Author Topic: Computer help  (Read 193 times)

Fiz

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Computer help
« on: 16 May 2020 01:17PM »
Hi everyone

I did buy a laptop (I want to write a non-fiction book, a lot of it is in my head and I have mind-mapped the content and layout) and it's Windows 10. I haven't used a computer in years, the last time I used a computer was windows 7. I was assured by people online that Windows 10 is very like 7 and that I would have no trouble but they didn't realise they were talking to a hopeless technophobe. I have no idea how to use it! There are no tabs! The laptop came with no instructions! My foster Mum doesn't believe this but there was nothing in the box apart from the laptop and charging lead with plug.

Also in the good old days to load software you inserted a CD into the drive and it loaded it all for you. I've bought Office because I shall need Word etc to write my book but how do I load the software onto the laptop? I also have Norton to install.

Also how do I find, load and use apps on my laptop? 

Please be advised, I am a bear with little brain and a technophobe so please assume that I know very little about computers. I know how to charge it and I know how to turn it on!

I was going to wait until I can see people and ask someone to show me but I am shielding and goodness knows how long that will be. I'm grateful for any help, advice, instructions. I have watched YouTube videos on Windows 10 for beginners but they're too complicated!

oldtone27

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #1 on: 16 May 2020 03:02PM »
Hi Fiz,

May I ask as few questions to see what you have got?

Is the laptop new? If it is I would expect it to come with some paperwork such as a get you started pamphlet. If you bought from a reputable retailer then they should be able to help you get started, over the phone if necessary.

Did you purchase it with Office installed or separate software?

Does you laptop have a CD or DVD drive. Most do not nowadays as software is usually downloaded from the Internet.

How far have you got actually staring it. Windows 10 usually offers a tutorial when it is first activated. That might be worth a look.

Can you get past the first 'lock screen' as it is called which is where to enter a password before the desktop opens.

If you can see the desktop there is a little four square 'window' icon at the bottom left, Clicking on that opens a list of applications installed. Stupidly its scroll bar is hidden until you move you cursor to right of that list. Until you are familiar just press the down arrow on your keyboard and that will scroll down the list and you can see what you've got.

It is possible to set Windows 10 in 'Classic' mode which looks more Windows 7/8. You retailer should be able to help you with this. I haven't tried is so am not sure how easy it is to set up. You might also ask about installing Office while you getting help.

I'll leave it there for now so you don't have information overload.



Sunshine

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #2 on: 16 May 2020 03:11PM »
Congratulations on getting a new laptop and I look forward to hearing more about the book.

Before you do anything else switch on the laptop and there should be a search option on the bottom lefthand side. Type in the word Taskbar and then in the search results click on the first result Taskbar Settings it will then say Taskbar and there is a list of switches eg Lock taskbar. Lock Taskbar needs to be On the next three options off and the last three on. This should give you a taskbar at the bottom of your screen which will have Icons for things like your Folders, Chrome or Microsoft Edge, etc. You have already used the internet so you have that success so during the next bit just make sure to see whether the new windows or tabs that open are either at the top of your web browser eg Microsoft Edge or in the taskbar at the bottom of the screen. 

To install software when you do not have a cd drive you need to go to the website download the software, install it and input the product key which is usually with the box that the product came in.

Let us start with Norton..

Go to this link https://support.norton.com/sp/en/uk/norton-download-install/current/info

> If you don't already have an account go to the top right and click on My Norton and look for this option Don't have an account? Click here. Click on Click here and set up your account.

> Once you have an account and are signed in go back to https://support.norton.com/sp/en/uk/norton-download-install/current/info . On the top left hand side there is an option to Download and Install you need to click on that.

> Scroll down the page a little bit and you will see the words Download in 3 easy steps. Click on Get Started (it is a yellow button).

> This opens a new window or tab on your webbrowser eg Chrome or Microsoft Edge so go there. Click on the option on the right ENTER YOUR PRODUCT KEY. Next enter your Product key and click the > sign to the right of where you wrote in your product key. This attaches that Norton Product Key to your account.

> Next click on this link https://my.norton.com/extspa/onboard/setup#/registration/home/reg/setupselection and click on Download Norton.

