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Understanding and Using HP Quick Launch (Windows 7, Vista)

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This document pertains to HP Notebook PCs with Windows 7 and Vista.
Some HP notebook PCs come with Quick Launch buttons. Quick Launch buttons enable you to quickly access the programs that you use most frequently. For example, if you frequently travel for your job to give presentations, you could program the Presentation button to always open a presentation that you frequently use—all you have to do is press the button and the presentation opens.
The two most commonly used Quick Launch buttons are the:
  • Presentation button – enables you to always open a particular program and to view the screen on multiple displays by simply pressing the Presentation button.
  • HP Info button – displays the HP Info Center, which provides you with quick access to HP 3D Drive Guard, HP Support Assistant, HP Wireless Assistant, and System Information by simply pressing the HP Info button.
If the Quick Launch buttons software is installed, the Quick Launch icon displays in the system tray, so that it is always available and easily accessible.

Determining if you have HP Quick Launch buttons

To determine if your notebook has HP Quick Launch buttons, look above the F1-F12 function keys on your keyboard for the HP Info button icon and for the Presentation button icon. If you have these icons, you have HP Quick Launch buttons.
Figure 1: Example HP Quick Launch Buttons
Image of the HP Quick Launch Buttons on a notebook keyboard.
1 - Information button
2 - Presentation button
NOTE:You may have HP QuickPlay buttons on your particular notebook model, but you may not have HP Quick Launch buttons. If you only have HP QuickPlay buttons, you will see the HP QuickPlay symbol above the keyboard, but you will not see the HP Info button or Presentation button Quick Launch icons. HP QuickPlay buttons may launch the HP QuickPlay, HP DVD Play, or MediaSmart programs, which are different from the HP Quick Launch program.
Another way you can determine if you have Quick Launch buttons is to look at the Product Specifications sheet for your particular notebook model. If you have a custom-to-order (CTO) notebook, a product specifications sheet may not be available. If no product specifications sheet is available for your particular CTO model, contact HP for help determining if your particular notebook model has HP Quick Launch buttons.

Obtaining the HP Quick Launch buttons software

If you have determined that you do have HP Quick Launch buttons, but the HP Quick Launch icon does not display in the system tray, or if the Quick Launch buttons do not launch applications when you press them, the HP Quick Launch software is not installed. You can download and install the most recent HP Quick Launch button software update. Use HP Update to locate the software, or go to the HP Drivers and Downloads page to download and install the most recent version of the HP Quick Launch button software.
NOTE:If the computer originally came with Windows Vista and has been upgraded to Windows 7 you must install the latest version of the Quick Launch Button software.

Using the HP Quick Launch buttons software

To use the HP Quick Launch buttons program, click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
Alternately, if the HP Quick Launch buttons icon is visible in the system tray beside the clock, double-click the icon to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.

Understanding the Quick Launch buttons options

When you open the Quick Launch buttons software, you will see four tabs:
  • Programmable buttons – enables you to select the action that you want each Quick Launch button to perform.
  • Q Menu – enables you to select which items appear on the Q Menu. You can also customize the Q Menu from this tab.
  • Quick Tile – enables you to select a window orientation for currently running applications.
  • Preferences – enables you to set your preferences for displaying the Quick Launch icon and Quick Launch desktop notifications.

Understanding Programmable Quick Launch buttons

Programmable Quick Launch buttons allow you to change the action that a particular Quick Launch button performs. Available actions include:
  • Browse – browse to a favorite program or web site and set that program or web site to always open as the action that occurs when pressing the applicable Quick Launch button.
  • HP Info Center – provides a centralized location from which you can access HP 3D Drive Guard, HP Help and Support, HP Wireless Assistant, and System Information.
  • Presentation – enables you to open a program, file, or web site automatically and adjust your video and power settings for optimum viewing.
  • Q Menu – provides a centralized location from which you can quickly access the programs, files, menus, and web sites that you use the most.
For example, you could choose to keep the default Presentation action for the Presentation button, configure the action to open the Microsoft PowerPoint presentation that you always use on business trips, and to display the presentation on both your notebook monitor and a presentation screen (dual display).

Programming the Quick Launch buttons

To program the Quick Launch buttons, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. Select an action to perform for each Quick Launch button by clicking the arrow to the right of the name of each action, select an action from the pop-up menu, click Apply, and then OK.
The Quick Launch buttons will now perform the actions that you just programmed.

Configuring the presentation settings for the Presentation action

If you chose the Presentation action for one of your Quick Launch buttons, you will need to configure the presentation settings. Configuring the presentation settings involves selecting the program, file, or web site that you want to open when you press the applicable Quick Launch button and configuring the display settings.
NOTE:When using Quick Launch buttons to show a presentation on an external monitor, it is important to know that you cannot switch between users during a presentation with an external monitor. Changing display modes with the fn + f4 key combination, switching displays, and using the Presentation button and Quick Launch menu will not work if you change users in the middle of a presentation. If you have changed users, and a performance problem arises as a result, log off of the first user account and ensure that the second user account is logged in properly before continuing with the presentation.
To select the program, file, or web site that you want to open when you press the applicable Quick Launch button, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. On the Programmable Buttons tab, click Configure to the right of the Presentation action, and then click Browse.
  3. Navigate to the program, file, or web site that you want to open when you press the applicable Quick Launch button, click Open, Apply, and then OK.
The Presentation button will now open the program, file, or web site that you have programmed it to open, unless you change it.

