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105 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Windows 7 Book Geared More Towards the Beginner to Intermediate User
You may be intimidated by the size of this tome when you pick it up (it is 1100+ pages) but you needn't be. It is truly a Windows 7 book geared toward the Beginner to Intermediate PC user. When I received it, I had a benchmark I was working against which is Windows 7 Inside Out. The Windows Inside/Out book was written more for the techie in mind. Very little fluff on...
Published on December 27, 2009 by Diana De Avila

versus
26 of 34 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Win 7 Bible
While the material contained appears to be fairly accurate, finding it is difficult. The page numbers in the index are wrong. Most are not even close. There are also a lot of typographical errors. Poorly edited.
Published on December 5, 2009 by Mr. Johnny Kreps


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105 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Windows 7 Book Geared More Towards the Beginner to Intermediate User, December 27, 2009
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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You may be intimidated by the size of this tome when you pick it up (it is 1100+ pages) but you needn't be. It is truly a Windows 7 book geared toward the Beginner to Intermediate PC user. When I received it, I had a benchmark I was working against which is Windows 7 Inside Out. The Windows Inside/Out book was written more for the techie in mind. Very little fluff on the user interface or how to use fun and creative applications. The Inside/Out book was not a book geared for fun ... however, the Windows 7 Bible IS. The Windows 7 Bible really caters to creativity too!

The first half of the book is all about getting around Windows 7, customizing your desktop and Windows experience and learning about cool new features like "Flip 3D" (press the Windows and Tab button simultaneously ... COOL). The book shows the cool, fun parts of learning Windows 7 without ever being intimidating or too technical. There are no CD's with code and the book takes you to the edge of creating a home network ... but not much farther. If you are a computer hobbyist that just needs a good reference book on getting around Windows 7, learning how to sync devices, manage files, work with media, making music, using Windows Live Mail, etc ... this is your book.

If you want something much more technical that gets more into networking and performance, I suggest Windows 7 Inside Out. If you just need a book to get a handle on Windows 7 and have some fun, buy the Windows 7 Bible. It's worth the money.
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53 of 54 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Appeals to the Widest Audience, January 19, 2010
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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There are so many Windows 7 books out there it is hard to give any one 5 stars. This book, the Windows 7 Bible may be 5 stars to some, and well, less than 5 stars to others. Why? Because, although this book appeals to the widest audience, in that it is a perfect blend of easy to read instructions, and complete enough to not disappoint, even the avid computer user, it still is not the simple yet effective tool for the beginner.

For example if you were someone who was introducing the older parent to computers for the first time, they would be challenged to use it. For that audience I recommend Windows 7 Step by Step (Step By Step (Microsoft)), it appears to be the top seller here at Amazon for those new to computing. I also like the Teach Yourself VISUALLY Windows 7 (Teach Yourself VISUALLY (Tech)) because a picture says a thousand words, and for someone who doesn't know the words that most of us take for granted, that is a great way to learn. When I was learning Excel 2007 for the first time, even though I was deeply steeped in Access 2007, I needed a quick guide that would provide the essentials, and the visual series was just right. You could turn to any section, and the clearly illustrated photos of the work screens made the procedures effortless, and unmistakable. You could pop open a page, read what you wanted to know, and be familiar enough with the function to step right through it.

The number one seller, but not for beginners is the Windows 7 Inside Out, or at least not for people new to computing that don't want to spend the time to learn it more in depth. One thing I like about the Inside Out series, which I have quite a few is that they include an eBook on a CD. That way you can copy it to your hard drive and have access to the pages, and advanced search features without having to go and dig out the book. More so if you have a network you can access the eBook from any one of your PC's. Yes it does copy into any one of your PC's as well, so it is always at the ready.

Pertaining to the Windows 7 Bible, the thing I am impressed about it the most is that you can crack the book on any page, and instantly know what they are talking about. The authors wanted to cover as much material as possible, but explain it in such a way that everyone would understand it. There is a large section on Windows Live Mail, which is advantageous since that one function is something used more frequently than most any other. Without going into each chapter section, the book covers the basics as well as some of the more advanced features. All in all an enjoyable read. I would recommend it.
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77 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything you need to know, January 10, 2010
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This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
I'm a person who tried her best to hold on to XP as long as possible, but the time came that change was inevitable as my old computer died. Those who went from XP to Vista and then to W7 might have found the transition easier. But, for me,who only stayed in Vista for 2 1/2 weeks while reinstalling programs, hardware drivers, and transferring documents, the change was considerable.