> On the next page click on the right hand option Install on a new device.
> On the next page it says Ready to Protect your device and you need to click on the yellow Agree and Download button.
> A big blue arrow should appear on the bottom left hand side and it will be pointing at the download as it is moved into your computer > It should say something like Norton Download EXE, once the numbers have either disappeared or stop changing  (it is usually very quick) click on the download at the bottom left hand side that the blue arrow is pointing to.

> A new window or tab will open with a picture of a mountain scene in a yellow hue will load on screen, it should say Norton Downloader at the top left hand side. Once it says Norton has successfully installed click on the OK button it is yellow.
> That is as far as I can go without a new product key so next bit is from memory > I think the Norton software page then loads on screen with options like Qick scan.. in which case Norton has installed on your laptop hooray  >cool<

Sunshine

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #3 on: 16 May 2020 03:16PM »
Oldtone,

You got here with the advice I had missed without knowing I missed it until I made my post and saw yours  >thumbsup<

Quote
If you can see the desktop there is a little four square 'window' icon at the bottom left, Clicking on that opens a list of applications installed. Stupidly its scroll bar is hidden until you move you cursor to right of that list. Until you are familiar just press the down arrow on your keyboard and that will scroll down the list and you can see what you've got.

Especially good  >star< i think I kind of navigate Windows 10 like it is Windows 7 so forgot about the Start button on the bottom lefthand side.
 :-)

Fiz

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #4 on: 16 May 2020 04:09PM »
Thank you both. Even without the laptop in front of me I understand what you are both saying which is a great start. Tomorrow I will get the laptop and literally work through your answers step by step. Sunshine, you've explained why I didn't see a task bar! If I can put one in place that will really help.

Nope, definitely didn't come with anything except an HP flyer with contact details for HP loose inside the box. I bought it online from John Lewis. Even though their stores aren't open I guess they will have tech support by phone but I am not great with phones. On forums people were saying how simple Windows is but not understanding how clueless I am about computers. I will give it a go tomorrow. No the laptop has no CD drive. I guess there is just a product code in the Norton and Office software I bought. I feel more confident that I will be able to get somewhere with it tomorrow.

oldtone27

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #5 on: 17 May 2020 09:22AM »
 Please let us know how you get on. Once you've got the desktop up probably the first thing to do it get on line.
 
 Most probably Microsoft Edge will be the default browser. This is the successor to Internet Explorer. The latest version of Edge is based on Chrome but I doubt your laptop will have that installed yet as it is very recent upgrade.
 
 The old Edge was not well liked as it lacked some features but it works and will get you going. You could download your favourite browser once accustomed to Windows 10.
 
 John Lewis is a reputable retailer so I think their support department should be able to offer enough help to get you going if you get stuck.
 
 Good luck.

JLR2

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #6 on: 18 May 2020 04:52AM »
I have to say from the off I'm not too clever myself when it comes to computers, if clever at all. Microsoft edge is something I only just managed to get onto my notebook and I only went through that to access some online videos, about how to create a raised patio, and found a message telling me the system had changed and that my browser no longer provided access. So I downloaded Edge and to be honest I do not like it much.

Coming back to what you were asking about Fiz, I was wondering if the laptop you have bought through John Lewis might actually have been one they have had returned to them and hence that apparent lack of information in the delivered box about setting up the laptop, might this be a possibility?  I would contact John Lewis and tell them of the lack of instructions in the delivery you received.

My desktop and notebook both run on Windows 8.1 as when they introduced Windows 10 I tried it and very quickly binned it. I honestly dread the failure of either of my computers as I do not want to go anywhere near W10. When I had to have my notebook repaired by Curry's I was lucky that they could do so and keep it on W8.1, including replacing the hard drive and keyboard under my service plan at no extra cost.

Whilst I was in their Inverness store I tried looking at their laptops and notebooks but found the ones that appeared fairly decent with things such as none reflective screens were a bit pricey and those nearer my budget had the dreaded (for me) Chrome as it's running system. Ages ago I inadvertently down loaded chrome only to find I just could not type in the content of an email because the chrome system insisted it knew what I wanted to write, so I had to constantly swipe out the previous word chrome had changed and then try to retype what it was I wanted to type. So I gave up and got rid of the Chrome system, the one thing I did learn was why the Chrome based notebooks and laptops in Curry's/PC World are so much cheaper than those with other running systems on them.

