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How to Launch an Application on a Windows PC and on a Mac

The convenience that computing resources have brought to our lives owes it to the myriad applications that we can use on the computer systems. Various applications have been designed and built to simplify the most complex of tasks. Once you have installed the software applications of your choice on your PC with a Windows operating system or on a Mac, the next obvious step is to access and launch the applications for using them. The mode of launching an application differs for a Windows based PC and a Mac. If you are making a switch from a PC with a Windows OS to a Mac, you certainly need to know exactly how to go about the task. There are multiple modes for application launch on a Mac just as in case of a Windows OS. Here's a closer look at the various options you have at your disposal along with a comparative study of the difference in the process for a Mac and a Windows installed PC.

Launching an application on a Windows PC

Here are the 3 useful ways that help in launching an application on a Windows PC.

1. Start Menu

  1. Access the start menu in the Windows operating systems by clicking on a button or icon at the bottom left corner of the screen. Notice the listing of all the programs installed on the system under the various subheadings.
  2. Important applications are listed at the top. Spot and click the option in this category in case you are searching for an application that is important by virtual of the significance of its use.
  3. If this application is used on the PC often, look no further as these are listed just below the important applications. Find and click on the application name.
  4. In case the application installed on the system is not listed at the top, find it in the all programs listing in the start menu. All the programs are listed here in a hierarchy. Search and click.

2. Program files directory

  1. The executable file for a program lies in the program files directory. The programs are generally installed in the C: partition of a Windows OS; look for the folder named after the application in the drive.
  2. Spot the executable .exe file in the folder. Double click on the file to launch the application. The file is easy to access unless it is hidden.

3. Search function

  1. Enter the name of the application in the search tab of the start menu.
  2. If the application is installed on the system, it appears in the search result. Click and launch.

Launching an application on a Mac

Here are the 5 useful ways that help in launching an application on a Windows PC.

1. Dock

  1. Spot at the bottom of the screen the bar having multiple application icons. A click on any of these icons is enough to launch the application. Look for the icon of the application on the Dock. Click if present to launch.
  2. Else, access the application on the dock by adding it to the dock. Drag and drop the icon of the application on the desktop or in the applications folder onto the dock.
  3. When you open an application, the icon automatically gets added to the Dock, albeit temporarily. To add permanently, right click on icon on the dock bar, click on options and then add to Dock. Now, just click the application icon on the Dock to launch it as and when needed.

2. Applications folder

  1. Open the application folder by accessing the Finder. Click on the desktop or on the finder icon on the dock to open the finder menu. Access the Go menu and opt for Applications option. The Finder window now displays the Applications folder.
  2. Click on the respective application's icon to open it.
  3. Drag and drop the icon on the Dock to add the icon to Dock for ease of access.

3. Launchpad

  1. It displays the icons of all the applications installed on the system. Access the launchpad icon on the dock in the OS X Lion. Else, go to the applications folder to spot the icon. Drag and drop the icon on the dock to add it for later use.
  2. Search for the particular application in the launchpad. Click the icon and launch.
  3. Launchpad is not available in the earlier versions of Mac OS X. In that case, access all the applications through the applications folder itself.

4. Recent items

  1. The recent items list stores data on the applications or documents last opened. If you have used the application recently, access it directly from the recent items list.
  2. Access the recent items list via the Apple menu. Click on the Apple icon on the left corner of the top of the screen. Select the recent items list option. Click and access the data relating to recent documents and applications used. Click on the icon for the application to launch.

5. Spotlight

  1. This is a search function available to you in Mac OS for you to access any document or application with ease.
  2. Search for the magnifying glass icon on the menu bar visible at the top of the screen. The icon is present on the right corner of the menu bar.
  3. Click on the magnifying glass icon on the menu bar.
  4. Key in the name of the application. The search function enables you to quickly find the application as it displays results simultaneously with the data you enter in the search tab.
  5. Spot the name of the application in the applications section. Click and launch.
The graphical user interfaces in both the operating systems, Windows and Mac OS, make application access and launch a breeze. As you get accustomed to working on these operating systems it becomes easy for you to quickly launch the applications you wish to use. Even for a beginner, learning the process is fairly easy and the presence of multiple avenues for the purpose brings to users the advantage of choosing the most convenient option. This is the basic advantage of using operating systems with emphasis on good graphical user interfaces.

Alia Haley is a blogger by profession. She loves writing on technology and autos. Beside this she is fond of cars and fancy accessories. Recently an article on iPhone Apps for Bikers attracted her attention. These days she is busy in writing an article on iPhone applications to stay safe.

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