Home > Store

Windows 8.1 Absolute Beginner's Guide

Register your product to gain access to bonus material or receive a coupon.

Windows 8.1 Absolute Beginner's Guide

eBook (Watermarked)

  • Your Price: $15.99
  • List Price: $19.99
  • Includes EPUB, MOBI, and PDF
  • About eBook Formats
  • This eBook includes the following formats, accessible from your Account page after purchase:

    ePub EPUB The open industry format known for its reflowable content and usability on supported mobile devices.

    MOBI MOBI The eBook format compatible with the Amazon Kindle and Amazon Kindle applications.

    Adobe Reader PDF The popular standard, used most often with the free Adobe® Reader® software.

    This eBook requires no passwords or activation to read. We customize your eBook by discreetly watermarking it with your name, making it uniquely yours.


  • Copyright 2014
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/8"
  • Pages: 512
  • Edition: 1st
  • eBook (Watermarked)
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-354173-8
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-354173-1

Make the most of your new Windows 8.1 device–without becoming a technical expert! This book is the fastest way to take control of Windows 8.1, and use it to create, connect, and discoversimplify and organize your whole life…learn more, play more, do more, live better! This book shows you how to do what you want, the way you want, one incredibly clear and easy step at a time. Windows has never, ever been this simple!

Who knew how simple Windows 8.1 could be?

This is the easiest, most practical beginner’s guide to using your new Windows 8.1 desktop, notebook, or tablet…simple, reliable instructions for doing everything you really want to do! Here’s a small sample of what you’ll learn:

