Windows 7

Windows 7 is the latest version of Microsoft's desktop OS for both the home user and business enterprise. Windows 7 brings new or enhanced features to users, making their PC experience a much more streamlined, productive and enjoyable one. The videos provided below will assist users to tap into all that Windows 7 has to offer.
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Windows 7 Introduction Series
Lesson 1:  Getting Started

Getting Started

An introduction to the Windows 7 desktop, and brief discussion of what is the same and what has changed, as well as the new features in Windows 7.  Microsoft’s goal with this new operating system was to deliver a better user experience, and they’ve made great strides in that direction with Windows 7. 

The goal of our series is to provide a thorough understanding  of Windows 7 and help you get the most out of your PC.

In this video we will review the following:

  • The Desktop
  • The Start Orb
  • The Start Menu
  • Gadgets
  • The Getting Started Center
Lesson 2:  Working with Desktop Gadgets

Working with Desktop Gadgets

This lesson introduces you to Desktop Gadgets, mini applications that you can place on your desktop to provide you with information or amusement. Some standard Gadgets include:

  • Analog Clock
  • Calendar
  • Slide Show
  • Weather
  • Currency Exchange Calculator (and more)

In Windows 7, Gadgets can be placed anywhere on the desktop, and additional Gadgets can be downloaded and added to your computer to add a wide variety of functionality to your desktop.

Lesson 3:  The Value of Shortcut Keys

The Value of Shortcut Keys

This lesson will discuss using keyboard shortcuts. Even though you may love using your mouse, there are many benefits to using the keyboard shortcuts available in Windows 7. A shortcut is a combination of keys that you press on the keyboard simultaneously that result in an action that might have taken you several steps to do manually. You may find out that with just a couple of keystrokes you can accomplish quite a lot - if you know what buttons to push. We'll demonstrate a few of the new shortcuts available in Windows 7 that may help you manage your windows and applications better, and where to find complete lists of all available shortcuts.

Lesson 4:  New Taskbar Features

New Taskbar Features

This lesson will review some of the new features on the Taskbar in Windows 7.  The new task bar looks a little different then previous versions, as it is taller.  In the past the task bar simply gave you access and control to your open programs and documents, but this new Taskbar also allows you to store program or folder shortcuts, and to reorder them however you would like.  We’ll also discuss the Show Desktop button and Desktop Peek functionality.

Lesson 5:  Making Changes to the Taskbar

Making Changes to the Taskbar

This Lesson will demonstrate how to make changes to your Taskbar to personalize it to your liking.  We’ll discuss:

  • Navigating to the Taskbar Properties
  • Taskbar Appearance options
  • The Notification Area
  • Desktop Preview
  • Taskbar Toolbars
  • Drag and Drop onto the Taskbar


Lesson 6:  Making Changes to the Start Menu

Making Changes to the Start Menu

This lesson will review your options for customizing your Start Menu.  Windows 7 has made some subtle changes and improved on the functionality of the Start Menu, while making it easier to use and configure.  Topics include:



  • Navigating to the Start Menu Properties
  • Changing the Power Button actions
  • Privacy Settings
  • Customization Options
  • Pinning an application to the Start Menu



Lesson 7:  Changing Your Date and Time

Changing Your Date and Time

By right-clicking the time you can select Adjust Date/Time and you will be in the Date and Time Properties dialog.  Here you can change the Date and Time, the Time Zone and choose an Internet time server.  You can also configure two additional clocks to display different time zones.

Lesson 8:  Altering Your Personalization Settings

Altering Your Personalization Settings

Applying and changing themes

Customizing themes

Lesson 9:  Display Configuration Options

Display Configuration Options

The Display Configuration Options affect the looks as well as the performance of your system. These configurations include:

  • Screen Resoultion
  • Settings for Single or Multiple Monitors
  • Font size
  • Quality Settings
Lesson 10:  Jump Lists Help You Work Faster

Jump Lists Help You Work Faster

Windows 7 introduces a new feature called Jump Lists that can be accessed from each Taskbar icon, as well as the Start Menu. Jump lists give you quick access to common tasks and functions for an applicaton, as well as frequently or recently opened sites or documents. You can also pin sites or documents to the application jump lists to allow you to quickly find and open them. 

