Windows 10

During the summer, you may have noticed some of the computers on campus made the switch from Windows 7 to Windows 10. Laptops and desktop computers will be upgraded, as needed, but computer labs around campus will be updated this fall. What does this mean for you?


desktop screenshot

There isn’t a lot of change in the desktop view of your computer. The icons are still available, and there is still the option to pin frequently used applications to the task bar.


The taskbar is one of the most significant changes, and it hasn’t changed that much. You will note the round windows button has been replaced by just the windows logo in the taskbar. The next change to the taskbar is the addition of Cortana. Next to the Cortana bar is the task manager icon, and then an icon for accessing the files on the computer. On the right-hand side of the taskbar, you still have access to the computer’s peripheral equipment and clock, but there is also a message icon available now. What does all of this look like now, and how do I use these features?

Windows button

start button

When the Window icon is selected, you will see this menu. It is very similar to the Windows 7 menu, but the logoff/shutdown option is now on the left-hand side versus the right-hand side in Windows 7, and menu is split. The shutdown, sleep and restart options are located under the power icon, shutdown  and the lock, sign out, and switch user are located under the profile button, profile icon along with change account settings. In between these two icons, is the settings icon. settings button This is where the control panel or windows settings are located. The programs listed on the right are the pinned applications. This is the applications that are pinned to the start menu. All programs are still listed in the start menu, and are listed in alphabetical order.







cortanaWhat is Cortana? This is Windows version of Apple’s SIRI. You can either use your computer’s microphone, or type into the search bar. Note, the microphone on the right-hand side of the search box would allow you to speak to Cortana. The Cortana home button brings you back to the screen shown above. The Cortana Notebook icon cortana notebook button will take you to the Cortana notebook. When you have created an account and logged in, this is where all of the items will be listed that you have asked Cortana to remember. The Cortana devices icon cortana devices button will allow you to connect other devices with Cortana. This allows Cortana to analyze your search history and become more familiar with you for more effective interaction. The Cortana settings icon cortana settings button will take you to the Cortana settings. There are several options in this area, including having Cortana on standby to respond to you speaking, “Hey, Cortana.” Finally, the Cortana feedback icon cortana feedback button will allow you to help shape the future of Cortana by suggesting new features and commenting on the current features.



Task Manager

Next to the Cortana feature, is the Task Manager icon. task manager icon This will allow you to see what other applications are open, and easily switch between them. In this image, I have two applications open – Firefox and the Snipping Tool.

Task manager


Windows Messages (Action Center)

messagesIn this space, you can view all of the messages that pertain to your Windows setup. In this image, you can see that Cortana will help you manage your schedule, and take current traffic conditions into consideration. Security and maintenance will tell you when your virus protection is out of date, or if there is an issue. This will also be where you will be notified of Windows updates, etc. The action center is accessed by selecting the text bubble icon messages icon in the lower right-hand corner. A number will be displayed on the icon when messages are available for you.

These are the basic changes of Windows 10 from Windows 7. If you experience a compatibility issue with a software you currently use with Windows 7, please contact Merlin Miller for further assistance at 660-562-1634 or