Assistance using Microsoft Windows XP

The mouse:

There are a number of options to help you with the mouse. Below are a list of common problems and solutions. If you don't find your particular problem here, try the different possible solutions listed or a different available option - one may just help you out! Most of the settings are not permanent until you select OK, but the requested change takes effect immediately so that you can see how it works. You can always Cancel out of an option to leave things as they were so don't be afraid to experiment. The screens shown here are the general XP ones but many manufacturers supply computers with some different options so don't worry if you see different screens to the ones shown.

Problem - The mouse pointer moves too quickly for me.

Problem - I find it difficult to see the mouse pointer when I move the mouse.

Problem - I find it difficult to see where the mouse pointer is.

Problem - I have difficulty "double clicking" on things.

Problem - I am left handed and/or cannot use the mouse with my right hand.

 

Problem (1)
The mouse pointer moves too quickly for me.

Solution (1)
Adjust the pointer speed using the following option:

Action Using the mouse Using the keyboard
Open the Control Panel Click on Start, then click on Control Panel Press the Windows () key, or press Ctrl and Esc, the press C for the Control Panel option. If Control Panel is not highlighted use the arrow keys to select it then press ENTER.
If the screen looks like the one shown opposite with a "Switch to Classic View" option, click on it. If the screen looks like the one shown opposite with a "Switch to Classic View" option, press the Tab key until the option is highlighted (with a box round it) and press ENTER.
You should now have a screen something like the one opposite. You should now have a screen something like the one opposite.
Double click on the mouse icon in the control panel. Press M and if the mouse icon shown opposite is not selected, use the arrow keys to highlight it. Press ENTER
You should have a window like the one opposite. Click on the Pointer Options tab at the top if it isn't already selected.
You should have a window like the one opposite. If the Pointer Options tab isn't already selected and displayed, press Ctrl+Tab until it is.
Adjust the pointer speed

Click on the slider under "Select a pointer speed" and hold the left mouse button, the drag the slider towards slow. Release the slider and try moving the mouse to see the effect.
If you are happy with the new setting, click on OK to save it, otherwise click on Cancel to leave it as it was.

Press Alt+C and a box should appear around the slider between slow and fast beneath "Select pointer speed". Use the arrow left and right keys to adjust the speed. You can try moving the mouse while doing this to see the effect of the change.
If you are happy with these settings, press Tab repeatedly until the OK box is highlighted and press ENTER. Use the Cancel option if you do not wish to save any changes made.

Note:

The Enhance pointer precision is a new option with XP to improve the precision when using a mouse on detailed graphics. It is probably best to leave it as it is.

   

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Problem (2)
I find it difficult to see the mouse poiner when I move the mouse.

Solution (2)
Switch on "pointer trails" using the following option:

Action Using the mouse Using the keyboard
Open the Control Panel Click on Start, then click on Control Panel Press the Windows () key, or press Ctrl and Esc, the press C for the Control Panel option. If Control Panel is not highlighted use the arrow keys to select it then press ENTER.
If the screen looks like the one shown opposite with a "Switch to Classic View" option, click on it. If the screen looks like the one shown opposite with a "Switch to Classic View" option, press the Tab key until the option is highlighted (with a box round it) and press ENTER.
You should now have a screen something like the one opposite. You should now have a screen something like the one opposite.
Double click on the mouse icon in the control panel. Press M and if the mouse icon shown opposite is not selected, use the arrow keys to highlight it. Press ENTER.

You should have a window like the one opposite. Click on the Pointer Options tab at the top if it isn't already selected.

You should have a window like the one opposite. If the Pointer Options tab isn't already selected and displayed, press Ctrl+Tab until it is.

Switch on pointer trails:

Click the Display pointer trails option and try moving the mouse around to see the trails. You can adjust the length of the trails by clicking and dragging the slider between Short and Long.
If you are happy with the new setting, click on OK to save it, otherwise click on Cancel to leave it as it was.

Press Alt+D to switch on pointer trails and try moving the mouse around to see the trails. You can adjust the length of the trails by pressing Tab so that a box appears around the slider between Short and Long, the use the arrow left and right keys to adjust it.
If you are happy with these settings, press Tab repeatedly until the OK box is highlighted and press ENTER. Use the Cancel option if you do not wish to save any changes made.

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Problem (3)
I find it difficult to see where the mouse pointer is.

