory is measured in various byte-sized units: kilobytes,
Objective: 1.1.1.6 and megabytes, gigabytes, petrabytes, and philobytes. Okay, those last two were just made up to
1.1.1.8 see if you were paying attention.
Req. File: None Next you need to know that computers have two major types of memory: random-access
memory (or RAM) and read-only memory (or ROM). Let’s discuss these two types of memory
in greater detail.
• RAM (random-access memory)
When someone at a computer superstore tells you how much memory a new computer
has, they’re really talking about RAM. RAM is the computer’s main memory, which it
uses to process information. Whenever you work with a file on your computer or open a
program, the data in that file or program is temporarily stored in RAM. RAM is volatile,
When you work with however; the data is stored only as long as the computer has power. Once you shut off
a file on your your computer, the data is gone. In order to avoid losing important data, you can and
computer, you’re should save your files on a regular basis (this is where storage comes in, but more on that
using RAM. later). Think of RAM like a notebook: You can read from it and write to it. Technically, it
could be called “read and write memory.” And, as with a notebook, you can overwrite it
many, many times—provided you have an eraser!
• ROM (read-only memory)
ROM is the computer’s low-level memory, which it uses to perform its most basic
functions. This memory is permanent; the data remains even if you shut off the computer.
This only makes sense because ROM is required to restart your computer. You never hear
people discuss how much ROM you have because the manufacturer usually installs it,
and you never touch it. It does all the behind-the-scenes work and then disappears once
you’re underway, much like a party planner. You can also think of ROM like a novel: You
can read from it, but you can’t write to it (and thus, its name).
Need some examples? Take a look at the following everyday computer operations to see how
RAM and ROM take part in the flow of information:
• Starting or “booting” the computer: Information in ROM provides instructions for the
microprocessor to load the operating system from storage to RAM.
• Starting a computer application: The microprocessor loads the application from storage to
RAM.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 21

• Creating documents: The file is stored in RAM until it is saved.


• Closing files and exiting an application: The file and the application are both removed
from RAM.
The following table illustrates the main differences between RAM and ROM.

Table 1-5: Comparing RAM and ROM


RAM ROM
Random-access memory Read-only memory

Main memory. Low-level memory.

Necessary to process information (example: work Necessary to perform the most basic functions
with a file). (example: start the computer).
Quick
Volatile: If not saved, data disappears when you Nonvolatile: Data remains even when you shut off
Reference
shut off the computer’s power. It’s temporary. the computer’s power. It’s permanent.
Computers have two types
Often discussed when buying a computer. Seldom mentioned when buying a computer. of memory:
• Random-access memory
You can read from and write to it. Comparable to a You can read from it, but you can’t write to it. (RAM).
notepad. Comparable to a novel. • Read-only memory
(ROM).
RAM:
• Computer’s main
memory, which is used to
process information
(example: work with a
file).
Or…
• Volatile: Unless saved,
data disappears when
you shut off the computer.
• Comparable to a
notebook; you can read
from it and write to it.
ROM:
• Computer’s low-level
memory, which is used to
perform its most basic
functions (example: start
the computer).
• Nonvolatile: Data remains
even when you shut off
the computer. It’s
permanent.
• You can read from it, but
you can’t write to it.
Comparable to a novel;
you can only read it

Institute of Applied Technology


22 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-6: Sharing Data,


Files, Hardware and Software
Figure 1-10
An example of how data is
shared in a network.

Shared files
Server

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.1.8, 1.1.1.9,
1.1.1.10 and 1.1.1.11
Req. File: None Workstation Workstation

Network
Figure 1-10

In Lesson 1-2: Types of Computers, you learned how large systems (such as mainframe
computers or minicomputers) centralize data processing and storage. This lesson will show
you how users interact with these centralized systems.
First of all, computers integrate into larger systems in a variety of different ways, including:
• Terminals that are connected to minicomputers or mainframe systems—describes the
three types of computer terminals that can be used with mainframe systems.
• Desktop computers connected to minicomputers or mainframe systems.
• Desktop computers connected to a network.
• Desktop computers, laptops, and handheld devices connected to larger systems, such as
networks or the Internet.
Users can access data that is stored on a larger system from their very own computer in a
process called networking.
A network is several computers, printers, and other devices that are connected together with
cables or radio signals. This allows the computers to “talk” with each other and share
information and resources (usually files and printers). Networks vary in size; they can be as
small as two computers connected to each other by a cable, or they can span the entire
globe—the Internet is actually the world’s largest network.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 23

Networks allow users to:


• Share Information: Networks allow you to share files and programs. Before networks,
people had to save their files on floppy disks to exchange information. This wasted a lot
of time—especially if the computers were located in opposite ends of the building!
• Share Equipment: Computers connected to a network can share equipment to reduce
costs. For example, rather than buying a printer for each computer, everyone can share
one central network printer.
• Use Network Software: Software designed for networks lets people send and receive
electronic mail (e-mail) with other users on the network, schedule meetings with other
users on the network, and share databases. Using software stored on a network frees up
resources and storage capacity on the individual PCs that are connected to the network.
In a network, PCs are connected to a larger system called a network server, which is usually a
minicomputer or workstation. A server is a central computer where users on the network can
save their files and information.
Information can be easily transferred in a network by copying data from one PC to a shared
network storage device (such as the server’s hard disk), and then copying the data from the
shared network storage device to the other PC. Data kept on a network server’s hard disk is
accessible to all users connected to the network. Transferring data from PC to PC over a
network eliminates the need to transfer data using floppy disks, CD-Rs or CD-RWs.

Table 1-6: Terminals Connected to Mainframe Systems


Computer Terminal Type Description
Intelligent Terminal A stand-alone terminal that has its own processing capability.
Smart Terminal A stand-alone terminal that has its own processing capability, but
less processing capability than an intelligent terminal.
Dumb Terminal A stand-alone terminal that has no processing capability of its
own. Dumb terminals rely completely on the mainframe’s
processor.

Quick
Reference
Networks Allow Users to:
• Share information
• Share equipment
• Share software
Types of Terminals
Connected to Mainframe
Systems:
• Intelligent Terminal
• Smart Terminal
• Dumb Terminal

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24 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-7: The Front of a


Computer and Peripheral
Devices
Figure 1-11
The front of a computer
case.

Scanner

Monitor
L IC3 Printer

Objective: 1.1.2.1 and Speakers


1.1.2.2
Req. File: None
CD-ROM or System unit
DVD player Floppy drive

Keyboard
Mouse

Figure 1-11

The system unit or computer case is that plastic box that sits under your monitor or desk and
is covered with slots, buttons, and lights. Computer cases come in several shapes and sizes.
Older computers often have the horizontal desktop case, which has gradually been replaced
by the vertical tower case. Manufacturers are now phasing out the tallest towers because the
compact size of the smallest tower, known as a mini-tower, is attractive to consumers.
Everything outside of and connected to the system unit is called peripherals. You can add
dozens of peripherals and accessories to make it more useful and fun. Common peripherals
include printers, scanners, external hard drives, CD-ROM drives, and digital cameras. Many
peripherals are considered to be input devices, because they allow you to talk to your
computer by inputting information. Other peripherals are output devices, because they let your
computer talk back to you. One more thing: all peripherals are considered to be part of a
computer’s hardware.

Table 1-7: What’s on the Front or Outside of a Computer Case?


Item Description
System Unit or A plastic or metal case with slots, buttons, and lights in the front and holes
Computer Case in the back. This is the most important part of a computer because it
contains the Central Processing Unit (CPU). The system unit directs the
computer, performs calculations, and stores information.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 25

Item Description
Floppy Drive Reads and writes to 3½-inch floppy disks. A floppy disk can store about
1.5 MB of information—about as much as a novel.
Hard Drive or Hard Disk The computer’s main, long-term storing device. Unlike floppy disks and
(Not shown) CD-ROMs, you typically cannot remove a hard disk.
CD-ROM or DVD Drive CD-ROMs and DVDs for your computer can store lots of information and
look exactly like CDs for your stereo and DVDs for your home DVD
player. In fact, you can listen to audio CDs on a CD-ROM drive and even
watch DVD movies on a DVD drive.
The only real difference between a CD-ROM and a DVD is how much
information they can store. A CD-ROM can store approximately 650MB
(megabytes) of information, while a DVD can store much more—up to
17 GB (gigabytes) or 17,000MB on a double-sided DVD.
Most CD-ROMs and DVD are read-only, meaning you can’t write
information to them. You can buy special CD-ROM and DVD drives that
can write or burn information to special CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R, and DVD-
RW discs.
Zip Drive A special type of disk drive that can read and write to Zip disks. A Zip disk
(Not shown) is a lot like a floppy disk, although they are faster and can store more
information—from 100 to 250MB (megabytes).
Tape Backup A device that you can use to store backups, or copies, of the information
(Not shown) on a computer’s hard drive.
Keyboard The keyboard is the thing you type on to tell your computer what to do.
Input Devices

Mouse Like the keyboard, the mouse is another input device that you use to
communicate with your computer.
Scanner Scanners work like photocopiers, except the image is translated into a
digital image in your computer rather than copied onto paper.
Monitor The monitor resembles a television set, and is where the computer
displays information.
Output Devices

Speakers If visible, your computer speakers are similar to those on a stereo system
(or at least a cheap stereo system). They allow your computer to play Quick
sounds. Reference
Printer A printer is where a computer writes down information or output, onto Components Visible from
paper, or a hardcopy. the Outside of the System
Unit May Include:
• Floppy drive
• CD-ROM or DVD drive
• Zip drive or tape backup
• Keyboard
• Mouse
• Scanner
• Monitor
• Speakers
• Printer

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26 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-8: The Inside of a


Computer
Power supply Central Processing Unit (CPU) ROM-BIOS
Figure 1-12
The side view of the guts
of a tower case.
CD-ROM or
DVD-ROM drive

L IC3
Floppy disk
Objective: 1.1.2.2 Ports drive

Req. File: None


Hard disk drive
(HDD)
Expansion
cards

Expansion
slots

Motherboard

Figure 1-12
Random-access memory (RAM)

Now that you know what’s on the outside, let’s crack open that mysterious computer case and
look inside. But no tools required—we’ve done all the work for you. Just compare Figure
1-12 with Table 1-8: What’s Inside a Computer Case? to see what’s important.

Everything plugs into Table 1-8: What’s Inside a Computer Case?


a computer’s Item Description
motherboard.
Motherboard The main piece of circuitry in a computer. Everything connects to or is wired
to the motherboard.
Central Processing The computer’s brain or heart, the CPU, is a computer’s main chip. The CPU,
Unit (CPU) or microprocessor, is really nothing more than an incredibly fast and powerful
calculator.
System Clock A system clock is an electronic device that issues a steady, high frequency
signal that synchronizes all the internal components of a computer. As the
computer’s clock speed increases, the number of instructions the CPU can
execute per second also increases.
Hard Drive The hard drive, or hard disk, is the primary storage area of a computer.
Random Access A computer’s temporary storage place, where it gets its work done. For
Memory (RAM) example, when you use a word processor to type a letter, the letter is stored
in the computer’s memory.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 27

Item Description
ROM-BIOS A computer’s ROM-BIOS (stands for Read Only Memory – Basic
Input/Output System) is a special chip with instructions for the computer to
communicate with other hardware parts.
Expansion Slot An expansion slot lets you add more features and capabilities to a computer
by plugging in expansion cards.
Expansion Card A card that allows you to expand your computer’s capabilities, such as a
modem card, a network card, a video card, or a sound card.
A video card is an expansion card that plugs into a computer’s motherboard
and is responsible for all the text and images that appear on your computer’s
monitor. Many computers don’t have a video card—all the video capabilities
are instead built into the computer’s motherboard.
PCMCIA Cards Notebook computers are too small to use expansion cards, so they use
special credit-card sized PCMCIA cards instead. You plug in a PCMCIA card,
or PC Card, into a notebook computer to give it more features and
capabilities. Nobody’s getting tested on this, but PCMCIA stands for Personal
Computer Memory Card International Association.

Quick
Reference
Components Inside the
System Unit May Include:
• Motherboard
• CPU (Central Processing
Unit)
• Hard drive
• System clock
• RAM (Random Access
Memory)
• ROM-BIOS
• Expansion slots and
cards
• PCMCIA cards (laptops
only)

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28 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-9: Specialized Input


Devices
Figure 1-13
There’s usually not
enough room to use a
mouse on an airplane or
on the beach. It’s for this
reason that most laptops
have built-in touch pads
and AccuPoint® Pointing
Devices.

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.2.3
Req. File: None
Figure 1-13

The keyboard and mouse are the two most common input devices for a computer, but there
are many more. Most respectable laptops have a built-in touch pad or AccuPoint® Pointing
Device or pointing stick that works like a mouse. Other mouse alternatives include track balls
and light pens.
Other common computer input devices include scanners for copying images to a computer,
joysticks for playing games, and microphones for recording sound. You can learn about these
input devices by taking a look at the following table.

Table 1-9: Specialized Input Devices


Input Device Description
A touch pad is a small, touch-sensitive pad used as a pointing device on some
portable computers. By moving a finger or other object along the pad, you can
move the pointer on the display screen.
Touch Pad
An Accupoint® Pointing Device, or pointing stick, is another mouse substitute
that is found on many laptop computers. An Accupoint® Pointing Device usually
sits in the middle of the keyboard and resembles an eraser at the end of a
AccuPoint® pencil.
Pointing Device
A track ball is essentially a mouse lying on its back. To move the pointer, you
rotate the ball with your thumb, your fingers, or the palm of your hand.

Track Ball

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 29

Input Device Description


A light pen is an input device that utilizes a light-sensitive detector to select
objects on a display screen. A light pen is similar to a mouse, except that with a
light pen you can move the pointer and select objects on the display screen by
Light Pen directly pointing to the objects with the pen.

A scanner is a lot like a photocopier. Instead of producing copies, a scanner


converts images into digital information and stores it in a computer.

Scanner
A bar code is a series of vertical bars of varying widths, commonly found on
consumer products and especially used for inventory control. A Bar Code
Reader is a type of laser scanner that reads bar code and therefore identifies
various items for pricing and inventory purposes.

Bar Code Reader


Mostly used for computer games, a joystick is a lever that moves in all
directions and usually controls some type of movement on the computer.

Joystick
If your computer has a sound card (and most computers have one) you can
plug in a microphone to digitally record sounds to your computer.

Microphone
A Web cam is a tiny digital video camera that usually sits on top of a computer’s
monitor. People use Web cams for videoconferencing and to send live images
over the internet.

Web cam Quick


Reference
A digital camera lets you take pictures that you can transfer to a computer.
Once you’ve transferred your pictures you can print them, insert them into a Specialized Input Devices
word processing document, or send them in an e-mail message. You can also Include:
edit digital photos. • Touch pads
Digital Camera • AccuPoint® Pointing
Devices
• Track balls
• Light pens
• Scanners
• Bar code readers
• Joysticks
• Microphones
• Digital cameras
• Web cams

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30 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-10: Specialized


Output Devices
Figure 1-14
A projector can be used
when giving presentations.

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.2.4
Req. File: None

Figure 1-14

The monitor and printer are two of the most common output devices for a computer, but there
are many more. Projectors and Plotters are used for specialized purposes, such as giving
presentations or printing large documents like architectural blueprints.
Specialized computer output devices include control devices/robots, as well as voice
synthesizers and other output devices for the physically challenged. You can learn more about
these specialized output devices by taking a look at the following table.

Table 1-10: Specialized Output Devices


Output Device Description
If you work in education, you are probably pretty familiar with projectors.
Projectors are used for giving presentations. Projectors can be used to display
pictures or diagrams, and, if you are using an overhead projector, you can even
write or doodle onto the images being displayed.
Projector

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 31

Output Device Description


Don’t expect to find a plotter at your local computer store. Plotters are special,
very expensive printers that are used to create large documents, such as
posters and blueprints.

Plotter
A control device is a device used to control an activity, process, or machine from
a distance. Control devices usually include a tiny microprocessor, which allow
them to function independently.

Control
Device/Robot
Voice synthesizers are just one of the many different types of output devices
that have been developed for the physically challenged. A voice synthesizer
automatically converts text into speech using an integrated text-to-speech
processor.

Voice Synthesizers
Braille translators allow the user to import information from virtually any word
processor and turn it into Braille at the touch of a button. One can also create
documents with the Braille Translator’s built-in word processor, as well as scan
information from the World Wide Web.
Braille Translators

Quick
Reference
Specialized Output
Devices Include:
• Projectors
• Plotters
• Control Devices/Robots
• Voice Synthesizers
• Braille Translators

Institute of Applied Technology


32 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-11: Hard Disk


Figure 1-15 Taxes Love Letters

Letter to Bill
How information is stored Investments
in a file cabinet. Letter to Mary

Figure 1-16
Letters
How information is stored
on a hard disk.
A file cabinet’s information is A folder may contain several
organized and grouped into files and even several
folders. subfolders.
L IC3 Figure 1-15
Objective: 1.1.2.5
Req. File: None

 Storage Notes:
Internal Hard Disk
A computer stores
Speed: Very fast. Most hard information on a hard disk.
disks have an average
access speed of 8 to 15 Information on a hard disk is A folder may contain several
milliseconds (ms). Figure 1-16 organized and grouped into files and subfolders.
Capacity: Enormous. Many folders or directories.
hard disks have more than
200 Gigabytes (GB) of A hard drive or hard disk is a computer’s main storage device. Most hard drives are tucked
storage. away in the system unit of a computer and hidden from view. Although you normally can’t
see a computer’s internal hard drive you can usually hear it whirring inside when you start the
Cost: Hard disks are
computer or a program. An external hard drive sits outside the computer’s system unit and
becoming more and more
plugs into a USB, Firewire, or SCSI port.
inexpensive. Byte for byte
they are the most Just like storing files in a file cabinet, the hard drive is used to store files on a computer. Most
inexpensive way to store computers have a single hard drive located inside of the computer case, labeled “C.” When a
data. computer has more than one hard drive they are labeled “D,” then “E,” and so on. Unlike
RAM, a hard drive retains its information even when you turn the computer off.
So what’s stored on a hard drive? Let’s take a look…
• Operating System Files
A computer’s operating system, like Windows XP, is stored on the hard drive.
• Program Files
Program files are the programs you work with, like your word processor, your Internet
software, or your games. Programs usually come on floppy disks or CD-ROM’s and must
be installed, or copied, to your hard drive in order to use the program.
Unlike diskettes and • Data Files
CD-ROMs, most hard Whenever you create a document or data file on your computer, such as a word
disks reside inside of processing document, the computer stores it in its temporary memory (RAM). You must
the computer or save your documents to the hard drive or they will be lost when you turn off your
system unit and computer.
cannot be easily
removed.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 33

Most hard drives are connected to a computer’s motherboard through something called an
IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics) connection. You can also connect CD-ROM and DVD
 Storage Notes:
External Hard Disk
drives to an IDE connection. A slight problem with IDE is that it only supports a total of four
devices or drives—which isn’t a big deal for most home users, but it is if you’re a business Speed: Very fast, though
and need a server with lots of hard drives. So, there’s another way to connect hard drives to a normally slower than internal
computer: through a SCSI (pronounced—get this—skuzzy) port. SCSI connections are often hard disks.
faster than IDE and they can connect up to seven devices instead of four. Capacity: Enormous – same
as internal hard disks.
OK, so what else do you need to need to know about hard drives?
Cost: Slightly more
• Hard Disk Size (or Capacity) expensive than internal hard
How much information (how many programs and data) a hard drive can store is measured disks.
in bytes, just like RAM. Hard drive sizes in newer computers range from
20 Megabytes (MB) all the way up to 200 Gigabytes (GB)! How big a hard drive should
you get when you buy a computer? If you’re a home or small business user, try to get at
least 40 Gigabytes. More is better in hard drives, because programs keep getting bigger
and bigger.
• Average Access Time
A hard drive’s average access time is how fast it can find information. Average access
time is measured in milliseconds (ms), or 1/1000 of a second. The lower the access
speed, the faster the hard drive. Most computers today have an average access time of 8
to 15 minutes.

Quick
Reference
Hard Drive:
• A computer’s main
storage device is
sometimes called the C:
drive.
• Modern hard drives can
store anywhere from
20GB to 250GB of
information.
• Average access time is
how fast a hard drive can
find information.
• Hard drives are
connected to a computer
through either an IDE or
SCSI interface.

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34 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-12: CD-ROM Drive


Figure 1-17
CD-ROM Transfer
A CD-ROM drive. Speed Rate
8x 1,000 KB/s
Figure 1-18 10x 1,600 KB/s
A CD-ROM drive can also 12x 1,800 KB/s
play the same, great audio 16x 2,400 KB/s
CDs that a stereo system 24x 3,600 KB/s
does. 32x 4,800 KB/s
40x 6,000 KB/s
Figure 1-19 Figure 1-17 48x 7,200 KB/s
Newer CD-ROM drives 60x 9,000 KB/s
can transfer data faster
than older drives, as this Figure 1-19
table shows.

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.2.5
Req. File: None

Figure 1-18

 Storage Notes: Another type of drive almost all computers have is a CD-ROM drive (CD-ROM stands for
CD-ROM Compact Disc-Read Only Memory). CD-ROM drives play CD-ROM discs—the same kind of
Speed: Much slower than a compact discs you can play in your stereo system. CD-ROMs can store lots of information: a
hard disk, but still faster than single CD-ROM can hold more than 600 Megabytes (MB) of data—more than an
a diskette. encyclopedia set! Unlike a hard drive, most CD-ROMs can only read information—you can’t
save, or record anything on them (that’s what the ROM in CD-ROM stands for: Read Only
Capacity: About
Memory!) On the other hand, CD-RW drives can read and write (or burn) to special CD-R and
650 Megabytes (MB).
CD-RW discs (the RW in CD-RW stands for ReWritable.) The CD-ROM drive is usually
Cost: Very inexpensive. labeled “D” on most computers.
The speed of a CD-ROM drive determines how quickly the computer can read information
stored on the CD-ROM. Faster CD-ROM drives produce better sound and video quality. The
original CD-ROM drive was no faster than an audio CD player, so the speed of all subsequent
CD-ROM drives is measured by how many times faster they are than the original. Today’s
CD-ROM drives are up to sixty times (60x) faster than the original.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 35

Here are some things you can do with CD-ROMs:


• Install Programs
More programs are coming on CD-ROMs because of their large storage capacity. Instead
of installing and copying 20 floppies to your hard drive, you only have to install a single
CD-ROM.
• Run CD-ROM Programs
CD-ROM-based programs are usually the coolest programs available for your computer.
CD-ROM programs often have rich, exciting multimedia content: high quality sounds,
music, videos, and animations. For example, one of the most popular CD-ROM programs
is a complete, searchable encyclopedia set which contains high quality pictures, sounds,
music, and videos.
• Play Audio CDs
Most CD-ROM drives are capable of playing audio CDs—the same kind your stereo
uses. Play your favorite tunes on your computer while you work.

Table 1-11: Types of CDs


CD Type Description
CD-ROM The original, standard CD, CD-ROM stands for Compact Disc, Read-Only Memory. What
this means is that you can only read information from a CD-ROM; you can’t add new
information.
CD-R If you have a CD-RW drive you can permanently store information on a CD-R (Compact
Disc-Recordable) disc. The information you write or burn to a CD-R is permanent and
can’t be changed or erased.
You can also use CD-R discs to create musical CDs that you can listen to in a stereo
system.
CD-RW Unlike CD-R discs, a CD-RW (Compact Disc-ReWritable) disc can be written to many
times. You can also modify and erase information on a CD-RW disc—if you have a Quick
CD-RW drive, of course. Reference
CD-ROM:
• Stands for Compact Disc-
Read Only Memory. A
CD-ROM drive lets you
install programs, run
CD-ROM based
programs, and play audio
CDs. A CD-ROM holds
about 650MB of
information.
CD-R:
• Stands for Compact Disc-
Recordable. Lets you
permanently write or burn
information.
CD-RW:
• Stands for Compact Disc-
ReWritable. Can be
written to and modified
many times.

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36 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-13: DVD Drive


Figure 1-20
A DVD disc looks almost
identical to a CD-ROM
disc.
Figure 1-21
The DVD logo.
Figure 1-22 Figure 1-20

A single DVD can store as


much information as
several CD-ROMs.
Figure 1-23
Figure 1-21 Figure 1-23
A DVD drive can also play Figure 1-22
the same, great movies
that you can watch on a Next generation DVD drives are quickly replacing CD-ROM drives in newer computers. A
DVD player. DVD (stands for Digital Versatile Disc) disc looks just like a CD-ROM, but it can store more
than 4 Gigabytes (GB) of information—as much as seven CDs. There are even rumored to be
future DVD discs that can hold up to 17 Gigabytes! Unfortunately there still really isn’t a lot
of software that is available on DVD discs. Most people simply use their DVD drive to watch
DVD movies. The CD-ROM drive is usually labeled D or E on most computers.
L IC3 New rewritable DVD drives, that can record or burn information to special type of DVD discs
Objective: 1.1.2.5 have recently become available the market. Unfortunately for the consumer, the greedy DVD
Req. File: None manufacturers couldn’t agree on a universal recordable DVD standard, so there are several
different competing formats out there. Hopefully consumers will eventually make the decision
for the DVD manufacturers, like they did between Betamax and VHS videotapes. Until then
there isn’t really any clear answer regarding which recordable and rewritable DVD format to
 Storage Notes: go with, although both DVD+RW and DVD-RW discs work in most newer DVD drives and
DVD players. We can tell you that the recordable DVD-RAM format is almost universally not
Speed: Faster than a compatible with most DVD players. Table 1-12: DVD Formats tries to make sense of all the
CD-ROM drive, but not as available formats. For more information on recordable DVD standards, visit
fast as a hard disk. http://www.dvdrhelp.com/dvdplayers.php on the Web.
Capacity: Usually about
4 Gigabytes (GB), although Table 1-12: DVD Formats
future DVD discs are DVD Format Description
rumored to hold up to
17 Gigabytes (GB). DVD-ROM The original, standard DVD. ROM stands for Read-Only Memory. This means
you can only read information from a DVD; you can’t add new information.
Cost: Slightly more than a
CD-ROM but still very DVD-R If you have a DVD-RW drive you can permanently store information on a
inexpensive. DVD-R (DVD-Recordable) disc. The information you write or burn to a DVD-R is
permanent and can’t be changed or erased.
DVD-RW drives can also write to DVD-RW discs

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 37

DVD Format Description


DVD-RW If you have a DVD-RW drive you can use DVD-RW (ReWritable) discs, which
can be re-written up to 1,000 times. You can also modify and erase information
on a DVD-RW disc. DVD-RW discs have some compatibility problems with
older DVD Players and DVD ROM drives.
DVD-RW drives can also write to DVD-R discs.
DVD+R If you have a DVD+RW drive you can permanently store information on a
DVD+R (DVD+Recordable) disc. The information you write or burn to a DVD+R
is permanent and can’t be changed or erased.
DVD+RW drives can also write to DVD+RW discs.
DVD+RW If you have a DVD+RW drive you can use DVD+RW (ReWritable) discs, which
can be re-written to up to 1,000 times. You can also modify and erase
information on a DVD+RW disc. DVD+RW discs have some compatibility
problems with older DVD Players and DVD ROM drives.
DVD+RW drives can also write to DVD+R discs.
DVD-RAM DVD-RAM is a rewritable DVD format that can be re-written to many times.
DVD-RAM discs are beginning to look like an orphan format, since they won’t
work in most DVD players.

Quick
Reference
DVD:
• Stands for Digital
Versatile Disc. A DVD disc
looks like a CD-ROM, but
can store much more
information.
Recordable and
Rewritable DVDs:
• There are several
competing, non-
compatible formats out
there, including DVD-R
/DVD-RW and DVD+R/
DVD+RW.

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38 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-14: Floppy Disks


Figure 1-24
A relic of the past,
diskettes don’t have the
speed or capacity to be
very useful in the 21st
century.

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.1.8 and
1.1.2.5
Req. File: None

Figure 1-24

 Storage Notes: Most desktop computers still have a diskette (or floppy) drive, although most laptops have
Diskettes dropped the all-but-obsolete diskette drive. Diskette drives read flat, 3½-inch diskettes.
Speed: Very slow. Diskette drives are as slow as a glacier when compared to hard drives and CD-ROM drives.
Diskettes can only store a scant 1.44 Megabytes (MB) – just a little more than your typical
Capacity: Very small –
novel.
1.44 Megabytes (MB).
Cost: Very cheap. So why are these relics from the 1980’s still around? Diskettes can still be useful for
transferring and backing up small documents. The three most common uses include:
• Transferring data files from one computer to another. To transfer data, simply copy or
save the data to the floppy disk, remove the disk from its drive, insert the floppy disk into
the disk drive of another computer, then load the data into the RAM or copy the data to
the other computer’s hard disk.
Quick
Reference • Backing up, or duplicating, information in case of hard disk or hard disk drive
malfunction and/or crash.
Diskettes:
• Loading new programs onto a system by installing them from floppy disks onto the hard
• Are slow and can only disk.
store 1.44MB. They are
all but obsolete.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 39

Lesson 1-15: Zip and Jaz


Drives
Figure 1-25
A Zip drive can store
100MB or 250MB on
removable Zip disks.
Figure 1-26
A Jaz drive can store 1GB
or 2GB on a removable
Jaz disk.
Figure 1-26

Figure 1-25 L IC3


Objective: 1.1.2.5
Req. File: None
Removable storage drives have features of both hard drives and diskette drives. Removable
storage drives work like a diskette drive because they read and write information on small,  Storage Notes:
removable cassettes that are about the size of a diskette disk. They are like hard drives Zip Drive
because each cassette can usually hold more than 100 megabytes (MB) and is much faster
Speed: Significantly slower
than a diskette disk, but still not quite as fast as a hard drive. Two of the most popular
than most hard disks.
removable storage drives are the Zip drive and Jaz drive, both made by Iomega.
Capacity: 100 to
Zip disks can store 100 to 250 Megabytes (MB) on a removable disk—about 70 to 170 times 250 Megabytes (MB).
as much as an old diskette disk. Zip drives are available in both 100MB and 250MB versions. Cost: Expensive when
You’ll need a 250MB version to read both 100MB and 250MB Zip disks. Zip disks are a great
compared to costs of
way to transfer and backup information—but they’re not much of a value when compared to equivalent CD-RW discs and
newer CD-RW and even newer DVD-RW discs. other storage devices.
Jaz disks can store 1 to 2 Gigabytes (GB) on a single removable disk—as much as an older
hard drive! Jaz drives are also fast, though not as fast as a hard disk, so they’re great for  Storage Notes:
backing up information. Despite their huge storage capacities, Jaz drives really never caught Jaz Drive
on. Speed: Slower than most
hard disks, but faster than a
Zip disk.
Capacity: 2 Gigabytes (GB).
Cost: Fairly expensive when
compared to costs of
equivalent CD-RW discs and
other storage devices.
Quick
Reference
• Zip and Jaz drives are
removable storage
devices that have
features of both diskettes
and hard disks.

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40 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-16: Other Storage


Devices
Figure 1-27
Flash cards are most
commonly used as the
‘film’ in digital cameras
and can also be read by
many PDAs and most
computers.
Figure 1-28
A tape backup
automatically makes a
copy, or backup, of all the Figure 1-27
files on a computer’s hard
drive.

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.2.5
Req. File: None
Figure 1-28

We’ve covered the main storage devices that are out there, but it seems as though one or two
new storage devices are invented and released every year; some catch on, some don’t. Here’s
a run-down on some of the less common storage devices that are out there:

Table 1-13: Other Storage Devices


Device Description
A tape drive creates copies, or backups, of the files on a computer’s hard drive
onto a tape cartridge. The backed-up files can be restored in case the original
files are lost due to disaster or stupidity.