Since I purchased the computer just before W7 was released it came with Vista and Dell gave me a free upgrade to the W7 Home Premium Edition, and then I purchased an upgrade to the W7 Pro edition. This is a lot of change for a Grandma to adjust to, and I couldn't have done it without this book.

For the Vista part of the adventure, I purchased a "missing manual" series book which was no help at all. I had to partition the secondary hard drive and couldn't make heads or tails of what it was telling me to do since it neglected to explain an intermediate step. I had to go to the internet to get clear directions. That book is thick and heavy and probably contains everything someone else needs to know, but it had nothing I tried to look up.

The transition to W7 came and The Windows 7 Bible is even thicker and heavier and I wasn't looking forward to any of this. But, amazingly, whatever problem or issue came up, I could find a clear and sensible solution for in this book. It is well-indexed; logically arranged; and gives clear, logical, and sequential instructions and explanations. With this book by your side, you feel you're talking to someone efficient from tech support.

When I was having problems trying to make changes to our company webpage and run some programs that were not compatible with W7 yet, I found just the advice I needed to resolve the issue quickly while staying in my comfort zone: upgrade to the Pro version and create a virtual XP machine. This works perfectly and, though it sounds complicated (the word "virtual" is a bit intimidating) by following the instructions, I was back up and running my old programs in no time.

The folder structure in W7 is totally different from the folder structure in XP. Ordinary processes (like setting a restore point)are handled differently. I couldn't find where my Photoshop presets were hiding. I couldn't figure out why some programs are installed in one program folder and others in another program folder (has to do with 32 or 64 bits). I kept hitting dead ends since nothing was where I expected it to be.

You can spend hours going around in circles trying to figure it out yourself, but thanks to this book you don't have to. You can find whatever you're looking for and--from setting up libraries to creating disk images--can do it easily. I have customized my computer to do things my way and am beginning to feel confident enough to put the book on the shelf instead of on my desk. I have also developed a good relationship with Windows 7 and (I think) I will come to feel as comfortable with it as I did with XP.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Use Windows 7 Smarter and Make it work for You!, February 17, 2010
By 
Admiralu "admiralu" (Camarillo, California United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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The Wiley Bible books are an excellent series that includes thorough coverage of the topic that other books tend to leave out, particularly in the features and customization sections. The author, Jim Boyce is a veteran computer author who has written many books on computers, particularly Microsoft Outlook in the Inside Out series. I have several books by him. I am pleased to see him contributing the everyday user books. His normal focus was on the advanced to expert group and he really knows his subjects. If you use Windows, you will need this book. I live in California and many of the community colleges and vocational schools are overflowing with students, job seekers and others clamoring to learn or upgrade their computer skills. The Windows 7 Bible provides something for everyone, from beginners to more advanced users. This book is really an intro course in itself and will show you how to use Windows more effectively. During these tough times, solid computer skills are valuable and can set you apart if you are a job seeker, no matter what occupation you choose. Mr. Boyce takes the time to really explain many terms, acronyms, and concepts and shows several different ways of doing tasks so that you can find a way that works for you.

While I am a girl geek (I can install an operating system, partition a hard drive, install and update drivers, and do my own PC troubleshooting), I still find the Bible series important because of the extensive coverage of personalization topics, accessories both included and left out of this version of Windows and expert tips. An excellent example of this is the Administrators account. When the first account on the computer is created, it is part of the administrators group. The admin account allows you to oversee all computer tasks including creating new accounts, installing software, setting parental permissions, etc. While this account is technically considered an admin account, in reality it is really a standard account with special administration privileges. For more advanced users (I'm going to get technical for a moment), this means that if you initiate an action that will cause a system change, such as installing a new program, the UAC or User Account Control will appear in a dialog box and momentarily darken your computer screen. If you are using a regular standard account with no admin privileges, UAC will ask you to enter the admin username and password. If you have admin privileges, you will simply click continue and go on with your work. The "Real" Administrators account is not subject to UAC (it won't appear) and is hidden by default. While many regular users may not ever need the "real" admin account, the ability to use it has saved me many times in dealing with the many problems I encountered in Windows Vista. This book contains such tips.

