When I go to print something, there are so many choices and I’m not sure what all I should be choosing. Can you please give me a brief rundown of the Print window? Thank you!

First of all, I just want to say that I completely understand what you’re saying. I feel a little overwhelmed every time I go to print something out too. Whether it’s one of my Word documents or a Web page, the process can be a little confusing. I mean, once you go to File, Print (or hit the Print icon), you’re given a new window with several different options and it’s hard to know exactly what you should click on. But that’s all going to change today. Come along with me as we examine the Print window just a little bit closer!

First of all, there are two tabs on the Print window: General and Options. You won’t need the Options tab very often, so let’s just focus on the General tab. At the very top, you’ll see the Select Printer section. If you only have one printer installed on your computer, you don’t need to worry about this part, but if you happen to have more than one, you just need to click on the printer you want to use. Perhaps you use a specific printer for certain documents. In that case, just find the printer in the list and click on it. Under that, you’ll see the status of your printer (Online or Offline), the location of it on your computer and any comments there may be about it.

You can then click on the Preferences button to change your settings for print quality, paper type, paper size, orientation, effects, color, etc. Most of those settings were put in place when you first installed your printer, so you don’t really need to worry about them, unless you need your project printed out in a very specific way. Also, if you’re having trouble finding the printer you want to use, you can click on the Find Printer button and search for it. Again, you won’t normally have to pay much attention to the Select Printer section, but there’s some information for you just in case you do.

Next, you’ll see the Page Range section. If you want all of the pages in your document to be printed, select All. If you only want a certain section printed, highlight it first and then choose Selection. Or, you can hit the Current Page option if you only want one page to print. Lastly, you can select the Pages option and type in the page numbers you want printed. For example, if you only want page two to print, type in 2. If you want pages one through nine to print, type in 1-9. It’s very easy to specify exactly what you want printed out!

Need more than one copy of your document? Then use the arrows next to Number of copies: to enter in how many you need. You can print as many copies as you’d like; there’s no limit. You can also collate your copies by checkmarking the Collate box. That’s all there is to it! When you have everything set up like you want, simply press the Print button and your document will be printed out just like you want it. Awesome!

~ Erin