Sorry Fiz not to have been of much help.     

Sunshine

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #7 on: 21 May 2020 11:52AM »
It seems to there can be a divide between those of us who started using computers more than a decade ago and those who grew up using smart phones and tablets. It reminds me of a video clip that showed some teenage boys trying to figure out how to use an old phone one with the 'mechanical dial' that moved forwards when you pushed it then back automatically. Huh I all of a sudden find it difficult to describe in words how to use an old phone.

JLR it sounds like the predictive texting setting on your Chrome book needed changing, the thing is though who wants to have to find the right part of the Settings page when they know if they just have a computer working in the same way the old one did that they could just write in the 'old way'- not me. That said I do use a Lenovo tablet and a Google smart phone but not for writing anything longer that a short note. If I want to do a big shop online I always do it using my desktop computer because it is just too fiddly to browse several pages at once using the Android system on my tablet or phone 

Fiz

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #8 on: 25 May 2020 10:45AM »
Apologies for the delay getting back here. I intended trying the following day, quite positive that I'd taken in the instructions okay but then had low days, crying and my aim was just getting through the day so attempting the laptop was put on hold. 

Then I turned the laptop on and it seems I had loaded Microsoft Office partly, though it's not easy to find so I'm unsure. I tried to download Zoom as my mental health support group met by zoom last week and I thought I'd like the option to join if I felt up to it. Creating a Microsoft account was hard. Then I tried to find an app store and found google store in my start up list so assumed that was the go to. I found zoom and clicked install only to be told that my device doesn't support google store (even though it's in the start up menu?) so then was led to Microsoft app store and attempted to download zoom with no apparent success when it told me it (zoom) wasn't campatable with my device. I gave up and cried.

Today I turned the computer on but got a blank screen of a photo that wouldn't respond to any clicking on it, no windows box in the corner, nothing but the picture. Eventually after much clicking I got a sign in box to my Microsoft account but it didn't recognise my password even though I KNOW that what I was typing was correct from creating the account a couple of days ago. It then wanted me for security reasons wanted me to type in my password for my sky email account which I knew that I'd forgotten but I am saved by my phone saving my forgotten password so despite not gaining access to my email on other devices eg when I was in hospital on the psych ward computer, I have been able to access my emails on my phone. So after 2 wrong guesses I chose to reset my sky password thinking at least I will now know it. So I did that, it refused to allow previous sky email account passwords so I created a brand new never used one and then I had a screen with my previously used tabs (yay I have tabs!) and was able to use my computer so I decided to open my sky emails on a new tab. But it didn't recognise the new password that I had to create to get onto this laptop today so I went through the process to create ANOTHER new password for my sky email account and found an email asking me to activate my zoom account ?! so I clicked on that and seem to have a zoom account even though my last attempt at using this laptop said that I didn't. It wanted me to create a password and so I did. Now I am completely muddled about what passwords I have for Microsoft, my email and zoom and feel stuffed about opening this laptop next time!

It was very scary just getting a blank screen of a dawn seascape with rocks in the calm sea and not being able to access any icons or anything at that point. Anyone know what to do if that happens again?

On the plus side, already I am beginning to remember where the letters on the keyboard are, having not used one for at least 11 years I had totally forgotten. I wish I could say the same about the symbols! And this laptop isn't using autocorrect so no automatic capitals at the start of the sentence, no apostrophes in appropriate positions in common words or automatic spell correct. No clue if it's possible to get that sorted in a setting? Or is it only smartphones that can do that?

Another positive is having just played with, or tried out this laptop I have worked out that the single mousepad actually works like a double mousepad with left and right sides as separate functions so I can now move slide bars up and down! It's been a complete nightmare up until learning that just creating accounts because I haven't been able to scroll down to accept t&c's! So in some respects I am making progress but I am already scared about the next time I turn this thing on and finding that blank photo screen again and not knowing how to bring the laptop to life. If I manage to get beyond that and need to create new passwords for various programmes all over again, next time I will find pen and paper and write down all the passwords! 