Lesson 11:  Working with Windows Explorer

Working with Windows Explorer

This lesson reviews the new layout and features of Windows Explorer in Windows 7, as it has changed slightly since Vista and more significantly since XP.  Topics include:

  • The Address Bar
  • The  Navigation Pane
  • The Library Pane
  • The Details Pane
  • The Preview Pane
  • Creating a New Folder 
Lesson 12:  Working with Libraries

Working with Libraries

Default libraries are created for Documents, Music, Pictures, and Video, but you can create your own folders and customize anyone to add additional locations.


Lesson 13:  Searching in Windows 7

Searching in Windows 7

What can search do for you? Let's see how the Search Orb can instantly search for documents, files, emails, and so forth.

Lesson 14:  Federated Search

Federated Search

We’ll demonstrate how to use a search connector, and how to download and install one.

Lesson 15:  Shutting Your System Down

Shutting Your System Down

In this clip you will learn all about how to shut your system down.

Onboard Applications and Live Essentials
Lesson 16:  Notepad and Wordpad

Notepad and Wordpad

Notepad and Wordpad are two applications that have been in the Winodws OS for a long time.  Even though Notepad remains the same in Windows 7 (as you will soon see from this clip), Wordpad receives the new ribbon interface and a host of other new features.

Lesson 17:  Paint


Paint has been in the Windows OS for quite some time.  However in Windows 7 it gets a bit of an overhaul with the addition of the ribbon interface, some new brushes and a host of other features.

Lesson 18:  New Calculator Features

New Calculator Features

The Calculator has always been a staple in Windows, but Windows 7 has added additional functionality to make it even more of useful and functional tool. Topics include:

  • Standard View
  • Scientific View
  • Programmer View
  • Statistics View

Options for Unit Conversion and Date Calculation are also available, as well as a set of four worksheets to assist you with mortgage calculations, determining vehicle lease costs, and calculating fuel economy.

Lesson 19:  The Snipping Tool

The Snipping Tool

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then why not send one?  Windows 7 includes the Snipping Tool to help you do just that.  The Snipping Tool makes it quick and easy for you to capture any image on your screen to paste into another application or send it in the body of an email, or as an attachment.  You can save images in a variety of popular formats, and even annotate your images to highlight or markup your snipped image before saving.

Lesson 20:  Windows Live Essentials

Windows Live Essentials

Windows Live Essentials is a set of programs that can be downloaded at no cost and installed to enhance your Windows 7 operating system.  They include Windows Mail, Writer, Calendar, Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Messenger, Toolbar, and Family Safety.  Some of these applications used to be part of the installed operating system, but in it's effort to build a leaner, meaner Windows 7, Microsoft has now taken them out of the OS to make them standalone applications, and grouped them together under the name “Windows Live Essentials.”  This approach allows users to download and add just the ones they want at no additional cost. 

This lesson will walk through the process of downloading and installing Windows Live Essentials.

Lesson 21:  Windows Live Mail

Windows Live Mail

Windows Live Mail is a fully functional email application and the next evolution of Outlook Express.  It allows you to easily manage multiple email accounts in one place, all your contacts, and a calendar that syncs with Windows Live Calendar at, so you can access and update your calendar from anywhere.  One nice new addition is the Photo Email feature that gives you tools to manage displaying multiple pictures in your email with customized borders and other enhancements.  It also includes some enhanced, yet easy to use security features. This lesson will provide an overview walk-through of the Live Mail.

Lesson 22:  Windows Live Photo Gallery

Windows Live Photo Gallery

Windows Live Photo Gallery is a comprehensive tool for organizing and managing your digital photo library.  It allows you to organize and view your photos a variety of ways, and allows you to easily create and assign “people” or “descriptive” tags to your photos so that you can easily group and find them when needed.  There are several new enhancements from the previous version of Photo Gallery, including the ability to publish your photos to an online album or group album to share with friends, or post videos to Soapbox, YouTube, or other services.  An important new feature is Live Sync, which allows you to synchronize the photo library between two systems that use the same Windows Live ID, allowing you to back up your gallery on another PC.  The session provides an overview walk through of Windows Live Photo Gallery.

