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Make your mouse easier to use in Windows 7

You can change the mouse pointer and turn on other features that can help make it easier to use your mouse on the Make the mouse easier to use page in the Ease of Access Center.

Open Ease of Access Center:

  • by pressing the Windows logo key Windows logo key + U.
  • or

  • Click on the Start button, then All Programs, then Accessories, then Ease of Access, then click on Ease of Aceess Center.

Click on Make the mouse easier to use.

Select the options that you want to use:

  • Change the color and size of mouse pointers.
    You can use these options to make the mouse pointer larger or change the color to make it easier to see.
  • Turn on Mouse Keys.
    If you have difficulty using a mouse, you can select this option to control the movement of the mouse pointer by using the numeric keypad.
  • Activate a window by hovering over it with the mouse.
    This option makes it easier to select and activate windows by allowing you to select a window by pointing at it with the mouse rather than by clicking it.

Make it easier to focus on tasks in Windows 7

You can reduce the amount of information on your screen so that it's easier to read, and you can set up your keyboard to make typing easier.

You can adjust these settings on the Make it easier to focus on tasks page in the Ease of Access Center.

Open Ease of Access Center:

  • by pressing the Windows logo key Windows logo key + U.
  • or

  • Click on the Start button, then All Programs, then Accessories, then Ease of Access, then click on Ease of Aceess Center.

Click on Make it easier to focus on tasks.

Select the options that you want to use:

  • Turn on Narrator.
    This option sets Narrator to run when you log on to Windows. Narrator reads aloud on-screen text and describes some events (such as error messages appearing) that happen while you're using the computer.
  • Remove background images.
    This option turns off all unimportant, overlapped content and background images to help make the screen easier to see.
  • Turn on Sticky Keys.
    This option sets Sticky Keys to run when you log on to Windows. Instead of having to press three keys at once (such as when you must press the CTRL, ALT, and DELETE keys together to log on to Windows), you can use one key by turning on Sticky Keys and adjusting the settings. This way, you can press a modifier key and have it remain active until another key is pressed.
  • Turn on Toggle Keys.
    This option sets Toggle Keys to run when you log on to Windows. Toggle Keys can play an alert each time you press the CAPS LOCK, NUM LOCK, or SCROLL LOCK keys. These alerts can help prevent the frustration of inadvertently pressing a key.
  • Turn on Filter Keys.
    This option sets Filter Keys to run when you log on to Windows. You can set Windows to ignore keystrokes that occur in rapid succession, or keystrokes that are held down for several seconds unintentionally.
  • Turn off all unnecessary animations.
    This option turns off animation effects, such as fading effects, when windows and other elements are closed.
  • Choose how long Windows notification dialog boxes stay open.
    This option sets how long notifications are displayed on the screen before they are closed.
  • Prevent windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the edge of the screen.

Use your computer without a display in Windows 7 (optimize for blindness)

Windows 7 has many features that allow you to use your computer without a display. For example, you can have screen text read aloud by using Narrator or you can have Windows describe screen activity to you.

You can turn on or adjust settings for these features on the Use the computer without a display page in the Ease of Access Center.

Open Ease of Access Center:

  • by pressing the Windows logo key Windows logo key + U.
  • or

  • Click on the Start button, then All Programs, then Accessories, then Ease of Access, then click on Ease of Aceess Center.

Click on Use the computer without a display.

Select the options that you want to use:

  • Turn on Narrator. This option sets Narrator to run when you log on to Windows. Narrator reads aloud on-screen text and describes some events (such as error messages appearing) that happen while you're using the computer.
  • Turn on Audio Description. This option sets Audio Descriptions to run when you log on to Windows. Audio Descriptions describe what's happening in videos.
  • Turn off all unnecessary animations. This option turns off animation effects, such as fading effects, when windows and other elements are closed.
  • How long should Windows notification dialog boxes stay open? This option sets how long notifications are displayed on the screen before they are closed.

Use Speech Recognition to operate windows and programs in Windows 7

You can use your voice to work with windows and programs. Usually, you can just say the command that you want to perform. For example, to minimize all open windows, you can say "Show Desktop." To see the System Properties dialog box, you can say "Right-click Computer," and then say "Click Properties."