•   Run Windows the way that’s easiest for you: mouse, touch,
or keyboard

•   Make the most of the Charms Bar and other new shortcuts

•   Get online with Internet Explorer® 11 and master its new tools

•   Retrieve up-to-the-minute news, sports, weather, and financial data

•   Set up your home network, printer, and other devices

•   Safeguard your personal information and keep it private

•   Enjoy all your digital photos, videos, movies, and music

•   Easily connect with anyone through email and the People app

•   Discover and play new Windows 8.1 games

•   Control your Xbox from Windows with Xbox® SmartGlass™

•   Manage even the most gigantic collections of data and media

•   Automatically back up your data to the cloud

•   Fix problems, protect against malware, and keep Windows working reliably

Sample Content

Table of Contents

Introduction    1

What Is an Absolute Beginner?    3

How This Book Is Organized    3

Conventions Used in This Book    4

Selects and Selecting    4

Special Elements    5

1  Your First Hour with Windows    7

Starting Up Windows    8

Signing In    9

Introducing the Start Screen    13

Returning to the Start Screen    14

Seeing Tiles off the Screen    15

Displaying All Apps    16

Using the Charms Bar    17

Using the Search Charm    19

Using the Share Charm    21

Using the Devices Charm    22

Using the Settings Charm    23

The Help and Tips App    24

Handling Special Startup Situations    25

Restarting Windows After a Problem    25

Waking Up Windows    26

Password Notifications    27

Exiting Windows    28

Signing Out of Windows 8.1    29

Locking Windows 8.1    29

Putting Windows 8.1 to Sleep    29

Shutting Down Your Windows 8.1 Computer    30

2  Interacting with Windows    31

Getting to Know the Windows 8 Interfaces    32

Using the Mouse in Windows 8    32

Using the Keyboard in Windows 8    34

Using Touch in Windows 8    35

Using the Virtual Keyboard    36

Using Windows Controls You Find on the Desktop    38

Window    38

Button    38

Option Button or Group    40

Text Box    40

Check Box    40

Windows 8 Toggle    41

List Box    42

Drop-Down List    43

Combo Drop-Down List    44

3  Organizing the Start Screen    45

Organizing All Those Tiles    46

Selecting a Tile    46

Moving a Tile    47

Making a Tile Bigger or Smaller    48

Adding a Tile to the Start Screen    49

Show More Tiles    50

Personalizing Tile Groups    51

Creating a Tile Group    52

Moving Tile Groups    54

Naming a Tile Group    54

4  Making Windows Your Own    57

Personalize the Start Screen    58

Personalize Your Account Picture    61

Personalize the Lock Screen    64

Setting a Lock Screen Slideshow    65

Lock Screen Apps    66

Personalizing the Desktop    67

Changing the Desktop Background    68

Changing the Mouse Pointers Used on the Desktop    69

Change the Desktop’s Color Scheme    71

Setting Up a Desktop Screensaver    71

5  Using Windows Store Apps    75

Learning Basic Windows Store Apps Info    76

Running Windows Store Apps    77

Starting a Windows Store App    77

Starting Additional Windows Store Apps    79

Stopping a Windows Store App (If You Must)    79

Using the App Bar to Change an App’s Settings    81

Managing Windows Store Apps    82

Using the App Switcher    82

Configuring App Switching with the Mouse    83

Switching to the Previous App    84

Showing Multiple Windows Store Apps on the Screen    85

Uninstalling Apps (If You Can)    89

Shopping at the Windows Store    91

Purchasing an App    93

Managing Your Windows Store Account    94

6  These Are a Few of My Favorite Apps    99

Email, Calendar, People    100

Maps    104

News    105

Sports    107

Food and Drink    107

Weather    108

Photographs    109

Reader    111

Music, Games, Video    113

Music    113

Games    115

Video    117

Additional Notable Apps    118

7  Setting Up Search, Share, and Notifications    121

Using Windows Search    122

Performing Search    123

Setting Search Options    124

Using Windows Share    127

Setting Share Applications    129

Setting Share Options    130

Fine-Tuning Notifications You Receive    132

8  Learning About the Windows Desktop    135

Introducing the Desktop    136

Getting to the Desktop    137

Returning to the Start Screen    139

Working with the Taskbar    139

Receiving Alerts and Notifications    140

Adding Toolbars to the Taskbar    142

Keeping the Desktop Organized    143

Automatically Line Up Icons on the Desktop    144

Arrange the Desktop by Icon Type    145

Change the Size of Desktop Icons    145

Hide All Desktop Icons    146

Displaying Special Icons on the Desktop    146

9  Working with Windows Desktop Programs    151

Introducing Windows Desktop Programs    152

Running Programs on the Desktop    154

Running Multiple Desktop Programs    154

Making It Easy to Start Your Favorite Desktop Programs    156

Saving Files to the Desktop    156

Exiting Desktop Programs    158

Working with Windows    158

Installing and Removing Programs    162

Installing Programs    162

Removing Windows Programs    162

10  Performing Easy Windows Configuration    165

The Control Panel    166

Setting Up Your Mouse or Touchpad    167

Mouse Settings    167

Touchpad Settings    170

Setting Up Your Keyboard    171

Changing Keyboard Settings    172

Personalize Language, Keyboard, and Date Formats    173

Setting Up Your Display    176

Adjusting the Resolution (Making the Screen Bigger or Smaller)    176

Setting Up Multiple Monitors    178

Adjusting Brightness    180

Setting Up Power Use    183

The Easy Method to Set Up Power Use    184

The Really Easy Method to Set Up Power Use    184

The Manual Method to Set Up Power Use    185

Customizing Corner Navigation    185

Setting Up Sound    186

Setting Up Your Speakers    186

Selecting Sounds for Windows Events    188

Ease of Access    190

11  Connecting to the Internet    195

Reviewing Important Internet Connection Basics    196

Learning About Internet Service Providers    196

Checking the Hardware Required to Connect    196

Learning the Internet Connection Services Typically Available    197

Understanding Routers for Internet Connection Sharing    199

Understanding the Network Adapter    200

Connecting to the Internet    201

Connecting to a Wireless Network    202

Connecting Where Free Wi-Fi Is Advertised    204

Connecting to Pay-as-You-Go Wi-Fi    205

Connecting to a LAN/Wired Network    205

Connecting After Upgrading to Windows 8    206

Connecting After You Restart Your Device    206

12  Surfing the Web    207

Figuring Out Which Browser to Use    208

Navigating to Websites    210