Lesson 23:  Windows Live Writer

Windows Live Writer

Live Writer is a blog-publishing application that enables you to create and maintain a blog, add photos and videos, and then publish to popular blogging services such as Windows Live Spaces, Blogger, WordPress, and TypePad.  If you don't have a blog yet, Writer can help you set one up.  It includes an easy to use text editor that allows you to work in HTML if you choose, and a good assortment of photo editing and enhancement tools.  This clip will walk through creating and posting a blog entry.

Lesson 24:  Windows Live Messenger

Windows Live Messenger

Windows Live Messenger is the latest version of MSN Messenger, and includes some great new features.  It requires a Windows Live or Hotmail account to login, and can talk with just about every IM program out there, including AOL, Yahoo, Google Talk, and others.  Like other IM programs, Messenger lets you categorize you contacts.  A new feature allows you to create IM Groups by inviting contacts to an ongoing shared conversation where all contacts see the comments of all.  You can store mobile numbers as well to send SMS messages as well.  Messenger let’s you easily share and transfer pictures and documents with your contacts. 

Lesson 25:  Windows Live Movie Maker

Windows Live Movie Maker

Windows Live Movie Maker allows you to automatically turn your videos, photos, and music into a movie files that can be burned to CD or DVD or published to an online video service like YouTube.  It even includes an AutoMovie feature that adds a title, credits, transitions, and effects, and music to save you time; but you can always edit this, or start from scratch to create your own movie.  This clip will walk through creating a short movie from a video clip and a few images.

Internet Explorer 8.0
Lesson 26:  An Overview of Internet Explorer 8.0

An Overview of Internet Explorer 8.0

In this lesson will provide an overview look at IE 8.0 and give you a walk through introduction to the interface. If you are familiar with Internet Explorer 7, there are many carry over features that you will recognize, and there are some nice new features that we'll briefly introduce and cover further in later lessons.

We'll review changes to the toolbar and point out the location of familiar browser options, including:

  • Zoom Settings
  • The Home button
  • Quick Tabs
  • Favorites/RSS/History
  • The Back/Forward buttons
  • The Address Bar
  • The Tools Options

Some of the new toolbar features we'll touch on include:

  • Email & Print Settings
  • Page Options
  • Safety Options
  • Help Options
Lesson 27:  Tab Navigation Tools

Tab Navigation Tools

This lesson will review Tab navigation in IE8, and your different options for working with tabs, including>

  • Opening a new tab
  • Recovering closed tabs
  • Scrolling multiple tabs
  • The Tab List
  • Using Quick Tabs
  • Tab Settings
Lesson 28:  Grouped Favorites and Multiple Home Pages

Grouped Favorites and Multiple Home Pages

This lesson demonstrates how you can organize your favorite sites into groups and save time by storing them as Grouped Favorites. We'll also discuss how your home page can be more than page. In fact, you can automatically open a number of pages with IE8 starts up. Topics include:

  • The Favorites icon
  • Grouped Favorites
  • Adding a Favorites Group
  • Deleting from a Favorites Group
  • Adding to the Favorites Toolbar
  • Creating a Home Page Tab Set
  • Tab Settings
Lesson 29:  Accelerators


Accelerators are a new enhancement in IE8, and enable you to do in one click (or a few) what used to require more user action, perhaps including cutting and pasting and so forth. The tasks include:

  • mapping locations
  • translation of words
  • defining words
  • search encyclopedias or the web
  • post to a blog or email (and more)

To use an accelerator, just select the text you are interested in. A blue icon will appear above and to the left of the text. Click on this and choose the accelerator action you'd like to take. You can choose to find more accelerators online and add them with one click. Accelerators help you do what you want to do faster.