Tape Drive
The LS-120 drive was meant to be an alternative to Zip disks, because it could
store 120 MB of data on a disk; and a replacement for diskette drives, because
it could also read and write to traditional 1.44 MB diskettes. Unfortunately
LS-120 never really caught on with the general public.
LS-120 SuperDrive

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 41

Device Description
Flash cards are commonly used as the ‘film’ for digital cameras. Flash cards
can store anywhere from a dozen to several hundred pictures, depending on
how much memory they have. There are three different types of flash cards:
Flash Cards CompactFlash cards, SmartMedia cards, and Memory Sticks. Flash cards can
store anywhere from 4 MB all the way up to 1 GB. Wow!
A USB flash drive is really another type of Flash Card that plugs into a USB
port. USB flash drives range in sizes from 16 MB to 512 MB.

USB Flash Drive

Quick
Reference
Other Storage Devices
Include:
• Tape drives
• LS-120 Super drives
• Flash cards
• USB flash drives

Institute of Applied Technology


42 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-17: Identifying Ports


Figure 1-29
The back of a computer On/Off switch
case.
Power receptacle

Keyboard port Mouse port


L IC3 USB ports Ethernet connector

Objective: 1.1.2.6 Serial port (COM1)

Req. File: None Parallel port (printer)


Serial port (COM2)
Air vents
Line-out jack (speakers/headphone)
Line-in jack Joystick port (MIDI)
Microphone jack
Phone jack Wall jack
Video (monitor)

Expansion spaces

Figure 1-29

When you look at the back of a computer, you may feel a bit overwhelmed by all the slots and
holes. Fortunately, manufacturers have added some fairly standard icons and color coding to
help you identify what should be plugged into your computer and where. Before long, you’ll
recognize those icons and colors, and the configuration won’t seem so mysterious. It’s rather
like hooking up cable and a DVD player to the back of your television—unless you’re one of
those people who just wait for the cable guy to take care of that heinous task. In any case, this
lesson will review each item piece by piece so you won’t get completely lost.
You may feel a bit
Before we begin, let’s define a couple of terms. The first thing you’ll notice is that the back of
overwhelmed the
your computer has lots of holes. Those holes are called (depending on who you ask) jacks,
first time you look at
ports, or connectors. You may notice that some of the connectors have holes, but some have
the back of a
computer. what look like stickpins (which are aptly named pins). The ones that have holes are called
female connectors; the ones that have pins are called male connectors. Let’s leave it at that.
Now let’s begin. Compare Figure 1-29 to Table 1-14: What’s on the Back of a Computer
Case? The back of your computer may be arranged differently but should include the same
elements.

Table 1-14: What’s on the Back of a Computer Case?


Port Icon Description
The keyboard and mouse jacks look identical on most

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 43

Port Icon Description


PCs, so look for colors and icons to help you with
plugging in these devices.
Some mice and keyboards use USB ports. Older mice
may use a serial port.
Serial (or COM) ports are a very versatile type of port.
Some of the things you can plug into a serial port include
Serial or COM a mouse, modem, scanner, or digital camera. Most
computers have two serial ports: COM1 and COM2.
You plug your printer into the parallel, or printer, port.
Parallel or Printer Many newer printers may use a USB port.

Designed to replace older Serial and Parallel ports, the


USB (Universal Serial Bus) can connect computers with a
number of devices, such as printers, keyboards, mice,
scanners, digital cameras, PDAs, and more. Better yet,
the USB port supports plug-and-play, so you can simply
plug in a USB device and start using it.
USB
USB 1 ports can transfer information at a speed up to
12 Mbps (Megabytes per Second). Newer USB 2 ports
can transfer information at a speed up to 480 Mbps. Most
computers come with two USB ports.
You plug your monitor into the video port.
Video or Monitor
Plug in your speakers or headphone into the Line Out
Line Out / jack.

The Line In jack allows you to listen to your computer


Line In using a stereo system.

You can plug a microphone into this jack to record Quick


sounds on your computer. Reference
Microphone
Ports on the Back of a
If you have a joystick, musical (MIDI) keyboard, or other Computer Include:
Joystick or Game gaming device, this is where you plug it in.
• Keyboard and Mouse
The phone or modem jack is where you plug your • Serial or COM
computer into a phone line.
Phone or Modem • Parallel or Printer
You can connect your computer to a network by plugging • USB

Network or Ethernet
<•••> in an Ethernet cable in this port. • Video or monitor
• Line in, line out,
A SCSI port is one of the fastest ways to connect a hard microphone
SCSI drive, CD-ROM drive, or other device to a computer.
• Joystick or game
A FireWire (IEEE 1394 or i.LINK) port lets you connect • Phone or modem
such devices as hard disks and digital camcorders to a • Ethernet or network
computer. A FireWire port can transfer information at a
FireWire speed up to 400 Mbps (Megabytes per Second). • SCSI
• Firewire

Institute of Applied Technology


44 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-18: Installing New


Hardware
Figure 1-30
The Add Hardware
Wizard.
Figure 1-31
The Add Hardware Wizard
searches for new
hardware.
Figure 1-32
Windows displays the
detected hardware. Figure 1-30 Figure 1-31

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.2.7
Req. File: None

Quick
Figure 1-32
Reference
To Add New Hardware to Any time you add a new hardware gadget to your computer, you need to make sure your
Your Computer: computer can talk with and operate it. Microsoft Windows communicates to your computer’s
1. Plug the hardware device hardware components using a small piece of software called a driver. A driver is like a
into your computer, via computerized operating manual that tells Windows how to communicate and operate all the
the appropriate cable (or hardware devices in your computer.
other connection device) Whenever you want to install a new piece of hardware to your computer, such as a network
connected to the correct card or a removable storage device, first you need to hook up the hardware device to your
port. computer via the appropriate cable (or other connection device) connected to the correct port.
2. Your computer is Your computer is configured to know when a new hardware device has been added, either by
configured to detect the installing the appropriate software (drivers) required to run the new hardware, or, if you’re
new hardware device, lucky, the piece of hardware is a Plug and Play device. Plug and Play devices are devices that
either by installing the Windows can automatically detect and set up to work with your computer, making them a
appropriate drivers or breeze to install. Most new devices are Plug and Play.
automatically if the new
hardware is a Plug and
Play device.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 45

Lesson 1-19: Selecting a


Personal Computer
Figure 1-33
Selecting a personal
computer can be difficult if
you don’t know what
you’re looking for.

L IC3
Figure 1-33
Objective: 1.1.3.1, 1.1.3.3,
and 1.1.3.4
Are you in the market for a new computer, but just don’t know what to look for? Don’t worry; Req. File: None
you’re not alone. The computer market changes practically every day, and it can get pretty
confusing trying to keep up with the latest products, trends, and consumer deals.
Before purchasing a personal computer, consider the following points:
• What are the purposes/tasks for which the computer will be used?
• Which platform (PC, Macintosh, or UNIX) best supports the types of applications that I Quick
want to run on the computer? If you plan to do a great deal of graphic or Web design
Reference
work, a Macintosh computer might be the best choice for you. PCs are more convenient
for general home or office use. Before Purchasing a
• Do I need portability? If your job involves off-site research or frequent traveling, a laptop Personal Computer,
computer might be the best choice for you. Laptops take up very little space and are just Consider the Following
as powerful as desktop computers. Be aware, however, that laptops are more expensive Points:
than desktop systems and are often easy targets for computer theft. • What are the
• Do I need versatility? A desktop computer offers greater system resources and a larger purposes/tasks for which
screen, which makes it a great choice for various multimedia tasks. Desktops also cost the computer will be
considerably less than a laptop, and are generally more secure when it comes to computer used?
theft. • Which platform best
Once you figure out exactly what you’re looking for in a computer, you’ll probably want to supports the types of
start looking for the best price. The price of a computer is affected by hardware (desktop vs. applications that I want to
laptop, monitor type, processor speed, hard disk size and type, etc.), software (pre-packaged run on the computer?
software that may come with the computer, such as anti-virus software), and integration • Do I need portability?
(internal modem or network card, online service subscriptions, etc.) factors.
• Do I need versatility?
Other factors that go into a decision to purchase a computer include:
Other Factors to Consider:
• Warrantees and support agreements can impact the price of a computer but
• Warrantees and support
provide assurance of ongoing support for purchased equipment.
agreements
• Specific hardware and software standards may be enforced by certain
• Specific hardware and
organizations; for example, everyone might have to use the same word processor.
software standards
• The expected useful life of a computer refers to the length of time that the
computer can be expected to be useful. Computer owners can maintain or extend a • The expected useful life
computer’s useful life by upgrading or trading in older computers. of a computer

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46 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-20: Computer


Performance
Figure 1-34
There are lots of factors
that determine a
computer’s speed. Most of
them are listed in Table
1-15: Factors that Affect
Computer Performance.

Figure 1-34

L IC3 Another huge factor to consider when searching for the right computer is performance. You
Objective: 1.1.3.2 and want the best possible performance for the best possible price, right? Well, the price of a
1.1.3.4 computer is affected by its components. Table 1-15: Factors that Affect Computer
Req. File: None Performance describes the different types of hardware and software that affect the price and
performance of a computer.

Table 1-15: Factors that Affect Computer Performance


Factor Description
Arguably the single most important factor that determines a computer’s
performance is the speed of its CPU. The speed of the CPU is measured in
megahertz (MHz) and gigahertz (GHz). The faster the CPU, the faster the
CPU Speed computer. The first PC in 1981 ran at 4.77 MHz, while today’s computers can
run at speeds exceeding 3,000 MHz, or 3 GHz.
The amount of RAM, or memory, is another very important factor in a
computer’s performance. Generally, the more RAM a computer has the better
its performance. However, you usually won’t see much of an improvement
Amount of RAM after 1 GB of RAM.
Video cards have their own processor and memory, just like the computer
does. The faster the processor and the more memory a video card has, the
faster it can draw graphics on the screen. Video card performance is especially
Type of Video Card important if you’re interested in playing newer, 3D computer games.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 47

Factor Description
A hard drive’s average access time is how fast it can find information. Average
access time is measured in milliseconds (ms), or 1/1000 of a second. The
lower the access speed, the faster the hard drive. Most newer computers have
an average access time of 8 to 15 ms.
Another factor that determines hard drive performance is how fast it spins, in
Hard Drive Speed revolutions per minute (rpms). Faster IDE hard drives may have speeds as
fast as 7,200 rpm, while high-end SCSI hard drives have speeds of 15,000
rpm.
Not only do you need a fast hard drive, you have to make sure that is has
plenty of free storage space. Microsoft Windows uses this hard disk space to
create a cache on the hard drive where it stores temporary information.

Free Hard Disk


Space
Just about every new computer comes with a built-in modem. A modem
translates a computer’s ones and zeros into audio tones, so that it can transmit
information over phone lines to other computers. The network or modem
connection speed affects computer performance by speeding up the transfer
Network or Modem
or download of files over a network or the Internet.
Connection Speed
Normally a computer stores a file in the same location on a hard drive. Over
time, a hard drive can become fragmented, and instead of storing a file in the
same location it begins storing parts of it all over. When the computer needs to
read a fragmented file, it must read several different parts of the hard drive
Hard Disk instead of just one. Defragmenting a hard drive puts the fragmented files back
Fragmentation together in one place. You should defragment your computer’s hard drive
about once a month.
Microsoft Windows can multitask, or run more than one program or task at a
time—probably no different than your job. And, just like your job, the more
programs or tasks you throw at Windows, the longer it takes to complete each
Quick
Multitasking one, and hence a drop in computer performance.
Reference
Considerations
Computer Performance is
Determined By:
• CPU speed.
• Amount of memory or
RAM.
• Network or modem
connection speed.
• The type and speed of the
video card.
• A hard disk’s speed, free
space, and fragmentation.
• How many programs are
running, or multitasking,
at the same time.

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48 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-21: Preventing Theft


Figure 1-35
Prevent theft of your
sensitive files by
password-protecting them.

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.4.1
Req. File: None
Figure 1-35

Preventing theft
When organizations develop security policies, it’s easy to get so caught up in procedures and
firewalls that they overlook how to protect their physical property. If a hacker can’t get the
information they want electronically, they can do much more damage by acquiring the actual
equipment in which the information is stored.
Theft of a laptop computer, desktop computer, PDA, or mobile phone should always be
reported to your company’s technical support department immediately, and your service
provider should also be contacted in case of a missing phone. Computers with startup
passwords have some protection, but determined attackers can still get through these barriers.
Sensitive files with password protection are another crucial line of defense against theft. The
contact information on a PDA or mobile phone is also valuable, and your professional image
Quick could be damaged if the contact information of business associates or clients is abused.
Reference Another way to protect your computer hardware from theft is by keeping your computer
Preventing Theft: locked to a desk or within a locked room. If you work for a large company or organization,
most likely your equipment is protected behind security systems such as building alarms and
• Always report the theft of video monitors.
a computer, PDA, or
mobile phone
immediately. It is a good
idea to keep your
computer locked to a
desk or within a locked
room. Security systems,
such as building alarms
and video monitors, are
commonly found in large
companies or
organizations.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 49

Lesson 1-22: Preventing


Damage and other Hazards
Figure 1-36
Exposure to magnetic
fields could cause
electrical surges that can
harm you and your
computer.
Figure 1-37
High heat and humidity
can damage computer
equipment.
Figure 1-37

Figure 1-36
L IC3
Nobody wants to leave their office with electric burns and a broken computer; that’s why Objective: 1.1.4.1, 1.1.4.2
keeping a tidy workspace and office is important. and 1.1.4.3
Req. File: None
Several main factors that can cause damage to computer hardware or media include:
• Heat and humidity: Extreme conditions such as high heat and humidity can damage
computer hardware and media such as floppy or hard disks.
• Exposure to electric or magnetic fields: Electric or magnetic fields can damage media
such as floppy or hard disks.
Quick
• Dirty or poorly maintained equipment: Poorly maintained equipment can prevent Reference
equipment such as a printer or mouse from operating properly. Damaged or poorly
maintained cables can keep peripherals from communicating with the computer properly. Prevention:
Exposed and/or jumbled wires and cables around the desk space are accidents waiting to • Prevent damaged
happen. It’s a good idea to take precautions to prevent tripping or equipment damage from equipment and personal
getting caught in one of these cables or cords by shortening them to the necessary length and injury by keeping your
by taping down cables that run along the floor. workspace and walking
areas clear, distributing
The holes and sockets that these many cables connect to should be examined as well. For electrical plug-ins wisely,
example, examine plugs, sockets, and leads for defects and repair any irregularities. And, if and maintaining proper air
there are a lot of electrical devices plugged into one outlet, have a professional install another
circulation around
outlet nearby to spread out the power demands evenly. Make sure to leave proper air
electrical equipment.
circulation around electrical equipment as well, to prevent over-heating.
Computers are also vulnerable to power irregularity (spikes) and power outages. “Spikes” in
the power supply can damage your hard drive, and power outages can result in a loss of data
or damage to files that were left open when the power went out. You can prevent power-
related damage or loss by protecting electric wires so that they are not easily disconnected,
using a surge protector, and/or using an uninterruptible power supply (UPS).

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50 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-23: Computer


Maintenance
Figure 1-38
Routine hard drive
maintenance keeps
computers happy and
running smoothly.
Figure 1-39
Most hard disk repair tools
can be found in Microsoft
Windows by right-clicking
the hard drive, selecting
Properties from the
shortcut menu, and
clicking the Tools tab.

Figure 1-38

Figure 1-39

L IC3 Cars require maintenance to keep them running at their peak performance. Some car
Objective: 1.1.4.5, 1.1.4.6 maintenance tasks are simple and routine, such as changing the oil every 3,000 miles. Others
and 1.1.4.7 are more complicated, such as installing a new radio. Computers are no different—they
Req. File: None require routine maintenance to prevent and/or correct problems and to keep them running at
their best performance.
Common problems that can occur if hardware is not properly maintained include a “sticky” or
inoperable mouse, printer paper jams and smearing, and a slowdown in overall performance
due to full or disorganized hard disks.
By now you’re probably wondering, “How does one maintain a computer?” There are quite a
few simple maintenance procedures that can be safely performed by users, including:
• Cleaning the Mouse, Keyboard, and Printer
Routine cleaning of these devices can prevent them from becoming damaged and/or
working improperly.
• Carefully Clearing Printer Paper Jams
Care must be taken to clear a paper jam without damaging the printer. No matter how
stressed out you may be, try your best to stay calm; most printer problems can be fixed
rather easily.
• Repairing a Hard Drive
Over time, hard drives can become damaged, effecting their performance. Fortunately
most of the hard drive damage is caused by normal wear and tear and is not serious. You
can diagnose and correct most hard drive problems with a hard drive repair program.
Microsoft Windows comes with a built-in hard drive repair program.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 51

• Defragmenting a Hard Drive


Normally, a computer stores a file in the same location on a hard drive. Over time,
however, a hard drive can become fragmented; instead of storing a file in the same
location, it begins storing parts of it all over. When the computer needs to read a
fragmented file, it must read several different parts of the hard drive instead of just one.
Defragmenting a hard drive puts the fragmented files back together in one place. You
should defragment your computer’s hard drive about once a month.
• Backing up a Hard Drive
Even though a computer’s hard drive stores information when the computer is turned off,
you should still back up the documents you create to some type of removable storage, Make sure you install
such as a CD-RW or tape backup. This will give you an extra copy of your files in case AntiVirus software on
your hard drive is damaged. your computer to
• Virus Protection prevent malicious
A computer virus is actually a small computer program written, by a malicious person computer viruses.
with the purpose of vandalizing computers. A virus can erase information on your hard
drive and cause many other unwanted problems. Anti-Virus programs that protect
computers against viruses, such as Norton AntiVirus or McAfee VirusScan, are available
at most computer stores. If you’re even thinking about connecting to the Internet, you
need to have AntiVirus software installed on your computer.
• Hard Drive Compression
A computer can increase space on a hard drive by using a special program to compress,
or squeeze together, the files stored on a hard drive. Most data compression programs can
effectively double the amount of information that a hard drive can store. Sounds great—
so why don’t many people use disk compression? First, data compression slows down
your hard drive because the computer has to uncompress files before it can read them. Quick
Second, data compression often causes more problems in hard drives. Third, several Reference
programs won’t run on the computer with compressed hard drives. Don’t compress your
hard drive unless you absolutely have to, and even then it might be better to start looking Maintenance Procedures
for a newer, larger hard drive instead of using data compression. Performed by Users
Include:
Maintenance procedures that should ONLY be performed by experienced professionals
include: • Cleaning the mouse,
keyboard, and printer
• Replacing malfunctioning hardware components • Carefully clearing printer
• Upgrading internal hardware components paper jams
• Working with any electrical components • Hard drive repair and
defragmentation
• Backing up a hard drive
• Installing virus protection
software
• Compressing the hard
drive
Maintenance Procedures
Performed by Users
Include:
• Replacing malfunctioning
hardware components
• Upgrading internal
hardware components
• Working with any
electrical components

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52 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 1-24: Identifying and


Solving Computer-related
Problems
Figure 1-40
Computer-related
problems can pop up (or
out!) at any time.
?!

L IC3
Objective: 1.1.4.4 and
1.1.4.8
Req. File: None

Figure 1-40

Common problems associated with computer hardware components include:


• Failed or “crashed” hard drive or floppy diskette drive
Quick
Reference • Components not plugged in or powered up
Common Problems • Hardware not connected or configured properly
Associated with Computer
• Malfunctioning monitor (not displaying or displaying incorrectly)
Hardware Components
Include: • Inoperable hardware devices (such as newly installed software not working or a printer
• Failed or “crashed” hard not printing properly)
drive or floppy diskette Following a defined, step-by-step procedure is the best way to solve these and many other
drive computer-related problems. If you find yourself in a pickle, first attempt basic solutions; such
• Components not plugged as restarting your computer and/or checking to make sure all components are plugged in and
in or powered up powered up. If that doesn’t work, call up the manufacturer of the hardware or ask a computer-
• Hardware not connected savvy friend to help you out. If you are having problems at work, contact your network
or configured properly administrator or tech support team. Once you find out what went wrong, you can avoid
similar problems in the future.
• Malfunctioning monitor
• Inoperable hardware
devices

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 53

Chapter One Review

Lesson Summary
Introduction to Computers
• Be able to identify the main parts of a typical computer setup.
• Understand the difference between hardware and software.

Types of Computers
• Different types of computers include supercomputers, mainframes, minicomputers, networked
computers, and microcomputers.
• Different types of microcomputers include PCs, Macs, servers, laptops, and PDAs.
• Other types of devices that contain a microprocessor include interactive books, cell phones,
calculators, mechanical devices, and industrial equipment.

Central Processing Unit (CPU)


• The CPU, or Central Processing Unit, is the computer’s main chip. It calculates and processes
information.
• CPU speed is measured in megahertz (MHz) and gigahertz (GHz).
• Common CPUs include: Intel Pentium III, Intel Pentium 4, Intel Celeron, AMD Athlon, AMD Duron.

Measuring Memory
• Computers use the binary system, where on is represented by a one (1) and off is represented by a
zero (0).
• A Bit is the smallest memory unit. Bit stands for binary digit.
• Eight bits make one Byte. A byte equals one character (letter, number, or symbol).
• 1,024 bytes make one Kilobyte (K or KB) which is equivalent to a one-page, double-spaced letter.
• 1,048,576 bytes make one Megabyte (M or MB) which is equivalent to a novel.
• 1,073,741,824 bytes make one Gigabyte (G or GB) which is equivalent to an encyclopedia set.
• 1,099, 511,627,776 bytes make one Terabyte (T or TB) which is equivalent to a small bookstore.

RAM and ROM


• RAM: Stands for Random Access Memory. This is the computer’s main memory, which is used to
process information. You can read from and write to RAM. RAM is volatile, and any data
disappears when you shut off the computer.
• ROM: Stands for Read Only Memory. This is the computer’s low-level memory, which is used to
perform its most basic functions. You can read from ROM but you can’t write to it.

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54 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Sharing Data, Files, Hardware and Software


• Networks allow users to share information, share equipment, and share software.
• Types of terminals connected to mainframe systems are intelligent, smart, and dumb terminals.

The Front of a Computer and Peripheral Devices


• Components visible from the outside of the system unit may include the floppy drive, CD-ROM or
DVD drive, Zip drive or tape backup, keyboard, mouse, scanner, monitor, speakers, and printer.

The Inside of a Computer


• Components inside the system unit may include the motherboard, CPU (Central Processing Unit),
hard drive, system clock, RAM (Random Access Memory), ROM-BIOS, expansion slots and cards,
and PCMCIA cards in laptops.

Specialized Input Devices


• Specialized input devices include touch pads, AccuPoint® pointing devices, track balls, light pens,
scanners, joysticks, and microphones.

Specialized Output Devices


• Specialized output devices include projectors, plotters, control devices/robots, voice synthesizers,
and Braille translators.

Hard Disk
• A hard drive is a computer’s main storage device, usually labeled C.
• Modern hard drives can store anywhere from 20GB to 250GB of information.
• Average access time is how fast a hard drive can find information.
• Hard drives are connected to a computer through either an IDE or SCSI interface.

CD-ROM Drive
• CD-ROM: Stands for Compact Disc-Read Only Memory. A CD-ROM drive lets you install
programs, run CD-ROM based programs, and play audio CDs. A CD-ROM holds about 650MB of
information.
• CD-R: Stands for Compact Disc-Recordable. Lets you permanently write or burn information.
• CD-RW: Stands for Compact Disc-ReWritable. Can be written to and modified many times.

DVD Drive
• DVD: Stands for Digital Versatile Disc. A DVD disc looks like a CD-ROM, but can store much more
information.
• Recordable and ReWritable DVDs: There are several competing, non-compatible formats out
there, including DVD-R /DVD-RW and DVD+R/ DVD+RW.

Floppy Disks
• Diskettes are slow and can only store 1.44MB. They are all but obsolete.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 55

Zip and Jaz Drives


• Zip and Jaz drives are removable storage devices that have features of both diskette and hard
disks.

Other Storage Devices


• Other storage devices include tape drives, LS-120 Super drives, flash cards, and USB flash drives.

Identifying Ports
• Ports on the back of a computer include: keyboard, mouse, serial or COM, printer or parallel, USB,
video or monitor, line in, line out, microphone, joystick or game, phone or modem, Ethernet or
network, SCSI, and/or Firewire.

Installing New Hardware


• To add new hardware to your computer, first you need to plug the hardware device into your
computer via the appropriate cable (or other connection device) connected to the correct port.
• Your computer is configured to detect any new hardware devices, either by installing the
appropriate drivers or automatically if the new hardware is a Plug and Play device.
• A Plug and Play device is a device that Windows can automatically detect and set up to work with
your computer.

Selecting a Personal Computer


• Before purchasing a personal computer, consider the following points: What are the purposes or
tasks for which the computer will be used? Which platform best supports the types of applications
that I want to run on the computer? Do I need portability? Do I need versatility?
• Other factors to consider when selecting a personal computer include warrantees and support
agreements, specific hardware and software standards, and the expected useful life of a computer.

Computer Performance
• Computer performance is determined by CPU speed, amount of memory or RAM, the type and
speed of the video card, the hard disk speed, free space, fragmentation, and the number of
programs running at the same time.

Preventing Theft
• Preventing Theft: Always report the theft of a computer, PDA, or mobile phone immediately. It is a
good idea to keep your computer locked to a desk or within a locked room. Security systems, such
as building alarms and video monitors, are commonly found in large companies or organizations.

Preventing Damage and Other Hazards


• Prevent damaged equipment and personal injury by keeping your workspace and walking areas
clear, distributing electrical plug-ins wisely, and maintaining proper air circulation around electrical
equipment.

Computer Maintenance
• Maintenance Procedures Performed by Users Include: Cleaning the mouse, keyboard, and
printer; carefully clearing out paper jams; hard drive repair and defragmentation; backing up a hard
drive; installing virus protection software; and compressing the hard drive.

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56 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

• Maintenance Procedures ONLY Performed by Experienced Professionals Include: Replacing


malfunctioning hardware components, upgrading internal hardware components, and working with
any electrical components.

Identifying and Solving Computer-related Problems


• Common Problems Associated with Computer Hardware Components Include: Failed or
“crashed” hard drive or floppy diskette drive, components not plugged in or powered up, hardware
not connected or configured properly, malfunctioning monitor, and inoperable hardware devices.

Quiz
1. Minicomputers are larger than mainframe computers. (True or False?)

2. The following are all examples of Microcomputers, except:


A. Mouse
B. Laptop
C. Mac
D. PDA

3. What is the ‘brain’ or main chip of a computer called?


A. The RAM
B. The ROM-BIOS
C. The motherboard
D. The CPU

4. The speed of a CPU is measured in what?


A. Bits per second (Bps)
B. Horsepower
C. Megahertz (MHz) and gigahertz (GHz)
D. Lux

5. How much information can be stored in a kilobyte?


A. As much as a bookstore.
B. As much as a novel.
C. As much as an encyclopedia set.
D. As much as a one-page letter.

6. What does RAM stand for?


A. Read All Material
B. Random Access Memory
C. Running Around the Mountain
D. Rapid Action Memory

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter One: Computer Hardware 57

7. You can read and write to a computer’s ROM. (True or False?)

8. A Dumb Terminal is a stand-alone terminal that has no processing


capability of its own. (True or False?)

9. What is a System Clock?


A. The main piece of circuitry in a computer.
B. An electronic device that synchronizes all the internal components of a computer.
C. The primary storage area of a computer.
D. An internal clock that allows the computer to display the current time.

10. Generally speaking, which of the following storage devices can hold the
most information?
A. A hard disk
B. A Zip disk
C. A CD-ROM
D. A DVD

11. Which of the following is NOT a type of computer port?


A. USB
B. Parallel or printer
C. Firewall
D. Network or Ethernet

12. A Plug and Play device is a device that Windows can automatically detect
and set up to work with your computer. (True or False?)

13. Which of the following does NOT affect a computer’ s performance?


A. The amount of memory or RAM.
B. The speed of the CPU.
C. The type and speed of the video or graphics card.
D. The number of keys on the keyboard.

14. Which of the following can cause damage to computer hardware or media?
(Select all that apply.)
A. Heat and Humidity
B. Exposure to electric or magnetic fields
C. Using an uninterruptible power supply (UPS)
D. Dirty or poorly maintained equipment

15. You should upgrade internal hardware components. (True or False?)

Quiz Answers
1. False. Mainframe computers are much more powerful than minicomputers.
2. A. A mouse is not a type of microcomputer.
3. D. The CPU, or Central Processing Unit, is commonly referred to as the “brain” of the
computer.

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58 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

4. C. The speed of the CPU, or Central Processing Unit, is measured in megahertz (MHz)
and gigahertz (GHz).
5. D. A kilobyte holds 1,024 characters; about as much information as a single page letter.
6. B. RAM stands for Random Access Memory.
7. False. A computer can read from ROM but not write to it.
8. True. Dumb terminals rely completely on the mainframe’s processor.
9. B. The System Clock is an electronic device that issues a steady, high frequency signal
that synchronizes all the internal components of a computer.
10. A. A hard disk will generally have more storage capacity than a Zip disk, CD-ROM, or
even DVD.
11. C. A FireWire is a type of port; a Firewall is a type of security device.
12. True. Plug and Play devices are extremely easy to install.
13. D. The number of keys on the keyboard does not affect a computer’s performance.
14. A, B, and D. Using an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) can actually prevent damage.
15. True. There are certain maintenance procedures that should ONLY be performed by
experienced professionals, and upgrading internal hardware components is one of them.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two:
Computer
Software
Chapter Objectives: ; Prerequisites
• Learn how hardware and software interact • A desire to learn about
computers.
• Learn about different kinds of software
• Learn about word processors, spreadsheets, databases and
more
• Identify the types and purposes of different utility programs

This chapter is all about software. Software is a computer program that tells computer
hardware how to operate. Software is even more diverse than hardware—there are thousands
and thousands of software programs out there. Software ranges from the Windows operating
system that manages your computer, to the word processor you use to print letters, to the Web
browser you use to peruse the Internet.
This chapter will give you an incredibly broad overview of the various types of software out
there. We’ll learn about how hardware and software interact, and we’ll also take a look at the
steps involved in developing software. Next we’ll take a quick tour of the most popular types
of software applications, from word processors to graphic and multimedia programs. Finally,
we’ll take a look at the different types and purposes of various utility programs.
60 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-1: The Interaction of


Hardware and Software
Figure 2-1
Microsoft Excel is an
example of a software
application program.
Figure 2-2
How hardware and
software interact.

Figure 2-1
L IC3
Objective: 1.2.1.1
Req. File: None

Input Process/Storage Output


You communicate with the The computer processes data, The computer communicates
computer via an input device; makes calculations, directs its results to you via an output
such as a mouse, a keyboard, the work of the hardware, and device such as a monitor, a
or a joystick. stores your files. printer, or speakers.
Figure 2-2

The two basic components that make up a computer are hardware and software, and you
simply can’t have one without the other. You already know that hardware includes the
computer’s monitor, case, keyboard, mouse, and printer. This chapter will focus entirely on
software.
Software refers to the various computer programs that tell hardware how to operate. An
application program is a software program that helps you accomplish a certain task, such as
writing a letter, browsing the Internet, or playing a game. Examples include word-processing
programs, spreadsheet programs, database programs, and games. You may have used
applications such as Microsoft Excel or Corel WordPerfect in the past, and if so, you know
just how easy they are to use. All you have to do is tell the software what you’re trying to do,
and then the software instructs the hardware.
Hardware and software interact in many different ways, including:

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 61

• Input
Input is the process of entering information into a computer. Data is inputted into a
computer via an input (hardware) device, such as a keyboard, mouse, scanner, etc.
Different devices enter different types of information; for example, a keyboard is used to
enter text and numbers while a mouse is used for selecting items on the screen.
The user interacts with software by giving commands, such as typing commands with a
keyboard and selecting menu options with the mouse.
• Process/Storage
A computer processes data by applying rules, or algorithms, to the data. The Central
Processing Unit (CPU) does all the processing, such as applying addition rules when
giving a sum function in a spreadsheet.
The storage function is handled by any number of drives (hard, floppy, Zip, tape-backup,
CD/DVD-ROM) or disks (compact discs or floppy diskettes).
• Output
Output is the result of data processing, and refers to how the computer presents
information to the user. Examples of computer output include text appearing on the
screen in a word processor, calculated numbers appearing in a spreadsheet, and hard copy
being produced by a printer.
An output is any device that lets the computer talk to you, such as a monitor, printer, or
speakers.
Got it? Great! Continue on to the next lesson to learn how software is developed.

