Going From PC to Mac: The Basics

More and more people are continuing to make the jump from their PC setup to a Mac setup. If you are one of those people, then this is a basic setup guide that will definitely assist you during your transition. Congratulations on making a great decision, becoming a Mac user is going to be a choice that you will wish you made a long time ago.
iMac Computer
To get started all you really need is you new Mac computer. It doesn’t matter if you have purchased a laptop or a desktop, the functions and setup will be the same. Lets take a look at how to get through the basic setup when you have first purchased your new Mac computer.


This is where you will start. Think of the desktop on your new Mac as a real desktop. In other words, think of it as a place where you keep all your tools to get everything done. Unlike PCs, a Mac has tons of built-in apps and functions that will allow you to immediately go to work or play on the computer.


Located on your desktop is what is called the “dock.” The dock is an access bar that allows you to access files and applications quickly, without having to open the hard drive. The dock can be put anywhere you want on the screen i.e. bottom, top or sides, and can also be hidden if you so choose. When you choose the “hide” setting, then the dock bar will only appear when you scroll over the area of the desktop you have chosen to put the dock on.

Apple Mac Dock
The dock comes complete with these apps already built-in:

  • Finder
  • Dashboard (for widgets)
  • Mail
  • Safari Web Browser
  • iChat
  • Address Book
  • iCal
  • Preview (for viewing jpegs and pdfs)
  • iTunes
  • Photo Booth
  • iPhoto
  • iMovie
  • Garage Band (create your own music)
  • Time Machine
  • System Preferences
  • Downloads
  • Application
  • Documents


Downloads, applications and documents can be viewed using “stacks.” Stacks is an application that is built-in to your Mac that allows for quick and easy viewing of files. Just click on a stack to see what is there, then click on whatever file you want opened for better viewing.

Menu Bar

On the top of the screen you will find the menu bar. The menu bar changes to fit what application or program you are using at the time of access. Simply scroll over any menu bar item and a list of commands and functions will become available.

All of your status menus (sound, date/time, WiFi connection, etc) can be found on the right side of your menu bar.
Apple Finder Icon


The “finder icon in your cock can be used to find any application, document or picture that is on your hard drive. Simply click on it and it brings the hard drive up. From there you can navigate around all of your computer’s files.


The spotlight function on the top right of your desktop menu bar is a shortcut that allows you to find anything that is on your computer or has been accessed by your computer. Just start typing the name/names of a file and spotlight will bring it up and direct you to it.

Apple Spotlight


Your menu bar has a option that will allow you to find get help on anything and everything regarding your Mac and its accessories. Just pull the option bar down and type in your issue and the help menu will automatically display all of the options available to you.

We hope this has been a help to you. Mac computers offer so much more than a PC does. They are fun for the whole family and only get better as the years go by. Enjoy your new Mac, as once you have used it for a couple of days there will be no going back.

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