Getting Started

In this chapter you will learn the basics of ZoomText, including:

  • How to install and activate ZoomText.
  • How to start and exit ZoomText.
  • How to enable and disable ZoomText.
  • How to use the main ZoomText user interface and tray icon.
  • How to use ZoomText's Windows logon support.
  • How to get help on using ZoomText.

Although the information in this chapter should get you up and running, please refer to the following chapters for complete instructions.


Installing ZoomText

ZoomText 10 is easy to install on your system. The ZoomText CD includes a talking setup program with large-print dialog boxes that guide you through the installation. The setup program offers two methods of installation: Automatic and Custom.

Automatic installation installs ZoomText using the most common setup options (listed in the table on the next page). You are presented with fewer dialogs and the installation is completed in less time.

Custom installation allows you to choose all of the setup options.

Note:   When you install ZoomText the setup program will install system-level components. In order to install these components you must have administrator privileges. If you do not have these privileges, contact your network administrator before proceeding with the installation.

The following table describes the setup options that are applied during automatic installations.



Setup Options

Automatic Installation Settings

Installation folder

In 32-bit versions of Windows:
C:\Program Files\ZoomText 10

In 64-bit versions of Windows:
C:\Program Files (x86)\ZoomText 10

Display a ZoomText icon on the desktop *


Start ZoomText automatically when the system starts *


Enable Windows logon support *


Speech synthesizers **

ZoomText English-only version:
All English speech synthesizers are installed.

ZoomText International versions:
TruVoice English and all available synthesizers for the selected language are installed.



This setting can be changed at any time after installing ZoomText. This setting is located in ZoomText's Program Preferences dialog. To open this dialog, in the Settings menu, choose Program...


Speech synthesizer options only apply when installing ZoomText Magnifier/Reader.


�   To install ZoomText

  1. Disable virus-protection software and close all other programs.
  2. Insert the ZoomText 10 CD into the CD-ROM drive.

The ZoomText Setup program will start automatically.

  1. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

�   If Setup does not start automatically

  1. Click on the Windows Start button and select Run...
  2. Browse to your CD-ROM drive.
  3. Select the Setup program and click Open.
  4. Click OK in the Run dialog box.



Downloading Program Components

If you obtained your ZoomText 10 software via download from Ai Squared’s website, you may not have received some of ZoomText’s optional program components. These components include speech synthesizers and product localizations (versions of ZoomText in other languages). You can download these components at any time.

Note:   The selection of components that you can download depends on the type of ZoomText product installed on your system.

�   To download program components

In ZoomText's Help menu, select Download Program Components...

Your web browser launches to the ZoomText program components web page. A list of available components is displayed along with instructions for downloading and installing.

Automatic Updating

ZoomText 10 includes automatic online version checking and updating. This service keeps your installation of ZoomText up-to-date with the latest fixes and enhancements. Here's how it works...

Each time you start ZoomText, the Update Wizard checks to see if you are online.  If so, it quickly checks to see if you are running the latest version. If an update is available, the Update Wizard will ask if you want to download it. By clicking on the 'Yes' button, the update will download and install automatically.

Note:   An Internet connection is required to use this feature.


ZoomText Update Wizard


If you or your network administrator does not want to check for updates each time you start ZoomText, you can disable automatic updating as follows:

�   To disable automatic updating

  1. In the Settings menu, choose Program...
  2. Uncheck Check for online updates each time ZoomText is launched.
  3. Click OK.


In addition to the automatic updating, you can manually check for updates at any time

�   To manually check for updates

In the Windows Start menu, choose Programs ZoomText 10 Other Check for Updates.

The Update Wizard appears and walks you through the update procedure.


Starting ZoomText 10

Once ZoomText is installed on your system, it can be started using one of the following procedures.

  • On the Windows desktop, select the ZoomText 10 program icon.
  • In the Windows Start menu, choose ProgramsZoomText 10ZoomText 10.

Note:   ZoomText can be configured to load automatically when starting Windows. This option can be enabled while installing ZoomText, or in the ZoomText Program Preferences dialog box. For more information, see "Program Preferences" in
Chapter 6.

When ZoomText starts up, it changes your display to show a magnified view of the normal screen. As you move the mouse, type text and navigate within your applications, the magnified view automatically scrolls, keeping the area of activity in view.

If you have installed ZoomText Magnifier/Reader, ZoomText will also speak aloud, narrating your actions as you work with your documents and applications. All of your Windows programs will operate normally while ZoomText is running.

Activating ZoomText 10

ZoomText 10 contains product activation technology designed to eliminate unauthorized use of ZoomText, without imposing a burden on legitimate users. Product activation is a simple, straightforward and anonymous process that takes just a few seconds to complete when performed over the Internet.