Quick
Reference
Examples of How
Hardware and Software
Interact Include:
1. Input
2. Processing/Storage
3. Output

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62 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-2: Software


Development
Figure 2-3
The steps involved in the Programming/
software development Product Development
process.

Debugging

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.1.2 Beta review
Req. File: None

Testing

Figure 2-3

Computer programs and systems don’t appear out of thin air; there are a series of procedures
that are normally followed. The development process consists of writing code, called
programming, and then product testing and review. The following table identifies simple
terms and concepts related to the software development process.

Table 2-1: Common Stages in Software Development


Quick Stage Description
Reference
Programming/ Write the programs necessary for the system using a high-level
Steps in the Software Product Development programming language, or code. Purchase any hardware required by the
Development Process: system.
1. Programming/Product Debugging Find and correct any errors, or bugs, in code. A fundamental step in the
Development quality control process.
2. Debugging
Beta Review The product is reviewed by external reviewers, such as customers. Another
3. Beta Review
fundamental step in the quality control process.
4. Testing
Testing The software is subjected to a series of systematic tests. Another
fundamental step in the quality control process.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 63

Lesson 2-3: Software


Upgrades
Figure 2-4
Not again! Software
manufacturers release
new versions of their
software regularly to add
features and fix bugs

Figure 2-4

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.1.3
Req. File: None
Software manufacturers often update their software through a process called upgrading. There
are many different reasons why software is upgraded, including:
• To add new features
• To fix problems or “bugs”
• To ensure compatibility with other products
Software upgrades can be installed via floppy disks or CDs, downloaded from the Internet, or
by taking advantage of automatic upgrade processes and procedures. Each software release is
given a new name or number, such as Windows 95 or Windows 98, to help distinguish the
software from older versions.
You can keep yourself informed of the latest software upgrades and availability by reading Quick
industry news articles or frequently visiting a manufacturer’s Web site. Take a look at the Reference
following table to familiarize yourself with several common advantages and disadvantages of Reasons for Software
software upgrades. Upgrades Include:
• To add new features.
Table 2-2: Benefits and Drawbacks of Upgrades
Or…
Benefits Drawbacks
• To fix problems or “bugs.”
Access to new functionality and features Incompatibility with older hardware and software
• To ensure compatibility
Fewer bugs Conflicts with existing programs with other products, such
as new hardware,
Ability to use new hardware and software Risks associated with being an “early adopter” of new
software, or operating
technology
systems.

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64 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-4: Word Processing


Figure 2-5
A word processor lets you
write letters, resumes, and
much, much more.

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.2.1 and
1.2.2.8
Req. File: None

Figure 2-5

Perhaps the most widely used and recognized computer application, word processing software
lets you create letters, reports, and many other documents on a computer.
• Create Letters and Documents
Whether it’s a 500-page steamy romance novel or a quick thank-you note to your
neighbor, a word processor makes writing things easier. Best of all, a word processor lets
you change, or edit, the text in a document before it appears on paper. You can easily add,
delete, or rearrange the text in a word processing document. Most word processors also
allow you to check your documents for spelling and grammar errors.
Microsoft Word is the • Format Text
world’s most popular Most word processors can make the text in your documents look pretty—even if you’re a
word processing terrible writer. For example, you can use various fonts, or typefaces, create bulleted or
software program. numbered lists, and change the alignment of text on the page.
• Create Tables
Tables are great: they are ranked right up there with the spell checker as one of the neatest
word processing features. A table neatly arranges text and data in a grid, organized by
columns and rows.
Quick • Add Images
Reference Most word processors let you insert pictures and images to create all kinds of neat
• A word processor is a documents: newsletters, greeting cards, pamphlets, and more.
program that lets you • Perform Mail Merges
create letters and Mail merge letters are used to send the same or similar documents to many different
documents. people at once. Since they contain the recipient’s name, address, and other information,
mail merge letters feel more personal—just like a typical sweepstake letter: If you have
the winning number, Bob Boyarksi, You are the winner of $10 Million Dollars!
Although a word processor can be used to create tables, so can spreadsheets and databases. It
is important to note that although different software programs can be used to perform the
same task, one program might be more appropriate for a certain task than another. For
example, if you were creating a table for your grocery list, a word processor would be more
appropriate than a spreadsheet. If you were attempting something more complicated, however,
such as organizing your financial records, a spreadsheet would be more appropriate than a
word processor. Move on to the next lesson to learn more about spreadsheets.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 65

Lesson 2-5: Spreadsheets


Figure 2-6
A spreadsheet program is
useful for calculating and
presenting information—
even if it’s not what you
want to see…

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.2.2
Req. File: None

Figure 2-6

Spreadsheet programs are super-powered calculators. Have you ever found yourself using a
calculator to add together more than 5 or 6 numbers? If so, you probably could be using a
spreadsheet program to make working with numbers faster, easier, and more accurate. You
can also analyze data and make it into charts with a spreadsheet.
• Perform Calculations
A spreadsheet can add various cells, perform powerful formulas, and calculate and
analyze information. The entire spreadsheet is updated and recalculated every time you Microsoft Excel is the
change a value. That way you can change one number to see how it affects everything world’s most popular
else. spreadsheet software
• Manage and Organize Information program.
Spreadsheets neatly arrange values in a grid, organized by columns and rows. You can
use a spreadsheet to present information in a professional and easy-to-read format. You
can also use a spreadsheet to store large collections of data, such as mailing and product
lists.
• Format and Present Information Quick
You can enhance the appearance of all those numbers by using various fonts, or Reference
typefaces, borders, shading, and more. • A spreadsheet software
• Create Charts program organizes,
Like the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words,” charts are often better at calculates, and presents
presenting information than hard-to-read numbers in a spreadsheet. A chart illustrates numbers.
data, relationships, or trends graphically.

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66 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-6: Databases


Figure 2-7 Field Names
A name that
A database stores and identifies the
manages information information in a
field.
related to a particular
subject or purpose. Field
A specific type of
information, such
as the last names
of your
employees.
L IC3
Record
Objective: 1.2.2.4 A collection of
information about
Req. File: None one person or
thing, such as the
name and address
Figure 2-6 of one employee.

In its simplest form, a database is a collection of information that is organized into a list.
Whenever you make a list of information, such as names, addresses, products, or invoices,
you are, in fact, creating a database. Technically speaking, you don’t even have to use a
database program to create a database.
A database program, however, is much more powerful than a simple list you keep on paper. A
database program lets you:
• Store Information
A database stores lists of information that are related to a particular subject or purpose. A
Microsoft Access is
database stores personal information, such as a list of aunt Mildred’s home recipes, or
the world’s most business information, such as a list of hundreds of thousands of customers. A database
popular database also makes it easy to add, update, organize, and delete information.
software program.
• Find Information
You can easily and instantly locate information stored in a database. For example, you
can find all the customers with the last name “Johnson” or all the customers who live in
the 55417 Zip code and are older than 65.
• Analyze and Print Information
You can perform calculations on information in a database. For example, you could
calculate what percentage of your total sales comes from the state of Texas. You can also
present information in a professional-looking printed report.
• Manage Information
Databases make it easy to work with and manage huge amounts of information. For
example, with a few keystrokes you can change the area code for hundreds of customers
in the (612) area code to a new (817) area code.
• Share Information
Most database programs allow more than one user to view and work with the same
information at once. Such databases are called multi-user databases.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 67

Databases usually consist of several parts. The table on this page identifies the main
components of a database.

Table 2-3: Database Objects


Object Description
Tables store a database’s data in rows (records) and columns (fields). For
example, one table could store a list of customers and their addresses while
Tables another table could store the customers’ orders. A database must always
contain at least one table where it can store information—all the other database
objects are optional.
Queries ask a question about data stored in a table. For example, a query might
Queries ask Access to display only customers who are from Texas.
Forms are custom screens that provide an easy way to enter and view data in a
Forms table or query.
Reports present data from a table or query in a printed format.
Reports

Programming codes help you perform routine tasks by automating them into a
Codes single command.

Quick
Reference
• A database program
stores, manages, and
organizes lists of
information.

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68 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-7: Presentation


Software
Figure 2-8
Even if your presentation
stinks, a presentation
program can at least make
it look pretty.

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.2.3
Req. File: None

Figure 2-8

A presentation program turns your ideas into professional, convincing presentations, or slide
shows. If you’ve ever used an overhead projector, flip chart, or even a black board, you’ll love
presentation software. A presentation program lets you create slides that include text,
graphics, charts, and even digital movies. Once you have created a presentation, you can
Microsoft PowerPoint display it as an electronic slide show on any computer.
is the world’s most
• Create Professional Presentations
popular presentation
There really wasn’t much to the movie Star Wars I: Attack of the Clones, but it sure
software program.
looked impressive. Presentation software can do the same thing for presentations, making
even the dullest speech look more professional.
• Add Drawings, Charts, and Illustrations
Quick Presentations with pictures, graphics, and visuals are much more compelling and
Reference effective at conveying messages than ones that contain only boring text. A presentation
software application like Microsoft PowerPoint makes it easy to add pictures and
• A presentation software
drawings to your slides, making them look as though you hired a professional graphic
program is used to create
design company to create them.
professional, convincing
presentations, or slide • Outline What You Want to Say
shows. If you think way back to your high school speech class, you might remember that you
learned to organize a presentation by writing down its major points in an outline (if only
some public speakers could remember this). Most presentation software has built-in
outlining tools to help you organize your presentation. Just remember to stick to that
outline during your presentation!

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 69

Lesson 2-8: Accounting


Figure 2-9
Accounting software, like
Intuit’s Quicken or
QuickBooks (shown
below) can help you pay
bills, balance your bank
account, and even
perform payroll.

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.2.7
Req. File: None

Figure 2-9

Personal finance and accounting software keep track of your personal or business finances. A
personal finance program can show you what your current checking, savings, or credit card
balances are, where you’re spending your money, and will even help you reconcile your
account when you get a bank statement. Business accounting programs go a step further—
they will create invoices, keep track of your receivables and payables, and even do payroll. QuickBooks is a very
Once you use a personal financing program for your home finances or an accounting program popular accounting
for your business, you’ll never know how you ever got along without one. software program for
• Balance Your Checkbook and Manage Finances small businesses.
Accounting software automatically keeps a running balance of your bank accounts—if
you remember to enter your checks and deposits. If you don’t, many account programs
can download your banking statements.
• Write Checks and Pay Bills
You can purchase special checks that you print out on your computer’s printer to save Quick
time and present a more professional image. Reference
• Create Invoices • Accounting software
If you run a business, an account program can print invoices and keep track of who owes helps manage personal
you money. and/or business finances
• Perform Payroll and balance accounts.
Many accounting programs have a payroll module, which deducts, and tracks Social
Security, Medicare, and state and federal employee taxes.
• Bank Online
Online banking lets you view your current checking and savings balances, pay bills, and
even accept online credit card payments.

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70 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-9: Web Browsing


Figure 2-10
A Web browser lets you
view Web pages on the
Internet.

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.2.7
Req. File: None

Figure 2-10

Web addresses and pages are everywhere—on television advertisements, in magazine and
newspaper articles, and even on business cards. Together, these Web pages make up what is
know as the World Wide Web (WWW) or Web for short. To view a Web page you’ll need a
piece of software called a Web browser. Luckily you won’t need to buy a Web browser, since
it comes standard on most computers. In fact, Microsoft has spent a considerable amount of
money and time in court determining that Windows is actually a Web browser.
• Browse and View Web Pages
Web pages are written in a simple language called HTML, which stands for Hypertext
Markup Language. A Web browser converts the HTML in a Web page into a readable
format and displays that information on your computer screen.
• Find Information
You can use a search engine to find just about anything on the World Wide Web. A search
engine catalogs the billions of Web pages on the Internet so that you can find information
on the topics that interest you. Google and Yahoo are two of the most popular search
engines out there.
Quick
Reference • Download Files
The Internet is filled with files and programs that you can download, or save to your
• A Web browser allows computer. You can download images and pictures, programs, even MP3 files that you can
users to view Web pages listen to.
on the Internet.
• Shop
You can spend lots of money on the World Wide Web. Anything that you can buy in a
store you can probably buy on the Internet. People use the Internet to shop for books,
computers, clothes, and even cars.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 71

Lesson 2-10: Web Authoring


Figure 2-11
Web Authoring software
can help you create
spectacular Web pages,
like the newsletter shown
here.

L IC3
Objective: 1.2.2.7
Req. File: None

Figure 2-11

A few years ago, only the brainy computer types knew how to write their own Web pages.
Today Web authoring programs make it easy for even a novice to get their own Web site up
on the Internet for the whole world to see.
• Create Web Pages
All those pretty Web pages you visit on the Internet are written in a simple language Macromedia
called HTML (stands for HyperText Markup Language). It’s actually possible to create a Dreamweaver is a
Web page by writing it directly in HTML using a simple text editor or word processor, very popular Web
but most people use Web Authoring software because it’s so powerful and easy to use. authoring software
• Insert Images program.
Web Authoring software makes it easy to add pictures and graphics to a Web page,
whether it’s a professional logo for a corporate Web site or a fake photograph for an
online dating service.
Quick
• Add Hyperlinks Reference
You can easily add hyperlinks to a Web page that point to other sites of interest on the
Internet. • A Web Authoring
program lets users create
• Publish Your Web Pages to the Internet Web pages in HTML that
A Web site isn’t any good if people can’t see it. Most Web Authoring programs have tools they can then publish to
to help you upload, or save your Web pages on to the Internet. the Internet.

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72 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 2-11: Graphic and


Multimedia Programs
Figure 2-12
Create pictures and maps
with the Paint program. Fill tool
Paint Tools Use this tool to
To see what a tool fill shapes with
does, point to it for a certain color
a second. The
name of the tool will Line tool
appear after a Use this tool to
second. draw lines
Curve tool
Use this tool
L IC3 to draw curves
Colors
Objective: 1.2.2.5 Select an outline
Req. File: None color by clicking the
color with the left
mouse button.
Select a fill color by
clicking a color with
the right mouse
button.
Figure 2-12

Graphic and multimedia programs come in all different shapes and sizes. Whether it’s the
simple Microsoft Paint, the all-inclusive Microsoft Publisher, or the specialized Adobe
Encore, beginners and professionals alike will have no problem finding a program that will
best suit their creative needs. Graphic and multimedia programs can be used to promote
creativity and to create professionally designed materials, as well as produce media such as
Microsoft Publisher is
audio and video.
a very popular
desktop publishing Table 2-4: Common Graphic, Audio, Movie and Animation File
software program. Formats
Format Media Description
Type
Quick BMP Graphic Also known as a bitmap, this is a generic graphics format used by
Reference Paintbrush and many other graphics programs.
• A graphic and
multimedia program can GIF Graphic Picture file format commonly used on the Internet.
be used to promote JPG Graphic Digital photographs are usually saved as JPEG files. Because of their
creativity, create small size, JPEG files are also commonly used on the Internet.
professionally designed
materials, and produce WAV Audio An uncompressed audio file format developed for Windows.
media such as audio and MP3 Audio A compressed audio file format that can be easily downloaded from the
video. Internet.
MOV Video A movie clip file in Apple QuickTime format.
QuickTime Animation A QuickTime file can contain up to 32 tracks of audio, video, or MIDI files.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 73

Lesson 2-12: Utility Programs


Figure 2-13
When a hard drive
becomes full, use a
compression program to
create more space.
Figure 2-14
Make sure you install Anti-
Virus software on your
computer to prevent
malicious computer
Figure 2-13 Figure 2-14 viruses.

L IC3
Just like cars require maintenance to keep them running properly, computers require various
Objective: 1.2.2.6
maintenance tasks as well, and these tasks can be taken care of by a utility program.
Req. File: None
• File Compression: File compression is a way of reducing the size of one or more files
so that they don’t take up a lot of space on the hard drive and can travel faster over a Quick
network. File compression is accomplished with software that uses mathematical Reference
equations (algorithms) to condense repeated data into smaller codes. Zip files are the
most common forms of this, which uses the WinZip program. Microsoft Windows XP File Compression:
features built-in Zip compression. • Reduces the size of one
• Hard Drive Compression: A computer can increase the space available on a hard or more files.
drive by using a special program to compress, or squeeze together, the files stored on a Hard Drive Compression:
hard drive. Most disk compression programs can effectively double the amount of • Increases the space on a
information a hard drive can store. However, hard drive compression should not be hard drive by
performed unless it is absolutely necessary.
compressing, or
• Virus Detection: A computer virus is actually a small computer program written by a squeezing together, files.
malicious person with the purpose of vandalizing computers by erasing information on
Virus Detection:
their hard drive and causing other problems. Anti-Virus programs that protect computers
against viruses, like Norton AntiVirus or McAfee VirusScan, are available at most • Virus detection software
computer stores. If you’re even thinking about connecting to the Internet, you need to should be installed on
have AntiVirus software installed on your computer. every computer in order
to protect it from
• Hard Drive Defragmentation: Normally a computer stores a file in the same location malicious computer
on a hard drive. Over time, however, a hard drive can become fragmented, and instead of viruses.
storing a file in the same location, it begins storing parts of it all over. When the computer
needs to read a fragmented file, it must read several different parts of the hard drive Hard Drive
instead of just one. Defragmenting a hard drive puts the fragmented files back together in Defragmentation:
one place. You should defragment your computer’s hard drive about once a month. • Over time, small errors
Windows comes with a built-in disk defragmenter, but there are many other programs out and fragmentation can
there. degrade the performance
of a hard drive. These
problems can be
corrected with
defragmentation software

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74 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Chapter Two Review

Lesson Summary
The Interaction of Hardware and Software
• Examples of how hardware and software interact include input, processing/storage, and output.

Software Development
• Steps in the Software Development Process:
1. Programming/Product Development
2. Debugging
3. Beta Review
4. Testing

Software Upgrades
• Software is updated periodically in order to add new features, fix problems or “bugs”, and ensure
compatibility with other products such as new hardware, software, or operating systems.

Word Processing
• A word processor is a program that lets you create letters and documents.

Spreadsheets
• A spreadsheet software program organizes, calculates, and presents numbers.

Databases
• A database program stores, manages, and organizes lists of information.

Presentation Software
• A presentation software program is used to create professional, convincing presentations, or slide
shows.

Accounting
• Accounting software helps manage personal and/or business finances and balance accounts.

Web Browsing
• A Web browser allows users to view Web pages on the Internet.

Web Authoring
• A Web Authoring program lets users create Web pages in HTML that they can then publish to the
Internet.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Two: Computer Software 75

Graphic and Multimedia Programs


• A graphic and multimedia program can be used to promote creativity, create professionally
designed materials, and produce media such as audio and video.

Utility Programs
• File compression reduces the size of one or more files.
• Hard drive compression increases the space on a hard drive by compressing, or squeezing
together, its contents.
• Virus detection software should be installed on every computer in order to protect it from
malicious computer viruses.
• Over time, small errors and fragmentation can degrade the performance of a hard drive. These
problems can be corrected with defragmentation software.

Quiz
1. Software tells hardware how to operate. (True or False?)

2. Data can be inputted into a computer via: (Select all that apply.)
A. Keyboard
B. Scanner
C. Plotter
D. Microphone

3. Which of the following is NOT a step in the software development process?


A. Debugging
B. PETA Review
C. Programming
D. Testing

4. Software manufacturers release product upgrades in order to: (Select all


that apply.)
A. Fix problems or “bugs”
B. Comply with government standards
C. Add new features
D. Ensure compatibility with other products

5. A word processor is the only program that allows you to create tables.
(True or False?)

6. Which of the following programs would be best suited for helping you
calculate a monthly budget?
A. A word processor
B. A spreadsheet
C. A database
D. A graphic and multimedia program

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76 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

7. Which of the following programs would be best suited for storing a list of
customers and their orders?
A. A word processor
B. A spreadsheet
C. A database
D. Web authoring

8. A Web browser allows users to: (Select all that apply.)


A. Add hyperlinks
B. Download files
C. Shop
D. Find information

9. A JPEG file is a generic graphics format used by Paintbrush and many


other graphics programs. (True or False?)

10. Which of the following is NOT a type of utility program?


A. Virus detection
B. Hard drive compression
C. Hard drive defragmentation
D. QuickTime

Quiz Answers
1. True. Software refers to the various computer programs that tell hardware how to operate.
2. A, B, and D. A plotter is a type of printer, which is an example of an output device.
3. B. Beta Review is a step in the software development process, but PETA Review is not.
PETA has to do with the treatment of animals—not software development!
4. A, C and D. There are no government standards that stipulate the release of product
upgrades.
5. False. Word processors, databases, and spreadsheets can all be used to create tables.
6. B. A spreadsheet would be the program best suited to help you balance your budget.
7. C. A database would be best suited for storing a list of customers and their orders.
8. B, C, and D. A Web Authoring program allows users to add hyperlinks.
9. False. JPEG files are very small and are commonly used on the Internet. Bitmap (BMP)
files are used by Paintbrush and many other graphics programs.
10. D. QuickTime is a graphic and multimedia program.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Three:
Using an
Operating System
Chapter Objectives: ; Prerequisites
• Identify different operating systems • A computer with
Windows 2000
• Learn about graphical user interfaces (GUIs) installed.
• Understand the Windows 2000 Screen
• Identify different elements of the Windows desktop
• Manipulate windows
• Learn how to shut down and restart the computer
• Learn how to use the Windows Start menu and taskbar
• Learn how to manage files and folders using Windows
Explorer
• Using the Control Panel and changing its settings
• Display and update a list of installed printers
• Installing and removing software

This chapter includes the knowledge and skills required to perform the most frequently used
functions of an operating system. Lessons include the ability to install and run software,
control the workspace (desktop), perform file management, and change system settings
(display, date and time, etc.). The operating system that we will be using is Microsoft
Windows, the most popular PC operating system.
78 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-1: Operating Systems


Figure 3-1
MS-DOS is a text-based
operating system from the
Stone Age.
Figure 3-2
Introducing…the Start
menu! Microsoft Windows
95 was a very popular
operating system that
featured long file names,
better performance, and Figure 3-1 Figure 3-2
an easy-to-use interface.
An operating system is a software program that loads automatically and controls just about
everything on your computer. Here’s what an operating system does:
L IC3 • Controls Your Computer’s Hardware
Objective: 1.3.1.1, 1.3.1.2, Windows controls the different devices of your computer system. It’s what makes your
and 1.3.1.4 printer print, what makes graphics and text appear on your monitor, and what makes your
mouse point and click.
Req. File: None
• Runs Your Computer’s Programs
An operating system is what runs all your programs. Without an operating system, your
word processor, Web browser (Internet), and games wouldn’t work. An operating system
lets your programs talk to your hardware, so, for example, your word processor can print
things to the printer.
C:\> • Organizes Files
A command prompt An operating system stores information in files and folders on your computer’s local disk,
is where you type just like you store files and folders in a filing cabinet.
commands in MS- An operating system is like an orchestra conductor who makes sure all the parts of your
DOS. computer—your hardware and programs—work together. Operating systems have been
around for a long time—here’s a brief history of the various operating systems out there:

Table 3-1: Types of Operating Systems


Operating System Released Description
MS-DOS 1980 MS-DOS stands for Microsoft Disk Operating System.
MS-DOS was one of the earliest PC operating systems
that displayed boring lines of text on the screen instead
of icons and pictures. You performed tasks in MS-DOS
by typing text commands. MS-DOS file names could
only be eight characters long.
Windows 3.1 1992 Windows 3.1 was the first successful operating system
for the PC that featured a GUI (Graphical User
Interface) that used easy to use pictures instead of hard-
to-remember MS-DOS commands. Technically
speaking, Windows 3.1 was not a true operating system,
since it still required MS-DOS to operate.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 79

Operating System Released Description


Windows 95 1995 The incredibly successful successor to Windows 3.1,
Windows 95 was a true operating system (no more
MS-DOS). It featured long file names, better
performance, and a greatly improved interface.
Windows 98 1998 Very similar with Windows 95, Windows 98 included
several new and improved features. More importantly,
Windows 98 came with support for many of the new
hardware devices out there.
Windows ME 2000 Windows ME was the successor to Windows 98. ME
stands for Millennium Edition or Mistake Eternal,
depending on who you talk to. Windows ME was very
similar to Windows 95 and 98 but it included new
multimedia features, new utilities, and lots of new bugs.
Windows NT 1993 Windows NT (stands for New Technology) was a
powerful 32-bit operating system that was faster, more
secure, and much more stable than Windows 95 or 98.
Windows NT was designed for use in large companies
where stability and security were especially important.
Windows 2000 2000 Windows 2000 was the successor to Windows NT.
Windows 2000 includes the best features of Windows
98 (easy Plug and Play hardware installation) and
Windows NT (security and stability). Windows 2000 is
still widely used in many businesses.
Windows XP Home 2001 Windows XP (stands for eXPerience) Home is designed
for home and consumer computing and is the successor
to Windows ME. Windows XP has the same technology
found in Windows NT and 2000, so it’s much more
stable than earlier versions of Windows.
Windows XP Professional 2001 Windows XP Professional is the business edition of Quick
Windows and is the successor to Windows NT and Reference
Windows 2000.
An Operating System:
Windows CE / Pocket PC Varies Windows CE (stands for Consumer Electronics) is the
• Loads automatically and
operating system made by Microsoft used to power
handheld computers or PDAs (Personal Data controls just about
Assistants). everything on your
computer.
Palm OS® Varies The Palm OS is another operating system that can be
found on handheld computers or PDAs.
UNIX Varies UNIX is an older, very powerful operating system that
can run on a computer, mainframe, or network. UNIX
features great performance, security, and reliability.
Linux Varies Linux is a newer UNIX-base operating system that is
available for FREE on the Internet. Linux is becoming a
popular alternative to Microsoft Windows.
Mac OS X 2001 Mac OS X is the latest operating system for Macintosh
computers.

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80 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-2: Understanding


Graphical User Interfaces
Figure 3-3 Microsoft(R) MS-DOS
(C)Copyright Microsoft Corp
The procedure for deleting
a file in a text-based C:\>DEL LETTER.DOC
operating system.
Figure 3-4
The procedure for deleting
a file in a GUI-based
operating system.

Figure 3-3

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.1.3 and
1.3.1.4
Req. File: None

Figure 3-4

Operating systems were originally character based, and therefore the information displayed on
a computer screen was strictly text. The only way users could interact with these archaic
systems was by typing commands via a keyboard—which took a very long time!
Finally, computers started using graphical images, or icons, to represent a program or file on
the screen. Along with the introduction of icons came the development of graphical user
interfaces (GUIs), which have become standard on practically all operating systems in recent
Graphical user years. GUIs allow computer users to point at pictures and icons and then click the icon to
interfaces (GUIs) manipulate that program or file, thus the phrase point-and-click. Obviously, the mouse is a
allow computer users manifestation of this point-and-click mentality because the mouse controls the onscreen
to point and click. cursor.
Figure 3-3 and Figure 3-4 make a good illustration of how much easier a GUI makes it to do
things, like delete a file. The following table describes some of the most common icons you’ll
see in the Windows 2000 GUI.

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.


Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 81

Table 3-2: Things You’ll See in the Windows 2000 GUI


Object Object
You use the arrow or pointer to The Recycle Bin stores your deleted files.
point and click at things.
Click the Start button to access Click the Close button to close the
the programs on a computer. current window or program.
Double-click My Computer to Click the Minimize button to temporarily
access the drives and files on a hide a window or program.
computer.
Double-click the Hard Drive to Click the Maximize button to expand a
access the hard drive’s folders and window or program to fill the entire screen.
files.
Double-click the CD-ROM Drive to A thumbnail displays a tiny preview of a
play or run the contents of the CD- digital picture or photograph.
ROM.
Folders hold files and subfolders,
just like a filing cabinet.

It is important to be able to identify several common problems associated with operating


systems, including:
• Incompatibility between an application program, file, or media type and the operating
system: Application software and files must be compatible with the operating system
being used.
• Corruption of fundamental files used by the operating system: Corrupt fundamental files
and other problems sometimes require that an operating system be reinstalled or upgraded
in order to solve problems such as instability.
• Denied access to a PC: Some operating systems require a specific logon procedure, and
failing to provide the proper logon can lead to an inability to access the system.

Quick
Reference
• Graphical User
Interface, or GUI, makes
computers easier to
operate by using pictures
and icons to represent
files and programs.

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82 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-3: Understanding


the Windows 2000 Screen
Figure 3-5
My Documents Folder
The major parts of the
Windows 2000 screen.
Application (Word)
More items may appear My Computer
on your computer,
depending on how it is set
My Network File (Word)
up. Places Desktop

Recycle Bin

L IC3
Internet Explorer
Objective: 1.3.2.1
Req. File: None
Application
(Outlook)

Start button
Taskbar

Quick Launch System Tray Area


Figure 3-5 Toolbar

You might find the Windows screen a bit confusing and overwhelming the first time you see
it. Nothing on the screen appears familiar to you—where do you even start? This lesson will
help you become familiar with the main Windows screen, known as the desktop. There isn’t a
step-by-step exercise anywhere in this lesson—all you have to do is look at Figure 3-5 and
then refer to Table 3-3: Major Parts of the Windows 2000 Screen to see what everything
you’re looking at means. And, most of all, relax! This lesson is only meant to help you get
acquainted with Windows—you don’t have to memorize anything.

Table 3-3: Major Parts of the Windows 2000 Screen


Item Description
Desktop The large, background area of the Windows screen. You can customize the desktop
by adding shortcuts to your favorite programs, documents, and printers. You can also
change the look of the desktop to fit your mood and personality.

My My Documents is a special folder that provides a convenient place to store files and
Documents documents you create on your computer.

My Computer My Computer lets you see the drives and folders on your computer. Double-click the
My Computer icon on the desktop to browse through your files and folders.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 83

Item Description
My Network If you’re on a network, the My Network Places icon will appear on your desktop. You
Places can double-click the My Network Places icon to browse through the computers in
your workgroup and the computers on the network. If you’re connected to the
Internet, the My Network Places icon will appear on your desktop since the Internet
is a network too.

Recycle Bin The Recycle Bin stores all the files you delete from your computer. You can use the
Recycle Bin to retrieve files you deleted by accident, or empty the Recycle Bin to
create more disk space.

Taskbar The Taskbar usually appears at the bottom of your screen, and contains the famous
Start button, which you use to start your programs. Whenever you open a program,
document, or window, an icon for that program appears on the taskbar. This lets you
see which programs are currently running so you can switch between them.

Start Button The Start button lets you quickly open your programs and documents. You can also
use the Start button to find files and change the settings for Windows.

Quick Launch New in Windows 2000, the Quick Launch Toolbar gives you quick access to your
Toolbar most frequently used applications. Internet Explorer, Outlook Express, the Windows
desktop, and several Web sites, called channels, are already included on the Quick
Launch Toolbar by default.