Understanding the display settings for the Presentation action

There are three display settings available that are commonly used for presentations:
  • Internal only: This is the only option that is available if your notebook is not connected to any other displays. Internal only refers to the LCD display in the lid of your notebook.
  • Dual display: This option becomes available if you connect a second monitor or a projector to your notebook. This is a very useful option for business meetings, because it allows you to view what is on your own screen, while others can read on the second screen. You may use the fn + f4 key combination to switch between display modes in this setup, turning off one monitor or the other, or leaving both on, if you choose.
  • Extended desktop: This option becomes available if you connect a second monitor to your notebook. An extended desktop treats both displays as one large display, so your desktop extends from one display to the other. You can open more than one application up to "full screen" size and view them side-by-side on the two monitors. You can move your mouse from one display to the other.

Configuring the display settings for the Presentation action

To set a display mode as a default for the program, file, or web site that the Presentation button will open, follow the steps below.
  1. Connect the external display or projector.
  2. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  3. From the Programmable Buttons tab, click Configure to the right of the Presentation action, select the desired display settings option, click Apply, and then OK. HP recommends that you check the option to Allow system to determine the optimum resolution. Selecting this option allows the computer to adjust your screen settings on multiple monitors automatically.
You have now configured the display settings for the Presentation action.

Understanding the Q Menu

The Q Menu provides a centralized location from which you can quickly access the programs, files, menus, and web sites that you use the most. You can even customize the Q Menu to contain exactly the options that you want it to have, presented in the order that you prefer to see them. You can add predefined items to or remove them from the Q Menu as well as create and modify items that you define yourself. You can also reposition the items on the Q Menu so that they will appear in the order that you prefer them to appear.

Adding and removing predefined Q Menu items

To add and remove predefined items from the Q Menu, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. On the Q Menu tab, select the checkbox(es) next to the items that you want to display on the Q Menu, and deselect the items that you want to remove from the Q Menu, click Apply, and then OK.
The Q Menu will now display only the predefined options that you opted to include.

Creating custom items for the Q Menu

To create your own items for the Q Menu, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. On the Q Menu tab, click Add, enter a Display Name for the item that you are creating, and do one of the following actions.
    • Enter a file name or full URL (for example, http://www.hp.com) into the File Name field and then click OK or
    • Click Browse, find the program or file that you want to add, click Open, and then click OK
  3. Click Apply and then OK.
The items that you created will now display on the Q Menu.

Modifying custom Q Menu items

If you have a custom Q Menu item for which you want to change the display name or file name, you can use the Modify button to make these changes. However, you cannot modify predefined Q Menu items, such as System Information or Power Options.
To modify a custom Q Menu item, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. On the Q Menu tab, click the checkbox (if there is a checkmark inside of it or not) to enable the Modify button.
  3. Click the Modify button, and then modify the display name or file name, as desired, click OK, Apply, and then OK.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 above for every custom Q Menu item that you want to modify.
You have now modified the custom Q Menu item(s).

Repositioning Q Menu item(s)

If you do not like the order in which the items in your Q Menu display, you can reposition them.
To reposition Q Menu items, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. On the Q Menu tab, select the item that you want to reposition on the Items to display on Q Menu list (even if there is already a check mark in the box), and then either click Move Up or Move Down to adjust the position of the item on the menu.
    NOTE:If you have to uncheck a box to enable the Modify button, be sure that you re-select the checkbox to display the option in the Q Menu.
  3. Click Apply and then OK.
The order in which the items in your Q Menu appear will now reflect the changes that you just made.

Using the Q Menu

To launch the Q Menu and select a program, press the HP Quick Launch button that is programmed to open the Q Menu.
Alternately, right-click the HP Quick Launch icon in the system tray, then select Launch Q Menu to open the Q Menu. Click an item in the list to open the selected program or web site.

Understanding Quick Tile

If you work with multiple applications open at the same time on a regular basis, you may want to specify whether you want them to open next to one another, or one above the other. The Quick Tile option enables you to do so.

Setting quick tile preferences

To set your quick tile preferences, follow the steps below.
  1. Open the programs for which you wish to set your quick tile preferences.
  2. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  3. On the Quick Tile tab, select either the Vertical Tile or Horizontal Tile option.
  4. Under Applications currently running, select the programs for which you would like to provide a quick tile setting.
  5. Click Apply, and then OK.
From now on, the selected programs will open by default in the tiled view that you just selected, unless you change your quick tile preferences.

Understanding Quick Launch preferences

The HP Quick Launch icon displays in the system tray and automatically displays HP Quick Launch Buttons desktop notifications by default.
If you prefer not to see the HP Quick Launch icon in the system tray or to receive desktop notifications, you can turn these options off, or direct HP Quick Launch to detect changes to your display settings automatically by changing your preferences on the Preferences tab. Click the check box to activate or deactivate a personal preference.

Setting Quick Launch preferences

To set your Quick Launch preferences, follow the steps below.
  1. Click Start, enter quick into the search field, and then select HP Quick Launch Buttons from the list to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
    Alternately, double-click the Quick Launch icon in the system tray to open the HP Quick Launch Buttons window.
  2. On the Preferences tab, select or deselect the checkbox(es) to set your personal preferences, click Apply, and then OK.

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