Laptops Simplified, 2nd Edition
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Step-by-step guidance on all things laptop-related, aimed at visual learners

A little overwhelmed by the selection of laptops out there and how to get started using one? Laptops Simplified, Second Edition is here to help! Boasting a straightforward, jargon-free approach, this easy-to-navigate guide takes the fear out of exploring the subject of laptops and breaks it down to the basics. Veteran author Sherry Kinkoph Gunter demystifies common laptop issues such as finding the laptop that is right for you, setting it up, troubleshooting it, and maintaining it.

Covers the very basics of connecting to wireless networks while away from home; working with a variety of devices such as cameras, cell phones, and extra monitors; and making sure all security precautions are in place for safe online experiencesFeatures full-color screen shots and numbered, step-by-step instructions on how to get up and running with your laptopIncludes coverage of the new Windows 8 operating systemShares helpful advice from a veteran author on getting the most out of your laptop

Laptops Simplified, Second Edition puts you on your way to becoming a confident and savvy laptop user!


Chapter 1 Introducing Laptops

Study Laptop Anatomy 4

Review Types of Laptops 6

Explore Microprocessors 8

Explore Power Options 9

Understanding Hard Drives 10

Understanding Types of Data Storage 12

Understanding Types of Slots and Ports 14

Chapter 2 Shopping for a Laptop

Choose an Operating System 18

Select a Microprocessor 20

Choose the Right Weight 21

Compare Monitor Display Sizes 22

Assess Graphics Capabilities 23

Determine Memory and Storage Needs 24

Compare Keyboard and Mouse Features 26

Consider Extra Features and Add-Ons 28

Chapter 3 Adding Peripherals and Accessories

Add External Storage Devices 32

Using Cooling Pads 34

Using Docking Stations 35

Add Security Items 36

Add a Printer or Scanner 37

Add Portable Accessories 38

Add Memory 39

Chapter 4 Setting Up Your New Laptop

Understanding Laptop Basic Operations 42

Connect Cables and Peripherals 43

Turn the Laptop On 45

Using a Touchpad 46

Explore a Wireless Mouse 47

Get to Know the Keyboard 48

Connect a Printer or Hardware Device from Windows 50

Chapter 5 Exploring Windows 8

Introducing Windows 8 54

Explore New Navigation Techniques 56

Log On to Windows 8 57

Get to Know the Metro Start Screen 58

Access the Metro Start Screen 59

Launch Metro Apps 60

Find an App 61

Shop for Apps 62

Work with the Charms Bar 63

Work with the App Bar 64

Access PC Settings   65

Pin Items to the Start Screen 66

Shut Down Windows 8 67

Access the Desktop 68

Get to Know the Windows Desktop 69

View Your Computer’s Contents 70

Empty the Recycle Bin 71

View Mobility Settings 72

Find Help 74

CHAPTER 6 Personalizing Your Laptop

Change the Screen Resolution 78

Change Your Account Picture 80

Customize the Start Screen 82

Personalize the Lock Screen 84

Customize Start Screen Tiles 86

Add a New User Account 90

Adjust Laptop Volume 92

Chapter 7 Working with Software

Understanding Software 96

Install a Program 98

Open and Close a Program 100

Explore a Program Window 102

Resize and Move Program Windows 104

Work with Multiple Program Windows 106

Using a Ribbon 108

Using Menus, Buttons, and Lists 110

Work with Dialog Boxes 112

Create and Save a File 114

Open a File 116

Print a File 117

chapter 8 Performing Popular Software Tasks

Schedule Dates with the Calendar App 120

Find a Location with the Maps App 122

Explore Windows Accessories 124

Enter and Edit Text in WordPad 126

Format Text in WordPad 128

Chapter 9 Managing Computer Files and Folders

Understanding File Formats 134

View Files and Folders 136

Navigate Folder Windows 137

Open Files and Folders 138

Create a New Folder 140

Select Files and Folders 141

Move and Copy Files and Folders 142

Rename a File or Folder 144

Compress a File or Folder 145

Extract Compressed Files 146

Search for Files and Folders 147

Delete a File or Folder 148

CHAPTER 10 Connecting to a Network

Review a Home-based Network Setup in Windows 8 152

Connect to a Wireless Network 154

Share Files and Folders via Public Folders 156

Set Up a Homegroup 158

Share Within Your Homegroup 160

Chapter 11 Exploring the Internet

Understanding the Internet and the World Wide Web 164

Launch the Internet Explorer App 166

Launch the Desktop Internet Explorer Browser 167

Open a Web Page 168

Search the Web 169

Keep Track of Your Favorite Pages 170

Change Your Home Page  172

Chapter 12 Communicating Online

Understanding E-Mail 176

Using the Mail App 178

Add an Account to the Mail App 180

Send an E-Mail with the Mail App 182

Reply to a Message 184

Forward a Message 185

Work with File Attachments 186

Using the People App 188

Using the Messaging App 190

Explore Video Conferencing 192

Chapter 13 Working with Digital Images

View Photos with the Photos App 196

View Photos in the Pictures Library 198

View Photos with Windows Photo Viewer 200

Play a Slide Show Using Windows Photo Viewer 202

Explore Windows Live Photo Gallery 203

Import Pictures from a Camera 204

Batch-Rename Photo Files 206

Tag Photo Files 207

Auto-Adjust a Photo 208

Crop a Photo 209

Create and Publish an Online Photo Album 210

Chapter 14 Working with Audio and Video

Use the Music and Video Apps 214

Open Windows Media Player 216

Build Your Media Library 218

Listen to Music 220

Watch Video Content 222

Create and Save Playlists 224

Burn CDs and DVDs 226

Chapter 15 Managing Laptop Power

Understanding Power Management 230

Create a Power Plan  232

Adjust Screen Brightness 234

Check Battery Charge 235

Using Your Battery Efficiently 236

Control Power Button Function 238

Chapter 16 Maintaining Your Laptop

Explore the Control Panel 242

Update Your Operating System 244

Back Up Data with File History 246

Free Up Disk Space 248

Defragment Your Hard Drive 250

Chapter 17 Keeping Your Laptop Secure

Understanding Computer Security 254

Password-Protect Your Laptop 256

Set a Picture Password 258

Encrypt Your Data 262

Thwart Intruders with Windows Firewall 264