File If you save a file on the desktop, an icon will appear with the file name and file type,
and the program in which the file was created.

Folder Save a folder on the desktop to organize files or icons that may be saved on the
desktop.

Application An application is a software program that runs on your computer. Usually application
shortcuts are saved on your desktop so you can open them without wading through a
bunch of menus.

Don’t worry if you find some of these things confusing at first—they will make more sense in
the upcoming lessons, after you’ve had a chance to use them.

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84 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-4: Understanding


the Parts of a Window
Title bar Minimize Maximize
Figure 3-6 button button
The parts of a typical Close button
Window. Menu bar

Toolbars

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.2
Req. File: None
Main Window
or Document
Area Scroll bar

Status bar
Figure 3-6

Located in every window are several little buttons, menus, and controls that you use to control
the program and window. Once you find your way around a window for one program, you’ll
be familiar with the windows for most programs since this window/menu/button concept
appears in just about every Windows program.
No exercises or homework for you in this lesson, it’s just here to help you become familiar
with the parts of a window. All you have to do is look at Figure 3-6 and then refer to Table
3-4: Parts of a Window to see a description of everything.
You’ll get a chance to use some of these buttons and menus later on.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 85

Table 3-4: Parts of a Window


Part Description
Title bar Displays the name of the program or window.

Minimize button Hides a window from your screen, but keeps it running in your computer’s
memory, ready for quick use. You can minimize a program you’re not using so
that it is still running but out of sight.

Maximize/Restore Depending on the size of the window, this button toggles between Maximize
button and Restore. Here’s what each one does:
Maximize: Enlarges the window so that it fills the entire screen. This
lets you see more of the contents of the window. The Maximize button
only appears when the window isn’t maximized, or doesn’t fill up the entire
screen.
Restore: When a window is maximized, or fills up the entire screen,
clicking the Restore button returns the window to its previous size.

Close button Closes the window or program when you’ve finished working with it, removing it
from the screen and the computer’s memory.

Menu Controls what the program does. The items listed on the menu change from
program to program, but the menu’s location doesn’t—it’s always perched near
the top of a window, right below the Title bar.

Toolbar Some (but not all) windows and programs have one or more toolbars, which
contain buttons you point to and click to perform frequently used commands.

Main Window or This is where all the action takes place. If you were using a word processor, this
Document Area is where your letter would appear; if were browsing the Internet, this is where
the Web pages would appear.

Scroll bar Sometimes a window is not large enough to display all the information at once.
When this happens, you use the scroll bar to move or scroll through the
information in the window.

Status bar Displays information such as instructions, messages about the state of the
computer, or your location in the window.

Got everything down? Don’t worry if you don’t; this lesson is just a quick guided tour of a
typical window. The rest of the lessons in this chapter focus on how to use a window’s
controls, buttons, and menus.

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86 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-5: Maximizing,


Minimizing, and Restoring a
Window
Minimize Maximize button (or
Figure 3-7 button Restore button if the
window is already
The Minimize, Maximize, maximized)
and Restore buttons
appear in the upper right-
hand corner of most
programs.
Figure 3-8 Figure 3-7
A window in a restored
state only fills up part of
the screen.
Figure 3-8
Figure 3-9
A window in a maximized
state fills up the entire
screen.
Figure 3-10
A window in a minimized
state appears only as an
icon on the taskbar.

Figure 3-9 Figure 3-10


L IC3 One of the benefits of Windows 2000 is that it enables you to open and work with several
Objective: 1.3.2.2 programs at the same time. To make working with several programs at once easier, you can
Req. File: None change the size of the windows. You can maximize or expand a window so it takes up the
entire screen, minimize or collapse a window so that it only appears as a button in the
Windows taskbar, or size a window somewhere in between. This lesson explains how to
change the size of a window by maximizing, minimizing, and restoring.
First let’s look at how to maximize or expand a window. Some programs, such as word
Maximize processors and Web browsers, are easier to work with and see if they fill the entire screen. To
button enlarge a window to fill your computer screen, you click the Maximize button.

1. Click the WordPad window’s Maximize button—the middle button on


WordPad’s Title bar.
The WordPad program maximizes, filling the entire screen. You can change a
maximized window back to its original size by clicking the Restore button. The
Restore button
Restore button appears in place of the Maximize button whenever a window is already
in a maximized state.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 87

2. Click the WordPad window’s Restore button to restore the WordPad


window back to its previous size.
Other Ways to Maximize
The window returns to its previous size. and Restore a Window:
Just like you can keep several papers on top of your desk, Windows can run more than • Double-click the Title
one program at a time. For example, you can work on a letter with your word bar of the window to
processing program while your Web browser is open and downloading a file from the
toggle between
Internet. There is a potential pitfall with running several programs simultaneously—
maximized and restored
there isn’t enough room for them all to fit on your computer screen!
states.
Luckily, you can tuck programs away, keeping them running and ready for use but
away from view by minimizing them.
3. Click the WordPad window’s Minimize button to minimize the WordPad
program. Minimize
The WordPad program shrinks to an icon located in the Windows taskbar. WordPad is button
still open and running—it’s just hidden from view, tucked away and ready for future
use. It’s important to note that minimized programs can still run in the background,
meaning if a program’s doing something, such as downloading a file from the Internet,
it will keep doing it even when the program is minimized.
It’s easy to redisplay a minimized program or window when you’re ready to use it
again. Here’s how: WordPad icon
4. Find and click the WordPad icon in the Windows taskbar.
The WordPad program springs back to life and appears on the screen.
It’s important that you get all this maximize/minimize/restore stuff down, because it will help
you run more than one program at a time and be more productive with your computer.

Quick
Reference
To Maximize a Window:
• Click the window’s
Maximize button.
Or…
• Double-click the window’s
title bar.
To Restore a Maximized
Window:
• Click the
window’s Restore
button.
Or…
• Double-click the window’s
title bar.
To Minimize a Window:
• Click the window’s
Minimize button.
To Restore a Minimized
Window:
• Click the window’s icon
on the taskbar.

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88 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-6: Closing a Window


Figure 3-11
Click the Close button
of the window you want to
close.
Figure 3-12
The window disappears
from your screen.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.2 Figure 3-11 Figure 3-12
Req. File: None Close button The icon for the window
disappears from the taskbar.

Close button When you’re finished working with a window or program, you can close it to remove it from
Other Ways to Close a the screen and computer’s memory. You can close any window or program by clicking its
Window: Close button—the little button that appears in the upper-right corner of the window.
• Select File → Exit or
Close from the menu. 1. Click the WordPad window’s Close button.
• Right-click the program The WordPad program closes. Notice the WordPad icon no longer appears in the
icon on the task bar and Windows taskbar at the bottom of the screen. That’s all there is to closing a window or
select Close program.
• Press <Alt> + <F4>. Here’s a tip: If a program has more than one window open, you can close all its open
windows by holding down the <Shift> key when you click the close button for any
window.
Quick Since you’re going to be working with the WordPad program in the next few lessons,
Reference you will need to open it again.
To Close a Window: 2. Click the Start button.
The Windows 2000 Start menu appears.
• Click the window’s Close
button. 3. Select Programs → Accessories → WordPad from the Start menu.
Or… The WordPad program reappears.
• Right-click the program’s If a program happens to be minimized, you need to restore it by clicking its icon on the
icon on the task bar and taskbar before you can see and click the window’s close button.
select Close.
Or…
• Press <Alt> + <F4>.
To Close All Open
Windows:
• Hold down the <Shift>
key while you click the
Close button of any
window.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 89

Lesson 3-7: Moving a Window


Figure 3-13
Move a window by
dragging it by its title Moving a window to a new
bar to a new location
on the screen.
location on the screen

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.2
Req. File: None

Figure 3-13

Sometimes when you have several programs or windows open, you will find that one window
covers the other windows or other items on your screen. When this happens, you can simply Title bar
move a window to a new location on the screen—just like you would move a report or folder
to a different location on your desk. Here’s how to move a window:

1. Position the mouse pointer over the title bar of the WordPad program.
Remember that the title bar is at the very top of a window or program and displays the Quick
name of the program or window. Reference
2. Click the title bar and move the mouse while still holding down the To Move a Window
mouse button.
Yep, it’s that click and drag stuff you learned earlier. An outline of the window follows • Click and drag the
your mouse as you drag the window, as shown in Figure 3-13, showing you where you window by its title bar.
are moving it. Release the mouse
button to drop the
3. Release the mouse button to drop the window in a new location. window in the desired
location on the screen.

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90 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-8: Resizing a


Window
v
Figure 3-14
Dragging a window’s edge
changes the width of the
window.
Figure 3-15
Dragging a window’s
corner changes the height
1. Point at the edge of 2. Click and hold the 3. Release the mouse
and width of the window. the window until the mouse button and button when the
pointer changes to drag the edge of window is the size
a the window you want

Figure 3-14
L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.2
Req. File: None

1. Point at the corner 2. Click and hold the 3. Release the mouse
of the window until mouse button and button when the
the pointer changes drag the corner of window is the size
to a the window you want

Figure 3-15

If you’ve been following the lessons in this chapter carefully, you should already know how
to change the size of a window or program by minimizing, maximizing, and restoring it. This
lesson explains how you can fine-tune the size of a window to meet your own specific needs.

1. Make sure the WordPad program appears as a window and doesn’t fill the
entire screen.
A window must not be maximized (fills up the entire screen) or minimized (appears
only as a button on the Taskbar) if you want to manually size it.
The mouse 2. Position the mouse pointer over the right edge of the WordPad window
pointer until it changes to a .
changes The two arrows point in the directions that you can drag the window's border, in this
shapes over case, left or right. Had you positioned the pointer over the top or bottom of the
the border of a window, the pointer would have changed to a , indicating that you could drag the top
window
or bottom of the window up or down.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 91

NOTE: Windows is very picky about where you place the pointer, and sometimes it
can be tricky finding the exact spot where the pointer changes. It’s there—just
move the pointer slowly over the border until you find it.
3. Click and hold down the left mouse button and drag the mouse to the
right one-inch to move the window border.
Notice the window’s border follows as you drag the mouse. When the window is the
size you want, you can release the mouse button.
4. Release the mouse button.
The window is displayed in the new size.
You’ve learned how to resize a window by adjusting the right edge of a window, but you can
also change a window’s size by dragging its left, top, and bottom edges. You can also resize a
window by dragging its corners just like you drag its edges, as shown in Figure 3-15.

Quick
Reference
To Change a Window’s
Size:
1. Point at the window’s
edge until the pointer
changes to a double-
arrow (like ).
Or…
Point at the window’s
corner until the pointer
changes to a double
arrow (like ).
2. Click and hold down the
mouse button and drag
the edge or corner until
the window is the size you
want.

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92 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-9: Shutting Down or


Restarting the Computer
Figure 3-16
The Shut Down Windows
dialog box.

Click the arrow and


select Shut down…
L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.3
Req. File: None …and click OK to shut
down your computer.
Figure 3-16

At the end of the day, when you’ve finished using your computer, you need to shut down
Windows before you turn your computer off. Shutting down gives Windows a chance to tidy
up after itself, saving information in the computer’s memory to the hard disk, cleaning up
temporary files, and verifying that you’ve saved any changes you made to any files you were
working on.
Should I turn my computer off at all? One of the great computer debates is whether or not you
should turn your computer off at all. Some people turn off their computer whenever they’ve
finished working on it, just like a television set. Others don’t turn their computers off—ever.
People who turn their computers off at night say that keeping the computer on 24 hours a day,
7 days a week wears out the computer’s mechanical components and wastes electricity. Other
people say that leaving your computer on keeps temperature fluctuations down, which is
better for the computer’s delicate internal components. Plus, most new computers enter a
standby or hibernation mode after a period of time, so they don’t really consume that much
power. Which method is best? That’s a decision you’ll have to make on your own.
If Windows 2000 is working really slowly, or is causing problems, you can reset the program
by restarting your computer. This option is also found in the shut down dialog box. This
lesson will show you how to shut down your computer, and how to restart your computer.

1. Save all of your work and exit all of the programs.


Start button
Saving any files you’ve been working on is the most important step of all when you
shut down your computer. You should also consider backing up vital information if you
have a tape backup, Zip drive, or other backup device. You can also save important
files to a floppy disk.
2. Click the Start button.
The Start menu appears.
3. Select the Shut Down option from the Start menu.
The Shut Down Windows dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-16.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 93

NOTE: Remember, using the correct procedure to shut down or restart your computer
is very important. If you don’t do these procedures properly, you might lose a
lot of important information.
4. Click the Shut Down list arrow in the Shut Down Windows dialog box.
Notice that there are a few options available in this list. Table 3-5: Options in the Shut
Down List explains them.
5. Select Shut Down.
If you clicked OK, Windows would begin closing out the operating program and other
programs that might be open.
Instead, try restarting the computer. This allows you to get the feel of shutting down the
computer without having to start it again manually.
6. Click the Shut Down list arrow and select Restart from the list.
The computer’s hard drive hums as Windows cleans up and shuts itself down.
NOTE: Leaving nothing to chance, Windows checks to make sure you’ve saved
everything you’ve been working on, such as letters you’ve created in your
word processing program. If Windows notices that you haven’t saved a file, it
asks if you want to save the changes you’ve made to the file before it
completes the shut down procedure.
After a few moments, the computer begins to start itself up again.
7. Log on to Windows once again.
Go on to the next lesson.

Table 3-5: Options in the Shut Down List Quick


Shut Down Option Description Reference
Stand by Use Stand by if you have a laptop and are going to leave your computer To Shut Down Windows:
briefly, but want to conserve as much energy as possible while you are 1. Save and close the files
away. After you return your computer to its original running state, you will you’ve been working on
be able to pick up exactly where you left off. (Make sure you save and exit all of the
everything you were working on first!) programs.
Use this option if you want to turn your computer off. It saves your 2. Click the Start button
Shut down and select Shut Down.
Windows settings and any information stored in memory to the hard
disk. 3. Click the Shut Down list
arrow and select Shut
Restart Restart saves Windows settings, writes information stored in your Down.
computer’s memory to the hard disk, and restarts your computer. Use
4. Click OK.
this option to reset your computer if Windows or your Windows-based
programs start acting flaky. You often have to restart your computer after To Restart Windows:
installing new software. 1. Save any files you’ve
been working on and exit
Log Off As… This option appears only if your computer is connected to a network.
all of the programs.
This option closes all your programs and disconnects your computer
from the network, preparing your computer to be used by someone else. 2. Click the Start button
and select Shut Down.
3. Click the Shut Down list
arrow and select Restart.
4. Click OK.

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94 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-10: Using the Task


Manager to Shut Down a
Program
Close button
Figure 3-17

The Windows Task


Manager.
A list of all the programs that are
open and their status is listed.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.3
Req. File: None

Figure 3-17

Sometimes you will find that programs lock up and freeze while you’re using them. When
this happens, you can’t exit the program as you normally would, but you can close it without
affecting other open programs by using the Task Manager. The Task Manager keeps track of
all of the programs running on your computer, and has information on your computer’s
performance. This is a very useful feature that, hopefully, you won’t have to use very often.
Other Ways to Open the
Task Manager: 1. Press <Ctrl> + <Alt> + <Delete>.
• Right-click the taskbar The Windows Security dialog box appears.
and select Task 2. Click the Task Manager button in the dialog box.
Manager from the
If you have any programs open, they appear in the dialog box, as shown in Figure 3-17.
shortcut menu.
If a program is functioning properly, the status will be “Running.” If the program is
frozen, the status will be “Not Responding.”
You won’t have to use this function until a program stops working properly, so here’s
what to do if one of your programs freezes.
3. Select the program with the status Not Responding. Click the End Task
button.
Windows closes down the program, and the program disappears from the Task
Manager list.
In addition to closing programs, there are two other things you can do with in the Task
Manager:
• Switch to: Select the program you want to switch to and click this button.
• New Task: Click this button to start another program.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 95

4. Click the Close button to close the Task Manager.


Most of the time, you will use the Applications tab of the Task Manager, but here is
some helpful information on the other two tabs in the dialog box:
• Processes: Displays information on the hardware, such as the CPU, memory
usage, and other behind the scenes information.
• Performances: Includes graphs for CPU usage, and totals for handles, threads
and other processes.
That’s about all there is to know about the Task Manager. Don’t forget to use this great
resource when you’re in a jam.

Quick
Reference
To Close a Program Using
the Task Manager:
1. Press <Ctrl> + <Alt> +
<Delete>.
Or…
Right-click the task bar
and select Task Manager
from the shortcut menu.
2. In the Application tab,
select the program that is
not responding.
3. Click the End Task
button.

Institute of Applied Technology


96 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-11: Starting a


Program
Figure 3-18
Click on the Start button to
open the Start menu, and
then point to Programs to
open the Programs menu.
Figure 3-19
Click Accessories to open
the Accessories menu,
and then click WordPad to
open the WordPad
program.
Figure 3-20
Figure 3-18 Figure 3-19
The WordPad program.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.4
Req. File: None

Any programs that are


currently running appear as
Figure 3-20 icons on the taskbar

To do just about anything with your computer, you need to run a program. A program is a
Start button complex set of instructions that tells your computer how to do something. Your word
processor is a program and so is the Solitaire game that comes with Windows. The easiest
way to start a program is by clicking the Windows Start button and then selecting the program
from the Programs menu. This lesson explains one of the most basic operations you can do
with Windows: starting a program.

1. Click the Start button.


Remember that the Start button resides in the bottom-left corner of the computer
screen. The Start menu pops up.
Programs
menu 2. Point to the word Programs.
A menu listing the different program categories pops out to the side of the Start menu,
as shown in Figure 3-18.

Accessories
menu

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 97

3. Point to the word Accessories.


Another menu, the Accessories menu, shoots out from the Programs menu, as shown in
Figure 3-19. The program you want to load, called “WordPad,” is located here, in the
Accessories menu. Can you find it?
4. Click the word WordPad.
The WordPad program appears onto the screen in its own window, as shown in Figure WordPad
3-20. WordPad is a simple word processing program that is included with Microsoft program
Windows.
Almost all programs
NOTE: The Programs menu is merely a list of the programs that should be available
run in their own
on your computer. Normally when you install a program onto your computer,
separate window on
it adds itself to the Start menu. Occasionally, old MS-DOS programs or
programs that are poorly written may not put themselves on the Start menu the screen.
when you install them, and you will have to find and add the program to the
Program menu yourself. You’ll learn how to manually add programs to the
Start menu in an upcoming lesson.
Great! You’ve just started your first program. Turn the page and we’ll examine the parts of the
WordPad window.

Quick
Reference
To Start a Program:
1. Click the Start button.
2. Point to the Programs
option.
3. Click the menu and any
submenus where the
program you want to run
is located.
4. Click the name of the
program you want to run.

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98 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-12: Switching


Between Open Windows
Figure 3-21
You can only work in one Click any part of a window to switch to
window at a time. Notice that window.
that WordPad appears in
front of the other window
and has a blue title bar.
Figure 3-22
Click any part of the
Calculator window or its
button on the taskbar so
The taskbar displays icons for each
that it appears in front of open window. Click an icon to switch
all the other windows. to its window.
Figure 3-21
Figure 3-23
Pressing <Alt> + <Tab>
lists all the programs that
are currently running.
Calculator

Figure 3-23

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.4
Req. File: None

The active window’s icon is


pressed down on the taskbar.
Figure 3-22

You can have several programs or windows open and running simultaneously, but you can
only work in one window at a time. The window you’re working with is called the active
window and always appears on top of any other windows that you have open. If you think
about it, you do the same thing when you work at your desk. When you want to work on a
piece of paper, you place it on top of everything else on your desk.
This lesson explains how to switch between the programs you’re running. There are actually
several ways to switch between windows, and we’ll cover all of them in this lesson. First, you
need to make sure you have several programs running…

1. Make sure the WordPad program is still open.


The WordPad program should still be up and running from the previous lesson. If it
isn’t, open it by clicking the Start button and selecting Programs → Accessories →
WordPad. Notice an icon for the WordPad program appears on the taskbar. Next, you
need to open another program that comes with Windows 2000—the calculator.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 99

2. Start the calculator by clicking the Start button and selecting Programs
→ Accessories → Calculator from the menu.
The calculator program appears in front of the WordPad program. An icon for
Calculator program also appears in the taskbar, next to the WordPad icon. Notice the
Calculator icon is pressed down, indicating it is the active window, or is the window
that appears in front of the others. You can make WordPad the active window by
clicking its icon on the taskbar.
3. Click the WordPad button on the taskbar.
The WordPad program appears in front, and its icon on the taskbar depresses, WordPad
indicating it is now the active window. You can also switch to a window by clicking button on the
any part of the window that you can see. taskbar
4. Click any portion of the Calculator window to make it active.
If you can’t see the Calculator window at all, it’s because the Calculator window is
completely covered by the WordPad window, in which case you will have to click the
Calculator icon on the taskbar instead.
Yet another method of switching between windows is a famous keystroke combination
in Windows: <Alt> + <Tab>.
5. Press and hold down the<Alt> key. While holding down the <Alt> key,
press and release the <Tab> key.
The task window appears, as shown in Figure 3-23. The task window lists all the
windows and programs that are currently running. Move on to the next step to see how
you can retrieve a program or window from the task list.
6. Still holding down the <Alt> key, press and release the <Tab> key until
the WordPad program is selected, then release the <Alt> key.
When you release the <Alt> key, the selected window or program is activated and
displayed in front of any other windows.
NOTE: <Alt> + <Tab> is especially useful when you use programs that fill the entire
computer screen, such as MS-DOS programs and some games. When you
can’t see the taskbar or any part of another window, <Alt> + <Tab> is the
only way you can switch between programs.
Quick
NOTE: When you’re working with multiple programs, be careful you don’t Reference
accidentally run a second copy of the same program. This wastes memory and
makes things confusing. For example, if you’ve been using the Calculator To Switch between Open
program and want to bring it back up, make sure you check the taskbar to see Programs:
if it’s already running. If it is (a Calculator icon appears on the taskbar) use • Click the program’s icon
any of the methods you’ve learned in this lesson to switch to it. If a program on the taskbar.
is already running and you load it again from the Start menu, a second copy of
Or…
the program opens and two icons for the programs will appear on the taskbar.
• Click any part of the
Think you have a handle on switching between programs and windows? Good, because when window you want to
you work with Windows, you’ll find yourself switching between programs and windows appear on front.
throughout the day.
Or…
• Press and hold down the
<Alt> key and press the
<Tab> to display the task
list. Press the <Tab> key
until the program you
want is selected, then
release the <Alt> key.

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100 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-13: Adding a


Shortcut to the Start Menu
Add a program to
Figure 3-24 the Start menu

The Start Menu Programs Remove a


tab of the Taskbar program from
the Start menu
Properties dialog box.
Use Windows
Figure 3-25 Explorer to add,
remove, and
The Browse window. organize
Figure 3-26 programs on the
Figure 3-25
Start menu Click Browse… …and select the
Select a Program folder to Figure 3-24 program file you
Rearranges the want to add to the
place the program in. Programs menu so Start menu
it is displayed in the
Figure 3-27 default order
The Remove
Shortcuts/Folders dialog
box.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.4
Figure 3-27
Req. File: None Figure 3-26

Normally, when you install a Windows-based program, it automatically adds its own menu
and icon to the Program menu. You can also manually add your favorite programs and files to
the Program menu, making them easy to find and open.
Other Way to Add
Programs to the Start 1. Click the Start button and select Settings → Taskbar and Start Menu.
Menu: The Taskbar and Start Menu Properties dialog box appears.
• Locate the program file 2. Click the Advanced tab.
in My Computer or The Advanced tab appears in front of the dialog box, as shown in Figure 3-24. The
Windows Explorer and Customize Start menu section is what’s important here—it allows you to add and
drag the program down remove programs to and from the Start menu.
to the Start button. The
only problem with this
3. Click Add.
method is that is places The Create Shortcut dialog box appears, asking you to specify the name and location of
the program at the very the file you want to add to the Start menu. If you know the specific name and location
top level of the Start of the program or file you want to add, you can type its name and location directly in
the Command line text box, for example C:\WINNT\NOTEPAD.EXE. Most of the
Menu (although you can
time you won’t know the name and location of the file and will have to browse through
move it to a folder
the contents of your computer in order to find it.
later).

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 101

4. Click the Browse button. Most of the programs


A Browse window appears, as shown in Figure 3-25. on your computer
are located in their
5. Browse to the WINNT folder in your hard disk and double-click the own subfolder in the
Notepad program file.
Program Files
Windows enter the name and location, C:\WINNT\NOTEPAD.EXE. folder in the C:
6. Click Next. drive.
The Select Program Folder window appears, as shown in Figure 3-26. Here, you must
double-click the menu where you want the program to appear.
7. Double-click the Accessories menu folder.
Yet another dialog box appears. Here, you can type a name you want to see on the
menu since the program names aren’t always very intuitive. For example, instead of
“Notepad” you could type “Notes.” For now, however, we’ll just use the program
name.
8. Click Finish and then OK.
If you’ve selected an MS-DOS program, Windows will prompt you to choose an icon
for the program. Windows adds the Notepad program to the accessories menu and
closes the dialog box. Check to make sure it’s there. Quick
Reference
9. Click the Start button, and select Programs → Accessories from the
menu. To Add a Program to the
Yep, there’s the Notepad program. Start Menu:
10. Click anywhere in the desktop area to close the Start menu. 1. Click the Start button
and select Settings →
Removing an item from the Program menu is even easier than adding one, as you will Taskbar and Start
see in the next few steps: Menu…
11. Right-click an empty area of the taskbar and select Properties from the 2. Click the Advanced tab
taskbar shortcut menu, and if necessary click the Advanced tab. and click Add.
The Advanced tab appears in front of the Taskbar Properties dialog box. 3. Click the Browse button,
12. Click Remove. open the program’s folder
The Remove Shortcuts/Folders dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-27. Here you and double-click the
must locate the program you want to remove from the Start menu. program name.
13. Click the expand button beside the Accessories folder to expand it. 4. Click the Next button,
open the program’s folder,
The Accessories folder expands and displays its contents. and double-click the
14. Find and select the Notepad program under the Accessories folder, then program name.
click the Remove button
To Remove a Program
The Notepad program is removed form the Start menu. from the Start Menu:
15. Click Close and then click OK. 1. Click the Start button
Deleting a program from the Start menu doesn’t remove the program from your computer— and select Settings →
only its shortcut on the Start menu. A shortcut is a quick way to start a program or open a file Taskbar and Start
or folder without having to go to its actual location. Shortcuts are especially useful for Menu…
programs, files, and folders you use frequently. All of the Programs in the Start Menu are 2. Click the Advanced tab
actually shortcuts that point to the program files, located elsewhere on your computer. We’ll and click Remove.
learn how to create shortcuts on the Windows desktop in the next lesson. You can tell the 3. Open the program’s
difference between a shortcut and original file because the shortcut displays an arrow ( ). folder, select the program,
and click Remove.
4. Click Close and then click
OK.

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102 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-14: Moving and


Deleting Desktop Icons and
Creating Shortcuts
Figure 3-28
Hold down the left mouse
Clicking and dragging with button while you drag the
the mouse. mouse across your desk.

Figure 3-29
Dragging the My
Computer icon on the
desktop. Drag
Place the pointer over an object and press and hold down the left mouse button. While you are still
Figure 3-30 holding the button, move the mouse to the where you want to place the object and then release the
mouse button.
The moved My Computer
icon. Figure 3-28

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.5
Req. File: None

Figure 3-29 Figure 3-30

1. A shadow of the icon follows the mouse 2. The icon is moved from its original location
cursor as it is being dragged. to a new place on the desktop.

We just learned how to add a shortcut to the Start menu, but how about adding a shortcut to
the Windows desktop? This lesson will show you how create, delete, move, and rename
desktop folders and icons. You can create folders on your desktop to organize important
information, or create shortcuts that will instantly take you to your most frequently used
programs.
First, let’s talk about how to move items around on your computer screen by clicking and
dragging them with the mouse. To click and drag something:
1) Move the mouse pointer over the object you want to move, then click and hold down the
mouse button.
2) While you are still holding down the mouse button, move the mouse until the pointer is
over the place you want to put the object.
3) Release the mouse button.
Let’s try dragging a desktop icon to another location on the desktop.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 103

1. Click the My Computer icon and hold down the left mouse button.
Depending on the layout of your screen, the My Computer icon should be located on
the left side.
2. While holding down the left mouse button, drag the mouse down and to To copy an icon,
the right. press and hold down
the <Ctrl> key while
A shadow of the My Computer icon follows your mouse pointer, indicating where the
clicking and dragging
icon will be located as shown in Figure 3-29.
the icon.
3. Release the left mouse button.
The icon is moved to a new location on the desktop, as shown in Figure 3-30.
One of the advantages of keeping things like folders on the desktop is that they are Other Ways to Create a
easily accessible. Shortcut:
4. Double-click the My Documents icon on the desktop. • Right-click the object
(file, folder, application)
A window opens on the desktop, showing all the files that are located in the My
that you want to create
Documents folder.
a shortcut of and select
NOTE: You can open any object on the desktop by double-clicking it. Create Shortcut. Then
If there is a program or folder that you often use, you may want to create a shortcut drag the shortcut icon
icon on the desktop. Try creating a shortcut to a Windows accessory. onto the desktop.
5. Click the Start button and select Programs → Accessories from the
menu.
Quick
You might use the Address Book often, so add a shortcut to it on the desktop. Reference
6. Press and hold down the <Ctrl> + <Shift> keys. Click and drag the
To Select and Move
Address Book option onto the desktop.
Desktop Icons:
An icon with a little arrow on it appears on the desktop.
1. Point to the object you
NOTE: If you decide you don’t really need a shortcut and want to delete it, don’t want to click and drag and
worry. When you delete a shortcut you only delete the icon, not the object to click and hold down the
which it points. To delete a desktop icon or shortcut, simply right-click it and mouse button.
select Delete from the shortcut menu. 2. While you’re holding
down the mouse button,
drag the object to the
desired location on the
screen.
3. Release the mouse
button.
To Open an Item from the
Desktop:

• Double-click the
item.

To Create a Shortcut Icon:


1. Select the object.
2. Press and hold down the
<Ctrl> + <Shift> keys.
3. Click and drag the object
onto the desktop.
Or…
1. Select the object.
2. Right-click the object and
l t C t Sh t t

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104 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-15: Understanding Drives,


Folders, Files and Storage Devices
Figure 3-31 Taxes Love Letters

How information is stored Letter to Bill


in a file cabinet. Investments

Figure 3-32 Letter to Mary

Letters
How information is stored
on a disk. The hierarchical
structure of drives, folders, A file cabinet’s information is
and files organized and grouped into
Figure 3-31
folders.
Figure 3-33
The hierarchical structure
of drives, folders, and files

L IC3
A computer stores
Objective: 1.3.2.5 and information on disks.
1.3.2.6
Req. File: None Information on a disk is organized and A folder may contain several
grouped into folders or directories. files and subfolders.
Figure 3-32

The operating system In the C: drive… So its path name


organizes files and (location) would be:
folders in a In the Program Files folder… C:\Program
hierarchical system of Files\Accessories\
drives, folders, and In the Accessories folder… WordPad.EXE
files. For example, the
WordPad.EXE file The WordPad.EXE file
is located in:
Figure 3-33

In order to understand file management, you need to understand how your computer stores
information. For example, filing cabinets store information in files, which are organized and
grouped in folders, which are kept in big drawers. Likewise, computers store information in
files, which are organized and grouped in folders, and stored not in big drawers, but on disks.
See the diagrams above for a clear illustration. There are a few types of devices computers use
to store information:

Table 3-6: Common Storage Devices


Type Size Description
1.44 MB Diskettes are the square plastic things that look like coffee
coasters. Floppy drives can’t hold a lot of information, but they’re
Diskette ideal for moving small files between computers.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 105

Type Size Description


Over Hard disks hide permanently inside your computer. Your
200 Gigabytes computer’s hard disk is its main filing cabinet—where it stores
Hard Disk (GB) almost all of its programs and files.