Lesson 30:  Web Slices

Web Slices

Web Slices are another new feature in Internet Explorer 8. Web slices are a type of "automatic feed update" and must be turned on within your browser to work. Well then isn't that just the same things as an RSS Feed, you might ask? It is similar, but there is an important difference. An RSS Feed lets you subscribe to a site or blog to automatically receive updates of new content as it is published on the site.

A web slice is really a subscription to a specific part of a website and will notifiy you of changes to that part of the website. A great example is a changing auction price on an item you are following, or the current temperature, or stock information. And the web slice checks are made even if IE isn't on. We'll cover:

  • Two methods for adding a web slice
  • Web Slice Properties
  • Deleting a web slice
Lesson 31:  InPrivate Browsing and InPrivate Filtering

InPrivate Browsing and InPrivate Filtering

This lesson focuses on two new features in IE8 that protect you when you are browsing the internet - InPrivate Browsing and InPrivate Filtering.

InPrivate Browsing is useful feature for when you are away from home or the office, and working on a public location of PC. InPrivate Browsing allows you to start a session that prevents IE from storing any information about your browsing, keeping your data and history private.

InPrivate Filtering works different. When activated, it prevents websites from collecting any information about you when you visit, so that you can remain anonymous.

Lesson 32:  SmartScreen Filter

SmartScreen Filter

In IE 7, Microsoft introduced a Phishing Filter into the browser to help protect users. The Phishing Filter helps by notifying you if a site is suspicious. It can do this by comparing the site you type in to a list of known phishing sites. If you type in a site that isn’t on that list, but seems suspicious, it will go ahead and check that site automatically, too. Sites are sent to a Microsoft server for confirmation, and these servers are updated constantly with new phishing sites. This global database is compiled from information supplied by service providers and from reports that come in from users who stumble upon sites that appear "phishy."

In IE 8, Microsoft has built upon the feature set of the Phishing Filter and provided something new called the SmartScreen Filter. According to the IE Team at Microsoft, this new filter improves upon the Phishing Filter in a number of ways.

Lesson 33:  Add-Ons and Pop-Ups

Add-Ons and Pop-Ups

Add-Ons are small programs or pieces of code that may enhance your browser by adding functionality to it.  Internet Explorer 8 provides a favorites link to allow you to download more Add-Ons from the Microsoft website
We discuss the pros and cons of downloading Add-Ons, including inadvertently downloading a program that includes unwanted pop up windows, possibly for advertising.  Internet Explorer 8 includes a Pop-Up Blocker to help control and eliminate unwanted popup Windows.

Lesson 34:  Compatibility View

Compatibility View

Internet Explorer 8 has become more standards compliant, but many of the websites on the internet have yet to catch up, and may not display as intended.  To allow the user to view these sites, IE8 includes a Compatibility View feature.  When activated, Compatibility View allows IE8 to fix these pages to display as intended with the former coding. 

Microsoft also maintains a Compatibility List of websites that have reported compatibility issues with IE8, and you can set your browser to check against this list and automatically use Compatibility View when visiting websites included on the list.

Lesson 35:  Suggested Sites

Suggested Sites

Suggested Sites is an online service that uses your browsing history to make personalized website suggestions based on the websites you visit most.  Your browsing history is sent to Microsoft, where it’s saved and compared to a frequently updated list of related websites.  By default, Suggested Sites is off, and can be turned on and off at anytime.  To turn it on, go under the Tools Menu and select Suggested Sites.

Lesson 36:  The Action Center

The Action Center

The Action Center is a one-stop access point for all things having to do with system security and system maintenance.  Working in conjunction with a system tray alert icon, it provides visibility to security and maintenance issues and alerts, and access to make changes to the alerts and notifications you receive from Windows 7 to tailor them to your needs.

The Action Center also includes a Reliability Monitor that allow you to view your systems performance over a timeline, and explore the factors that effected performance at various points to determine what, if any, changes to make. 

Lesson 37:  User Account Control

User Account Control

User Account Control is a special security mechanism built into the Windows 7 operating system.  It allows you to create users for your PC and assign them one of two types:  Standard or Administrator. 