Entering the URL of a Site You Want to Visit    210

Searching the Web    211

Following a Hyperlink to Another Page    213

Revisiting a Site You Visit Often    214

Opening a Tabbed Site    215

Navigating Back and Forth    215

Enhancing Your Browsing    216

Zooming In and Out    216

Playing Videos and Music on the Web    217

Viewing Web Pages in the Desktop Browser    218

Pinning Websites to the Start Screen    219

Sharing Web Pages    221

Printing While You’re Web Browsing    222

Using the Desktop Browser    224

Creating Shortcuts to Websites    224

Opening All Links in the Desktop Browser    225

13  Managing Your Contacts    229

Introducing the People App    230

Connecting with Your Contacts    233

Setting Up Your Contacts    237

Linking to Facebook    238

Linking to Google, Outlook.com, and Exchange/Office 365    240

Linking to Twitter    241

Linking to LinkedIn    243

14  Setting Up and Using Email    247

Exploring the Mail App    248

Setting Up Your Email Accounts    250

Setting Up Your Google, Yahoo, AOL, or Outlook.com Account    251

Setting Up Your Exchange/Office 365/Outlook.com Account    252

Manually Setting Up an Email Account Using IMAP or EAS    253

Reading Your Email    255

Replying to a Message    256

Filing a Message in a Folder    258

Deleting a Message    259

Forward a Message    260

Mark a Message as Unread    261

Managing Junk Mail    261

Writing an Email Message    262

Addressing Your Message    264

Formatting Your Email Message    264

Attaching a Photo or Another File to Your Message    267

Checking Spelling in Your Message    268

Managing Your Inbox    268

Creating Folders    269

Flagging Messages    271

Printing Emails    271

15  Managing Your Calendar    275

Getting to Know the Calendar App    276

Controlling the Calendar View    277

Setting Calendar Colors    279

Synchronizing with Other Calendars    280

Connecting to Your Hotmail Account    281

Connecting to Microsoft Accounts    282

Connecting to Your Gmail Account    283

Adding Events to Your Calendar    284

16  Enjoying Your Digital Photos in Windows    291

Learning Photos App Basics    292

Accessing Pictures Stored on SkyDrive    293

Transferring Pictures from a Flash Drive    294

Browsing Through Your Photos    296

Working with Your Photos    298

Organizing the Pictures Library    301

Renaming Your Pictures    303

17  Sharing Your Windows Computer with Others    307

Windows 8 Users and Account Basics    308

Adding a New User    310

Adding a New User with a Local Account    311

Adding a New User with a Microsoft Account    312

Creating a PIN or Picture Password    316

Adding a PIN to Your Account    316

Adding a Picture Password to Your Account    317

Making Changes to User Accounts    319

Changing a User’s Type    320

Removing a User Account    321

Maintaining Security    322

Setting Password Policy    323

Using the Screensaver to Add Security    325

18  Sharing Files and Printers    327

Networking with Homegroup    328

Using the Windows Homegroup    329

Creating a Homegroup    330

Joining a Homegroup    332

Leaving a Homegroup    333

Troubleshooting Homegroup Connections    333

Setting Up Sharing    334

Disabling Sharing for Specific Files or Folders    336

Sharing Files and Folders Only with Specific Users    337

Sharing Your Printer    339

Seeing Stuff Shared by Others    340

19  Managing Files and Folders    343

Files and Folder Basics    344

Understanding Files    344

Understanding Folders    345

Exploring with File Explorer    347

Working with Libraries    348

Navigating the Folder Tree    351

Customizing the Content Pane    353

Exploring the Preview and Details Pane    355

Folder Options    357

Navigating Through Your Folders    360

Selecting Files and Folders    362

Selecting a Single File at a Time    363

Selecting Multiple Contiguous Files    363

Selecting Multiple Noncontiguous Files    364

Typical Files and Folders Tasks    365

20  Working with SkyDrive    369

Introducing SkyDrive    370

Adding Files to Your SkyDrive    373

Managing Files on Your SkyDrive    374

Viewing SkyDrive Status    376

Configuring SkyDrive File Storage    378

Saving to SkyDrive as Default    378

Managing Photo Storage Considerations    379

Synchronizing SkyDrive    380

Manage Metered Connections Considerations    382

Using SkyDrive from the Desktop    384

Offline Availability    385

21  Having Fun with Movies and Videos    387

Getting Started with the Xbox Video App    388

Setting Up Your Xbox LIVE Account    388

Adding Your Videos to the Videos Library    391

Moving Through the Xbox Video App    393

Shopping for Videos    398

Making a Purchase    398

Renting a Selection    399

22  Enjoying Music    403

Getting Started with the Music App    404

Learning What’s Where in the Music App    404

Setting Up Your Xbox LIVE Account    407

Loading Your Music into Windows 8    408

How to Link Your Music    409

How to Move Your Music    412

Browsing Through Your Music    412

Playing Music    414

Creating Playlists    415

Purchasing Music    416

Importing Music and Creating Music CDs    418

Importing Music from a CD    419

Creating a Music CD    421

23  Having Fun and Playing Games    423

Using Xbox LIVE with Windows 8    424

Setting Up Your Xbox LIVE Account    425

Controlling Xbox from Windows 8    427

Installing Xbox SmartGlass with an Xbox 360    428

Using Xbox SmartGlass    430

Learning the Xbox Games App    433

24  Safe Web Browsing    437

Understanding Internet Threats and Risks    438

Web Browsing Risks    438

Learning About Risky Attachments and Other Email-Related Threats    440

Learning Phishing Threats    441

Avoiding Virus Threats    443

Defending Yourself    444

Reviewing All-in-One Internet Defense Suites    444

Defending with Windows Defender    445

Checking Your Security Status at the Action Center    449

Using SmartScreen to Avoid Dangerous Websites    449

Covering Your Internet Tracks    451

Browsing Quietly and Invisibly with InPrivate Browsing    452

Using Windows Firewall    453

Managing All Your IDs and Passwords    455

25  Troubleshooting and Solving Common Problems    457

Handling Special Windows Startup Situations    458

Restarting Windows After a Problem    458

Messages You Might Receive While Signing In    459

Using the Troubleshooting Wizards    460

Using Task Manager to Close Unresponsive Programs    462

Understanding Refresh and Restore    463

Getting a Do-Over with Refresh    463

Restarting from Scratch with the Reset Option    465

Index    469


Submit Errata

More Information

Unlimited one-month access with your purchase
Free Safari Membership