Browser Basics:
Address Bar

Title: Jan's Illustrated Computer Literacy 101
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Getting to Web Pages

The Address Bar can get you to a web page in two ways:

Address Bar with drop list of sites

  1. Type it: Type the web address into the Address Bar and press ENTER, or click the Go button. Of course you must know the address! It is a great method when you do not have a shortcut in Favorites to the site or it's an address that you can remember. (It was probably a short one!)
  2. Drop list: The addresses that you typed previously in the Address Bar are kept in a list that drops from the bar. New places will eventually replace the old addresses on the list. Only the addresses that you typed yourself are listed.

Where you are:
JegsWorks > Lessons > Web

Before you start...

Project 1: Browser Basics    ConnectingTo subtopics
    IE InterfaceTo subtopics
    Navigating Arrow - Subtopic open
    icon-footprintAddress Bar
    icon-footprintAddress Paths
    PrintingTo subtopics
    SavingTo subtopics
    SearchingTo subtopics
    ExercisesTo subtopics

Project 2: HTML BasicsTo subtopics


Icon Step-by-Step 

Step-by-Step: Address Bar

 Icon Step-by-Step

What you will learn:

to clear browser cache
to enter a web address
to stop a page from loading
to use the Address Bar droplist

 Start with:  Connected to Internet  Internet Explorer open

The first icon above means "Connect to the Internet." You must be actually connected to the Internet for most of the following steps to work. A page on your hard drive or on a CD will load too fast for you to do some of the steps below. If you do not have an Internet connection, just read the directions to see how it works.

For the purposes of this section it does not really matter what site you view as long as it takes a while to load the page. Web sites are updated and completely rearranged from time to time. Do not be surprised if the illustrations below do not match what you see.

If a web address in the directions doesn't work, use any address that does work. Sometimes we have to get creative! 

Clear Cache

For this exercise, you need to clear the cache (temporary Internet files) first so that the browser will have to download the page from scratch. This is not something you need to do normally. You will be looking at what happens as a page is loaded, so read the directions first and then follow them.

  1. Select from the menu  View  |  Internet Options...   and in the Options dialog click the button Delete files to clear the Temporary Internet files. 

Address Bar: Enter Address

Type an address:

  1. In the Address Bar type  and check the time. Then press ENTER.
  2. Internet Explorer - Microsoft Argentina siteWatch the Status bar as IE contacts the site and starts loading the default page for this directory.

    How long
    does it takes for the page to finish loading all of the items? (That is, when does the Status Bar say Done?)

    As the page loads, you may see a number of "items remaining" in the Status Bar message. These are are usually images. They might be sound files or other embedded objects.

    Did you notice a blank page loading first? Sometimes a blank page has code on it that is checking what browser you are using so it can present you with a page that will work well in your particular browser. Or it may be automatically redirecting you to the page's new location.

Key Combo to complete address:

  1. In the Address Bar type  microsoft . (The browser may try to automatically complete the address. The highlighted parts will be ignored in the next step.)
  2. Keyboard Hold down CTRL and press ENTER. (CTRL + ENTER) Be prepared to be fast with the next step below!
  3. Before the page finishes loading, click on Stop button the Stop button. This will stop the process of loading the page.

    IE4 Microsoft site - Stopped loading before done.Keyboard  Your key combo adds  www  before and  com  after what you typed in the Address Bar. IE then proceeds to load the page, Microsoft's home page for your browser version. You can use this keyboard shortcut for any address that starts with www and ends with com.

    If your connection is fast and you are close to the server, the page may load too quickly for you to stop it. That is not likely if you cleared the temporary Internet files earlier. If you were late in clicking Stop, clear the temporary files and try again.

  4. Scroll the page and look for what parts did not load. Images that are not loaded yet show as a standard icon Image not loaded

    Image not loadedTip Once the browser knows the height and width of an image, you will see a outline that is the size of the image. If the height and width are not included in the source code, you will see just the standard size icon until the browser can calculate the size. The page will rewrap as the browser calculates the size of each image. This can make the page jump around a lot! Very annoying!

  5. IE4 Microsoft site loaded.Click on Refresh button the Refresh button to load the page again. This time let it finish.

Using Links

First you will visit a few pages and then see how you can use the drop list to return. You will see that the drop list only remembers certain addresses that you visited. Which ones?? That's for you to find out below.

Again, it does not matter what pages you visit for this exercise. But, be sure to use the same methods as in the directions, so you can see what happens with the drop list.

Link on page:

  1. Internet Explorer - Microsoft Support pageClick on Support at the top of the Microsoft page. This link is actually part of an image.

    A new page loads that tells about various support options. [If you are using a different page, just choose a link on the page.]
  2. Click on a text or image link or two that look interesting. You may look around the site a bit, but you are just passing through for now.

Link in Favorites:

  1. From the menu select  Favorites  |  Links  |  Today's Links .

    The page that loads is Microsoft Network's home page. [If you do not find Today's Links in your Favorites list, just use a link that is there. You are practicing using Favorites from the menu, so the particular link does not really matter.]

    Now that you have visited several pages, the drop list on the Address Bar may have something interesting to show.

Link in drop list

  1. Internet Explorer - MSN page with Addresses drop list showingClick on the arrow at the end of the Address Bar. Hmmm. Only the sites that you have typed into the text box show. The sites you reached by clicking a link on a page or from a shortcut in Favorites are not listed here.

    All the pages you saw are shown in the History pane, as the next step will show.

Link in History

  1. History paneClick on Button - History the History button on the toolbar.

    The History pane lists the sites that you visited and then the titles of the pages you saw. A page can show up twice with a slightly different name, depending on how you accessed it. Hover over a page title and a popup tip will show the full URL.

    The History pane in IE5 looks a little different but the principle is the same. All pages that you visited are listed.

  2. Open several folders in the History pane and inspect the entries.
  3. Close the History pane by clicking the Close Pane button at the top right of the pane or by clicking History button the button again..
  4. Open the drop list on the Address Bar again and choose .

    You should be able to tell that it loaded faster this time. On this return visit to the page, IE could use what it had stored in the temporary files on your hard drive.