I am struggling emotionally and very tearful so I may come and go but if this laptop turns on and behaves quickly when needed that will make things easier. I need to load Norton at some stage too. 

JLR2 no this is definitely a brand new laptop, it's a new hp laptop edition that was brand new at the time that I bought it so could not be old than brand new. I can't compare with other laptops not having had one for so long but when I buy a new smart phone the most I get is a quick start guide telling me how to insert the sim card and battery and no instructions about how to work it. I think manufacturers assume people are previous computer/smartphone users moving on to a newer one and therefore basic instructions are lacking. I watched lots of YouTube videos specifically typing in "for beginners" and the videos are entitled for beginners and yet they were all way beyond me. I suspect the state of my mental health isn't helping my ability to concentrate and take things in. Plus I think anyone would struggle a bit if they hadn't used a computer in 11 years or more. 

So, it remains to be seen if I can work out how to get into a zoom meeting later. I am hoping to be part of a zoom with my sons, their partners and my granddaughter at tea time and I know I won't cope very well if I am unsuccessful at joining that as I am so looking forward to seeing them. I feel so incredibly isolated here at home. I'm not in a good place but know that so many in this country and around the world are in the same place. 

I have yet to try zoom. I have one acquaintance who took part in the peer group zoom last week and she is willing to try to connect via zoom with me so I may try that during the day today in hope of sorting things to make me more confident that my family zoom might be successful.

it's nice to be back and with luck or skill in getting this laptop going each day I will be here more often.  >bighugs<

lankou

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #9 on: 25 May 2020 12:11PM »
It seems to there can be a divide between those of us who started using computers more than a decade ago and those who grew up using smart phones and tablets. 

I started using computers back when the program had to be wired manually.
I then progressed to punched tape. (It is sad that I got to the stage I could read punched tape.)
I then progressed to Computerised Numerical Control.
Then I got a PC with a 386 chip in it and used a communication system before the internet went public domain that was the electronic equivalent of two empty tins connected with a tight string.

Sunshine

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #10 on: 25 May 2020 12:50PM »
Fiz,

Getting used to something new can be challenging at the best of times so congratulations for keeping on trying.

The picture/photograph you get when you laptop is switched on is basically there to show you it is on and so if you think of it like a screen saver and just click on your mouse or move your mouse it should come on. I will double check this later when I next switch my computer on.

If you let me know which laptop make and model you have I will be better able to help you. A few years ago I got a thrifty basic HP 'laptop' and had trouble figuring out how to do stuff because of the way the hard drive was set up. I dont use Zoom  or Skype but if you are still stuck later I could try and figure it out for you.  >bighugs<

Lankou,

Oh my here I was thinking I was old skool  >biggrin<, so did you use the 'stuff' that predated message boards darn I forget what it was called? It was before my time. I arrived just as Windows 95 was being replaced by Windows 98 Hmm now I am confused because it was actually 1998 a whole other century ago  >whistle<  >lol<

oldtone27

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #11 on: 25 May 2020 03:18PM »
Fiz, the picture you refer to is called the 'lockscreen'. It may vary in appearance.

I find simply pressing the space bar will open the password input field. I have had problems with setting up Microsoft passwords in the past so I think I just set up another account.

Microsoft always makes a simple process complicated.*

Looking at Zoom in MS Store it talks of use on a tablet in conjunction with some other stuff. Not sure what its compatibility requirements are. If you don't need conferencing with many people simultaneously perhaps What's App would be simpler although I haven't tried the windows version. Works fine on Android and IS.

Lankou & Sunshine, I started using computers daily when the PC first appear with DOS as its operating system. Widows still suffers from that legacy I think.

Since then I have used all manifestation of Windows most of which have been a constant frustration (see* above).

Giving credit where it is due Win 10 is the most reliable, but still has many of its useful features hidden, or at least not intuitive.



Fiz

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Re: Computer help
« Reply #12 on: 25 May 2020 03:58PM »
Ah, the space bar! I didn't try that, I was trying everything I could think of with the mousepad plus I tried esc. Lockscreen sounds about right, it was definitely locked! If it locks again the space bar will be the first thing I try, thank you.