This lesson will review your options for each type, and discuss the similarities and differences.  In contrast to earlier operation systems, Windows 7 allows the standard user a greater level of control than ever before, while providing administrative restrictions on actions that may risk harm to the system or affect other users. 

Lesson 38:  Using the UAC Slider

Using the UAC Slider

The User Account Control (UAC) slider allows you to set each user to a different security notification level to customize when the user will receive security prompts.  This is accomplished with a new, easy to use slider control.  We’ll review each level to discuss their benefits and dangers.  We’ll also demonstrate the Secure Desktop Mode and explain its purpose.    

Lesson 39:  Windows Defender

Windows Defender

Spyware can do any number of things to annoy you and slow down your system, such as displaying pop-up ads, altering your Internet settings, and even using private information without permission. Windows Defender is Microsoft’s answer to spyware, and in included in  Windows Vista and Windows 7.  It’s a simple but powerful tool that is always active in the background, and can be used to perform an immediate scan of your system to look for the latest spyware and eliminate it from your system.  This lesson will review how to access Defender and run scans, and discuss some of the menu options.

Lesson 40:  Windows Defender Tools and Settings

Windows Defender Tools and Settings

This lesson continues our look at Windows Defender, and focuses on the available Tools and Settings.  We’ll review Automatic Scanning and the default actions that Defender can take when it finds a suspect file, as well as ways to exclude locations or file types from the scan.  Defender also allows membership options for Microsoft’s Spynet, an online user community that shares information on spyware and other harmful programs so that all users can benefit, and Microsoft can test and update it’s definition files.  You can choose not to participate, or choose a basic or advanced membership.

Other topics include:

  • Advanced and Administrator options
  • Quarantined Items
  • Allowed Items
Lesson 41:  Windows Firewall

Windows Firewall

This lesson will review the Windows Firewall that is included in Windows 7.  The firewall allows for a flexible configuration that can adapt to changing network conditions on you computer, which is very important for laptops that may move back and forth from home, work, and public internet connections.  The firewall is broken into private and public categories, which allows you more openness and sharing within your private network, while public networks are configured with a stricter set of protection.  Instead of having to modify your firewall settings on the fly when you travel, your system will just adjust to the new network and be more protective based on the settings you put in place for public networks. 

Topics include:

  • Turning the Firewall on and off
  • Blocking and allowing programs
  • Block notification
  • Network Profiles
Lesson 42:  BitLocker Drive Encryption

BitLocker Drive Encryption

One of the biggest security issues in large corporations is the amount of sensitive information traveling around unsecured on employee laptops.  If the laptop is stolen the information is out of your control and fair game.  Windows 7 has an answer for this issue, called BitLocker, which is included in Windows 7 Ultimate and Enterprise editions.  When activated, BitLocker will encrypt   your drive, and only allow access when verified by the method chosen during setup.  We’ll discuss the different methods and requirements to run BitLocker.
BitLocker To Go also allows you to extend this security function out to external hard drives and USB Flash drives, allowing you to encrypt and protect them as well.

Lesson 43:  Parental Controls

Parental Controls

This lesson demonstrates the option in Windows 7 to turn specific features on or off.  This is accomplished with a Control Applet in Programs and Features.  Windows 7 includes a comprehensive list of available features and and allows you to check or uncheck boxes to turn the features on or off.  Making changes will require administrative privileges, as the changes affect all users.

Lesson 44:  Turn Features On and Off

Turn Features On and Off

This lesson demonstrates the option in Windows 7 to turn specific features on or off.  This is accomplished with a Control Applet in Programs and Features.  Windows 7 includes a comprehensive list of available features and and allows you to check or uncheck boxes to turn the features on or off.  Making changes will require administrative privileges, as the changes affect all users.

Lesson 45:  Windows Live Family Safety

Windows Live Family Safety

Windows Live Family Safety is focused on your family's safety when they venture onto the internet.  It allows you as a parent to control the web content and contacts that your children view and communicate with, and to block or allow access appropriately.  It requires a Windows Live ID for each user account, and then provides a personalized Family Safety Site where you can manage your children's accounts and permissions on multiple PCs, and view reports that give you the amount of your children spend online, and where they spend it.

