Windows 7 and Quicken 2012 - dummies

Windows 7 and Quicken 2012

By Stephen L. Nelson

For Quicken 2012 users, Windows 7 offers a slightly different operating environment than they might be used to with earlier versions of Windows. Windows 7 —any version of Microsoft Windows 7 — is an operating environment that manages your system resources (things like memory, your monitor, your printer, and so on).

Applications (programs such as Quicken) run on top of Windows 7. In other words, you first start Windows 7 by turning on your personal computer (PC). Then, after Windows 7 is running, you can start applications, such as Quicken.

Windows 7 provides a standard graphical interface. In English, Windows 7 provides a common approach for using visual elements — icons, buttons, check boxes, and so on.

Windows 7 enables you to run more than one application at a time. You may, for example, run Quicken, a tax preparation package, and even a Windows accessory program, such as the Calculator.

Starting Windows 7 is easy. You just turn on your personal computer (PC). If you can find the on-off switch, you’re set.

If you can’t find the on-off switch or it doesn’t seem to work, don’t feel silly. Ask someone who has used that computer. Sometimes the on-off switch is on the front of the computer and is labeled On-Off (which makes good sense, of course).

Sometimes, manufacturers stick the on-off switch on the back of the computer or label the switch something really stupid, such as 0 and 1. Sometimes, too, people plug a computer and all its peripherals (printers, modems, and all that junk) into a power strip that needs to be turned on to turn on the computer. So just ask someone.

The desktop is what you see after Windows 7 starts. Other Windows desktops look similar.

To start a program like Quicken, you click the Start button (the round Windows button in the lower-left corner of the screen) so that Windows 7 displays the Start menu. Then you choose the All Programs menu option so that Windows 7 lists all the programs that you, Windows 7, or someone else has installed. And then you click one of the listed programs to start that program.

Sometimes programs — such as Quicken — don’t appear as options on the All Programs menu. They appear on submenus. If you click Start and don’t see the Quicken 2012 item, then choose the All Programs menu and you should then see a Quicken item. (Pointing to some object like the Start button and then pressing the mouse’s left button is called clicking the object.)

To practice this starting business, try starting the WordPad application that comes with Windows 7 by following these steps:

  1. Click the Start button.

  2. Choose All Programs→Accessories→WordPad.

    Windows 7 opens the WordPad program. (A program window is just the window that a program like WordPad or Quicken displays.)