650 Megabytes Compact discs, or CD-ROMs, look like the audio discs you play in
(MB) your stereo. CD-ROMs are inexpensive and they can store a lot of
CD-ROM information, which is why they’re used to install software for store
games and programs with a lot of multimedia. Unlike floppy or
hard disks, most CD-ROMs can only read information—you can’t
save anything on them.

Variable, Network drives appear to be similar to hard disks when you see
depending on them in My Computer. But really, network drives are just folders
Network size of host saved on a computer within the network. Therefore, their size
Drive depends on the capacity of the host computer.

100 to Removable storage drives have features of both hard disks and
250 Megabytes floppy disks. They are like a floppy drive because they read and
(MB) write information on small, removable cassettes that are about the
Removable size of a floppy disk. They are like hard drives because each
Drive cassette can usually hold more than 100 MB and is almost as fast
as a hard drive. Two of the most popular removable storage drives
are the Zip drive and Jaz drive, both made by Iomega.

Most computers come with a diskette drive, a hard drive, and a CD-ROM drive. Your
computer labels these drives with letters, as shown in .
Just like liquids are measured in quarts and gallons, computers save their information in units
called bytes. Unlike gallons, computers use the metric system, so 1,000 bytes make up a
kilobyte and 1,000,000 bytes make up a megabyte.

Table 3-7: How Memory is Measured


Term Description Size
Byte A byte can store a single character, A single character.
such as the letter j or numeral 8.

Kilobyte A kilobyte (K) is about 1,000 bytes 1,024 bytes


(K or KB) (1,024 to be exact). A kilobyte is
equivalent to a page of double-spaced
typing.

Megabyte A megabyte (MB) is about one million 1,048,576 bytes


(MB or MEG) bytes—about as much text as an
average-length novel.

Gigabyte A gigabyte (GB) is over one billion 1,073,741,824 bytes


(GB or GIG) bytes, and holds more information
than several dozen encyclopedias!

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106 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-16: Using My


Computer
Figure 3-34
My Computer displays the
drives, folders
(directories), and files that
are in your computer.
Figure 3-35
The Local Disk (C:)
Properties dialog box.
Figure 3-36
The My Computer toolbar.

Figure 3-35
L IC3 Double-click My to view the contents of
Computer… your computer.
Objective: 1.3.2.6 Figure 3-34
Req. File: None Displays the
Moves back Moves back folders in a
or up to the or up to the separate pane Moves the Copies the
previous previous (i.e. Windows selected file(s) selected file(s) Undo your
folder or level folder or level Explorer) or folder(s) or folder(s) last action
Program Files

Stuff
Root Folder
(Hard Disk) WINNT
Moves forward Search for files Displays a Deletes the Change how
to the last and folders on history of files selected the contents
A root folder, or subfolder or your computer you have file(s) or are of the
directory, is the first level or on the opened folder(s) folder are
folder from which all network recently displayed
the other folders Figure 3-36
branch. When you
double-click the C:
When you want to see what’s in a file cabinet, you simply pull open one of its drawers. You
Hard Drive icon, the
can view the information stored on your computer’s drives in much the same way—by
window shows the
opening the drive you want to access. This lesson will show you how to look at the drives,
contents of the root folders, and files in your computer.
folder of the C drive.
1. Double-click the My Computer icon to open it.
The My Computer window appears, as shown in Figure 3-34. My Computer lists all
your drives and several special folders (Printers, Control Panel, Dial-up Networking,
and Scheduled Tasks) that contain other information. Since your computer may have
different drives, the contents of your computer may differ from those shown in Figure
3-34. Want to see what’s inside something? All you have to do is double-click the
drive, folder, or file you want to open.
My Computer

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 107

One more note of interest: Notice My Computer appears in its own window, with its
own little buttons, scroll bars, and menus? The My Computer window works just like
the other windows you’ve been working with. You can move it, resize it, and minimize
it. You can even open more than one copy of My Computer at a time.
2. Double-click the (C:) Local Disk icon.
The contents of the (C:) drive appear in the window. What do all those symbols in the Local Disk (C:)
window mean? Each item you see has an icon, or symbol, to help you identify what
type of item it is. Double-click an icon to open it.
To move back to the previous folder or level, click the Up button on the toolbar.
3. Click the Up button on the toolbar to move back to the My Computer
Up button
level.
NOTE: If the toolbar is not visible, select View → Toolbars → Standard Buttons from
the menu. 3½ Floppy (A:)
You move up one level, from the C: drive back to My Computer. Now that you know
the procedure for displaying the contents of a drive, move on to the next step lesson to
open a folder.
4. Close the My Computer window.
Getting the hang of opening and exploring your computer? Good, because we’ll be doing a lot
more snooping inside the contents of your computer throughout the rest of this chapter.

Quick
Reference
To View the Contents of
Your Computer:
• Double-click the My
Computer icon on the
Windows Desktop.
To Navigate to a Folder or
File:
• Follow the above step to
open My Computer and
then double-click the drive
or folder to navigate
through the levels of your
computer.

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108 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-17: Navigating to a


File or Folder
Figure 3-37
Double-click a folder to
open it and view its
contents.
Figure 3-38
The file and folders
appear in the window.

L IC3 Figure 3-37


Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: None
The Address bar displays the
name of the current drive and
folder

Figure 3-38

Your computer stores related files together in folders, just like you do with your file cabinet.
In the previous lesson, you learned how to use My Computer to view the contents of your
computer, and how to open a disk drive and display its contents. In this lesson, we’ll go a little
bit further and show you how to open a folder.
Windows 2000 gives you your very own folder named “My Documents” as a convenient
location to store all your files. Here’s how to open the My Documents folder (and any other
folder).

1. Double-click the My Documents folder on the Windows desktop.


My Documents The contents of the My Documents—several files and subfolders—appear in the
window. The My Documents folder contains several folders, or subfolders. If you think
about it, you probably do the same thing—keep several subfolders inside a larger
folder—in your own file cabinet.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 109

2. Double-click the My Pictures folder.


NOTE: This is where the comparison we’ve been using between a file cabinet and a
computer begins to break down a bit. When you file things in your file
cabinet, you probably never have more than two, possibly three nested folders My Pictures
(i.e. a folder inside another folder). Your computer’s folders, on the other
hand, can contain as many subfolders as you want, nested as deep as you
want, so you can have a folder inside a folder inside a folder—ad infinitum.
The contents of the My Pictures folder appear in the window. Notice the Address bar
displays the current folder you are in: My Pictures.
You can open any of the files within this folder by double-clicking.
Instead of clicking the Up button several times to jump back through several levels of
folders you can click the Address bar to quickly jump to the root directory of any of
drive on your computer.
3. Click the Address Bar list arrow.
A list your computer’s drives and the folder you are currently in appears. You can click
any folder or drive to go to that folder or drive.
4. Select the (C:) Local Disk from the list.
You return to the root directory of the C: drive. The Address bar is a fast way to select a
drive; especially if you are in a folder that is nested several levels deep.
You can think of the Address Bar as your compass because even when you’re exploring
unfamiliar folders nested deep in the far recesses of your computer, it always tells you where Address Bar
you are. If you get really lost, you can always click the Address Bar and jump back to the
familiar C: drive.
All this moving around your computer, opening disk drives and folders is a little boring, but
it’s something you have to get used to if you want to have any degree of proficiency with
Windows. Going back to our trusty file cabinet metaphor, imagine what would happen if you
didn’t know how to open the drawers and folders in your file cabinet. How would you find
your tax returns if you were audited or be able to find your insurance policy number if you Quick
were in a car accident? Opening disk drives and folders and being able to navigate through the Reference
contents of your computer are among of the most important Windows skills you can learn. To Open a Folder
• Double-click the folder.
To Move Back or Up to the
Previous Level or Folder
• Click the Up button on
the toolbar.
Or…
• Click the Back button on
the toolbar.
Or…
• Click the Address Bar on
the toolbar and select the
appropriate drive or
folder.

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110 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-18: Creating a Folder and


Viewing Folder Details
Figure 3-39
To create a new folder,
right-click any empty area
of the window to open a
shortcut menu, select New
→ Folder from the
shortcut menu.
Figure 3-40
A newly created folder.
Figure 3-41
The Temp Folder
Properties dialog box. Figure 3-39
Figure 3-41
Figure 3-42
A file’s path name, or
location, is determined by
first by the drive, then by The WordPad.EXE file is located in:
the folder(s), then by the
In the C: drive…
file name.
In the Program Files folder…

In the Accessories folder…

The WordPad.EXE file

L IC3 So its path name (location) would be:


C:\Program Files\Accessories\WordPad.EXE
Objective: 1.3.2.5 and Figure 3-42
1.3.2.6
Req. File: None Figure 3-40

Windows 2000 comes with the My Documents folder which you can use to save your files in,
but sooner or later you’ll want to expand your horizons and create your own folders inside the
My Documents folder or on the network to help you better organize your files. This lesson
will show you how to create a new folder to hold and organize your files.

1. Double-click My Computer on the desktop.


The My Computer window appears after you double-click the My Computer icon.
2. Double-click the Local Disk (C:) icon.
The contents of the (C:) hard drive appear.
Other Ways to Create a 3. Right-click an empty area of the (C:) drive window.
Folder: A shortcut menu appears.
• Select File → New →
Folder from the menu.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 111

4. Select New → Folder from the shortcut menu, as shown in Figure 3-39.
A new folder appears with a temporary name “New Folder” as shown in Figure 3-40.
Now all you have to do is move on to the next step and give the new folder a name.
5. Type Temp Folder as the name for the new folder, and then press
<Enter>.
Up button
Your new Temp Folder is located in the root directory, or first folder, of the C: drive.
You can create a folder inside any existing folder the same way—by opening the folder
and then repeating Steps 3-5. You can create as many folders as you like to develop a
your own filing system to help organize your files and folders. Open the Temp Folder
to display its contents.
NOTE: A file name can contain up to 255 characters, including spaces. File names
cannot contain the following characters: \ / : * ? " < > |
6. Double-click the Temp Folder to open it.
The contents of the Temp Folder appear in the window. That’s right, there’s nothing
there. The Temp Folder is an empty folder, since you just created it.
You can stack folders within folders to further organize your files. Create another
subfolder.
7. Select File → New → Folder from the menu.
A new folder appears in the window.
8. Type Junk Folder and press <Enter>.
Now the Temp folder you created has its own subfolder, “Junk Folder.”
9. Click the Up button. Quick
You are back in the Local Disk directory. Reference
You can choose how you want to view the items in folders. For example, instead of just To Create a New Folder:
viewing a bunch of icons, you can use a view that shows more information about the 1. Open the disk or folder
items. where you want to place
10. Click the Views button on the toolbar. the new folder.
A list of options drops down: 2. Right-click any empty
• Large Icons: Displays the items with large icons. area in the window and
select New → Folder
• Small Icons: Displays the items with small icons. from the shortcut menu.
• List: Lists the items in columns with small icons. Or…
• Details: Lists the items with information about file size and type, and when it Select File → New →
was last modified. Folder from the menu.
• Thumbnails: This is especially effective in folders containing graphics; a 3. Type a name for the
preview of the file or the folder’s contents is shown. folder and press <Enter>.
11. Select Details from the list. To View Folder Details:
The window view changes and information is shown about all the items in the
• Click the Views button
directory.
on the toolbar and select
You can also view the details about a specific file or folder. the view you want to use.
12. Right-click the Temp Folder and select Properties from the shortcut (Select Details to view
menu. information about each
A dialog box appears, showing the properties of the folder, such as the folder’s name, item in the folder).
location on the computer, and size. Or…
The location of a folder or file is also called the path, kind of like a street address. A • Right-click the folder and
path contains the drive letter, followed by a colon, followed by any folders (which must select Properties from
be separated by backslashes \), and then finally comes the name of the file. For the shortcut menu.
example C:\Program Files\Accessories\WordPad.EXE (see Figure 3-42 for an
illustration).

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112 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-19: Common File


Types
Figure 3-43
Letter to Sue.TXT
Files display different
types of icons to help you
identify what type of file File Name File Extension
Can be up to 255 Usually hidden from
they are. characters (although view, these three
older MS-DOS programs characters tell
Figure 3-44 will only see the first 8 Windows what type
characters, such as of file it is and what
Every file has a three- Letter~1.txt). type of icon to assign
letter extension, which is to it.
Figure 3-44
normally hidden from view,
so Windows knows what
Figure 3-43
type of file it is.

In this lesson, we’ll take a closer look at files. When you’re viewing the contents of your
computer, you’ve probably already noticed that everything has its own picture or icon to
represent what it is. Except for a few exceptions, folder icons always look like little manila
L IC3 folders ( ). Files, on the other hand, come in a variety of types and icons.
Objective: 1.3.2.6 There are two parts to every file: the file name, which you’ve already seen and are familiar
Req. File: None with, and the file extension, a three letter extension that tells Windows what type of file it is
(see Figure 3-44). Since Windows assigns pictures or icons to the types of files it recognizes,
it normally hides these file extensions from view. Whenever you open a file by double-
clicking it, Windows automatically opens the file in the program it knows created the file. For
example, Microsoft Word always adds the file extension .DOC to its files, so when you
To View File Extensions: double-click a .DOC file, Windows knows it has to open the file in Microsoft Word.
• Select Tools → Folder
Options from the Table 3-8: Common File Types
menu. Click the View File Description
tab. Make sure the Hide
file extensions for Windows doesn’t know what type of file this is, so you can’t readily
known file types open it by double-clicking it. That doesn’t mean the file isn’t important –
option is unchecked Unknown File Type it’s probably a very important file for Windows or a program. Leave
and click OK. these files alone unless you absolutely know what they are for.

This is a document created in Microsoft Word, a word processing


Word Document (.doc) program. Word documents normally have a .DOC extension.

This is a spreadsheet created with the program Microsoft Excel. Excel


Excel Workbook (.xls) spreadsheets normally have a .XLS extension.

This is a database created with Microsoft Access. Access databases


Access Database (.mdb) normally have a .MDB extension.

This is a presentation created with Microsoft PowerPoint. PowerPoint


PowerPoint Presentation presentations normally have a .PPT extension.
(.ppt)

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 113

File Description
There are many different image file types, but JPEGs and GIFs are two
Image Files of the most popular. JPEG (.jpg) images use millions of colors, such as
photographs. GIF (.gif) images use 256 colors, such as logos.
(.jpg and .gif)

Text or ASCII files are simple files that only contain text – no formatting,
Text File graphics, or any fancy stuff. Text files usually have a .TXT extension.

Audio files are stored in a number of different formats, such as the


Audio Files
.WAV or .MP3 file.

Video files are also stored in a number of different formats, such as


Video Files
.WMV, .MPG, and .AVI.

Compressed files or folders take up less space on a hard disk, and are
easier to transfer over a network. These files are usually compressed
Compressed Files (.zip) by a third party, such as WINZIP.

These files are created by Windows or other programs and are deleted
Temporary Files
when no longer used.

Shortcut files point to files and folders elsewhere on your computer so


Shortcut File that you can quickly open that file, folder, or program without having to
go to its actual location.

Setup files are special executable (.EXE) program files, except instead
Setup Program File (.exe) of running a program when opened, they install software programs
onto your computer.

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Lesson 3-20: Counting Files in


a Folder
Figure 3-45 The four
selected files
The Practice Properties are all Text
dialog box. Document
files.
Figure 3-46
The Properties dialog box The folder
for selected files. contains 11
files, and 1
Figure 3-47 folder.

Using the window to count


selected files.

Figure 3-45 Figure 3-46

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: Practice folder
The window and
status bar display
the number of
selected files, their
file size, and file
names.

Figure 3-47

Since a folder is meant to organize your files and documents, it might be useful to be able to
see how many files are in a folder with the click of a few buttons. Though you may not need
to use this feature very often, here’s how to do it if the situation arises:

1. Open My Computer. Right-click your Practice folder and select


Properties from the shortcut menu.
Other Ways to Count If you don’t know where your Practice folder is located, ask your instructor for help.
Selected Files:
The Practice Properties dialog box appears.
• Refer to the left column
of the My Computer
2. Notice the Contains section of the dialog box, as shown in Figure 3-45.
window to count The dialog box indicates that the Practice folder contains eleven files and one folder.
selected files and their This number is somewhat deceptive, however. The number of files in the folder,
file names. eleven, includes the number of files in the subfolder, two. So, when you open the
Practice folder you will see nine files and one folder, which contains two files.
• Refer to the status bar
to count selected files.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 115

3. Click Cancel to close the dialog box.


For more selective counting, it is possible to count the number of files in a selected
group.
4. Double-click the Practice folder to open it. Select the first file in the Other Ways to Select
folder, press and hold down the <Shift> key, and select the last file in Multiple Files:
the folder. Release the <Shift> key. • Press and hold down
Now count the number of files that are selected. the <Ctrl> key to select
non-adjacent files.
5. Right-click the selected files and select Properties from the shortcut
menu.
Notice the top of the dialog box counts the items selected: 9 files, 0 folders.
What if you wanted to count a number of files of the same type? Here’s how…
6. Click the Views button on the toolbar and select Details from the list.
Click the Type column heading.
The files are sorted by file type in the window. To count the number of files of a
specific type, you must first select them. Try counting all the text files in the folder.
7. Select the first text document, press and hold down the <Shift> key,
and select the last text document. Release the <Shift> key.
The computer will be able to tell how many files are selected, and since they are all the
same file type, it can tell you what type of file they are.
8. Right-click the selected files and select Properties from the shortcut Quick
menu. Reference
The Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-46. Notice that the dialog box
To Count Files in a Folder
counts four selected files, but it is also able to identify the file type. The Type section
of the dialog box says, “All of type Text Document.” (including files in
subfolders):
9. Click Cancel to close the dialog box.
1. Right-click the folder and
Now you know the foolproof way to count files in a folder. select Properties from
the shortcut menu.
2. Find the number of files
(including files in
subfolders) and the
number of subfolders in
the Contains section of
the Properties dialog box.
To Count Files of the
Same File Type:
1. Select the files of the
same file type you want to
count.
2. Right-click the selected
files and select
Properties from the
shortcut menu.
3. Find the number of files
selected at the top of the
Properties dialog box and
the type of selected files
in the Type section of the
Properties dialog box.

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116 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-21: Changing File Status


Figure 3-48
The Letter Properties
dialog box.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.6 Check the Read-only
checkbox to change
Req. File: Letter.rtf the status of the file.
Figure 3-48

The default attribute of a file is that when it is opened, the user can read and change it or even
delete it, meaning it has read-write status. But sometimes you may want to make the file even
more secure. If you want people to be able to read the file but not change or delete it, you can
change the status to read-only.
This lesson will show you how to change the status of files in the Properties dialog box.

1. Navigate to your Practice folder.


If you don’t know where your Practice folder is located, ask your instructor for help.
2. Right-click the Letter.rtf file. Select Properties. Make sure the General
tab is selected.
A dialog box appears, displaying the properties of the file. The Attributes section
appears at the bottom of the General tab. This is one place you can change the file’s
status.
Notice there are two options in the Status section of the dialog box:
• Read-only: Specifies whether this file or folder is read-only, which means that
it cannot be changed or accidentally deleted.
If multiple files are selected, a check mark means that all the files are read-only.
A filled box means that some files are read-only and some aren't.
• Hidden: Specifies whether the file or folder is hidden, which means that you
cannot see or use it unless you know its name.
If multiple files are selected, a check mark means that all the files are hidden. A
filled box means that some files are hidden and some aren't.
3. Check the Read-only check box in the Attributes section of the General
tab. Click OK.
The Letter.rtf file now has read-only status, which means when the file is opened it can
be read, but not changed or edited.
Changing a file from read-only back to read-write status is easy.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 117

4. Right-click the Letter.rtf file. Select Properties. Uncheck the Read-only


check box and click OK.
The file will now allow users to read and write or edit the file.
NOTE: Changing the file status is not as secure as protecting a file with a password. A
password-protected file is much more protected than a read-only file.

Quick
Reference
To Change File Status:
1. Right-click the file.
2. Select Properties from
the shortcut menu.
3. Check the status you
want: Read-only or
Hidden.
4. Click OK.

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118 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-22: Sorting Files


Figure 3-49
A bullet (•) appears next
to the current view. Here
the window is displayed in
Large Icons view.
Figure 3-50
The window displayed in
Details view.

Figure 3-49 Figure 3-50


While in Details view, click the
column heading you want to use to
sort the items. Click the column
L IC3 heading again to sort the items in
Objective: 1.3.2.6 reverse order.

Req. File: Practice folder


When you work with files and folders on your computer, you may find that you need to
change how you view information on the screen. This lesson will show you how to change the
appearance of items using one of four view modes: Large Icons, Small Icons, List, or Details.
Experiment to find the view that works best for you. You’ll also learn how to sort files and
folders: by name, date (when they were created), size, and type.

1. Navigate to and open your Practice folder.


Windows normally displays items as large icons by default, as shown in Figure 3-49.
2. Verify that you are viewing your computer’s contents as large icons by
selecting View → Large Icons from the window.
You can display more items in a window at a time by using List view. Try switching to
List view now.
3. Select View → List from the menu.
The items are displayed as small icons in a list.
Other Ways to Change Details view displays information about each item, including the name, size, type of
Views: item, and when it was created or last modified.
• Select a view from the 4. Select View → Details from the menu.
View button list arrow You can sort items in a variety of ways: alphabetically by name, by size, or even by the
on the toolbar. date they were last modified or saved. If you’re in Details view all you have to do is
click the heading for the column you want to use to sort the items.
5. Click the Name heading to sort the items by name.
The list is sorted alphabetically by name. Clicking the heading again sorts the items in
reverse order (Z-A).
You can have Windows arrange and organize items so they appear in neat columns and
rows, instead of a cluttered mess.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 119

6. Select View → Arrange Icons → Auto Arrange from the menu.


A check mark (9) appears by Auto Arrange when this feature is on. Now, whenever
you change the size of a window, or add, move, or delete a file, Windows will
automatically rearrange the items.
7. Select View → Arrange Icons → by Name from the menu.
The list is sorted alphabetically by name.

Table 3-9: Different Methods of Viewing Items


View Description
Files and folders are displayed as large icons.
This is a good view for when you’re learning how
Large Icons to use Windows or have trouble clicking a file
with the mouse.

Files and folders are displayed as small icons.

Small Icons Quick


Reference
To Change How Items are
Displayed:
Files and folders are displayed as small icons in
a list. This is a great default view, because it • Select View from the
allows you to see as many files as possible. menu and select from one
List
of the four view modes
(Large Icons, Small Icons,
List, or Details).
Or…
Displays information about every file and folder,
such as its name, size, type, and when it was • Select a view from the
last modified is displayed. You can change the View button list arrow on
Details the toolbar.
order the list is sorted by clicking the column
headings. To Change How Items are
Sorted:
1. Follow the above step to
New in Windows 2000, Thumbnails view is very display the window in
useful if you are working with pictures and Details View.
Thumbnails graphics because it previews every graphic file
instead of only displaying an unhelpful file name. 2. Click the column
heading you want to use
to sort the window. Click
the column heading again
to sort in reverse order.
To Automatically Arrange
Icons:
• Select View → Arrange
Icons → Auto Arrange
from the menu.

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120 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-23: Using File


Extensions and Renaming
Files and Folders
Figure 3-51
Right-click a file or folder
to display a list of things
you can do to it.
Figure 3-52
A renamed folder.
Figure 3-53
The file extensions help
the computer identify the
file.

Figure 3-51 Figure 3-52

L IC3
Letter to Sue.TXT
Objective: 1.3.2.5, 1.3.2.6 File Name File Extension
and 1.3.2.7 Can be up to 255 Usually hidden from
characters (although view, these three
Req. File: Open Me.txt older MS-DOS programs characters tell
will only see the first 8 Windows what type
characters, such as of file it is and what
Letter~1.txt). type of icon to assign
Figure 3-53 to it.

A file extension is the three-letter tag that follows the name of a file, as shown in Figure 3-51.
As you know, file extensions help the computer identify and categorize file types. For
example, a .DOC file is a word processing file and a .JPG file is a type of image. When you’re
renaming files, you should be careful not to change the file extension so you can revisit the
file in the future. But unless you have customized Windows to show file extensions, you
won’t have to worry about them when you rename a file or folder.
To View File Extensions: In this lesson, you will learn how to rename files and folders that don’t display file extensions,
• Select Tools → Folder as well as how to rename an existing folder.
Options from the
menu. Click the View 1. Open My Computer.
tab. Make sure the Hide The My Computer window appears after you double-click the My Computer icon.
file extensions for
known file types
2. Double-click the (C:) Local Disk icon.
option is unchecked The contents of the (C:) Local Disk appear.
and click OK.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 121

3. Right-click an empty area of the (C:) drive window. Other Ways to Create a
A shortcut menu appears. Folder:
4. Select New → Folder from the shortcut menu. • Select File → New →
A new folder appears with a temporary name “New Folder” as shown in Figure 3-52. Folder from the menu.
Move on to the next step and give the new folder a name.
5. Type Rename Me as the name for the new folder, and then press
<Enter>.
Up button
Your new Rename Me folder is located in the root directory, or first folder, of the
C: drive. You can create a folder inside any existing folder the same way—by opening
the folder and then repeating Steps 3-5. You can create as many folders as you like to
develop your own filing system to help organize your files and folders.
NOTE: A file name can contain up to 255 characters, including spaces. File names Other Ways to Rename a
cannot contain the following characters: \ / : * ? " < > | Folder:
• Select the folder and
NOTE: Make sure to be careful when renaming files. Make sure to make it unique
select File → Rename
from other file names that might be similar. Also, if there is a chance you may
forget the file’s new name, write it down so that you will be able to find it from the menu.
again.
6. Double-click the Rename Me folder to open it.
The Rename Me folder is empty since you just created it.
7. Click the Up button to move back to the root directory.
You can easily change the name of a folder. Here’s how:
8. Right-click the Rename Me folder icon.
A shortcut menu appears, with a list of things you can do to the selected folder. Open Me
9. Select Rename from the shortcut menu, type Junk and press <Enter>.
The “Rename Me” folder is renamed “Junk.”
Now use the same process to rename a file.
10. Navigate to your Practice folder.
If you don’t know where your Practice folder is located, ask your instructor for Quick
instructions. Reference
11. Right-click the Open Me file. • File Extensions help the
A shortcut menu appears, with a list of things you can do to the selected file. computer identify files.
12. Select Rename from the shortcut menu, type Poems as the new name for They are not shown by
the file, and then press <Enter>. default.
The Open Me file name is renamed to Poems. To Rename a File:
That’s all there is to renaming files and folders. • Right-click the file, select
Rename from the
shortcut menu, type a
name for the folder and
press <Enter>.
Or…
• Click the file to select it,
select File → Rename
from the menu, type a
name for the folder and
press <Enter>.

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122 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-24: Selecting Files


and Folders
Figure 3-54
To select several files that
are next to each other,
hold down the mouse
button and drag a
rectangle around the files
you want to select.
Figure 3-55
When you want to select a
group of consecutive files,
select the first file you Figure 3-54
want to select, hold down Move the pointer to Hold down the mouse button and drag
an empty area in a rectangle around the files you want to
the <Shift> key and click the window. select.
the last file.
Figure 3-56
Use the <Ctrl> key when
you want to select several Click the first
random files. file you want to Press and hold
select, press down the
and hold down <Ctrl> key
the <Shift> key while you click
and click the each file you
last file you want to select.
want to select.
L IC3
Figure 3-55 Figure 3-56
Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: Grocery List.txt
By now, you know that you must select a file or folder before you can do something to it, such
as move or delete it. In this lesson, you will learn how to select more than one file and/or
folder at a time, so you can move, copy, or delete a group of files at the same time.

1. Navigate to your Practice folder.


If you don’t know where your Practice folder is located, ask your instructor for help.
First, let’s review how to select a single file.
2. Click the Grocery List file to select it.
The Grocery List file is highlighted, indicating that it is selected. Once selected, you
could delete, move, or copy the file. To deselect a file, just click in any empty area on
the window.
3. Click any empty area of the window to deselect the Grocery List file.
The Grocery List file is no longer selected.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 123

You can select more than one file or folder at a time, so you can delete, move, or copy
a whole bunch of files at once. Like so many Windows functions, there are several
ways to select multiple files. If the files you want to select are next to each other, you
can move mouse pointer to empty area on the screen, hold down the mouse button and
drag a rectangle around the files you want to select, as shown in Figure 3-54.
4. Move the pointer to any empty area in the folder window, click and hold
down the mouse button and drag a rectangle around several files, as
shown in Figure 3-54.
The only problem with this method is that it only works when you want to select files
that are next to each other.
5. Click any empty area of the screen to deselect the files.
Another method of selecting adjacent files and folders is to click the first file you want
to select, hold down the <Shift> key as you click the last file of the group of files you
want to select.
6. Click the Grocery List file to select it (the first file in the group), press
and hold the <Shift> key as you click the Zip Me file (the last file in the
group).
You’ve selected the Grocery List file, the Zip Me file, and all the files that are in
between them.
7. Click any empty area of the screen to deselect the files.
To select random, or non-adjacent, files and folders, hold down the <Ctrl> key, and
then click each item you want to select.
8. Click the Grocery List file to select it, press and hold down the <Ctrl>
key, click the Resume file and the Zip Me folder, then release the <Ctrl>
key.
Remember, you can move, copy, or delete any selected files all at once. Holding down
the <Ctrl> key also lets you click and deselect any selected files.
To select all the files and folders in the window, select Edit → Select All from the Quick
menu. Reference
9. Select Edit → Select All from the menu. To Select Multiple Files:
All the files in the window are selected.
• If the files are next to
10. Close the window to end this lesson. each other, you can click
and drag a rectangle
around the files you want
to select.
Or…
• If the files are next to
each other, you can click
the first file you want to
select, press and hold
down the <Shift> key and
click the last file you want
to select.
• If the files aren’t next to
each other, you can select
random files by holding
the <Ctrl> key and
clicking the files you want
to select.

