To work with files you must first have some! Playing around with files already on the hard disk might get us all in trouble. So you will first create some files. Then you can play with them!
You learned to open an application from the Start menu or (Win8) Start screen in Windows Basics. In this section you will learn another method.
The application Notepad is a plain text editor. This means that you can create documents that contain only text - no graphics. It also means that you can't get fancy. No tables, frames, or other fancy features. So why bother??
Every word processor out there can read such a plain text document, when they don't read each other's file formats well at all! What Notepad creates is just fine for writing simple memos, lists, or quick notes and is widely used for writing programming code. So Notepad is well worth meeting.
Notepad opens with a new blank document ready for your typing. Many applications behave this way. Others offer you the option first of opening an existing document or picking a template for a new document.
The cursor is the shape that shows where the text you type will go. Different programs use somewhat different shapes. A vertical bar of some type is the most common. Do you see the cursor in the images of Notepad? It is the vertical bar at the end of the typing.
Undo in Notepad: You can only undo the last action in Notepad. Clicking somewhere can be an action!
Step-by-Step: Text - Create & Save
|What you will learn:||to open an application from Computer/File Explorer
to create a new document
to save a document
to close an application
To use this method to open an application, you need to know:
a. the name of the file that starts the application
b. what folder the file is in
Filenames do not show the extensions
Most installations of Windows do not show the file name extensions by default. Anyone who works with many types of documents will understand why hiding the extension is a bad idea!
Solution: Open Folder Options, in a Computer or File Explorer window and change a setting:
WinXP: Open the Tools menu and select Folder Options. Click on the View tab. Uncheck the box for 'Hide extensions for known file types'. Click on OK and your change will be applied.
Vista/Win7: Click the Organize button, and then Folder and Search Options. Click the View tab. Uncheck the box for 'Hide extensions for known file types'. Click on OK and your change will be applied.
Win8: On the View ribbon tab, click the button Options and then on the View tab. Check the box 'File name extensions' to show the extensions.
Since this document has not been saved before, you will see the Save As dialog box. For most applications the Save In text box shows the folder last used to save something, even if it was by a different program. Others programs have a default folder for saving files.
Manage files & folders in dialog: While in an Open or Save As dialog box, you can do most of the tasks that you learned to do in My Computer and Explorer, like rename, move, copy, delete. Popup menus are available, too. You can even create a new folder using the New Folder button on the toolbar.
Some applications are not entirely happy with doing these things inside a dialog box. They may lock up or crash. So test your applications before you try to manage files within a dialog box. You wouldn't want crash the program before you actually saved your work!
drive did not show in drop list
Sometimes the list does not show a removable drive until you have used it.
Solution: Select My Computer in the drop list. The drives will show in the pane below. Double-click your flash drive from there to show its contents
Vista, Win7, Win8: The Save dialog opens with a folder tree and contents pane which show the last folder to which you saved a file.
Remember - spaces are important in a path, too!
The title bar of Notepad changes to include the new name, with a txt extension automatically added. Most applications have a default extension to add to a filename if you don't type it in yourself.
To see what extensions an application uses on its saved files, click on the down arrow in the 'Save as type' box. In an Open dialog box, on the other hand, this list will show what extensions the program can open. But it may not be able to save in those types. For example, Microsoft Word can open Lotus Word Pro documents (extension lwp) but cannot save in that format. It's a one-way translation.
If you made changes to your document since the last time you saved it, a dialog will appear that asks if you want to save the document. Only you know if you need to save those changes.