Solution (3)
Switch on "Show location of pointer...." This does not require you to move the mouse to find the pointer:

Action Using the mouse Using the keyboard
Select Mouse in the Control Panel Use the first 4 steps in Solution2 above. Use the first 4 steps in Solution2 above.

You should have a window like the one opposite. Click on the Pointer Options tab at the top if it isn't already selected.
Click in the box by "Show location of pointer when I press the CTRL key" so that it has a tick mark in it like shown opposite

You should have a window like the one opposite. If the Pointer Options tab isn't already selected and displayed, press Ctrl+Tab until it is.
Press the Tab key repeatedly until there is a box around "Show location of pointer when I press the CTRL key". If the boc to the left of the text doesn't have a tick mark in it, press space to put one there (pressing space again removes it).

Test it!

Press the Ctrl key once. When you release it you should see circles of decreasing sizes appear briefly on the screen around wherever the pointer is currently located.

If you are happy with the new setting, click on OK to save it, otherwise click on Cancel to leave it as it was.

Press the Ctrl key once. When you release it you should see circles of decreasing sizes appear briefly on the screen around wherever the pointer is currently located.

If you are happy with these settings, press Tab repeatedly until the OK box is highlighted and press ENTER. Repeat this action for the previous window. Use the Cancel option if you do not wish to save any changes made.

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Problem (4)
I have difficulty "double clicking" on things.

Solution (4)
Adjust the double-click speed with the following option:

Action Using the mouse Using the keyboard
Select Mouse in the Control Panel Use the first 4 steps in Solution2 above. Use the first 4 steps in Solution2 above.

You should have a window like the one opposite.
Click on the tab at the top labelled "buttons".

You should have a window like the one opposite. Press Ctrl+Tab so that the "buttoms" tab at the top is highlighted.

You should now have a screen something like the one opposite (these screens can vary with different computer suppliers but the options are similar).
In the Double-click speed box, click on and drag the slider between Slow and Fast, then try the adjusted speed by double clicking on the folder to the right. This will open if your double-click was successful. Note that the mouse should not move between the two clicks - this is often a problem for new users. Keep adjusting the speed until your are able to double-click on the folder successfully.

If you are happy with the new setting, click on OK to save it, otherwise click on Cancel to leave it as it was.

You should now have a screen something like the one opposite (these screens can vary with different computer suppliers but the options are similar).
Press the Tab key repeatedly until there is a box around the Slow - Fast slider under Double-click speed. Then use the arrow left and right keys to adjust the speed.
You will need the mouse for the next bit! Try double clicking on the folder to the right.This will open if your double-click was successful. Note that the mouse should not move between the two clicks - this is often a problem for new users. Keep adjusting the speed until your are able to double-click on the folder successfully.

If you are happy with these settings, press Tab repeatedly until the OK box is highlighted and press ENTER. Repeat this action for the previous window. Use the Cancel option if you do not wish to save any changes made.

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Problem (5)
I am left handed and/or cannot use the mouse with my right hand.

Solution (5)
Switch the functions of the mouse buttons over with the following option:

Action Using the mouse Using the keyboard
Select Mouse in the Control Panel Use the first 4 steps in Solution2 above. Use the first 4 steps in Solution2 above.

You should have a window like the one opposite.
Click on the tab at the top labelled "buttons".

You should have a window like the one opposite. Press Ctrl+Tab so that the "buttoms" tab at the top is highlighted.

You should now have a screen something like the one opposite (these screens can vary with different computer suppliers but the options are similar).
Click on the check box next to "Switch primary and secondary buttons" so that a tick appears in the box. Note the change will not take effect until you click on the Apply or OK button. Then you will have to use the opposite mouse buttons to how it was configured before.

If you are happy with the new setting, click on OK to save it, otherwise click on Cancel to leave it as it was.

You should now have a screen something like the one opposite (these screens can vary with different computer suppliers but the options are similar).
Press the Tab key repeatedly until there is a box around the "Switch primary and secondary buttons" option and press space to put (or remove) a tick in the check box next to it.
You will need the mouse for the next bit! Note the change will not take effect until you click on the Apply or OK button. Then you will have to use the opposite mouse buttons to how it was configured before.

If you are happy with these settings, press Tab repeatedly until the OK box is highlighted and press ENTER. Repeat this action for the previous window. Use the Cancel option if you do not wish to save any changes made.

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