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124 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-25: Duplicating and


Moving Files and Folders
Figure 3-57
To move a folder, drag it to
a new location on your
computer, in this case to
the Temp Folder.
Figure 3-58
The Browse For Folder
dialog box lets you specify
where you want to move
or copy a file or folder.
Figure 3-58
Figure 3-57

L IC3 You probably don’t reorganize the folders in your file cabinet very often—and you probably
Objective: 1.3.2.6 won’t need to move or copy the folders on your computer very often either. When you find
Req. File: Temp Folder you do need to move or copy a folder however, you can do so by using one of two simple
created in Lesson 3-18: methods:
Creating a Folder and • Dragging-and-dropping.
Viewing Folder Details • Using the Move To and Copy To buttons (known as the Copy and Paste method in
previous versions of Windows).
To copy a folder, hold You’ll learn how to use both methods in this lesson.
down the <Ctrl> key
as you drag the 1. Create a new folder called My Stuff in your C: drive.
folder to the new
location. 2. Drag the My Stuff folder to the Temp Folder, as shown in Figure 3-57.
Already forgot how to click and drag? If so, here it is one more time: position the
mouse over the My Stuff folder, click and hold down the left mouse button as you
Move To button move the pointer to the Temp Folder, then release the mouse button. The My Stuff
folder is moved inside the Temp Folder. Let’s make sure we really moved the My Stuff
Other Ways to Move a folder.
File or Folder:
• “Cut” the file or folder by
3. Double-click the Temp Folder to open it.
selecting Edit → Cut Yep, there’s the My Stuff folder. You’re probably already beginning to suspect that
from the menu or there are several methods for doing exactly the same thing in Windows. Here’s another
popular method for moving folders you might want to know—using Windows’ new
pressing <Ctrl> + <X>,
Move To button.
moving to the desired
location and then 4. Click the My Stuff folder to select it.
“paste” the file or folder Once you have selected the folder you want to move, you can use the Move To button
by selecting Edit → to move it to another location.
Cut from the menu or
pressing <Ctrl> + <X>.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 125

5. Click the Move To button on the toolbar.


The Browse for Folder dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-58. This is where you
tell Windows where you want to move the selected folder. The Browse for Folder
dialog box displays the drives and folders on your computer in a hierarchical view. A
plus symbol or a minus symbol beside a folder means a folder contains several
subfolders. Normally, these subfolders are hidden. You can display the hidden folders
within a folder by clicking the plus sign beside the folder.
6. Click the Plus Symbol to the left of the My Computer icon.
My Computer expands and displays its contents. The Local Disk (C:) is where you
want to move the My Stuff folder.
7. Click the Local Disk (C:) icon and click OK.
The My Stuff folder is moved from the Temp Folder back to the root directory of the C:
drive.
NOTE: Make sure to remember where you moved the file—lost files can be rather
difficult to try and find again.
8. Click the Up button on the toolbar to move back to the root directory.
If you can move a folder you can copy a folder—because all you need to do to copy a
folder is hold down the <Ctrl> key while you drag the folder to where you want it
copied.
Quick
9. Hold down the <Ctrl> key while you drag the My Stuff folder to the Reference
Temp Folder.
Although you can’t see it, the My Stuff folder has been copied to the Temp Folder. To Move a Folder:
Let’s make sure. • Drag the folder to the
10. Double-click the Temp Folder to open it. desired location (you
The contents of the Temp Folder appear in the window. Sure enough, the My Stuff might have to open
folder has been copied. Although we won’t step through it, you can also copy a folder another My Computer
using the Copy To button. Just select the folder, click the Copy To button, specify window).
where you want to copy the folder and click OK. Or…
11. Click the Up button to move back to the root directory. 1. Click the folder to select it
and click the Move To
We’ve worked on copying and moving folders to locations on the same drive, but you can button on the toolbar.
also copy a folder to a different drive by simply dragging to the drive icon where you want it
copied. If you can’t see the drive or folder where you want to move or copy something to, you 2. Select the folder or disk
can do a couple of things: you can use the Cut, Copy, Paste method, or you can open a second where you want to move
My Computer window and drag the folder from one window to the other. the folder and click OK.
To Copy a Folder:
• Hold down the <Ctrl> key
while you drag the folder
to the desired location
(you might have to open
another My Computer
window).
Or…
1. Click the folder to select it
and click the Copy To
button on the toolbar.
2. Select the folder or disk
where you want to move
the folder and click OK.

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126 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-26: Using the


Folders Pane
Figure 3-59
You can move and copy
files using click and drag
in Windows Explorer.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: Open Me.txt and
Zip Me folder Figure 3-59

In this lesson, you’ll learn how to perform basic file management in the Folders pane.
Although the Folders pane looks a little different from the rest of the My Computer screen, all
the file management procedures you already know work exactly the same.

1. Open My Computer. Click the Folders button on the window toolbar to


open the Folders pane.
Basically, the Folders pane is another way to navigate through your computer.
2. Navigate to and click your Practice folder in the left Folders pane.
The contents of the Practice folder appear in the right pane of My Computer.
3. Click the plus symbol beside the Practice folder in the left Folders
pane to display the subfolders.
The Practice folder expands and displays all the subfolders inside it, and the plus
symbol changes to a minus symbol. Since you can see all the files in the right pane,
it’s much easier to move and copy files between folders.
4. Hold down the <Ctrl> key while you click and drag the Open Me file in
the right pane to the Zip Me folder in the left Folders pane, as shown in
Figure 3-59.
It doesn’t matter if you click and drag a copy of the Open Me file to the Zip Me folder
in the left pane or the right pane—they’re the same folder.
Move on to the next step and create a new folder while the Folders pane is displayed.
5. Create a new folder named 2003 in the Practice folder.
Need a refresher on how to create a folder? First you need to click the Practice folder
in the left folder pane to select it and display its contents in the right pane. Next, right-
click any empty area in the right pane of the window, select New → Folder from the
shortcut menu, type 2003, and press <Enter>.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 127

6. Move the 2003 folder to the Zip Me folder by dragging the 2003 folder
from the right pane to the Zip Me folder in the left pane.
Verify that the 2003 folder was moved inside the Zip Me folder.
7. Click the plus symbol beside the Zip Me folder to display its
subfolders.
The Zip Me folder expands and displays the 2003 folder inside it. Try deleting a folder
using Windows Explorer—you already know the technique.
8. Click the 2003 folder to select it, press the <Delete> key, and then click
Yes to confirm the deletion.
It doesn’t matter if you use the left or right pane to select a folder—they’re the same
folder, and you can rename, copy, move, and delete folders in either pane of the Quick
window. Reference
9. Close the window to end this lesson. To Open a File or Folder:
As you can see, the Folders pane can be very useful. • Double-click the file or
folder.
To Move a File or Folder:
• Drag the file or folder to
the desired location in
either pane of the window.
To Copy a File or Folder:
• Hold down the <Ctrl> key
while you drag the file or
folder to the desired
location in either pane of
the window.
To Create a New Folder:
1. Click the disk or folder
where you want to put the
new folder.
2. Right-click any empty
area in the window and
select New → Folder
from the shortcut menu.
3. Type a name for the
folder and press <Enter>.
To Delete a File or Folder:
• Select the file or folder
and press the <Delete>
key. Click Yes to confirm
the deletion.
To Rename a File or
Folder:
• Right-click the file or
folder, select Rename
from the shortcut menu,
type the new name and
press <Enter>.

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128 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-27: Deleting Files


and Folders
Figure 3-60
A dialog box appears to
confirm a deletion.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.6 and
1.3.2.7
Req. File: Text file.txt and
Temp folder

Figure 3-60

You can delete a file or folder once you are done with it, but be cautious. Before you delete a
folder, make sure it doesn’t contain any important files. If you don’t know what the contents
of a folder are, you shouldn’t delete it. Deleting a file isn’t quite as dangerous as deleting a
folder, but you should always consider whether or not you might need it again in the future.
Don’t delete a file unless you’re absolutely sure you will never need it again. And NEVER
delete a file if you don’t know what it is.

1. Navigate to your Practice folder.


If you don’t know where your practice files are located, ask your instructor for help.
2. Click the Text File to select it, and then press the <Delete> key.
A dialog box may appear, asking you to confirm the file deletion.
3. Click Yes to delete the selected file.
The Text File is deleted and disappears from the window.
Deleting a folder is just as simple.
4. Go to the C: drive. Click the Temp Folder in the C: drive to select it, and
then press the <Delete> key.
A dialog box may appear, asking you to confirm the folder.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 129

5. Click Yes to delete the selected folder and all its contents.
The Temp Folder and all its contents are deleted and disappear from the window.
Windows places any deleted files or folders in the Recycle Bin in case you change your
mind later on and decide you want to restore the file or folder. We’ll discuss the
Recycle Bin in the next lesson.

Quick
Reference
To Delete a File:
• Select the file and press
the <Delete> key. Click
Yes to confirm the folder
deletion.
Or…
• Click the Delete button
on the toolbar.
Or…
• Right-click the file and
select Delete from the
shortcut menu.
To Delete a Folder:
• Select the folder and
press the <Delete> key.
Click Yes to confirm the
folder deletion.
Or…
• Click the Delete button
on the toolbar.
Or…
• Right-click the folder and
select Delete from the
shortcut menu.

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130 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-28: Restoring a


Deleted File and Emptying the
Recycle Bin
Figure 3-61
To restore a deleted file
from the Recycle Bin,
right-click the file and
select Restore from the
shortcut menu.
Figure 3-62
You can empty the Empty the Recycle Bin
Recycle Bin by
right-clicking it and Restore all files in the Recycle Bin
selecting Empty Recycle
Bin from the shortcut
menu. Figure 3-61

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: None

Figure 3-62

Just like a wastebasket, the Recycle Bin stores all of the files and folders you have deleted. If
you change your mind and decide you need a deleted file it’s easy to find and retrieve it. This
lesson will show you how to open the Recycle Bin and see what’s inside, restore a previously
deleted file, and empty the Recycle Bin to free up some space on your hard disk.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 131

1. Double-click the Recycle Bin to open it.


You may need to move or minimize the My Computer window if the Recycle Bin isn’t Recycle Bin
visible. The Recycle Bin opens and displays all the files you have recently deleted. If contains
you accidentally delete a file or folder, you can retrieve it from the Recycle Bin. deleted files
New in Windows 2000 are the Empty Recycle Bin and Restore All Files button, which
make it easy to empty the Recycle Bin and restore any deleted files.
2. Find and right-click the Text File (deleted in the previous lesson) and
select Restore from the shortcut menu, as shown in Figure 3-61.
Recycle Bin
Restoring a file pulls it out of the Recycle Bin and puts it back in its original location, does not
the Practice folder. contain deleted
3. Close the Recycle Bin window. files
Now, make sure the Text File is in its original location.
4. Verify that the Text File has been retrieved to the Practice folder.
There is a theoretical limit to how many deleted files and folders the Recycle bin can
hold. The maximum size of the Recycle bin is normally set 10 percent of the hard
drive. So for example, if you have a 10GB hard drive, the maximum amount of files
the recycle bin could hold would be 1GB. When the Recycle Bin reaches its limit,
Windows automatically starts deleting files from the Recycle bin, starting with the
oldest file.
You can adjust the properties for the Recycle Bin, so for example, you could adjust its
maximum size from 10 percent of the hard drive to 5 percent, by right-clicking the
Recycle Bin and selecting Properties from the shortcut menu.
Usually it’s best to let Windows automatically handle the Recycle Bin, but you can also
manually empty the Recycle Bin if you find you need more free space on your
computer.
5. Right-click the Recycle Bin and select Empty Recycle Bin from the
menu.
A dialog box may appear and ask you to confirm your deletion.
6. Click Yes if asked to confirm the deletion.
All the files and folders are permanently deleted from your computer. Notice the Quick
Recycle Bin icon no longer displays any trash, indicating it is empty. Reference
NOTE: Be careful when emptying the Recycle Bin. Since Windows automatically To Restore a Deleted File:
erases the oldest files from the Recycle Bin, you really shouldn’t have to 1. Double-click the Recycle
manually empty the Recycle Bin much at all. A lot of users empty the Recycle Bin to open it.
Bin just about every time they delete something—and then later kick
themselves because they realize they needed the file they just permanently 2. Find and right-click the
erased. deleted file and select
Restore from the shortcut
One final word about the Recycle Bin—any files you delete from a floppy disk are not placed menu.
in the Recycle Bin. So be extra careful when you’re deleting files from a floppy disk, because
the Recycle Bin won’t be able to restore them. To Empty the Recycle Bin:
• Right-click the Recycle
Bin and select Empty
Recycle Bin from the
shortcut menu.

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Lesson 3-29: Finding a File


Figure 3-63
The Search Results
window.
Type the name of the file
you want to look for
Search for text in the file. The results of
This type of search can your search
be slow. appear here
L IC3 Specify the drive or folder
you want to look in
Objective: 1.3.2.6
Start the search
Req. File: Soap
Bubbles.bmp Search Options lets
you search for files by
date, type, and size

Figure 3-63

It’s just as easy to misplace and lose a file in your computer as it is to misplace your car
keys—maybe easier! Luckily, Windows comes with a great feature called Find, which can
track down your lost files. Find can search for files even when you can’t remember the exact
file name or location.
You can search for a file by:
• The file name or any part of the file name
• The date the file was created or modified
• The type of file, such as a Microsoft Word document or graphic file
• The text it contains
• The size of the file
You can set one or several of these criterions to search for a file. For example, you might look
for a Microsoft Word document that you created last month with the word “May” somewhere
in the name.

1. Click the Start button and select Search → For Files or Folders.
The Find dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-63.
2. Type Bubbles in the Search for files or folders named box, make sure
the (C:) hard disk appears in the Look in box, and then click the Search
Now button.
Windows searches through the C: hard disk, and displays the names and locations of all
the files its finds that have the word Bubbles in their names. You can open any of these
files by double-clicking them.
3. Double-click the Soap Bubbles file located in the Windows folder.
The Soap Bubbles file, a bitmap picture of several bubbles, opens in the Paint program.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 133

4. Close the Paint program and delete the Bubbles text in the Search for
files or folders named box.
If you only know part of the file name, just enter the part of the file name that you
know. For example, searching for the word “Bubble” will find every file or folder with
a name containing the word “Bubble” such as Bubble.BMP, Bubble boat.DOC, etc.
If you remember the date when you created a file, but not its name, you can also search
for a file by date. Instead of entering the name of the file in the Named box, click the
Date tab and tell Windows to search for all files within a certain number of days or
between certain dates. Let’s take a look at the Date tab so you’re more familiar with it. Search Options lets
you search for files
5. Click the Search Options link.
by date, type, and
The Search Options dialog box appears. size.
You can click the Date check box to select files that were either created, modified, or
last accessed, and then specify the number of days or a date range when the files were
either created, modified, or last accessed.
By clicking the Type check box, you can search for specific types of files, for example
WordPad documents.
You can also search by files based on size by checking the Size check box and entering
the size range in the Size boxes.
Another way you can search for files is by using the Containing text box and entering
the text they contain. For example, if the only thing that you remembered about a file
was that it was about how to Install a spark plug you could search for files containing
the text “Install”.
6. Click the Containing text box, type Install and then click the Search
Now button.
Windows searches through the C: hard disk and displays the names and locations of all
the files it finds that contain the word “install.” A lot of files should appear in the
search results area of the Find window.
NOTE: File searches based on the text they contain are much slower than searches
based on other criteria. Also, if you’re searching for a file that contains a
phrase, make sure you enter the exact sequence of the phrase. For example, if
you’re looking for a file that contains the phrase ACME Widget Company and Quick
you tell Windows to search for a file containing the text ACME Company, Reference
Windows won’t find the file because you didn’t include the word Widget. To Find a File:
You can cancel a search in progress, especially if you’re getting too few or too many 1. Click the Start button
results, by clicking the Stop Search button at any time. and select Search → For
7. Click the Stop Search button to cancel the search, and then close the Files or Folders from the
Search window. Start menu.
2. Enter part of the file name
in the Search for files or
folders named box.
You can also search for
files using other criteria—
using the Containing text
box or by clicking the
Search Options link.
3. Click Search Now to start
searching for the file(s).

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Lesson 3-30: Viewing


Recently Used Files
Figure 3-64
The My Documents menu
keeps a listing of the files
you most recently used.
Figure 3-65
Clear the My Documents
list in the Advanced tab of
the Taskbar and Start
Menu Properties dialog
box.

L IC3 Figure 3-64 Figure 3-65


Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: Grocery List.txt
Windows remembers the files that you used most recently so you can quickly retrieve them
without having to dig through several browse windows. This lesson shows you how you can
use the Documents option in the Start menu to open a recently used file.
First, we need to open a file and close it so it appears in the recent documents list.

1. Navigate to your Practice folder and open the Grocery List file. Close
the file once you have opened it.
You could retrieve the Grocery List by opening Notepad and selecting File → Open
from the menu. You could retrieve the Grocery List by opening My Computer or
Windows Explorer, opening the C: drive, and double-clicking the file. Or you could
just select the Grocery List from the Documents menu, as we’ll see in the next step.
2. Click the Start button and select Documents.
The Documents menu appears, listing your recently used files, as shown in Figure
3-64. Can you find your Grocery List?
3. Select the Grocery List from the Documents menu.
The Grocery List opens in Notepad, where you can review and make changes to the
file.
4. Close the Notepad program.
Although there’s really no need to, you can remove the list of documents from the
Documents menu.
5. Click the Start button and select Settings → Taskbar and Start Menu
and click the Advanced tab.
The Advanced tab appears in front of the Taskbar and Start Menu Properties dialog
box, as shown in Figure 3-65.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 135

6. Click the Clear button to remove the contents of the Documents menu.
Initially, it appears as though nothing has happened, but Windows has removed the list
of files from the Documents menu.
7. Click OK to close the Taskbar Properties dialog box.
Verify that the Documents menu has been reset and is empty.
8. Click the Start button and select Documents.
The Documents list is empty. As you create and open files, they will appear in the
Documents list.

Quick
Reference
To Open a Recent File:
• Click the Start button →
Documents and select
the file you want to open.
To Clear the List of
Recently Used Files:
1. Click the Start button
and select Settings →
Taskbar and Start Menu
and click the Advanced
tab.
2. Click Clear to clear the
list and click OK.

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Lesson 3-31: Formatting a


Floppy Disk
Figure 3-66
The Format dialog box.

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.2.6
Req. File: None

Figure 3-66

Before you can use a floppy disk, you must format it so that you can save information on it.
You can also format a disk to erase any files that are saved on it and prepare it for new files.
You can save yourself a lot of time by buying pre-formatted disks—just make sure they are
formatted in IBM format!
Unless you have an extra floppy handy, you don’t have to walk through this lesson’s step-by-
step exercise, but when you need to format a floppy, here’s how to do it:

1. Insert the floppy disk you want to format into the floppy drive.
NOTE: Formatting a floppy disk completely erases any information stored on it, so
Shortcut menu make sure the disk you want to format doesn’t contain any information you
may need.
2. Double-click the My Computer icon to open it.
The My Computer window appears.
Quick 3. Right-click the drive containing the floppy disk you want to format
Reference (usually A:), and select Format from the shortcut menu.
To Format a Floppy Disk: The Format dialog box appears. There are several options you can specify when
1. Insert the floppy you want formatting a floppy disk—see Figure 3-66 to see what they are.
to format into the floppy 4. Click Start.
drive. The floppy drive whirrs as it formats the floppy disk. Formatting a floppy disk usually
2. Open My Computer or takes about a minute. When the format is complete, the Format Results dialog box
Windows Explorer, right- appears with information about the formatted disk.
click the floppy drive and
select Format from the NOTE: Don’t use a floppy disk that has bytes in bad sectors—throw it away. A floppy
shortcut menu. disk with bad sectors is not reliable and should not be entrusted with your
valuable data.
3. Select the formatting
options and click Start. 5. Click Close to close the Results dialog box and click Close again to
close the Format dialog box.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 137

Lesson 3-32: Common Problems


Associated with Files
Figure 3-67
Once you have created
backup files, make sure
they are stored in a safe
place.
Figure 3-68
Misplaced files can be
extremely hard to find!

Figure 3-67 Figure 3-68

A novelist has been laboring over an epic-length masterpiece for eight years. There are a few
L IC3
printed manuscripts, but the most complete and updated work is saved in one place: on a Objective: 1.3.2.7 and
computer hard drive. Unfortunately, the novelist never backed up the work on another 1.3.2.8
computer or external storage device like a floppy or zip disk. Then, on one tragic night, an Req. File: None
electrical fire engulfed the computer and all manuscripts, eight years of work erased in a few
hours.
This is a tragic tale that could easily have been prevented with a simple backup copy of the
novel. No matter how much you trust your computer or the safety of its location, you should
always save a backup of your information. In many organizations, the computer support
department backs up the information on a centralized network system. Smaller organizations Quick
or individuals may depend on responsible individuals finding their own backup methods, such Reference
as floppy or zip disks. • Backing up information on
But no matter how many backup files you save, you should always keep a backup in a a regular basis is a very
different location than your computer. For example, let’s say that you store your backups at important file
your desk. If the entire building burns down, it will destroy both the computer and the backup management task.
files. You could also choose to store your files in a fireproof safe. Some Web sites even offer Common Problems
storage space on their servers, so that even if your entire town is wiped out by a hurricane in Associated with Files
Virginia, your work is safely stored on a server in Minnesota. Include:
Other common problems associated with working with files include: • Files that cannot be found
• Files that cannot be found: Make sure to name and store files systematically so that you • Hard drive becoming too
do not misplace something important. full
• Hard drive becoming too full: If your computer starts acting sluggish or working • Denied file access
improperly, your hard drive may be too full. A utility program, such as hard drive
compression, can usually take care of this for you, but you may end up having to replace
your hard drive altogether.
• Denied file access: Some files are protected by passwords or other security systems. If
you do not provide the proper username or password, you may be prevented access to
protected files.

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Lesson 3-33: A Look at the


Control Panel
Figure 3-69
Open the Control Panel by
clicking the Start button
and selecting Settings →
Control Panel.
Figure 3-70
The Control Panel.

L IC3 Figure 3-69 Figure 3-70


Objective: 1.3.3.1, 1.3.3.2,
and 1.3.3.5
Req. File: None The Control Panel is the place to go when you want to change the various settings of your
computer and Windows. You’ll be seeing a lot of the Control Panel in the upcoming lessons,
so this lesson will just be a quick introduction. No exercises here—just a guided tour of the
Control Panel to help you become familiar with it.

1. Open the Control Panel by clicking the Start button and selecting
Control Panel Settings → Control Panel.
Other Ways to Open the The Control Panel appears, as shown in Figure 3-70. Your Control Panel may look
Control Panel: slightly different, depending on your computer setup.
• Open My Computer 2. Look at the various icons in the Control Panel and refer to Table 3-10:
and double-click the What’s in the Control Panel to see what they do.
Control Panel folder. If you’re curious, you can even go ahead and double-click any of the icons in the
Control Panel to display the dialog box that lives behind each one—just don’t touch
anything on those dialog boxes for now!
NOTE: Some systems (such as centrally managed computer networks) have system
administrators that perform all system settings-related tasks. If you are denied
access to a system setting, this is most likely the case.
3. When you’re finished, close the Control Panel.
Ready to start customizing your computer? Then move on to the next lesson and let’s start!

Table 3-10: What’s in the Control Panel


Item Description
Accessibility Allows you to change the settings for the mouse, keyboard, sound, and display
Options to make the computer easier to use for those who are physically challenged.
Add New Hardware Starts a Wizard that walks you through the installation of new hardware to your
system, such as a network card or CD-ROM player.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 139

Item Description
Add/Remove Installs or removes programs and additional Windows components on your
Programs computer.
Date/Time Changes the date, time, and time zone information on your computer.
Display Changes how your things are displayed your screen. You can adjust the
resolutions, how many colors to use, the color scheme, and a lot more.
Fonts Displays all the fonts that are installed on your computer and allows you to
install or remove fonts.
Game Controllers This is where you can adjust your computer’s joystick (if you have one).
Internet Options Changes your Internet settings.
Keyboard Adjusts the rate at which the cursor blinks, the rate characters are repeated
when you hold down a key, and country and language settings for the keyboard.
Modems Lets you see what modems are installed in your computer and what COM port
they use, and adjust their properties, such as how they dial numbers.
Mouse Adjusts your mouse settings, such as if the buttons are configured for a
left-handed or right-handed user, the double-click speed, and the speed of the
mouse pointer.
Multimedia Changes settings for your computer’s multimedia devices, such as the sound
card’s volume and recording levels and the size of the window in which digital
video plays on your computer.
Network If you’re connected to a network, this allows you (or preferably your network
administrator) to configure your network settings, such as the what type of
network hardware, software, and protocols you’re using.
Power Changes your computer’s power management settings, which reduces how
Management much power your computer system uses—especially important for laptop users.
Printers Displays all the printers that are currently installed for use on your computer,
enables you to add and remove printers and change each printer’s default Quick
settings. Reference

Regional Settings Changes how numbers, currencies, dates and times are displayed throughout To Open the Control
Windows. Panel:

Sounds Changes system and program sounds. • Click the Start button
and select Programs →
System Provides advanced information about your computer system and allows you to Settings → Control
change its settings. You shouldn’t touch this one unless you really know what Panel.
you’re doing.
Or…
• Open My Computer and
double-click the Control
Panel folder.

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Lesson 3-34: Changing the


Date and Time
Change the year by clicking
Figure 3-71 Select the month the up or down arrows
The Date & Time tab of
the Date/Time Properties
dialog box.
Figure 3-72
Using the time and dates
control in the Date/Time
Properties dialog box.
Figure 3-73
The Time Zone tab of the
The current day is highlighted. To
Date/Time Properties Figure 3-71 change the day, click the correct day
dialog box.

1. Click the number you


want to adjust (hour,
minute, or second)

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.3.3 and
1.3.3.5
2. Click the up or down
Req. File: None arrow to increase or
decrease the selected
hour, minute, or second

Figure 3-73 Figure 3-72

Your computer has its own built-in clock that has many purposes, including determining when
you created or modified a file. For this reason, you should make sure the date and time are set
correctly in computer. This lesson will show you how to set the date and time for your
computer if you find it needs adjusting.
The far right area of the taskbar normally displays the time your computer thinks it is. To
display the date, you merely need to move the pointer over the clock and wait a few seconds.

1. Move the pointer over the clock on the taskbar and wait a few seconds.
A small box that displays the date appears.
Display the
Current Date To change the date or time, double-click the clock on the taskbar.
2. Double-click the clock on the far right edge of the taskbar.
The Date/Time Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-71. To change the
time setting, click on the area of the clock you want to adjust and then adjust the
settings using the up or down arrows.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 141

NOTE: It is very important that you understand the purpose and consequences of a
system setting change before actually changing the setting. For example,
changing the date and time incorrectly can cause files to be stored with
incorrect date/time stamps. Avoid this, and many, inconveniences by
exercising extreme care when changing system settings.
3. Click the hour part of the time and click the clock’s up-arrow to advance
the time one hour, as shown in Figure 3-72.
You could adjust the minutes the same way—by clicking the minute part of the time
and then clicking the up or down arrows. You can also manually type the numbers in
using the keyboard.
You can change the date in the right area of the dialog box. Change the month and year
by clicking their corresponding text boxes, located above the calendar.
4. Click the Month list arrow and select January from the list, then click
the Year text box and click the up arrow to advance the year several
years.
The calendar actually displays the days in the selected month. The current day is
highlighted. To change the day, just click the day you want.
5. Click on day 1 in the calendar, to change the date to January 1.
If you use a laptop, you may need to adjust which time zone you’re in. You can do this
using the Time Zone tab of the Date/Time Properties dialog box.
6. Click the Time Zone tab.
The Time Zone tab appears in the front of the dialog box, as shown in Figure 3-73. You
can click the Time Zone list arrow to select your current time zone from a list of all
available time zones. Also note the Automatically adjust clock for daylight savings
changes box. When this box is checked, Windows will automatically adjust your
computer’s clock when daylight saving time changes, meaning one less clock you have Quick
to change. Reference
7. Click Cancel to close the Date/Time Properties dialog box without
applying the date and time changes you’ve made. To Display the Current
Date:
The built-in clock in your computer should keep track of the date and time even when you
turn your computer off. If your computer doesn’t keep the proper time and date, it means there • Point at the clock on the
is probably something wrong with your computer’s built-in clock. taskbar for several
seconds.
To Change the Date and/or
Time:
1. Double-click the clock on
the taskbar.
2. Adjust the date and time
using the calendar and
clock controls, as shown
in Figure 3-72 and click
OK.
To Change Time Zones:
1. Double-click the clock on
the taskbar.
2. Click the Time Zone tab
and select the time zone
from the list box and click
OK.

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Lesson 3-35: Adding


Wallpaper to the Desktop
Figure 3-74
The Background tab of the
Display Properties dialog
box. Preview of how the selected wallpaper
will look on the desktop
Figure 3-75
Windows with the Carved
Stone wallpaper. Select from several preset images to
use as wallpaper…

Or click here to use your own picture or


graphic as wallpaper
Specify how the graphic should be
displayed (centered, tiled, or stretched)
L IC3
Objective: 1.3.3.3 and
Figure 3-74
1.3.3.5
Req. File: None

Figure 3-75

Most of us don’t work in a sterile work environment—we decorate our desktops with pictures,
plants, and Dilbert calendars. Similarly, Windows lets you give your computer personality to
reflect your own personal tastes. In this lesson, you will learn how to start personalizing
Windows by adding wallpaper to the Windows desktop. Wallpaper in Windows is a graphical
picture you can stick to the desktop—the blank, background area of the Windows screen.

1. Right-click a blank area on the desktop, and select Properties from the
shortcut menu.
The Display Properties dialog box appears.
Desktop 2. Click the Background tab.
shortcut menu The Background tab appears in front of the Display Properties dialog box, as shown in
Figure 3-74. This is where you can select a file to use as wallpaper.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 143

3. In the Wallpaper section, select the Coffee Bean file from the list.
A preview appears of what your desktop will look like with the selected wallpaper.
Notice the Display combo box—you can display your wallpaper using one of three
different methods:
• Center: Centers the image in the middle of your desktop. Use this setting if you
have a large picture you want to display, such as a scanned picture.
• Tile: Makes a repeated pattern from the image. Use this setting for small to
medium sized pictures and for all the default files listed in the Wallpaper box.
• Stretch: Stretches the image so that it fills the entire screen.
4. Click the Display list arrow and select Tile.
You’re ready to add your wallpaper.
5. Click Apply.
The Coffee Bean design appears in a tiled pattern on your screen. If you want to use a
picture that isn’t listed in the Wallpaper section, such as a scanned picture of your
family, you can click the Browse button.
6. Click the Browse button.
A Browse dialog box appears, asking you to specify the name and location of the file
you want to use as your wallpaper.
7. Close the Browse dialog box.
To remove wallpaper from your screen, just repeat steps 1 and 2, and select (None)
from the Wallpaper section.
NOTE: Remembering the system setting changes that you’ve made can make it much
easier to modify or remove them. If you are unsure about a system setting
change, make sure to keep track of your actions so you don’t get stuck with an
unintended setting. Quick
8. In the Wallpaper section, select (None) from the list, and then click OK. Reference
The Display Properties dialog box closes, and the wallpaper is removed from the To Add or Change
screen. Wallpaper:
Here’s one more wallpaper tip: if you’re surfing the Web with Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 1. Right-click a blank area
(the Web browser that comes with Windows 2000) and happen to see a graphic or picture you on the desktop and select
like, you can use it as your wallpaper. Just right-click the graphic and select the Set as Properties from the
Wallpaper option from the shortcut menu to save the image from the Internet and display it as shortcut menu.
wallpaper. 2. Make sure the
Background tab is
selected, then select the
wallpaper you want to use
from the preset list or click
Browse and specify the
name and location of your
own picture or graphic
you want to use as
wallpaper.
3. Select how you want the
wallpaper to be displayed
(centered, tiled, or
stretched) from the
Display list (optional).
4. Click OK.

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144 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-36: Changing Screen


Colors
Figure 3-76
The Appearance tab of the
Display Properties dialog
box.
Figure 3-77
The Desert color scheme.
Figure 3-77
1. To change the color of a specific item, click
the item in the preview area (which also
displays how your screen will look)…

…or select it from the Item list.


L IC3
2. Once you have selected an item, change it’s
Objective: 1.3.3.3 color by selecting a color from the color
Req. File: None palette
Figure 3-76
Select a color scheme here

Another way to personalize Windows is to change the screen colors. Windows screen colors
include all the basic parts of a window: the title bar, the menu, any scroll bars, etc. Windows
comes with an assortment of color schemes you can use, and if you don’t like any of the color
schemes, you can create your own.