Control Panel
Lesson 46:  Getting to Know the Control Panel

Getting to Know the Control Panel

The Control Panel, although considered scary to some, is really just the location of small applications (applets)  that you can use to make configuration changes.  You can access tools that help you to either configure the functionality of your system to better suit your needs, or adjust security and networking options to help the system perform properly. This lesson will give you an overview of the Control Panel, and we'll go into the details of many of the tools it provides in the following clips.  Topics include:

  • Control Panel Categories
  • Changing your View
  • Display as a Menu on the Start Menu
Lesson 47:  AutoPlay


AutoPlay allows you to control the default action that takes place when you insert or connect any type of media to your PC.  Your action options will vary depending on the type of media, and you can always choose to take no action at all.  AutoPlay is found in the Hardware & Sound Category in the Control Panel.

Lesson 48:  Credential Manager

Credential Manager

Credential Manager enables you to save your credentials (usernames and passwords) for websites you log into and other resources you connect to (like network servers or remote PCs). These credentials are saved in the Windows Vault, and can be backed up and restored, or loaded onto another PC.  We’ll review the three types of credentials:

  • Windows Credentials
  • Certificate-based Credentials
  • Generic Credentials
Lesson 49:  Default Programs

Default Programs

The Default Programs Control Panel applet allows you to specify what programs you want Windows 7 to use for specific functions, such as your default browser, email program, media player, or image viewer.  You can make individual custom changes, or default to all Microsoft or all non-Microsoft programs.  Topics include:

  • Associating a File Type with a Program
  • AutoPlay settings
  • Set Program Access and Computer Defaults
Lesson 50:  Device Manager

Device Manager

Device Manager is one of the best tools to use when troubleshooting a hardware issue, because it allows you to quickly view which devices or drivers are not functioning properly.  In this lesson will review it’s features, including:

  • Scanning for Hardware Changes
  • Adding Legacy Hardware
  • Updating and rolling back drivers
  • Resource conflicts

Lesson 51:  Ease of Access Center

Ease of Access Center

In Windows XP, the Ease of Access Center was called Accessibility Options. It now has a new name in Vista and Windows 7, but it’s goal is the same: to enhance the functionality for users with limited vision, hearing, or manual dexterity.  It gives you quick access to four common tools that you can easily use, but there are many other options that can be configured here.  To help understand what features may want to use, you can take a short questionnaire to explain the considerations you need, and the operating system will present you with recommendations.  All options can also be explored individually, and are grouped into seven functional areas:

  • Use the computer without a display
  • Make the computer easier to see
  • Use the computer without a mouse or keyboard
  • Make the mouse easier to use
  • Make the keyboard easier to use
  • Use text or visual alternatives for sound
  • Make it easier to focus on tasks


Lesson 52:  Fonts


All aspects of font management can be accessed in place thanks to the Font applet in Control Panel.  This lesson will review the available options, including:

  • New layout and grouped font styles
  • Font Preview
  • Hiding and Deleting a Font
  • Finding a Character
  • Increasing Windows display font size
Lesson 53:  Power Options

Power Options

It makes good sense for business reasons and environmental reasons to make sure your computer is running as power-efficiently as possible.  Power Options in the Windows 7 Control Panel allows you to do this, by providing three different power plans to suit your needs.  The standard plans include:

  • Balanced
  • Power Saver
  • High Performance
Lesson 54:  Programs and Features

Programs and Features

If you need to remove or repair an installed program, or turn specific windows features on or off, then you will need to use the Programs and Features applet in the Control Panel.  If you have used Add/Remove Programs in an earlier release of Windows, you will be familiar with Programs and Features.  You can select form a list of applications and choose to uninstall, change, or repair the application.  There is also a link to “Turn Windows features on or off”.  That process is covered in more detail in the Security section of this series.