The book is divided into 10 major sections, each with chapters covering topics and a troubleshooting section at the end. They are as follows:

Part One - Getting Started, Getting Secure
This section includes what's new in Windows 7, explanations of terms and basic computing techniques, parental controls and family safety and help and support.

Part Two - Batten Down the Security Hatches
This section includes chapters on the Windows firewall, malicious software, and Windows Updates

Part Three - Personalizing Windows 7
This section is one of the book's major strengths. The author goes in depth to take the reader through options to help you make the Window 7 environment your own. Included are personalizing the look and feel of Windows (colors, backgrounds, settings, etc.), ease of access settings for persons with disabilities, transferring files from one computer to another, customizing startup options and the Windows accessory programs (Calculator, Word Pad, etc.). This kind of information used to be included in the Microsoft Inside Out series, but was dropped when they decided to focus their coverage on more advanced topics.

Part Four - Using the Internet
This section is also a bonus. Windows 7 does not come with a mail client as it did in previous editions. No Outlook Express or Windows Mail. It also doesn't have a calendar or photo gallery. These features are available as free downloads from Microsoft called Windows Live Essentials, along with other programs and options you can choose. Topics in this section include using Internet Explorer 8 (customizing, security options, RSS feeds, web slices, etc.), Windows Live Writer (a new free blogging program available for download), Windows Live Mail (the replacement for Outlook Express in XP and earlier editions and Windows Mail in Vista), newsgroup and contact features.

Part Five - Pictures, Music and Movies,
This section covers the Windows Live Photo Gallery (free download), a more powerful Windows Media Player (it can now play unprotected AAC files from iTunes and many DVD files without the need for 3rd party software), Windows Media Center (available in the Home Premium, Professional and Ultimate editions) where you can watch TV on your PC if you have the necessary hardware to hook up to your TV set.

Part Six - Managing File and Folders
Covering a key component of Windows, how to manage your files and powerful new search options (Start Menu search, Windows Explorer file and folder search and the search index), backing up your data with an improved Windows Backup and Restore. Yes, you do need to backup your computer, an important feature.

Part Seven - Printing, Faxing, Scanning
This section covers installing, managing, and printing documents, faxing and scanning options. The faxing and scanning options are also a section that many other books tend to skip.

Part Eight - Installing and Removing Programs
Covers working with software programs, from installations, upgrading, repairing, and removing programs. It also includes more advanced topics like managing programs and processes, running under XP mode and compatibility options.

Part Nine - Hardware and Performance Tuning
This section is also a bit more advanced, covering installing and removing hardware, using Bluetooth wireless devices, syncing and fine tuning your system.

Part Ten - Network and Sharing
This more advanced section covers creating a home network with the new homegroup feature and managing resources. While it does give explanations of basic networking for the home user, those of you needing more information will find more information in the Microsoft Inside Out series or the Special Edition Using series for more geeky goodies.

Each section of the book also provides resources you can use to solve some common problems, both on your computer and on the web. Before I consider a new edition of Windows, this is one of the two books I will read first before buying. (The other is the Microsoft Inside Out edition of Windows). I highly recommend this book, if you are going to use Windows, make it work for you with the excellent tips included in this book.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There's Something In Here For Everyone, January 27, 2010
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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This is an ideal book for someone who has never used Windows before, and because of the many things which have changed and have been introduced in Windows 7, it is still useful to anyone just moving over to this great new operating system as well.

I'm a long-time Windows user myself. I found the "What's New" section very much useful. As for the remainder of the book, although some of the content may seem to be familiar territory, it is easy enough to skim headers and images to find things that have changed, undiscovered items of interest, and tips which may help make using Windows a little easier.

For new Windows users, including new computer users, this book is perfect! The first chapter covers computer basics such as keyboards, function keys, mouses, dragging, clicking and things of that nature so that you won't have to keep asking loved ones such tedious questions.

For experienced Windows users, I would not want to attack their pride by suggesting anything redundant, but to read this book is to become fully familiarized with Windows again, which will make using the operating system much more enjoyable. Much has changed, and there's no better feeling than knowing where everything is and what tools you have at your disposal.