1. Right-click a blank area on the desktop, and select Properties from the
shortcut menu.
The Display Properties dialog box appears.
2. Click the Appearance tab.
The Appearance tab appears in front of the Display Properties dialog box, as shown in
Figure 3-76. This is where you can change the colors of the various window elements,
or you can use a color scheme to change the appearance of many screen elements all at
once.
3. Click the Scheme list arrow and select the Desert scheme from the list.
The preview area of the dialog box displays how your screen will look with the
selected color scheme. You can also change the colors for the various elements of a
window. First, you need to select the item or element.
4. Click the Title bar of the Active Window in the preview area of the
dialog box.
The words “Active Title Bar” should appear in the in Item combo box. You can also
select an item by selecting it from the Item combo box—but it’s more intuitive to click
the item from the preview area. Next, you can change the color and the font (if it’s
used) of the selected item.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 145

5. Click the Color list arrow.


A color palette appears below the Color box. Select the color you want use for the
selected item.
6. Select the Red color from the color palette.
The preview area of the dialog box displays the active title bar in red. To make and
confirm your changes, you would normally click Apply or OK. However, since you
don’t want to keep these changes for now you can click Cancel instead.
7. Click the Cancel button to close the Display Properties dialog box
without saving any of your screen color changes.
Color Palette
You can always return to the original Windows color scheme by opening the Display
Properties dialog box, clicking the Appearance tab, and selecting the Windows Standard
scheme from the scheme list.

Quick
Reference
To Change Windows Color
Scheme:
1. Right-click a blank area
on the desktop and select
Properties from the
shortcut menu.
2. Click the Appearance
tab.
3. Select a color scheme
from the Scheme list and
click OK.
To Change the Color of a
Specific Windows Item:
1. Repeat Steps 1 and 2 of
the previous instructions.
2. Select the item from the
Item list or by clicking it
in the Preview area.
3. Select a color from the
color palette and click
OK.

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146 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-37: Adjusting the


Screen Resolution
Figure 3-78
Lower resolution (640 by
480) displays larger
images on the screen;
higher resolutions (800 by
600) displays smaller
images but lets you see
more information at once.
Figure 3-79 640 by 480 pixels
The Settings tab of the
Display Properties dialog Figure 3-78 800 by 600 pixels
box.
Figure 3-80
The Display Properties
warning dialog box.
Figure 3-81 Figure 3-80

Click Yes to keep the new


resolution, click No to
switch back to the original Drag the slider
resolution setting. to select the
display
Figure 3-81
resolution

Figure 3-79

L IC3 Screen Resolution has to do with how much information can fit on the computer screen.
Objective: 1.3.3.3 Obviously, you can’t adjust how large or small your computer’s monitor is (without buying a
Req. File: None new one that is), but you can make all the images on your screen larger or smaller so you can
see more information at once.

1. Right-click a blank area on the desktop and select Properties from the
shortcut menu.
The Display Properties dialog box appears.
2. Click the Settings tab.
The Settings tab appears in front of the Display Properties dialog box, as shown in
Figure 3-79. The Screen area is where you can change the resolution setting. Look at
the numbers of pixels that are displayed—that is the current display resolution.
3. Slide the bar in the Screen area all the way to the left.
The number of pixels should change to 640 by 480. If your slider is already set at 640
by 480, move the slider one notch to the right, to 800 by 600.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 147

4. Click Apply.
A dialog box, similar to the one shown in Figure 3-80 appears.
5. Click OK to confirm the change in resolution.
If you’re unlucky and have an older computer, Windows may have to restart the
computer to resize the screen. If you’re lucky, Windows will resize the screen without
restarting your computer. Windows asks you if you like the new resolution setting, as
shown in Figure 3-81. If you do like it, click the Yes button, if you don’t, click the No
button. If you don’t do anything, Windows assumes you don’t like the new resolution
setting, or your monitor can’t display the new resolution, and switches back to the
original resolution.
6. Click No to return to the original resolution setting.
For a more complete description of the various resolution settings you can use, see Table
3-11: Common Screen Resolutions. The highest resolution you can display depends on how
much memory is installed on your video card. Most video cards have enough memory to
display at least 800 by 600 resolution.

Table 3-11: Common Screen Resolutions


Resolution Description
No longer supported in most computers, 640 by 480 used to be the lowest
Higher Resolutions Require More Speed and Video Memory

resolution setting. Larger and cheaper monitors have made 640 by 480
resolution effectively obsolete.

640 by 480

This has been the standard resolution setting for most computers, and is the
lowest setting on newer monitors. This is a good in-between resolution,
allowing you to display quite a bit of information on the screen without having
to use a magnifying glass to read it. Use this setting if you have a 15-inch or
800 by 600 17-inch monitor.

The new standard, 1024 by 768 puts a lot of information on your screen, but Quick
the images can start getting small and difficult to read at this point (unless you Reference
have a large monitor). Use this setting if you have a 17-inch or larger monitor
or when you want to see a lot of information at the same time, for example if To Change the Screen
1024 by 768 you’re working on a large spreadsheet, graphic files, or multiple windows. Resolution:
1. Right-click a blank area
Depending on how expensive the graphics card in your computer is, there may on the desktop and select
be several higher modes of resolution which continue to display more and Properties from the
more information and smaller and smaller images. shortcut menu.
2. Click the Settings tab.
Higher
resolutions 3. Slide the Screen Area
slider to the right or left to
select the resolution you
want to use.
4. Click OK.

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148 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-38: Adjusting the


Screen Color Depth
Figure 3-82
You can change the
number of colors
displayed on your screen,
resulting in more realistic
images.
Figure 3-83
The Settings tab of the
Display Properties dialog 16 Colors
box.

L IC3 Figure 3-83


Change the color
Objective: 1.3.3.3 depth here
Req. File: None
High Color (16 bit)
Figure 3-82

Another change you can make to your display settings is the number of colors that are
displayed on the screen at once, or the color depth. Why would you want to change the
number of colors displayed on your screen? Perhaps you want to use higher color depth
settings to make videos and photographs more realistic. Or some finicky games also require
you to use a specific color depth.

1. Right-click a blank area on the desktop, and select Properties from the
shortcut menu.
The Display Properties dialog box appears.
2. Click the Settings tab.
The Settings tab appears in front of the Display Properties dialog box, as shown in
Figure 3-83. The Colors combo box is where you can select the color depth you want
to use. The Colors combo box displays the current color depth setting.
3. Click the Colors list arrow and select 16 Colors.
If your Color box is already set to display 16 Colors or if there isn’t a 16 Color option,
then select 256 Colors.
NOTE: If 16 Colors is the only option that appears in the Colors combo box it means
your video card is not properly installed. You’ll need to reinstall the video
drivers (software) that came along with your computer or video card.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 149

4. Click Apply.
A dialog box appears, asking you confirm the changes you’ve made to the display
settings.
5. Click OK to confirm the display setting changes.
Windows may have to restart the computer to change the display setting. A dialog box
will appear, asking you if you like the new display settings. Here again, click Yes if you
want to keep the new settings and No if you want to switch back to the original color
depth. If you don’t do anything, Windows assumes you don’t like the new resolution
setting, or your monitor can’t display the new resolution, and switches back to the
original display settings.
6. Click No to return to the color depth setting.
For a more complete description of the various color depth settings you can use, see the table
below. The maximum color depth, or simultaneous number of colors you can display at once,
depends on how much memory is installed on your video card. Most video cards have enough
memory to display at least High Color (16-bit) resolution.

Table 3-12: Common Color Depths


Color Depth Description
No longer supported on many computers, 256 colors was the standard color
More Colors Require More Speed and Video Memory

depth years ago. Most computers and video cards these days are fast enough to
run with more colors without taking a performance hit, making this color depth
almost obsolete.
256 Colors

16-bit color displays roughly 65,000 colors at once. This is the point where
pictures become photo-realistic. This is a good color depth setting because it can
display photo-realistic images without slowing your computer down. You have to
really squint to see much difference between 16-bit color and higher levels of
16-bit color depth.

24-bit color displays 16.7 million colors at once. Depending on how expensive
Quick
the graphics card in your computer is, there may be several higher modes of
color depth, which continue to display more and more colors on the screen. Reference
To Change the Screen
24-bit
Resolution:
32-bit color displays 16.7 million colors at once. 32-bit color is faster and more 1. Right-click a blank area
efficient than 24-bit color. on the desktop and select
Properties from the
shortcut menu.
32-bit
2. Click the Settings tab.
3. Click the Colors list and
select the Color Depth
setting you want to use.
4. Click OK.

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150 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-39: Using a Screen


Saver
Figure 3-84
The Settings tab of the
Display Properties dialog
Displays how the screen saver will look
box.

Specify how much time must elapse before


L IC3 Windows displays the selected screen saver.
Objective: 1.3.3.3
Req. File: None Assign a password to your screen saver to
protect your computer from unauthorized use.
Windows will not clear a screen saver until this
password is typed correctly. To assign a
password, add a check here and click the
change button.

Figure 3-84 Change the energy saving features of your


Select a specific screen saver here monitor

A screen saver is a moving image that appears on the computer screen when you haven’t used
your computer for a while. Screen savers were originally used to protect screens from screen
burn, which could occur when an static image was left on the screen for hours and hours. You
may have seen examples of screen burn on older cash machines. You don’t have to worry
about screen burn with today’s monitors, but many people still like to use screen savers for
entertainment and to personalize their computers.
This lesson will show you how make a screen saver appear if your computer hasn’t been
touched for a while. You will also learn how to conserve power by having the monitor switch
to a low-power standby mode or even turn itself off if the computer has been idle.

1. Right-click a blank area on the desktop, and select Properties from the
shortcut menu.
The Display Properties dialog box appears.
2. Click the Screen Saver tab.
The Screen Saver tab appears in front of the Display Properties dialog box, as shown in
Figure 3-83.
3. Click the Screen Saver list arrow.
A list of the available screen savers appears.
4. Select the Starfield Simulation screen saver from the list.
A preview of the Flying Windows screen saver appears in the preview area of the
Screen Saver
settings dialog box. You can also preview the screen saver in full screen mode by clicking the
Preview button. You can change the settings for the selected screen saver by clicking
the Settings button.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 151

5. Click the Settings button.


A dialog box appears with settings for the selected screen saver. The options listed in
this dialog box will differ depending on the screen saver. There may be options for how
many and what type of objects should appear on the screen, how fast the objects should
move, or if you want to hear sounds when the screen saver is active—it depends on
which screen saver is selected.
6. Click Cancel to close the Options for Flying Windows dialog box.
You can assign a password to your screen saver to protect your computer from
unauthorized use by clicking the Password protected check box. Windows will not
clear a screen saver until this password is typed correctly. EnergyStar
compliant logo
You can easily change the amount of time it takes before Windows displays the
selected screen saver.
7. Click the Wait box and type 15.
You can also click the Wait box up arrow until the number 15 appears. Now the screen
saver will appear when you don’t use your computer for 15 minutes.
Instead of using a screen saver, if you have an Energy Star compliant monitor you can Quick
conserve power by switching the monitor to a low-power standby mode or even have Reference
the monitor turn itself off if the computer hasn’t been used for a while. Most monitors
made in the last five years are Energy Star compliant. To Set Up a Screen Saver:
8. Click the Power button in the Energy saving features of monitor section. 1. Right-click a blank area
on the desktop and select
The Power Management dialog box appears. Properties from the
9. Click the Turn off monitor list arrow and select After 30 minutes. shortcut menu.
This setting will cause your monitor to turn itself off when the computer hasn’t been 2. Click the Screen Saver
used for 30 minutes. To turn the monitor back on, simply press a key on the keyboard tab.
or move the mouse—you don’t need to push the monitor’s on/off switch. 3. Click the Screen Saver
10. Click OK. list and select a screen
saver.
4. (Optional) Specify how
much time must elapse
before Windows displays
the selected screen saver
in the Wait box and click
the Password Protected
check box and click
Change to assign a
password to the screen
saver.
5. Click OK.
To Adjust the Energy-
Saving Features of your
Monitor:
1. Follow the preceding
Steps 1 and 2.
2. Click the Settings button
in the Energy Saving
Features section and
adjust the interval after
which the monitor shuts
off.

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152 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-40: Changing


System and Program Sounds
Figure 3-85
Displays the events
The Sounds Properties to which you can
assign sounds
dialog box.
Figure 3-86 Click to hear the
selected sound.
The Browse for Sound file
Click to use your
dialog box. own sound file

Select a preset
sound from the
selected sound
scheme
Figure 3-86
L IC3
Objective: 1.3.3.3
Req. File: None Figure 3-85
Select the sound
scheme you want to
use

Computers still have a long way to go before they can talk to you, but they can give you
simple audio feedback, as long as your computer has a sound card and speakers. This lesson
shows you how to assign sounds to events performed on your computer. An event is an action
performed by you or a program. For example, when you press an incorrect key, the computer
sometimes utters a simple beep. If you have a sound card, you can choose to play a sound
other than a boring beep whenever you press an incorrect key. Other events you can assign
sounds to include when you start or quit Windows.

1. Open the Control Panel by clicking the Start button and selecting
Settings → Control Panel from the menu.
The Control Panel opens.
2. Double-click the Sounds and Multimedia icon.
The Sounds Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-85. The Sounds
Sounds and Properties dialog box displays the events to which you can assign sounds and the
Multimedia available sounds that you can associate with the events. There are also a number of
sound schemes available that you can use to change the sounds assigned to many
different system events all at once.
3. Select the Exit Windows in the Events list.
You can listen to the sound that is currently assigned to any event by selecting the
event and then clicking the triangular play button in the Preview area of the dialog box.
The sound assigned to the Exit Windows event (if one is assigned) appears in the Name
box.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 153

4. Click the Play button in the Preview area of the dialog box to listen to
the sound assigned to the Exit Windows event.
If you don’t hear a sound, either the Exit Windows event doesn’t have a sound assigned
to it (you can check this by looking at the Name box) or else your computer doesn’t
have a soundcard and/or speakers, the volume is turned off, or the soundcard drivers
are not installed correctly.
To assign a different event to the selected sound, click the Browse button to select the
sound.
5. Click the Browse button.
A Browse window appears, as shown in Figure 3-86. Select the location and file for the
sound you want to hear every time the selected event occurs.
6. Double-click the Microsoft Sound.
The Microsoft Sound is now assigned to the Exit Windows event. You can listen to The
Microsoft Sound by clicking the triangular play button in the Preview area of the
dialog box.
7. Click the Play button in the Preview area of the dialog box to listen to
The Microsoft Sound.
You can quickly assign sounds to many system events at the same time by using a
sound scheme. A scheme is a set of events and the sounds associated with them. Table
3-13: Common Sound Schemes lists the sound schemes that ship with Windows.
8. Click the Schemes list arrow and select the Utopia sound scheme.
Windows may ask you if you want to save your current sound scheme—you can
answer No to this. Now Windows will use the Utopia sound scheme for any system
events. Quick
Reference
NOTE: Windows 2000 may not have installed all the sound schemes during
installation. To make sure all the sound schemes are installed, open the To Use a Sound Scheme:
Control Panel, double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon, click the 1. Click the Start button
Windows Setup tab, select the Multimedia option and click Details, and make and click Settings →
sure the Multimedia sound schemes options is checked in. Control Panel.
9. Click Cancel to close the Sounds Properties dialog box without saving 2. Double-click the Sounds
your changes. icon.
3. Select a scheme from the
Table 3-13: Common Sound Schemes Schemes list.
Scheme Description 4. Click OK.
Jungle Sounds you might hear in the jungle: lions roaring and bird chirping To Assign a Sound to a
Specific Windows Event:
Utopia A no-nonsense scheme: clicking, whooshing, and sliding sounds 1. Follow the above Steps 1
and 2.
Windows Default Window’s standard beep sounds (boring!) 2. Select the event from the
Event list.
Musica Sounds you might hear in an orchestra: drums, clarinets, trumpets
3. Click the Browse button
and specify and the
Robotz Industrial, mechanical sounds you might hear in some futuristic factory location and name of the
sound file you want to
assign to the event. Click
the Play button to listen to
the selected sound.
4. Click OK.

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154 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-41: Adjusting the


Mouse
Figure 3-87
The Buttons tab of the
Specify if you are right-handed or left-handed to switch the
Mouse Properties dialog functions of the left and right mouse buttons
box.
Figure 3-88
The Motion tab of the Specify weather you want to open items by clicking them
once (like the Web) or twice (the traditional method)
Mouse Properties dialog
box.
Drag the slider to change the double-click speed

Double-click this area to test the double-click speed

L IC3
Figure 3-87
Objective: 1.3.3.3
Req. File: None
Drag the slider to change the pointer
speed

Adjust how much your pointer moves


when you move your mouse faster

Specifies whether the mouse pointer


snaps to the default button (such as OK
or Apply) in dialog boxes

Figure 3-88

A common complaint many users have about Windows is they don’t like how the mouse
works. The mouse either is too slow or too fast, does not respond very well to your double-
clicks, or worst of all if you’re left-handed, its buttons are in the wrong places!
This lesson shows you how to adjust the mouse settings to make it easier for you to work
with.

1. Open the Control Panel by clicking the Start button and selecting
Settings → Control Panel from the menu.
The Control Panel opens.
2. Double-click the Mouse icon to change the mouse settings.
The Buttons tab of the Mouse Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-87.
Mouse icon

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 155

Many people complain that the double-click speed setting for Windows is too fast. To
adjust the amount of time between clicks, drag the Double-click speed slider to the
right or left. You can test the double-click speed by double-clicking the jack-in-the-box
in the Test area box.
3. Slide the Double-click slider to Slow, and then double-click the jack-in-
the-box in the Test area.
Jack jumps out of his box when you complete a successful double-click.
4. Slide the Double-click slider to Fast, and then double-click the jack-in-
the-box in the Test area.
You probably won’t be able to double-click fast enough to make Jack go in or out of
his box with the double-click setting this fast.
You will have to experiment with the Double-click slider, adjusting it to find a
double-click speed that suits your own personal preferences. Most people find that the Double-click
double-click speed works best somewhere in the middle or somewhat to the left of the Test Area
Double-click speed bar.
5. Click the Motion tab.
The Motion tab of the Mouse Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-88.
Here you can also adjust how fast the mouse pointer moves across your screen when Quick
you move the mouse by dragging the Pointer speed slider to the right or left. Reference
Now that you understand how to adjust the mouse to your liking, you can close the To Open the Mouse
Mouse Properties dialog box to end the lesson. Properties Dialog Box:
6. Click Cancel to close the Mouse Properties dialog box without saving
your changes. • Click the Start button,
select Settings →
Control Panel and
double-click the Mouse
icon.
To the Left and Right
Mouse Buttons:
• Open the Mouse
Properties dialog box,
click the select either the
Right-handed or Left-
handed option and click
OK.
To Change the
Double-Click Speed:
• Open the Mouse
Properties dialog box,
drag the Pointer Speed
slider to a new position,
and click OK.
To Change the Pointer
Speed:
• Open the Mouse
Properties dialog box,
click the Motion tab, drag
the Pointer Speed slider
to a new position, and
click OK.

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156 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-42: Changing the


Default Printer and Printer
Settings
Figure 3-89
Right-click any printer in
the Printers folder to
change its settings.
Figure 3-90
The Printer Properties
dialog box will be different
for every printer,
depending on the printer’s
features.

Figure 3-89

Clicking a tab lets


you view and
change those
settings for your
L IC3 printer

Objective: 1.3.3.4
Req. File: None

Set Printing Preferences

Figure 3-90

Sometimes, you may want a little more from the relationship between your computer and your
printer. Perhaps you have more than one printer connected to your computer and want to
Default Printer change the default printer. Maybe you want to take advantage of some of your printer’s more
advanced features, or maybe you are having trouble printing and want to look at your printer’s
settings to find out what’s wrong.
This lesson will show you how to change which printer your computer uses as the default
printer (where your computer prints everything unless you choose a different printer from the
printer list) and how to view and change the default settings for your printer.

1. Click the Start button and select Settings → Printers from the menu.
The Printers window appears.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 157

2. Right-click the printer you want to set as your new default printer and
select Set as Default Printer from the shortcut menu.
The default printer displays a black checkmark. Any documents you print will now Printers folder
be sent to the new default printer. Other Ways to Open the
You can also view the properties for all of your printers in the Printers folder. Here’s Printers Folder:
how: • Open My Computer and
3. Right-click the printer whose properties you want to view and select double-click the
Properties from the shortcut menu. Printers folder.
The Properties dialog box for your particular printer appears, as shown in Figure 3-90.
Keep in mind that every printer is different, so the Properties dialog box for your
particular printer may look a lot different from the one shown. All Printer Properties
dialog boxes let you change the default options for your particular printer—what port it
uses, its print quality, etc.
4. Click Cancel to close the Properties dialog box, then close the Printers
folder.

Quick
Reference
To Change the Default
Printer:
1. Open the Printers folder
by clicking the Start
button and selecting
Settings → Printers.
2. Right-click the desired
printer and select Set as
Default from the shortcut
menu.
To View/Change a
Printer’s Properties:
• Open the Printers folder,
right-click the appropriate
printer, and select
Properties from the
shortcut menu.

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158 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

Lesson 3-43: Installing New


Software
Figure 3-91
The Add/Remove
Programs Properties
dialog box.
Figure 3-92
The installation program
for every software
program is different-—but
most of them work the
same way.

Figure 3-91

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.3.6 and
1.3.3.7
Req. File: None

Figure 3-92

Most programs come with specific instructions that explain their own installation better than
this lesson ever could. Still, if you’ve misplaced the instructions or never had them to begin
with, for example if you’ve downloaded a program off the Internet, this lesson will help you
install most programs.

1. Find the Program’s disk (or disks) and insert it (or the first disk) into the
Add/Remove disk drive.
Programs If your software comes on more than one disk, dig through the box until you find a disk
labeled Disk 1, Installation, or Setup.
Actually, if you’re installing a newer program from a CD-ROM you might not have to
do much more—a lot of CD-ROM’s will automatically start the installation program
when the CD is inserted. You can move on to Step 8 if this is the case.
Finally if you’re installing a program from a file located on your hard drive or a
network drive skip to Step 6.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 159

2. Click the Start button and select Settings → Control Panel from the
menu.
The Control Panel appears.
3. Double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon.
The Add/Remove Programs Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-91. Add New
Programs
NOTE: Some systems (such as centrally managed computer networks) have system
administrators that perform all software-related tasks. If you are denied access
to add/remove a program, this is most likely the case.
Most programs have
4. Click the Add New Programs button, click the CD or Floppy button,
a special installation
and click Next.
program used to
Windows searches your floppy drive and CD-ROM for the program you want to install. install them onto
Most programs come with a special program called SETUP or INSTALL, which your computer.
installs the main program onto your computer. These programs are
If you’re installing a program from a CD-ROM or floppy disk, you’ll probably only usually named
have to follow the first four steps—and you can skip ahead to Step 8. If Windows can’t Setup, Install, or
find the installation program move on to Step 5. something similar.
5. Click Cancel to close the Install window and close the Control Panel.
If you’re installing a finicky program, a program that you’ve downloaded from the
Internet, or a program located on a network, you’re probably going to have to install
the program yourself.
6. Open My Computer. Quick
Reference
You have to open the disk drive or folder where the setup program is located. For
example, double-click the CD-ROM icon if you’re installing from a CD-ROM. If To Install Software:
you’re installing a file you’ve downloaded from the Internet, find and open the folder 1. Find the Program’s disk
where you saved the file. (or disks) and insert it (or
7. Find and double-click any files called Setup or similarly named files. the first disk) into the disk
drive.
8. Follow the onscreen instructions to install the program. 2. Click the Start button
Every program is different, and so is its installation program. Most installation programs have and select Settings →
more in common with each other than they have differences. Most use a step-by-step Wizard Control Panel.
to guide you through the installation process, most let you specify where you want to install 3. Double-click the
the program (although they have their own default folder in mind), and most let you specify Add/Remove Programs
which program components you want to install. icon.
Most installation programs create their own folder and icons in the Start menu, which can be 4. Click the Install button
both a blessing and a curse—a blessing because you don’t have to manually add an icon to the and then click Next.
Programs menu, a curse because if you’ve installed a lot of software onto your computer, your If this doesn’t work, click
Programs menu will be cluttered with dozens of folders and programs. You can always Cancel, close the Control
reorganize the Programs menu and reduce the amount of folders and clutter—something you Panel, open My Computer
learned back in a previous lesson. find the disk drive or
folder where the program
you want to install is
located, and find double-
click the installation
program (usually called
SETUP).
5. Follow the on-screen
instructions to install the
program.

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Lesson 3-44: Removing


Software
Figure 3-93
The Add/Remove
Programs Properties lists Select the
program that
all the Windows programs you want to
that are installed on your delete or
computer. add/remove
components
All the programs
Figure 3-94 that are installed on
from…
your computer
The Confirm File Deletion …and click its
appear here
dialog box. Change/Remove
button

L IC3
Objective: 1.3.3.6 and Figure 3-93
1.3.3.7
Req. File: None

Figure 3-94

You’ve finally finished that adventure game you’ve spent 100 hours on, and since you no
longer need the game, you decide to reclaim the 200 megabytes it occupies on your hard
drive. So how do you remove, or erase, a program that you no longer need from Windows?
You’ll learn how in this lesson.
Before Windows 95, removing programs from the computer was a very messy process—so
messy in fact, that most people never removed programs they no longer needed. The unused
programs just sat there, taking up valuable space on the hard drive. Times have changed, and
removing most programs is a breeze with Windows 2000. The following steps should remove
all but the most belligerent, obsolete programs from your computer.

1. Click the Start button and select Settings → Control Panel from the
menu.
The Control Panel window appears.
2. Double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon.
The Add/Remove Programs Properties dialog box appears, as shown in Figure 3-93.
Add/Remove Hopefully, most of the programs installed on your computer should appear somewhere
Programs on this list, in alphabetically order.
NOTE: Some systems (such as centrally managed computer networks) have system
administrators that perform all software-related tasks. If you are denied access
to add/remove a program, this is most likely the case.

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3. Find and select the program you want to remove from your computer,
and click its Change/Remove… button.
Be absolutely sure you want to remove the program, as it will be completely erased
from your hard disk. If you created any files or documents with the program you want
to remove, it’s probably a good idea to back them up, although removing a program
usually doesn’t affect any files it created.
4. Finish removing the selected program by following the onscreen
instructions.
Since every program is different, the steps for removing the programs may differ
slightly as well. They usually involve nothing more than confirming that you want to
really want to delete the program and possibly having to select which components of a
program you want to delete. You may also have to restart your computer.
After following the prompts and instructions, the selected program is deleted from your
computer. Of course, you can always reinstall the program, should you ever decide you
need it again.
What if the program I want to remove doesn’t appear in the list? Sorry, but then there is no
easy way to remove the program. It was probably written for an older version of Windows or
even MS-DOS and cannot be automatically removed by Windows. There are still several
things you can try to remove the program:
First, check the menu group where the program is located in the Start menu. Usually there are
several additional programs or icons. If one of the options says something like “Uninstall
Brand X Software” you’re in luck—you can click that option and remove the program.
Second, you can purchase and install an Uninstall program to remove the obtrusive program.
Uninstall programs are great for removing older Windows programs, and they’re usually safe
to use too. The only disadvantage is that you have to buy them. How many older Windows
programs do you need to remove from your computer? If it is only one or two, then the
prospect of paying $30 to $50 for an Uninstall program isn’t very appealing.
Third, you can try erasing the program the old-fashioned way—by opening My Computer or
Windows Explorer and finding and deleting the folder where the program is located. Be very
careful and make sure you know what you’re doing when you remove or erase the program
yourself—you don’t want to inadvertently delete something that shouldn’t be deleted! Quick
Reference
To Remove a Program:
1. Click the Start button
and select Settings →
Control Panel.
2. Double-click the
Add/Remove Programs
icon.
3. Find and select the
program you want to
remove from your
computer, and then click
its Change/Remove…
button.
4. Finish removing the
selected program by
following the on-screen
instructions.

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Chapter Three Review

Lesson Summary
Operating Systems
• An operating system loads automatically and controls just about everything on your computer.

Understanding Graphical User Interfaces


• A Graphical User Interface, or GUI, makes computers easier to operate by using pictures and
icons to represent files and programs.

Understanding the Windows 2000 Screen


• Be able to identify the main components of the Windows screen.

Understanding the Parts of a Window


• Be able to identify a window’s title bar, menu, minimize, maximize, and close buttons.

Maximizing, Minimizing, and Restoring a Window


• To Maximize a Window: Click the window’s Maximize button, or double-click the window’s
title bar.
• To Restore a Maximized Window: Click the window’s Restore button, or double-click the
window’s title bar.
• To Minimize a Window: Click the window’s Minimize button.
• To Restore a Minimized Window: Click the window’s icon on the taskbar.

Closing a Window
• To Close a Window: Click the window’s Close button, or right-click the program’s icon on the
task bar and select Close, or press <Alt> + <F4>.
• To Close All Open Windows: Hold down the <Shift> key while you click the Close button of
any window.

Moving a Window
• Click and drag the window by its title bar. Release the mouse button to drop the window in the
desired location on the screen.

Resizing a Window
• Point at the window’s edge until the pointer changes to a double-arrow (like ), or point at the
window’s corner until the pointer changes to a double arrow (like ). Then click and hold down the
mouse button and drag the edge or corner until the window is the size you want.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 163

Shutting Down or Restarting the Computer


• To Shut Down Windows: Save and close files you’ve been working on and exit all of the
programs. Click the Start button and select Shut Down. Click the Shut Down list arrow, select
Shut Down from the list, and click OK.
• To Restart Windows: Save any files you’ve been working on and exit all your programs. Click the
Start button and select Shut Down. Click the Shut Down list arrow and select Restart from the
list, and click OK.

Using the Task Manager to Shut Down a Program


• Press <Ctrl> + <Alt> + <Delete> to open the Task Manager. Or, right-click the taskbar and select
Task Manager from the shortcut menu. In the Application tab, select the program that is not
responding and click the End Task button.

Starting a Program
• Click the Start button and point to the Programs option. Click the menu and any submenus where
the program you want to run is located. When you have found the program, click it.

Switching Between Open Windows


• Click the program’s icon on the taskbar, or click any part of the window you want to appear on front,
or press and hold down the <Alt> key and press the <Tab> to display the task list. Press the
<Tab> key until the program you want is selected, then release the <Alt> key.

Adding a Shortcut to the Start Menu


• To Add a Program to the Start Menu: Right-click a blank area of the task bar and select
Properties from the shortcut menu. Click the Start Menu Programs tab and click Add. Click the
Browse button, open the program’s folder, and double-click the program name. Click Next button,
open the program’s folder and double-click the program name.
• To Remove a Program from the Start Menu: Right-click a blank area of the task bar and select
Properties from the shortcut menu. Click the Start Menu Programs tab and click Remove. Open
the program’s folder, select the program, and click Remove. Click Close and then click OK.
• The items in the Programs menu are only shortcuts that point to the actual program files, which are
located elsewhere on your computer. Deleting a shortcut from the Programs menu doesn’t delete
the actual program.

Moving and Deleting Desktop Icons and Creating Shortcuts


• To Create Desktop Icons:
• To Move Desktop Icons: Click the object you want to move and hold down the mouse button.
While you’re holding down the mouse button, drag the object to the desired location on the screen
and then release the mouse button.
• To Delete an Item from the Desktop: Right-click the item and select Delete from the shortcut
menu.
• To Rename a Desktop Icon: Right-click the icon and select Rename from the shortcut menu.

Understanding Drives, Folders, Files and Storage Devices


• Be able to identify the common storage devices used to store files, and understand the hierarchical
system of drives, folders, and files on your computer.

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Using My Computer
• To View the Contents of Your Computer: Double-click the My Computer icon on the Windows
Desktop.
• To Navigate to a Folder or File: Follow the above step to open My Computer and then double-
click the drive or folder to navigate through the levels of your computer.