Lesson 55:  Region and Language

Region and Language

The Region and Language control panel applet allows you to adjust your PC to the language and data format styles of your region. You can select a language and region, and adjust the format style for dates, times, numbers, and currency.  This lesson will review the options in each of the four tabs:

  • Format
  • Location
  • Keyboards and Languages
  • Administrative
Lesson 56:  Speech Recognition

Speech Recognition

Windows Speech Recognition has two primary functions. One is to allow you to control the computer by giving specific voice commands, so that you can open, close, and navigate around programs and within documents. The other is to allow you to dictate text (or have text read back to you). These features can help an individual with manual dexterity or vision issues to use the computer effectively.  This lesson will review the available options in the Speech Recognition applet.

Lesson 57:  Sync Center

Sync Center

Today we have so many devices that we sync to our computers, and Windows 7 provides a control panel applet to help automate and manage our synchronized devices.  Through the Sync Center applet, you can establish “sync partnerships” with devices you use.  The Sync Center maintains a relationship with the device that allows it to track display reports on sync progress, problems, and conflicts.  You can also schedule your syncs to occur automatically, as long as the device is connected. 

Lesson 58:  User Accounts

User Accounts

The User Account applet in the Control Panel allows you to create multiple user accounts for you PC, with individual logins and permission levels.  You may want to setup separate logins for your children or coworkers, so that each can have their own programs, document, music, and picture folders, and a separate login providing a level of privacy.  This lesson will review the options for creating and managing user accounts in Windows 7.

Lesson 59:  Windows Cardspaces

Windows Cardspaces

Windows CardSpace is a new concept in digital identities, aimed at protecting the user’s personal identity from phishing or identity theft when logging into internet sites and services.  If you do any business, banking, or pay bills online, then you probably have a more than enough different user names and passwords to remember.  And you have to be constantly vigilant not to be tricked into giving your login information away.  Windows CardSpace will provide you with a virtual “wallet” where you can store digital ID cards that can be used to gain access to your sites on the website, and it does it in a quick and secure fashion that does not require you to input a username and password.  You can create personal identities and install managed identities provided by the sites you connect to.  But to use CardSpace ID cards, the site has to be configured to offer information card logins.  As this is a relatively new approach, it is not yet widely utilized, but we anticipate seeing more widespread use in the future.

Lesson 60:  Windows Update

Windows Update

Windows Update allows you to connect to a Microsoft database to check for software updates, and download and install them.  You can handle updates manually, or you can establish an automatic schedule to keep you system up-to-date.  This lesson will review the configuration options of Windows Update and options for it’s use.

Windows 7 Administration
Lesson 61:  System Properties

System Properties

The System item provides a variety of different settings you can configure for your system.  Initially when looking at the System item through Control Panel you will be shown basic information about your computer with a variety of different links.  Those links will take you to configuration dialogs that will help you perform tasks like changing your computer name, adjusting remote access settings and much more.

The Sytem Properties dialog has 5 different tabs including:

  • Computer Name
  • Hardware
  • Advanced
  • System Protection
  • Remote
Lesson 62:  Changing the Computer Name and Domain Settings

Changing the Computer Name and Domain Settings

In this lesson you will be shown how you would change the name of your computer, as well as how you would switch your computer from a Workgroup network arrangement to that of a Domain.

Lesson 63:  Advanced System Properties: Performance Settings

Advanced System Properties: Performance Settings

From the System item in Control Panel you can select a link titled 'Advanced system settings' that will take you into the System Properties, to the Advanced tab.  From here you can configure Performance, User Profiles and Startup and Recovery settings.  In this lesson we will walk you through the Performance Settings, which include the following tabs:

  • Visual Effects
  • Advanced
  • Data Execution Prevention
Lesson 64:  Advanced System Properties: User Profiles

Advanced System Properties: User Profiles

From the System item in Control Panel you can select a link titled 'Advanced system settings' that will take you into the System Properties, to the Advanced tab.  From here you can configure Performance, User Profiles and Startup and Recovery settings.  In this lesson we will focus on the User Profiles settings.