To open Windows Speech Recognition:

  • Click on the Start button, then click on Control Panel.
  • Click on Ease of Access
  • click on Speech Recognition.

Speech Recognition commands for working with windows and programs
The following table shows Speech Recognition commands for working with windows and programs. Words in italics indicate that you can say many different things in place of the example word or phrase and get useful results.

To do this

Say this

Click any item

Click File; Click bold; Click Save; Click Close

Double-click any item

Double-click Computer; Double-click Recycle Bin; Double-click Folder Name

Right-click any item

Right-click Computer; Right-click Recycle Bin; Right-click Folder Name

Minimize all windows to show your desktop

Show Desktop

Click something you don't know the name of

Show numbers (Numbers will appear on the screen for every item in the active window. Say an item's corresponding number to click it.)

Click a numbered item

19 OK; 5 OK

Double-click a numbered item

Double-click 19; Double-click 5

Right-click a numbered item

Right-click 19; Right-click 5

Open a program

Open Paint; Open WordPad; Open Program Name

Switch to an open program

Switch to Paint; Switch to WordPad; Switch to Program Name; Switch application

Close a program

Close that; Close Paint; Close Documents; Close Internet Explorer

Restore

Restore that; Restore Paint; Restore Internet Explorer

Minimize

Minimize that; Minimize Paint; Minimize Internet Explorer

Cut

Cut that; Cut

Copy

Copy that; Copy

Paste

Paste

Delete

Delete that; Delete

Undo

Undo that; Scratch that; Undo

Scroll in one direction

Scroll up; Scroll down; Scroll left; Scroll right

Scroll an exact distance in pages

Scroll down 2 pages; Scroll up 10 pages

Scroll an exact distance in other units

Scroll up 5; Scroll down 7

Go to a field in a form or a program

Go to field name; Go to Subject; Go to Address; Go to Cc

Type without using the keyboard with On-Screen Keyboard in Windows 7

Instead of relying on the physical keyboard to type and enter data, you can use On-Screen Keyboard. On-Screen Keyboard displays a visual keyboard with all the standard keys. You can select keys using the mouse or another pointing device, or you can use a single key or group of keys to cycle through the keys on the screen.

To open On-Screen Keyboard:

  • Click on the Start button, then All Programs, then Accessories, then Ease of Access, then click on On-Screen Keyboard.

Select how information is entered into On-Screen Keyboard

Click Options, and then, under To use the On-Screen Keyboard, select the mode you want:

 

Typing mode

Description

Click on keys

In clicking mode, you click the on-screen keys to type text.

Hover over keys

In hovering mode, you use a mouse or joystick to point to a key for a predefined period of time, and the selected character is typed automatically.

Scan through keys

In scanning mode, On-Screen Keyboard continually scans the keyboard and highlights areas where you can type keyboard characters by pressing a keyboard shortcut, using a switch input device, or using a device that simulates a mouse click.

Note:

  • If you're using either hovering mode or scanning mode and accidently minimize On-Screen Keyboard, you can restore it by pointing to it in the taskbar (for hovering mode) or by pressing the scan key (for scanning mode).
  • If you're using a mouse click to select a key in the Scan through keys mode, the mouse pointer must be located over On-Screen Keyboard.
  • The keyboard layout changes in On-Screen Keyboard depending on the language displayed in the active program.

To set On-Screen Keyboard to use audible clicks
You can have On-Screen Keyboard make an audible click when a key is pressed.

Click Options, select the Use click sound check box, and then click OK.

To use a numeric key pad in On-Screen Keyboard
You can use a numeric key pad to enter numbers with On-Screen Keyboard.

Click Options, select the Turn on numeric key pad check box, and then click OK.

To enable text prediction in On-Screen Keyboard
When text prediction is enabled, as you type, On-Screen Keyboard displays a list of words that you might be typing.

Click Options, select the Use Text Prediction check box, and then click OK.

If you don't want to automatically add a space after you insert a word using text prediction, clear the Insert space after predicted words check box, and then click OK.

Note

  • Text prediction is only available in English, French, Italian, German, and Spanish. To enable text prediction in a specific language, you must first install additional language files for that language. For more information, see Install or change a display language.
  • Text prediction isn't included in Windows 7 Home Basic.

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