Navigating to a File or Folder


• To Open a Folder: Double-click the folder.
• To Move Back or Up to the Previous Level or Folder: Click the Up button on the toolbar. Or,
click the Back button on the toolbar. Or, click the Address Bar on the toolbar and select the
appropriate drive or folder.

Creating a Folder and Viewing Folder Details


• To Create a New Folder: Open the disk or folder where you want to place the new folder. Right-
click any empty area in the window and select New → Folder from the shortcut menu, or select
File → New → Folder from the menu. Type a name for the folder and press <Enter>.
• To View Folder Details: Click the Views button on the toolbar and select the view you want to
use. (Select Details to view information about each item in the folder). Or, right-click the folder and
select Properties from the shortcut menu.

Common File Types


• Be able to identify common file types.

Counting Files in a Folder


• To Count Files in a Folder (including files in subfolders): Right-click the folder and select
Properties from the shortcut menu. Find the number of files (including files in subfolders) and the
number of subfolders in the Contains section of the Properties dialog box.
• To Count Files of the Same File Type: Select the files of the same file type you want to count.
Right-click the selected files and select Properties from the shortcut menu. Find the number of
files selected at the top of the Properties dialog box and the type of selected files in the Type
section of the Properties dialog box.

Changing File Status


• Right-click the file. Select Properties from the shortcut menu and check the status you want:
Read-only or Hidden. Click OK.

Sorting Files
• To Change How Items are Displayed: Select View from the menu and select from one of the four
view modes (Large Icons, Small Icons, List, or Details), or select a view from the View button list
arrow on the toolbar.
• To Change How Items are Sorted: Follow the above step to display the window in Details View.
Click the column heading you want to use to sort the window. Click the column heading again to
sort in reverse order.
• To Automatically Arrange Icons: Select View → Arrange Icons → Auto Arrange from the
menu.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 165

Using File Extensions and Renaming Files and Folders


• File Extensions help the computer identify files. They are not shown by default.
• To Rename a File: Right-click the file, select Rename from the shortcut menu, type a name for the
folder and press <Enter>. Or, click the file to select it, select File → Rename from the menu, type
a name for the folder and press <Enter>.

Selecting Files and Folders


• If the files are next to each other you can click and drag a rectangle around the files you want to
select. Or, if the files are next to each other you can click the first file you want to select, press and
hold down the <Shift> key and click the last file you want to select. If the files aren’t next to each
other you can select random files by holding the <Ctrl> key and clicking the files you want to
select.

Duplicating and Moving Files and Folders


• To Move a Folder: Drag the folder to the desired location (you might have to open another My
Computer window). Or, click the folder to select it and click the Move To button on the toolbar.
Select the folder or disk where you want to move the folder and click OK.
• To Copy a Folder: Hold down the <Ctrl> key while you drag the folder to the desired location (you
might have to open another My Computer window). Or, click the folder to select it, click the
Copy To button on the toolbar, and select the folder or disk where you want to move the folder.
Click OK.

Using the Folders Pane


• To Open a File or Folder: Double-click the file or folder.
• To Move a File or Folder: Drag the file or folder to the desired location in either pane of the
window.
• To Copy a File or Folder: Hold down the <Ctrl> key while you drag the file or folder to the desired
location in either pane of the window.
• To Create a New Folder: Click the disk or folder where you want to put the new folder. Right-click
any empty area in the window and select New → Folder from the shortcut menu. Type a name for
the folder and press <Enter>.
• To Delete a File or Folder: Select the file or folder and press the <Delete> key. Click Yes to
confirm the deletion.
• To Rename a File or Folder: Right-click the file or folder, select Rename from the shortcut menu,
type the new name, and press <Enter>.

Deleting Files and Folders


• To Delete a File: Select the file and press the <Delete> key. Click Yes to confirm the folder
deletion. Or, click the Delete button on the toolbar. Or, right-click the file and select Delete from
the shortcut menu.
• To Delete a Folder: Select the folder and press the <Delete> key. Click Yes to confirm the folder
deletion. Or, click the Delete button on the toolbar. Or, right-click the folder and select Delete from
the shortcut menu.

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Restoring a Deleted File and Emptying the Recycle Bin


• To Restore a Deleted File: Double-click the Recycle Bin to open it, then find and right-click the
deleted file and select Restore from the shortcut menu.
• To Empty the Recycle Bin: Right-click the Recycle Bin and select Empty Recycle Bin from the
shortcut menu.

Finding a File
• Click the Start button and select Search → For Files or Folders from the Start menu. Enter part
of the file name in the Search for files or folders named box.
You can also search for files using other criteria using the Containing text box or by clicking the
Search Options link. Click Search Now to start searching for the file(s).

Viewing Recently Used Files


• To Open a Recent File: Click the Start button → Documents and select the file you want to
open.
• To Clear the List of Recently Used Files: Click the Start button and select Settings → Taskbar
and Start Menu and click the Advanced tab. Click Clear to clear the list and click OK.

Formatting a Floppy Disk


• Formatting a floppy disk erases any previous files stored on it and prepares the disk so that you
can save information on it.
• To Format a Floppy Disk: Insert the floppy you want to format into the floppy drive, open My
Computer or Windows Explorer, right-click the floppy drive and select Format from the shortcut
menu. Select the formatting options you want to use and click Start.

Common Problems Associated with Files


• Understand why it is important to backup your files to a storage device, at a different location,
and/or in a weatherproof or fire resistant container.
• Common problems associated with files include lost files, the hard drive becoming too full, and
denied file access.

A Look at the Control Panel


• The Control Panel is where you can change the various settings of your computer and Windows.
• Open Control Panel by clicking the Start button and selecting Programs → Settings → Control
Panel, or by opening My Computer and double-clicking the Control Panel folder.

Changing the Date and Time


• Point at the clock on the taskbar for several seconds to display the current date.
• To Change the Date and/or Time: Double-click the clock on the taskbar, adjust the date and time
using the calendar and clock controls, and click OK.
• To Change Time Zones: Double-click the clock on the taskbar, click the Time Zone tab, select
the time zone from the list box, and click OK.

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Adding Wallpaper to the Desktop


• To Add or Change Wallpaper: Right-click a blank area on the desktop and select Properties from
the shortcut menu. Make sure the Background tab is selected, and then select the wallpaper you
want to use from the preset list or click Browse and specify the name and location of your own
picture or graphic you want to use as wallpaper. Select how you want the wallpaper to be displayed
(centered, tiled, or stretched) from the Display list and click OK.

Changing Screen Colors


• To Change Windows Color Scheme: Right-click a blank area on the desktop and select
Properties from the shortcut menu, click the Appearance tab, select a color scheme from the
Scheme list and click OK.
• You can change the color of a specific Windows object (such as the Title bar) by opening the
Appearance tab of the Display Properties dialog box, clicking the object in the Preview area or
select it from the Item list, specifying its color from the color palette, and clicking OK.

Adjusting the Screen Resolution


• Screen Resolution has to do with how much information can fit on the screen. Higher screen
resolutions can display more information on the screen at once but at the price of making
everything appear smaller.
• To Change the Screen Resolution: Right-click a blank area on the desktop and select Properties
from the shortcut menu, and click the Settings tab. Slide the Screen Area slider to the right or left
to select the resolution you want to use, and click OK.

Adjusting the Screen Color Depth


• Color depth has to do with how many colors are displayed on the screen at the same time.
• To Change the Screen Resolution: Right-click a blank area on the desktop and select Properties
from the shortcut menu, click the Settings tab, click the Colors list and select the Color Depth
setting you want to use, and click OK.

Using a Screen Saver


• To Set Up a Screen Saver: Right-click a blank area on the desktop and select Properties from the
shortcut menu, click the Screen Saver tab, click the Screen Saver list and select a screen saver,
and click OK.
• You can password protect your screen saver by clicking the Password Protected check box and
clicking Change to assign a password to the screen saver.
• You can adjust the energy-saving features of your monitor by opening the Screen Saver tab of the
Display Properties dialog box, clicking the Settings button in the Energy Saving Features section,
and adjusting the interval after which the monitor shuts off.

Changing System and Program Sounds


• To Use a Sound Scheme: Click the Start button and click Settings → Control Panel, double-
click the Sounds icon, select a scheme from the Schemes list, and click OK.
• To Assign a Sound to a Specific Windows Event: Click the Start button, select Settings →
Control Panel and double-click the Sounds icon. Select the event for which you want to assign a
sound, then click the Browse button and specify and the location and name of the sound file you
want to assign to the event. Click the Play button to listen to the selected sound, and click OK.

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Adjusting the Mouse


• Open the Mouse Properties dialog box by clicking the Start button, selecting Settings → Control
Panel from the menu, and double-clicking the Mouse icon.
• To Switch the Left and Right Mouse Buttons: Open the Mouse Properties dialog box, select
either the Right-handed or Left-handed option, and click OK.
• To Change the Double-Click Speed: Open the Mouse Properties dialog box, drag the Pointer
Speed slider to a new position, and click OK.
• To Change the Pointer Speed: Open the Mouse Properties dialog box, click the Motion tab, drag
the Pointer Speed slider to a new position, and click OK.
• To Add Pointer Trails: Open the Mouse Properties dialog box, click the Motion tab, click the
Show pointer trails box, and click OK.

Adding a Printer
• To Add a Printer: Open the Printers folder by clicking the Start button and selecting Settings →
Control Panel, then double-click the Printers folder. Double-click the Add Printer icon and click
Next. Specify how the printer is connected (local or network) and click Next. Select the printer’s
manufacturer and model. If your printer doesn’t appear in the list, insert the disk that came with
the printer and click the Have Disk button. Click Next. Select a port to use with the printer (usually
LPT1:) and click Next. (Optional) Specify whether or not you want to use the printer as the default
printer and assign a name to the printer if you want. Click Next. Specify if you want a test page to
be printed and click Finish.
• To Delete a Printer:

Installing New Software


• Find the Program’s disk (or disks) and insert it (or the first disk) into the disk drive. Click the Start
button and select Settings → Control Panel. Double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon.
Click the Install button and then click Next. If this doesn’t work, click Cancel, close the Control
Panel, open My Computer to find the disk drive or folder where the program you want to install is
located, and double-click the installation program (usually called SETUP). Follow the on-screen
instructions to install the program.

Removing Software
• Click the Start button and select Settings → Control Panel. Double-click the Add/Remove
Programs icon. Find and select the program you want to remove from your computer, and then
click its Change/Remove button. Finish removing the selected program by following the on-
screen instructions.

Quiz
1. An operating system is built-in to a computer’s ROM-BIOS. (True or False?)

2. Which of the following is a text-based operating system?


A. Windows 95.
B. Windows 2000.
C. Windows CE.
D. MS-DOS.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 169

3. A Graphical User Interface, or GUI, has become standard on most operating


systems. (True or False?)

4. The little bar that lists a program’s name and is found at the top of a
window is called the:
A. Windows bar.
B. Program bar.
C. Title bar.
D. Very top of the window bar.

5. You can open or restore a minimized window by clicking its icon on the
taskbar (True or False?)

6. You can move a window to a different position on your computer screen by


dragging it by its:
A. Title bar.
B. Status bar.
C. Move handle.
D. Tail.

7. Why would you use the Task Manager?


A. To provide feedback on your boss’s performance.
B. To close locked up or frozen programs.
C. To make a to-do list.
D. To manage large-scale projects.

8. Which of the following statements is NOT true? (Select all that apply.)
A. You can’t add or remove programs from the Start menu.
B. Most programs add themselves to the Start menu’s Programs menu.
C. Deleting a program from the Start menu deletes the program from your hard disk.
D. You can open recently used documents by clicking the Start button, selecting
Documents, and selecting the file you want to open.

9. Computers store information on which types of disks. (Select all that


apply).
A. Floppy disks.
B. Hard disks.
C. Compact discs (CD-ROMs).
D. Removable disks.

10. Drives are named with one letter. Most computers have a floppy disk called
(A:) and a hard disk called C: (True or False?)

11. The purpose of your computer’s folders is to: (Select all that apply).
A. Lose your important files.
B. Store related files and programs in the same place.
C. Make it difficult to delete things unless you really know what you’re doing.
D. Organize related files and information on your computer.

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12. .TXT, .DOC, and .BMP — these are all examples of:
A. Three meaningless letters with a period in front of them.
B. File extensions.
C. Types of advanced degrees in computers.
D. How confusing computers are.

13. Which program(s) can you use to view and manage the contents of your
computer? (Select all that apply).
A. Netscape Navigator.
B. My Computer.
C. System Sleuth.
D. Windows Explorer.

14. You open a file or folder by double-clicking it. (True or False?)

15. Do this to display the contents of a certain drive or folder:


A. Right-click the drive or folder.
B. Click the drive or folder while holding down the <Alt> key.
C. Double-click the drive or folder.
D. Triple-click the drive or folder.

16. To view an object’s properties, right-click the object and select and select
Properties from the shortcut menu. (True or False?)

17. When you’re browsing the contents of your computer, do this to move back
or up to the previous level or folder. (Select all that apply.)
A. Click the Up button on the toolbar.
B. Click the Back button on the toolbar.
C. Press <Ctrl> + <Z>.
D. Click the Address Bar on the toolbar and select the appropriate drive or folder.

18. Which of the follow statements is NOT true?


A. You can move a file or folder to a new location by clicking and dragging it.
B. You can rename a file or folder by right-clicking it, selecting Rename from the
shortcut menu, typing the new name and pressing <Enter>.
C. A plus symbol next to a folder in Windows Explorer indicates the folder is locked
and cannot be modified or deleted.
D. Holding down the <Ctrl> key while you’re clicking and dragging something copies it
instead of moving it.

19. Delete a file or folder by clicking it, pressing the <Delete> key, and
confirming the deletion. (True or False?)

20. Do this to select multiple files and folders: (Select all that apply).
A. Click and drag a rectangle around any adjacent files you want to select.
B. Select File → Select Multiple Files from the menu, and then click the files you want
to select.
C. Click the first file you want to select, press and hold down the <Shift> key and click
the last file you want to select.
D. Hold down the <Ctrl> key and click the files you want to select.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 171

21. Which of the following statements is NOT true? (Select all that apply).
A. You can find a file on your computer by clicking the Start button, selecting Find →
Files and Folders, enter what you want to search for and click Find Now.
B. Open Windows Explorer by clicking the Start button and selecting Programs →
Windows Explorer.
C. To save a file in a location other than the program’s default folder you have to save
the file, then use My Computer or Windows Explorer to move the file to the desired
location.
D. You can display the contents of a drive or folder using Large Icons, Small Icons,
List, or Details View.

22. The three-letter extension of a file is normally displayed in Windows 2000.


(True or False?)

23. Your computer’s date and time function needs to be updated frequently.
(True or False?)

24. Which of the following are ways to personalize your computer? (Select all
that apply).
A. Choose a screen saver.
B. Sign your name on your monitor with a Sharpie.
C. Change Windows’ color scheme.
D. Add wallpaper to the desktop.

25. What happens when you change color depth?


A. The brightness of your screen changes.
B. You change the number of colors displayed on your screen.
C. The size of the objects on the screen change.
D. The shade of colors changes.

26. Used only for advanced networking settings, the Control Panel should
never be touched by ordinary users (True or False?)

27. Which of the following statements is NOT true?


A. You can change the color of individual Windows objects, such as the title bar and
scroll bars.
B. You can change the colors for all Windows objects at once using a color scheme.
C. Double-click the clock on the taskbar to adjust the time and date your computer
thinks it is.
D. You can only use preset patterns as your desktop wallpaper.

28. 640 x 480, 800 x 600, 1024 x 768 are all examples of:
A. Color depths.
B. Dimensions for the three largest patios in the world.
C. Screen resolutions.
D. Multiplication problems that you would need to use a calculator to solve.

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172 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

29. You can change the mouse’s double-click speed by clicking the Mouse icon
in the Control Panel (True or False?)

30. What does the little check mark next to a printer indicate in the Printer
Folder?
A. The printer power is on.
B. The printer needs a maintenance check.
C. The printer is broken.
D. It is the default printer.

31. Your computer comes with all the programs you need already installed.
(True or False?)

Homework
1. Start the WordPad program by clicking the Windows Start button, pointing to
Programs → Accessories and clicking Microsoft WordPad.
2. Use Help to find out how to resize the window.
3. Click the Save button on the Standard toolbar to save your document and exit
WordPad.
4. Right-click the desktop and change the wallpaper.
5. Create a shortcut for the WordPad program by holding down the <Ctrl> and <Shift>
keys and dragging the WordPad icon onto the desktop.
6. Double-click the WordPad icon to open the program.
7. Click the WordPad window’s Maximize button.
8. Click the WordPad window’s Restore button.
9. Move the WordPad window to the left-hand side of your computer screen.
10. Open the Calculator by clicking the Window’s Start button and selecting Progams →
Accessories → Calculator from the menu.
11. Click the WordPad icon on the taskbar.
12. Close both the Calculator and the WordPad program by clicking each window’s
Close button.
13. Open My Computer.
14. View the contents of your C: hard disk.
15. Create a new folder in the root directory of your C: hard disk.
16. Rename the new folder “Project Files.”
17. Insert a floppy disk in the (A:) drive and copy the Project Files folder there.
18. Delete the Project Files folder from the C: drive.
19. Open the Recycle Bin and find the deleted Project Files folder. Would you know how
to retrieve it?
20. Open Windows Explorer and view the contents of the (A:) drive.

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Chapter Three: Using an Operating System 173

21. Use the Windows Explorer View menu to display the contents of the (A:) drive in
List view.
22. While you're still in List view, sort the files in alphabetical order.
23. Use the Start menu's Find feature to find all the files named "readme.txt" on your C:
drive. Open one of these files by double-clicking it.
24. Go to the Printers folder and set the default printer for your computer.

Quiz Answers
1. False. An operating system is software that the computer loads when it first starts up.
2. D. MS-DOS is a text-based operating system.
3. True. Almost all operating systems these days use a graphical user interface.
4. C. The little bar along the window’s top that lists the program name is the Title bar.
5. True. Clicking the icon of a minimized program on the taskbar restores the window.
6. A. Move a window by dragging its Title bar.
7. B. The Task Manager is the best solution for locked up or frozen programs.
8. A and C. You can easily add and remove programs from the Start menu—and deleting
programs from the Start menu leaves the original program intact.
9. A, B, C, and D. Computers can store their information on any of these disk types.
10. True. Drives are named using one letter. In general, computers have a floppy disk called
(A:) and a hard disk called C:
11. B and D. Your computer’s folders store related files and programs in the same location
and organize related files and information on your computer.
12. B. File extensions, which are used to identify the file type.
13. B and D. My Computer and Windows Explorer both display the contents of your
computer and allow you to manage your computer’s files and folders.
14. True. Double-clicking a file or folder opens it.
15. C. Double-click a folder to open it and display its contents.
16. True. Right-clicking an object and selecting Properties from the shortcut menu displays
the properties of the object.
17. A, B, and D. Any of these will bring you back to the previous level or folder.
18. C. A plus symbol next to a folder in Windows Explorer means the folder contains
subfolders.
19. True. You can use the <Delete> key to delete files and folders from your computer.
20. A, C, and D. You can use any of these methods to select multiple files and folders.
21. C. You can easily save a file in a different location by opening the drive and/or folder
where you want to save the file and clicking Save.
22. False. File extensions are normally hidden in Windows 2000.
23. False. It’s not a good idea to update your computer’s date and time on your own.
24. A, C and D. Choosing a screen saver, adding wallpaper to the desktop, and changing the
Windows color scheme are all ways to personalize your computer.

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174 IC3 Module 1 – Computing Fundamentals

25. B. Screen depth changes the number of colors displayed on your screen.
26. False. The Control Panel is where you go to make changes to Windows and your
computer. While there are a few technical areas in the Control Panel, most of it is
straightforward and easy to understand.
27. D. You can use your own pictures and graphics as wallpaper in addition to Windows
preset wallpaper settings.
28. C. These are all examples of screen resolutions.
29. True. The double-click speed is probably one of the first things you should adjust if
you’re having trouble double-clicking with the mouse.
30. D. A checkmark next to a printer in the Printer Folder indicates it is the default printer.
31. False. Your computer comes with basic applications, but you will need to purchase and
install more programs on your computer.

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Index 175

Index
BMP graphics file format ......................72
1 browsing
16-bit color ..........................................149 contents of your computer ....... 106, 108
byte ................................................ 19, 105
2
24-bit color ..........................................149 C
286 processor.........................................17 C drive ................................................. 105
case, computer .......................................24
CD-R .....................................................35
3
CD-ROM....................................... 35, 105
32-bit color ..........................................149
CD-ROM drive................................ 25, 34
386 processor.........................................17
CD-RW..................................................35
Celeron processor ..................................16
4 Central Processing Unit...............See CPU
486 processor.........................................17 client/server network .............................23
Close button...........................................88
8 closing a window...................................88
8088 processor.......................................17 color depth, changing .......................... 148
color scheme........................................ 144
A COM port ..............................................42
Access, Microsoft ..................................66 compression...........................................50
accounting software...............................69 computer
AccuPoint pointing device.....................28 back of ...............................................42
adding inside of .............................................26
hardware ............................................44 laptop.................................................15
programs to Start menu....................100 networked ..........................................14
software ...........................................158 overview ............................................60
wallpaper .........................................142 PDA...................................................15
Alt + Tab key combination ....................98 ports...................................................42
Athlon processor....................................16 server .................................................14
average access time, hard drive .............33 computer case ........................................24
computer, viewing contents of............. 106
Control Panel....................................... 138
B
Mouse icon ...................................... 154
back up
copying
hard drive...........................................50
folders.............................................. 124
tape drive ...........................................41
cpu .........................................................46
backup files
CPU ................................................. 16, 26
understanding ..................................137
cutting
bit...........................................................19
folders.............................................. 124

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176 IC3

D files
database................................................. 66 changing status.................................116
date counting ...........................................114
finding file by.................................. 132 deleting ............................................128
sort files by.......................................118 displaying details .............................118
sorting files by .................................118 extensions ........................................112
Date/Time Properties dialog box ........ 140 finding..............................................132
date/time, adjusting ............................. 140 recently opened................................134
default printer...................................... 156 selecting multiple.............................122
deleting sorting ..............................................118
files ................................................. 128 types of ............................................112
folders ......................................124, 128 finding
Recyle Bin....................................... 130 files ..................................................132
delsecting files .................................... 122 Firewire port ..........................................43
desktop flash cards ..............................................41
wallpaper, adding to........................ 142 floppy disk
Details view .........................................118 displaying properties of ...................106
diplay formatting ........................................136
screen resolution, changing............. 146 viewing contents of..........................106
display floppy disk ...........................................104
color depth, changing...................... 148 floppy disks
screen colors ................................... 144 description of .....................................38
screen saver, adding ........................ 150 floppy drive......................................25, 38
wallpaper, adding ............................ 142 folder path............................................112
documents list in Start menu............... 134 folders
dragging and dropping ........................ 102 copying ............................................124
resizing a window ............................. 90 creating ....................................110, 120
window to new position .................... 89 deleting ....................................124, 128
drives moving .............................................124
types of............................................ 105 opening ............................................108
Duron processor.................................... 16 Program Files folder ........................101
DVD drive .......................................25, 36 renaming ..................................110, 120
DVD+R................................................. 37 root folder ........................................109
DVD+RW ............................................. 37 selecting multiple.............................122
DVD-R.................................................. 36 Folders button ......................................126
DVD-RAM ........................................... 37 Folders pane
DVD-ROM ........................................... 36 using.................................................126
DVD-RW .............................................. 37 Format command .................................136
fragmentation.........................................50
E
emptying Recycle Bin......................... 130 G
End Task button .................................... 94 game port ...............................................43
EnergyStar compliant monitor ............ 151 gb ...........................................................19
Ethernet port ......................................... 43 GHz........................................................16
Excel, Microsoft.................................... 65 GIF graphics file format ........................72
Exiting Windows 2000.......................... 92 gigabyte .................................................19
expansion card ...................................... 26 gigabyte (GB or GIG) ..........................105
expansion slot ....................................... 26 gigahertz ................................................16
Explorer graphical user interface..........................80
dragging and dropping in ................ 126 graphics card..........................................46
GUI ........................................................80
F
file extensions ......................................112 H
file management.................................. 104 hard disk ..............................................105

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Index 177

viewing contents of..........................106 Large Icons view ................................. 118


hard drive...............................................25 light pen.................................................28
back up...............................................50 line in jack .............................................43
compression.......................................50 Linux .....................................................78
external ..............................................32 List view.............................................. 118
fragmentation...............................47, 50 LPT port ................................................42
free space ...........................................47 LS-120 SuperDrive................................41
internal...............................................32
maintenance.......................................50 M
repair..................................................50 Mac OS X..............................................78
speed ..................................................47 Maximize button....................................86
hardware ................................................12 maximizing a window ...........................84
installing ............................................44 mb..........................................................19
hub, network ..........................................23 megabyte ...............................................19
megabyte (MB).................................... 105
I megahertz ..............................................16
IDE ........................................................32 memory............................................ 26, 46
information technology (IT) ..................12 byte .................................................. 105
input.......................................................60 compared to ROM .............................20
input device gigabyte ........................................... 105
AccuPoint pointing device.................28 kilobyte............................................ 105
joystick ..............................................28 measurements .................................. 105
light pen .............................................28 measuring ..........................................18
microphone ........................................28 megabyte ......................................... 105
scanner...............................................28 MHz.......................................................16
touch pad ...........................................28 microphone............................................28
trackball .............................................28 microphone jack ....................................43
input devices mimimizing a window...........................84
keyboard ............................................25 Minimize button ....................................87
mouse.................................................25 modem................................................. 139
scanner...............................................25 modem port............................................43
installing monitor ..................................................25
hardware ............................................44 monitor port...........................................43
software ...........................................158 motherboard...........................................26
Iomega ...................................................39 mouse ....................................................25
IT 12 double-click speed, change.............. 154
dragging and dropping..................... 102
J pointer.................................See pointers
Jaz drive.................................................39 settings, change ............................... 154
joystick ..................................................28 mouse port .............................................42
joystick port ...........................................43 Move To button ................................... 124
JPG graphics file format ........................72 moving
folders.............................................. 124
window ..............................................89
K
MS-DOS................................................78
kb ...........................................................19
multitasking ...........................................47
keyboard ................................................25
My Computer ...................................... 106
keyboard port.........................................42
My Computer ........................................83
kilobyte ..........................................19, 105
My Documents ......................................83
kilobyte (K or KB)...............................105
My Network Places ...............................83
L
N
laptop .....................................................15
network port ..........................................43

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networks................................................ 23 line out ...............................................42


client/server network......................... 23 LPT ....................................................42
components ....................................... 23 microphone ........................................42
peer-to-peer network ......................... 23 modem................................................43
workgroup......................................... 23 monitor...............................................42
notebook ............................................... 15 mouse.................................................42
network ..............................................43
O parallel ...............................................42
opening phone .................................................43
folders ............................................. 108 printer.................................................42
My Computer.................................. 106 SCSI ...................................................43
operating system ................................... 78 serial...................................................42
output .................................................... 60 USB ...................................................42
output devices PowerPoint, Microsoft...........................68
monitor.............................................. 25 presentation software .............................68
printer................................................ 25 printer.....................................................25
speakers............................................. 25 printer port .............................................42
printers
default, changing..............................156
P
processor
Palm OS ................................................ 78
286 .....................................................17
PalmPilot............................................... 15
386 .....................................................17
palmtop ................................................. 15
486 .....................................................17
parallel port ........................................... 42
Athlon ................................................16
parts of a computer ............................... 12
Celeron...............................................16
parts of a window.................................. 85
Duron .................................................16
pasting
Pentium..............................................16
folders ............................................. 124
Program Files folder ............................101
path ......................................................112
programs
PCMCIA cards...................................... 26
adding to Start menu ........................100
PDA ...................................................... 15
closing................................................88
peer-to-peer network............................. 23
installing ..........................................158
Pentium processor................................. 16
maximizing ........................................86
peripheral devices ................................. 24
minimizing.........................................86
CD-ROM drive ................................. 25
removing..........................................160
DVD drive......................................... 25
removing from Start menu ...............100
floppy drive....................................... 24
restoring .............................................86
hard drive .......................................... 25
starting ...............................................96
Zip drive............................................ 25
switching between .............................98
pictures
using as wallpaper........................... 142
Pocket PC.............................................. 15 Q
pointers QuickBooks ...........................................69
trails, display................................... 155 Quicken..................................................69
pointesr
speed, change .................................. 155 R
ports ...................................................... 42 RAM ................................................26, 46
COM ................................................. 42 compared to ROM .............................20
Ethernet............................................. 43 measuring...........................................18
Firewire............................................. 43 Recycle Bin............................................83
game.................................................. 42 emptying ..........................................130
IEEE 1394......................................... 43 retrieving deleted files from.............130
joystick.............................................. 42 removable drive ...................................105
keyboard ........................................... 42 removing software ...............................160
line in ................................................ 42 renaming

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Index 179

folders ...................................... 110, 120 Start command.......................................96


repair Start menu
hard drive...........................................50 adding menus to............................... 100
resizing a window..................................90 adding programs to .......................... 100
resolution, changing.............................146 Documents list................................. 134
Restart option.........................................93 removing programs from................. 100
Restore button........................................87 starting
restoring a window ................................84 programs............................................96
ROM......................................................20 Status bar ...............................................84
ROM-BIOS............................................26 storage device
root folder ............................................109 CD-ROM drive..................................34
DVD drive .........................................36
S flash card ...........................................41
safety precautions ..................................49 floppy drive .......................................38
scanner.............................................25, 28 hard drive...........................................32
screen Jaz drive.............................................39
color depth, changing ......................148 LS-120 SuperDrive............................41
colors, changing...............................144 tape drive ...........................................41
resolution, changing.........................146 USB flash drive .................................41
wallpaper, adding.............................142 Zip drive ............................................39
screen saver .........................................150 storage devices
scroll bars...............................................84 types of ............................................ 105
SCSI.......................................................32 SuperDrive.............................................41
SCSI port ...............................................43 switching between program...................98
searching system unit.............................................24
for files.............................................132
selecting T
multiple files and folders .................122 tape backup............................................25
serial port ...............................................42 Task Manager ........................................94
Setup programs ....................................159 Task Manager button .............................94
shortcuts Task window..........................................98
in Programs menu............................101 taskbar
Shut Down options ................................93 clock ................................................ 140
Shutting down Windows 2000...............92 switching between programs .............98
Small Icons view ................................. 118 taskbar ...................................................83
software .................................................12 telephone port ........................................43
accounting..........................................69 terabyte ..................................................19
database .............................................66 thumbnail...............................................81
installing ..........................................158 time zone, changing............................. 140
presentation........................................68 title bar...................................................84
removing..........................................160 touch pad ...............................................28
spreadsheet ........................................65 track ball................................................28
Web Authoring...................................71 turning off
Web browser ......................................70 monitor, automatically..................... 151
word processing.................................64 turning off computer..............................92
sound types of computers.................................60
assigning to system events...............152
chaging system sounds ....................152 U
sound card ports.....................................43 USB flash drive .....................................41
speakers .................................................25 USB port................................................42
spreadsheet ............................................65
Stand by option......................................93
V
Start button ............................................83
video card ..............................................46

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Video port ............................................. 42 resizing...............................................90


virus, computer ..................................... 50 restoring .......................................84, 86
switching between .............................98
W Windows 2000
wallpaper............................................. 142 exiting ................................................92
Web Authoring software ....................... 71 Windows, operating system ...................78
window word processing .....................................64
closing..........................................84, 88 Word, Microsoft.....................................64
maximizing ....................................... 86
maximizing button ............................ 84 Z
minimizing ...................................84, 86 Zip drive ..........................................25, 39
moving .............................................. 89

© 2005 CustomGuide, Inc.