Desktop Windows 95, 98 and NT 
Note: "Folder" and "Directory" are the same.
Lesson 1
| Directory |Disclaimer |

1. This is my opening screen when my computer is turned on. It's called "Desktop".  It contains Short Cut  Icons for programs and files that will open if double clicked. At the top is desktop toolbar that contains shortcuts to applications and files that only need one click. At the bottom is a Start Button, "Status Bar" and "Computer Clock" The color of the desktop is green but can be changed to a more pleasing background if you wish. Short Cuts can be added or deleted. Status Bar displays programs that are running and messages.

Start" Button lower left on screen.
Clicking opens menu that display folders you need to get started.( Image on right.)
  As a beginner you should be concerned with only Four: "Programs", "Find", "Help" and "Shut Down"
  "Programs": clicking opens another menu that displays short cuts to the applications that are installed on your computer.
  "Find" is an application that helps you find a file on your computer. 
  "Help": is printed documents that helps you with different aspects of Windows. Unfortunately, the help files often are remiss in informing you exactly how but do offer clues. Hands on training, trial and error are more beneficial to a beginner.
 "Shut Down" always select when you are ready turn your computer off. Do not turn off until the computer tells you to do so.

Note: next to Start is the beginning of the Status Bar. It says I am currently running FrontPage, Windows Explorer and Character Map.


View of Status Bar with running apps, quick launch and clock at screen bottom
Status Bar hosts selection icons for running programs and messages Windows 98 has Quick Launch, customized for  Shortcuts. "Desktop" icon click minimizes running programs and exposes the entire desktop to view Clock plus short cut icons. Reset by Right mouse click, select "Adjust"
Quick Launch is for those that don't have MS Office Shortcut Bar below. I prefer the shortcut bar and leave the status bar area for running applications and  messages. However, if you don't have, this is an option you may want to use. Create Desktop shortcut and drag it to the Quick Launch Section. It's that simple

Status Bar is like reading gauges in your car.  The Status Bar will show you all the programs you are currently using.  "Windows 98" Desktop Icon (Paint Brush) on the status bar "Quick Launch" section is an important timesaver when you have several programs running and you want to see the desktop that has a specific shortcut icon you want to get to. Clicking will minimize all the programs that are running and put them in the status bar allowing full view of other short cut icons located on your desktop that are hidden by other program windows. Click program button in status bar to restore program selected to full size. 
  Note: If you like to multi task or run lots of applications at the same time, you need to know how much RAM your machine has installed.  Minimal RAM means your programs will start running very slow because it has to spool from virtual memory (swapping from the hard drive rather than direct RAM memory).
Note: The above picture of my "Status Bar" shows that I'm running FrontPage, Windows Explorer, Character Map, two PaintShop Pro applications and Adobe Photoshop. Quick launch icons on right, discuss later.

View of Desktop tool bar at the top of the screen   (MS Office Utility)
These are normally shortcuts to applications you would commonly use to create a new file and want quick access to start them. You can change and customize to meet your needs and add additional tool bars for specific purposes like your standard forms, both written and email.  Note: the first icon on my tool bar is Window Explorer. This utility normally has a shortcut located: "C:\WINDOWS\Start Menu\Programs\StartUp" Folder that loads when the computer is turned on or starts. The actual name for the shortcut bar is "MSOffice.exe". Instruction to customize toolbar, Click Here. Windows 98 Quick Launch Bar is a similar shortcut bar.

We covered some of the definitions and names that are used in reference to the Desktop. It is not the intent to cover all the configurations that involve Windows, only those that help you find and move data and the understanding of existing utilities that favor that goal.  I don't care what background color or theme you use unless it interferes with work flow. Now Let's go to the Windows Explorer!
To open your explorer click Icon in tool bar or click Start, select programs, select Windows Explorer in second menu. But let's go to the next lesson and see samples from the Windows Explorer.
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