Lesson 65:  Advanced System Properties: Startup and Recovery

Advanced System Properties: Startup and Recovery

From the System item in Control Panel you can select a link titled 'Advanced system settings' that will take you into the System Properties, to the Advanced tab.  From here you can configure Performance, User Profiles and Startup and Recovery settings.   In this lesson we will focus on the Startup and Recovery settings, which include both 'System startup' configuration options and 'System failure' configuration options.

Lesson 66:  System Properties: System Restore Points

System Properties: System Restore Points

When viewing the System item in Control Panel you will note in the tasks pane a link for 'System protection'.  It takes you to the System Protection tab of System Properties.  From here you can configure system restore points that you can establish to go back to a point in time when your system was functioning properly.  You can use system protection to undo unwanted system changes and restore previous versions of files, as you will see in this clip.

Lesson 67:  Enabling Remote Connectivity

Enabling Remote Connectivity

When viewing the System item in Control Panel you will note in the tasks pane a link for 'Remote settings'.  It takes you to the Remote tab of System Properties.  From here you can configure both Remote Assistance options and Remote Desktop options, as you will see in this clip.

Lesson 68:  Changing Your IP Address

Changing Your IP Address

In this lesson you will be shown how you can use the Network and Sharing Center item in Control Panel (or located in your Notification Area) to view existing IP settings and make adjustments to those settings through the properties of the network adapter.

Lesson 69:  The Network and Sharing Center

The Network and Sharing Center

The Network and Sharing Center is your one-stop location for all things networking related on your system.  This clip will take you on a walking tour of the center and will describe the purpose of the settings you can configure and how you locate them.

Lesson 70:  Opening an Administratrive Command Prompt

Opening an Administratrive Command Prompt

While it is true that many settings for your system can be configured through a GUI (graphic user interface) there are times when you might choose to use a command prompt.  Some items will work fine under the typical prompt.  At times, however, you may wish to make serious changes to your system. This will require an Administrative command prompt.  This lesson will show you how to open one of these prompts.

Lesson 71:  The Windows Experience Index

The Windows Experience Index

The Windows Experience Index is designed to show you at a glance how your system's key components are rated according to a Windows system assessment.  The end result is a base score that is provided that will indicate the lowest subscore of your component ratings.

Components that are rated include:  Processor, Memory (RAM), Graphics, Gaming Graphics, and Primary Hard Disk.  These are rated on a scale of 1.0 to 7.9.

Lesson 72:  Advanced Performance Tool

Advanced Performance Tool

From within the System item through Control Panel you have the ability to see your Windows Experience Index (covered thoroughly in another clip).  From within the index rating you can click a link to Advanced Tools from the task pane on the left.  This will take you to the Performance Information and Tools | Advanced Tools sections.  Performance Issues (if you have any) will be displayed, as well as a list of links toward other tools that will assist in avoiding, detecting or elminating performance issues.

Lesson 73:  The Reliability Monitor

The Reliability Monitor

The Reliability Monitor can be located through the Action Center.  It reviews your computer's reliability and problem history and displays a stability index to the viewer.  The index asssesses your system's overall stability on a scale of 1 to 10.  You can review periods of time and see areas where your system became mildly (or majorly) unstable and the monitor will help you determine the cause of the instability.

Lesson 74:  The Resource Monitor

The Resource Monitor

The Resource Monitor is one of the tools you can find by typing 'Resource Monitor' in the Instant Search bar located off the Start menu.  This lesson will show you the practical value of using the Resource Monitor.

Lesson 75:  The Problem Steps Recorder

The Problem Steps Recorder

We all have corporate users within our job, or family members and/or friends who call us up with computer problems they need help fixing.  At times we need to see the problem before our own eyes to render assistance but this may be problematic.  The Problem Steps Recorder is a very easy to use tool that will allow persons to record what they are doing on their system when a problem occurs.  The steps they performed combined with images of the problem are taken and put into a zip file that can be emailed to you (or that you might email to another, if you are the person in need of assistance).  This lesson will show you how this works.

4 hrs, 55 min
Running Time

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