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Acquiring and Installing Software

We will talk about three methods of acquiring and installing software:

• Purchase off the shelf
• Download
• CD/DVD from magazine

Installing Software:

Purchase off the shelf:
Most will have installation instructions of some sort (either in a user manual or on the side of the box, etc) or in a file on the CD/DVD itself. Some CD/DVDs will auto-start the installation when the CD/DVD is placed in the drive. Generally the procedure is as follows: Insert CD/DVD into the drive. If the installation application does not start automatically, click on Start> Run> Browse> double click on the CD/DVD drive. You should see a set of files appear in the panel (indicating the contents of the CD/DVD). With a bit of luck, one of the files will be called something like "setup.exe". Click on the file and then click on Open. The name of this file, and where it is, will appear in the text box on the RUN dialogue. Click OK to execute the program. (NB Some software may have the setup program inside another folder on the CD/DVD. Check to see if there is a readme file as this may give you further instructions).

Download software:
Before you click on the download button to save the file, check where it is going to be downloaded to. After the file has been downloaded, go to that folder using Windows Explorer. If the last part of the file's name ends in .exe then simply double click on the file to start the installation process and just follow the prompts.

If, on the other hand, you have downloaded a file which ends in .zip or .rar then you have downloaded a file called an archive. An archive is a set of files that have been brought together into one single file, to either keep the files grouped together or to compress the file (make the file smaller). Everyone who has Windows XP can get access to a ZIP file, simply treat it like any other folder.

RAR files require a separate program to be installed. Once installed it behaves much like ZIP does. If you don't have WINRAR then you will need to download and install this application (or any other that handles RAR files). In both cases, extract the files to another folder and execute the setup program to install.

CD/DVD from magazine:
Most CDs will auto start, and bring up the contents in a web page. You will browse to the file that you want, then you will "download" the file to a folder which you will then treat identically to a program downloaded from the Net (see above).

To Uninstall Software

The best way to uninstall any software in Windows is through Control Panel. If you fail to uninstall in this manner you may leave yourself with an unstable system.

Start> Control Panel> Add/Remove Programs> select the program you want to remove >click on Change/Remove (further dialogue boxes may appear depending on the application you have chosen to remove)

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