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Make your keyboard easier to use in Windows 7

You can use your keyboard to control the mouse and make it easier to type certain key combinations.

You can adjust these settings on the Make the keyboard 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 your keyboard easier to use.

Select the options that you want to use:

  • Turn on Mouse Keys.
    This option sets Mouse Keys to run when you log on to Windows. Instead of using the mouse, you can use the arrow keys on your keyboard or the numeric keypad to move the pointer.
  • 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 and not realizing it.
  • 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.
  • Underline keyboard shortcuts and access keys.
    This option makes keyboard access in dialog boxes easier by highlighting access keys for the controls in them.
  • Prevent windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the edge of the screen.

Make your computer easier to see in Windows 7 (optimize visual display)

If you sometimes have trouble seeing items on your screen, you can adjust the settings to make text and images on the screen appear larger, improve the contrast between items on the screen, and hear on-screen text read aloud.

You can adjust these settings on the Make the computer easier to see 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:

  • Choose a High Contrast color scheme. This option allows you to set a high-contrast color scheme that heightens the color contrast of some text and images on your computer screen, making those items more distinct and easier to identify.
  • Turn on Narrator.
    This option sets Narrator to run when you log on to your computer. 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 your computer. Audio Descriptions describe what's happening in videos.
  • Turn on Magnifier.
    This option sets Magnifier to run when you log on to your computer. Magnifier enlarges the part of the screen where the mouse is pointing and can be especially useful for viewing objects that are difficult to see.
  • Adjust the color and transparency of the window borders.
    This option allows you to change the appearance of window borders to make them easier to see.
  • Make the focus rectangle thicker.
    This option makes the rectangle around the currently selected item in dialog boxes thicker, which makes it easier to see.
  • Set the thickness of the blinking cursor.
    This option allows you to make the blinking cursor in dialog boxes and programs thicker and easier to see.
  • Turn off all unnecessary animations.
    This option turns off animation effects, such as fading effects, when windows and other elements are closed.
  • Remove background images.
    This option turns off all unimportant, overlapped content and background images to help make the screen easier to see.

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.

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