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Mar 23

5 Useful windows 7 tips and tricks to help you get things done easier

1. Windows 7 Keyboard Shortcuts

The windows key is generally between the left CTRL key and the left Alt key

Windows Key and spacebar – Quickly show desktop.
Windows key and L – Locks the computer quickly.
Windows Key and Home – Minimises all windows but the active one
Windows Key and +/- – zooms in and out
Windows Key and M – Minimise all windows
Windows Key and R – Opens run command
Windows key and F – Opens search box
Windows Key and T – Scroll through items on taskbar
Alt and Tab – Switches between open windows

2. Pin to start menu or taskbar

Do you get sick of looking for programs either on a cluttered desktop or by going through your program menu? You can easily add programs to the taskbar or start menu with a couple of clicks.
To do this find the program in your programs list and right click on it. You will see 2 options in there “pin to taskbar” and “pin to start menu” Select where you want the icon to appear and press the left mouse button. (The image shows where the taskbar and start menu are located.

3. Desktop shortcut for favourite websites

This is another question I get asked often “Can I create a shortcut to a website on my desktop” the answer is yes just the same as you can create any other shortcut. Simply right click on your desktop select new and then shortcut.

You will be then asked where you want the shortcut to point to so put your web address in here and then press next. We have used our website but say for example you wanted google you would put http://www.google.com

Finally give the shortcut a name. This can be any name you want to remind you what the shortcut is for. Finally press finish. You should now see your shortcut on the desktop.

4. Disable startup programs you dont need

There is a utility in windows that allows you to disable programs starting up when windows starts up that is called Msconfig. While it is not recommended you play around with other settings in here disabling some of the programs starting up that you dont need can give you a bit of your speed back on boot up and stop the annoying programs starting up (registration screens etc). It is also good for diagnosing a slow PC as you can disable and then enable programs to detect which may be causing issues.

Use the keyboard shortcut “Windows key + R” to open the run command you will get the below window. Type msconfig into that window as below and press enter.

On the next screen you will see 5 tabs. We ONLY want to modify the startup Tab (see arrow). Warning modifying the other tabs or disabling programs you do not know about can cause problems.

On the left hand side you will see items with tick boxes next to them. Disable any that you are sure you dont need and press apply. You may be asked to restart your computer for changes to take effect.

5. Showing and adding gadgets to your desktop

You can get what are called gadgets on your desktop. These include things like calendars, clocks, newsfeeds, weather and a whole lot more. To add a gadget to your desktop right click on your desktop and select and click on gadgets in the menu.

The screen below allows you add the gadgets you want to your desktop by simply double clicking them with your left mouse button. You can also get more gadgets online by clicking the “get gadgets online” link at the bottom

You should now have a number of gadgets on your screen like the image below. You can move these gadgets around your desktop by left clicking and holding and moving the mouse to a new place on your screen then letting go of the mouse button.

1 comment

  1. John

    Windows 7 Keyboard shortcuts very useful in getting around. I wish I knew and used them more often. Do you know what’s going to happen with Windows 8? Are they changing those?
    John recently posted..Monitoring File Access in Windows 7My Profile

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