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Windows 95 provides a powerful yet easy-to-use operating system that enables you to use a variety of applications in addition to connecting to a variety of networks. The features and procedures of Windows 95 are similar to those of 3.11, but with more power, utility, and flexibility.

The What and Why of Windows 95

Windows 95 is an exceptional operating system that enables you to perform tasks—such as opening programs, copying files, editing documents, and so on—that help you get your work done quickly and easily. In addition, Windows 95 lets you connect to your company's network to access other computers, files, and printers as well as to the Internet, for an entire world of possibilities.

Windows 95 is a graphical user interface (GUI), which means that Windows provides a workspace that is graphical, and therefore, easy to use and understand. As you become familiar with Windows 95, you'll find that it makes it easy-to-use applications effectively to complete your work and manage your files.

Graphical User Interface A GUI (pronounced “gooey”) makes interacting with your computer easy. You usually use a mouse to point at and select icons (small pictures that often represent files or application programs), and you choose operations (commands from menus) to perform. A GUI is an alternative to a command-line interface such as DOS, where the user enters text commands from a keyboard.

Why use Windows 95? Windows makes using your computer faster and easier in the following ways:

  • You can work in and have several applications open on-screen at the same time, if you like. You also can easily switch between open applications and share data between them, which saves you time and effort.

  • The graphical user interface is easy to understand and use, so you'll be up and running quickly. Once you get started, you'll be surprised at how quickly your educated guesses become correct ones.

  • All application programs designed for Windows 95 look similar: title bars, menus, icons, even commands are often comparable. In addition, Windows applications use similar keyboard and mouse operations to select objects and choose commands. To a great extent, once you've learned one application, you've learned a part of them all.

  • With Windows 95, you can integrate a variety of servers, including Windows NT, NetWare, TCP/IP, Microsoft LAN Manager, among others.

  • You can use both 16-bit and 32-bit applications.

  • Video and graphics applications run smoothly so that multimedia applications, games, and graphics programs such as CorelDRAW! really shine.

Windows 95's GUI provides a common approach to using a variety of applications for your computer. Learning Windows is fast, easy, and fun—and it takes a minimum of effort.

Why the 10 Minute Guide to Windows 95?

The 10 Minute Guide to Windows 95 can save even more of your precious time. Each lesson is designed so that you can complete it in 10 minutes or less, so you'll be up-to-speed in basic Windows 95 skills quickly.

Although you can jump between lessons, starting at the beginning is a good plan. The bare-bones basics are covered first, and more advanced topics are covered later.

Conventions Used in This Book

To help you move through the lessons easily, I've used the following conventions:

What you type Information you type appears in bold color type.
Items you select Commands, options, and icons you select as well as keys you press appear in color type.

In telling you to choose menu commands, this book uses the format menu name, menu command. For example, if I say “choose File, Properties,” you are to open the File menu and select the Properties command.

In addition to these conventions, the 10 Minute Guide to Windows 95 uses the following icons to identify helpful information:

Plain English tips define new terms or terms that may be unfamiliar to you, such as technical terminology, jargon, and so on.

Timesaver Tips include keyboard and mouse shortcuts and hints that can save you time and energy.

Panic Button icons identify areas where new users often run into trouble, and offer practical solutions to those problems.


I'd like to thank all of the people at Que who were involved with this project. First and foremost, all my gratitude to Martha O'Sullivan for her support and friendship. Martha, you're the best! Thanks too, to Henly Wolin and Tom Lamoureux for your hard work and advice. And thanks to the Que team of copy and tech editors, production people, indexers, and everyone else who makes a book successful.


All terms mentioned in this book that are known to be trademarks have been appropriately capitalized. Que cannot attest to the accuracy of this information. Use of a term in this book should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark.

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