With its comprehensive, well-illustrated coverage, I recommend "Windows 7 Bible" to everyone. It's also an approachable, absolute must for beginners. It's a fine book!
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive overview of Windows 7; perhaps tries to do too much..., December 27, 2009
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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Jim Boyce and Wiley Publishing are not engaging in hyperbole when they call this discussion of Windows 7 a bible. It's long (over 1100 pages) thick (2.4 inches) and heavy (3.5 pounds). Within these dimensions are detailed discussions of Windows 7 features and foibles that dissect the operating system over ten broad topical areas in 34 chapters and three appendices. Whew.

The sheer length of this book permits detailed discussions of many features. Some might argue that there is excessive discussion about some, contributing to the heft of the volume (which may keep it from being the "go-to" reference due to sheer size).

I found no glaring issues related to the Windows 7 content, but did encounter some general computing points that are debatable:
(1) A discussion of passwords in Chapter 3 makes the surprising suggestion to keep a password-protected list of your passwords in Excel on another computer. I'd amend this to keeping such a list on *some* removable media (not necessarily another computer), and then remind users that that workarounds for password protection offered by Office files are notoriously easy to defeat.
(2) A Chapter 23 tutorial on importing image files from a scanner overlooks that scanners have their own interface and file save options. The book then inexplicably suggests using .jpeg or .png instead of the "bitmap" format to save images. JPEG is a lossy, compressed format that I would not recommend for archiving scanned images and PNG is non-proprietary alternative to the .gif format that is less than ideal for rendering complex images. A better recommendation should have been to scan images into a .tiff/.tif format, which is lossless and can then be converted to .jpg or .png in order to take advantage of their smaller file sizes. "Bitmap" is a generic term for one category of images, often confused with the Windows-proprietary .bmp file format (which is also --confusingly-- called "bitmap"). This book should have taken advantage of a chance to disambiguate this concept instead of compounding the confusion for users (who are the author's broadly identified target audience in the opening pages).

These are not serious issues, but they were surprising.

If you're only going to buy one Windows 7 reference book, this would be an acceptable choice. If your budget will support more than one, consider adding this to a bookshelf that also contains one or both of:
-Windows 7: The Missing Manual
and
-Windows 7: The Definitive Guide: The Essential Resource for Professionals and Power Users
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Valuable resource for XP and Mac users, January 21, 2010
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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At slightly over 1200 pages, this is a behemoth of a book. Fortunately it's not the kind of book you must read through in a linear fashion. It's a great resource however and is a book you will likely visit as the need arises. It is geared to the beginning to intermediate Windows user for the most part, but any level will find useful information here. It's just not going to go into great technical depth that a more advanced user might desire. But for new Windows 7 users, including upgraders from XP, it'll be great.

I use a Mac as my primary computer and also had an older PC laptop that was running Windows XP. I had never upgraded from XP to Vista, so when my new PC laptop came with Windows 7, I was not familiar with the multitude of interface and operational changes that had been made in the OS. I really appreciated Chapter 1 in this book that highlighted all the significant changes between XP and Windows 7. It saved me a lot of aggravation getting used to the new taskbar and other assorted differences.

The book takes a good approach by looking at all the main areas and applications you are likley to encounter when using Windows 7. For instance, I was not really familiar with the newer Windows Live apps and this book got me started.

For Mac users who are not familiar with Windows, this is a great book for helping them as well. It has plenty of screenshots, although it is a bit hard to see the small detail.

I particularly liked the networking chapters that discuss the differences between the flavors of Windows 7 and how that would impact your ability to network to your office computer, for instance.

It's a big book, but it's a helpful reference to have around. Although you could search the internet for answers, it's sometimes more efficient to have a ready resource at hand. Nice to be able to flip through the pages when convenient, to pick up bits of knowledge.

I'd recommend this book first to XP users who never had a Vista experience and next to Mac users who want to get a comprehensive look at Windows 7.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Switching to Win 7? GET THIS!, December 24, 2009
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This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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I am transitioning from XP to Win 7, and this reference book will come in handy. I consider myself an advanced, but reticent & deliberate, user. Although I manage my system settings and tweak for performance, I only do so after deliberately seeking the best advice. For XP, that advice was online. For Win7, it's all in this one book. There is some information that is relatively simple and too basic for me, but there is also much more here for me to learn.

