Tips for Beginners
Below are some of the many tips contained in the Computer Guide to make life easier when using your PC.
In a large
Word document press Ctrl+g to go directly to a specified page, heading,
section or other selected item.
to quickly select a paragraph just double-click in the left-hand margin
To select the
entire document in Word press Ctrl+a. Selecting everything is useful
if you want to cut and paste into another application, such as Internet
mail, or need to alter the Language for spell checking purposes.
In Word, after
you have loaded an existing document, you can go straight to where
you left off last time by pressing Shift+F5.
You can have
almost any magnification you like in Word. Click on the Zoom control
in the tool bar and enter your own percentage magnification, such
In Word, when
you are in Print Preview mode, if you click on the Multiple Pages
icon you can drag it down and across to show as many pages as you
wish on the screen.
- You can use
Word’s AutoCorrect (from Tools) to save repetitive typing. For example,
if you type Following our recent conversation often, create
an entry, foc, that will automatically expand to read Following our
recent conversation every time you type foc followed by a space, Enter
or a punctuation.
When you are using
Explorer or any other Windows product to mark some files in a sub-directory
or folder to copy, move or delete them, the following conventions
apply to all Windows programs assuming that you using Windows Explorer
in the classic style:
- Clicking once
on a file marks it by highlighting it
- Clicking on another
file, will mark it, and will de-select the first.
- By holding the
Ctrl key when clicking, all the previously selected files remain selected.
- By holding the
Shift key down when clicking, all files between the last highlighted
file and the current file that is being selected will also be highlighted.
- Both Shift and
Ctrl clicking can be used in the same session. An example of this use
would be if you wanted to delete all but two or three files from a folder
that contains very many files. This is achieved by:
- click once to
highlight the first of the files to be deleted
- scroll down to
the last file
- hold the shift
key down and click on the last file to mark the lot
- release the shift
key and scroll until you see a file that you wish to keep then holding
the Ctrl key click on it. This will unmark just this file and leave
the others marked.
you are using Windows Explorer in the Web style, that is just moving over
a file highlights it and one click opens then the above rules still apply,
except that you do not have to click. These settings are controlled from
Explorer, Tools, Folder Options.
- To delete the
marked files just press the Delete key. If you hold the shift key down
when you press the Delete key, the files will be deleted, rather than
going into the Recycle bin and deleting from there.
- In Windows Explorer,
to sort by date just click on ‘Modified’ heading. This helps you to
quickly find the recent files. Or click on Size to find all the large
files. Clicking a second time will reverse the sort order.
- If these headings
are not visible, but other headings are, then extend the Explorer window
to the right.
- If no headings
are visible then click on View and select and Details.
dragging and dropping occasionally behave oddly?
- Dragging and dropping
using Windows Explorer seems simple most of the time, with the odd perplexing
result for some users. Here are the full rules:
- When you drag
a file from one folder to another on the same drive, Windows moves the
- When you drag
a file to a folder on a different drive, Windows copies the file.
- If the original
file is executable (COM, EXE, or BAT) and you drag it to a folder on
a hard disk, you create a shortcut by default. If you drag it to a floppy,
you get a copy.
- Holding down
Shift while you drag forces a move, if going to another drive,
- Holding Ctrl
forces a copy, if dragging within the same drive,
- Holding Ctrl+Shift
creates a shortcut.
Windows Shortcuts for Natural
Many users who have the Windows
keyboard (the one which has two keys marked with the Windows logo (WIN
key)) do not make much use of these extra keys. These
keys can be used for shortcuts such as:
- Pressing the Windows key
and E will launch Explorer
- WIN+f will launch the Find
- WIN+m will minimise all open
- Shift+WIN+m will undo the
So now you do not need to have
extra shortcuts on the desktop for the Explorer or Find Files cluttering
If you don’t
like the Icon of a shortcut in Windows you can alter it by right-clicking
on it, Properties, Program, Change Icon. If you still can’t find one
you like then browse in the following files: C:\Windows\System\Shell32.dll,
C:\Windows\System\Pifmgr.dll, C:\Windows\System\Cool.dll, C:\Windows\System\User.exe
or moving files by dragging them in Windows Explorer, if you change
your mind just press the Esc key to abort the current operation.
To make a shortcut
to any program, right-click on the program in Windows Explorer, create
a shortcut, and then drag it onto the desktop
If you are working
in a full screen DOS box and wish to make it a window, just press
Alt+Enter. Pressing Alt+Enter again will toggle it back.
When using Windows
Explorer you can type the first letter of a file and Explorer will
jump to the first file starting with that letter. For example, if
in the Windows folder you press the w key the cursor will jump to
waves.bmp (if that is your first w file.) If you type win, very quickly,
it will jump to Win.com.
These tips are selected from
questions asked by the readers.