Welcome to Windows 7! This tutorial is intended to help you transition smoothly to using Windows 7 as your operating system in the workplace. Use the information, links, and videos on the tabs below to read about Windows 7 concepts, watch demonstrations of common tasks, or get step-by-step instructions.
The new and improved features in Windows 7 make it easier for you to manage files, find information, and customize your desktop so that you can work the way you want to.
To see a demonstration of the new desktop features—like Snap, Peek, and Shake, watch the following video.
To read overviews of these new features, try one of the following links:
What's new with the Windows 7 desktop?
What's new with the Windows 7 taskbar?
What's new with the Start menu?
To see task-specific videos and step-by-step instructions, click one of the following links, and then try out the new features yourself!
Snap makes it easy to expand or maximize windows, or align them against the edges of the desktop. For more information, see Expand windows vertically on the desktop using Snap, Maximize windows on the desktop using Snap, and Arrange windows side by side on the desktop using Snap.
With Shake, you can instantly minimize every open window on the desktop except the one you want to focus on. For more information, see Minimize windows on the desktop using Shake.
Use Peek to take a sneak peek at individual open windows or the entire desktop. For more information, see Preview an open window on the desktop using Peek and Temporarily preview the desktop using Peek.
You can set taskbar buttons to display as much or as little detail as you want, and to appear in a specific order. For more information, see Change how buttons appear on the taskbar and Rearrange buttons on the taskbar.
You can pin your favorite or most important files and programs to the Start menu or the taskbar so they're easily accessible. For more information, see Pin a program to the Start menu, Pin a program to the taskbar, and Using Jump Lists to open programs and items.
Now that you know the lay of the land, you can learn how to manage programs in Windows 7.
Windows 7 includes many programs that you can use to increase your productivity or just have fun. But you can also install other software so that you have your favorite programs, or the ones you use often, at your fingertips.
You can install programs on your computer from an installation disc, from the Internet, or from a network. You can also change programs you've already installed, or remove them if you don't use them anymore or want to free up space on your hard disk. For more information, see Install a program
and Uninstall or change a program.
If you use more than one program—or more than one instance of a program—at the same time, it's easy to switch among open windows using taskbar buttons or keyboard shortcuts. The window-arranging features in Windows 7 also help you quickly locate which program you want to use. For more information, see Switch between windows
and Manage multiple windows.
Windows associates certain types of files with specific programs, but you can change which program you use to open files. For example, if you have more than one kind of word-processing program installed, you can set Windows to open all documents with the program you choose. For more information, see Change which programs Windows uses by default.
Many of the programs you've used in previous versions of Windows should work just as well with Windows 7. But if you have trouble, there are several ways to make sure that a program is compatible with Windows 7. For more information, see Make older programs run in this version of Windows.
Now that you know the basics of working with different programs, take a look at the ways in which Windows 7 has made it easier to find and organize your files.
Windows 7 offers new and improved search capabilities and other features to help you easily find and organize your files. To see an overview, watch the following video.
You can also learn about individual file-management tasks in Windows 7. Click one of the following links to see step-by-step instructions and task-specific videos, and then try the procedures yourself.
In Windows 7, you can search for files and other items in more places: from the Start menu or in different windows. Your searches begin automatically, as soon as you start typing a search term, and the results are organized by file type. You can also customize file properties to make individual items easier to identify. For more information, see Find a file or folder
and Change the properties for a file.
Libraries are new in Windows 7. They organize files by type and show them in a single view, even if the actual files are stored in different folders on your computer. For more information, see Managing your documents, Include folders in a library, and Create a new library.
If you're running Windows 7 on a brand-new computer, you might want to move the files and settings from your old computer to the new one all at once. You can do this using Windows Easy Transfer. For more information, see Transfer files and settings from another computer. You can also see a demonstration by watching the following video.
Windows 7 Help & How-to
Getting started with Windows 7
Windows 7 How-to Videos
Windows 7: Top Solutions