Bible is right ... 1100+ pages of an easy-to-read reference for computer users. Whether you are an advanced or novice user, get this!

===========================
UPDATE after 3+ YEARS OF USE (April 2013)
===========================

Has it really been 3+ years since Win 7 came on the scene? Amazing. I thought I would update this review after 3 years of use.

Shortly after my original review appeared, my 70-year old father went to Win 7. After several times consulting my Win 7 Bible for him, I bought him his very own copy!

Another thing to know - I still use this book once & awhile. Perhaps I don's use it as frequently, but I use it as a reference or refresher whenever I need to do something, or want to check if I am doing something efficiently.

Finally, when it comes time to go to Win 8, I will be looking for a comparable book like this from Wiley. Sure, if you really want to, you can probably find all this information somewhere online. But for $25, I don't think you can beat the value of having fingertip access to the best info about a windows operating system.

A+
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The lastest Windows Bible, December 23, 2009
By 
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Windows 7 has many changes, hence, the welcome release of Jim Boyce's complete guide that shows everything it does. Windows 7 Bible just about covers everything from split screens to the various navigation changes like pinning stuff to the task bar, big screen previews/ invisible windows, home group, the new sticky note feature, plus other stuff. The "bible" details all the parts of the core Windows 7 operating system, One important section covers using the new Internet Explorer 8, including stuff like network changes, web slices and walks you through the new desktop features, including Windows Live. Boyce's Windows 7 Bible outlines/details everything you show know to run the Windows 7 operating system. Following are some of the titles it covers:
1. Windows Live Essentials
2. Mail,
3. Movie Maker,
4. Photo Gallery,
5. The Toolbar,
6. Writer,
7. Messenger
8. Using Windows Live stuff like Hotmail /Spaces
9. Explains the use of the new stuff: Desktop Gadgets Desktop Windows manager, Fax and the slick DVD Maker
10. Devices and Printers option changes,
11. Changes to using the Calculator, Paint & WordPad
12. Media Center,
13. Searching for updates
14. Changes in applets is covered in detail
15. Home networking features
Most will learn a lot about Windows 7 and those with more than average operating system knowledge will really enjoy the book that takes shows all the new system in detail. Bottom line Windows 7 is much more than an operating system - novices will be amazed at all the features available to them and explained in the Windows 7 Bible - a great reference.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 1205 Pages Of Useful Information For Beginners and Intermediate Users, March 10, 2011
This review is from: Windows 7 Bible (Paperback)
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Yes, its 1,205 pages in length, so its not the kind of book you'll want to read all the way through, assuming you're somewhat familiar with previous versions of Windows.The eleven chapters/sections break down as follows, with the approximate number of pages dedicated to that topic:

(1) Getting Started and Getting Secure: 111 pages (2) Batten Down the Security Hatches: 30 pages (3) Personalizing Windows 7: 154 pages (4) Using the Internet: 28 pages. (5) Pictures, Music and Movies: 128 pages. (6) Managing Files and Folders: 168 pages. (7) Printing, Faxing, Scanning: 52 pages. (8) Installing and Removing Programs: 56 pages. (9) Hardware and Performance Tuning: 86 pages. (10) Networking and Sharing: 54 pages. (11) Appendixes: 20 pages.

The index at the rear is 40 pages long, which I consider a major advantage, since this book is most likely to be used as a reference source on specific topics. And the Contents section in the front of the book breaks down sub-topics nicely.

I doubt advanced users will find this book their best choice. While it is well-written, it begins with the basics. For example, under "Using Internet Explorer" there is a description of what the web is and how it works.

It is for that reason I suggest the book is best aimed at beginners and intermediate users. I guess I'm somewhere at the upper end of "intemediate" because I've found some of the sections quite useful (particularly the Media Center information), while the majority of chapters covered areas I already know.

The entire book is in black and white. That includes the diagrams and illustrations, of which there are many. Some are of less that optimum clarity, probably because they're printed on very inexpensive paper, which has a matte finish. And the type is quite small (I need my reading glasses).

I'm rating this book a 4, because it is so comprehensive and well-organized. It might well be the only reference book most users will need.
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Windows 7 Bible
Windows 7 Bible by Jim Boyce (Paperback - September 15, 2009)
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