After you install ZoomText you have up to 60 days to activate the software. Until you do, ZoomText will run as a trial. You can activate immediately or anytime during the 60-day trial period.  All features are available during the trial period, so you have full use of the software. When the trial period expires you must activate ZoomText to continue using it.



Preparing to Activate ZoomText

To activate ZoomText 10 you will need your ZoomText 10 serial number, provided with your purchased copy. If you have purchased an upgrade version of ZoomText 10 you will also need the serial number from your previous version of ZoomText (version 9.1 or earlier), unless your previous version is already installed on your system. These serial numbers can be found within your ZoomText product packages, as described below.

�   Where to find your ZoomText serial number

  • On the ZoomText CD sleeve
  • On the product registration card
  • On the top of the ZoomText product box
  • On the back of the ZoomText User's Guide

Note:   If you purchased your ZoomText 10 product from Ai Squared's online store, your product serial number will be included in your purchase confirmation email.


The Activation Process

During the 60-day trial period, each time you start ZoomText the Activation Wizard appears. The wizard presents the following options for you to choose from:

  • Option 1:   I have a serial number and want to activate ZoomText

Choose this option if you have already purchased or been provided with a ZoomText product and you're ready to activate the software. The wizard will guide you through the activation process.

  • Option 2:   I want to purchase ZoomText

Choose this option if you are ready to purchase a ZoomText product. The wizard will display information on how to purchase ZoomText.

  • Option 3:   I want to try ZoomText

Choose this option if you want to run ZoomText in trial mode. Trial mode allows you to use ZoomText for up to 60 days. When the 60-day trial period expires, you must activate ZoomText to continue using it.


The ZoomText Activation Wizard - Welcome dialog

When you choose to activate ZoomText you are prompted to enter your product serial number. Once you have entered your serial number, the manner in which activation is completed depends on whether or not you have an Internet connection.


  • If you are connected to the Internet your serial number and system code are automatically passed to the Ai Squared activation server for validation. An activation code is then passed back to your computer, activating your ZoomText license. This process takes just a few seconds to complete.
  • If you are not connected to the Internet the wizard displays your serial number and system code, along with instructions on how to manually obtain an activation code. An activation code can be obtained from Ai Squared's activation website (using another computer that is connected to the Internet), or by contacting Ai Squared's Product Support department.

    Telephone activation support is available Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm Eastern Time.

    In North America, call toll-free (866) 331-1233
    Outside North America, call (802) 362-5393

Activating a Magnifier/Reader installation with a Magnifier serial number

If you have installed the ZoomText Magnifier/Reader software and then activate ZoomText using a Magnifier serial number, the software will convert to a ZoomText Magnifier product - i.e. all screen reading features will be disabled. To regain the use of the screen reading features, you must purchase a Magnifier/Reader serial number and reactivate ZoomText.

Activating ZoomText on more than one computer

With single-user versions of ZoomText, you can install and activate ZoomText on up to three computers (in accordance with the ZoomText Software License Agreement). Multiple activations are provided to accommodate individuals that use more than one computer, such as a home computer, a work computer and a laptop computer. While ZoomText may be installed on up to three computers, use of the collective installations is restricted to one user at any given time.

Note:   Multi-user standalone versions of ZoomText provide one activation per licensed user.



Transferring Your ZoomText Software License

Should you want to move your ZoomText software to a new computer, or need to reformat the hard drive on your current computer, it is important that you first transfer your software license back to the ZoomText activation server. This preserves your license so that it may be used to activate your new installation of ZoomText.  

To transfer your ZoomText software license, from the ZoomText menu bar, select HelpTransfer Software License...  This action will launch the ZoomText Activation Wizard and guide you through the transfer process. This process will deactivate ZoomText on your current computer so that it can be reactivated on the new computer.



Frequently Asked Questions about Product Activation

  • What is product activation?
    Product activation is an anti-piracy technology designed to verify that ZoomText has been legitimately licensed.
  • How does product activation work?
    The activation process verifies that the serial number is legitimate and has not been activated on more computers than allowed by the ZoomText Software License Agreement.
  • What happens if I don’t activate my product?
    If you don’t activate your product by the 60th day (after installation), ZoomText will stop working until you activate it.
  • What if my product activation fails?
    Product activation will only fail under exceptional circumstances. In most cases, you can reactivate ZoomText as quickly and easily as the original activation. If your attempt to reactivate fails, contact Ai Squared Product Support for help.
  • What if I need to reformat or upgrade my computer?
    If you need to reformat your hard drive or upgrade your Windows operating system, you should first transfer your ZoomText software license back to the ZoomText activation server. See "Transferring Your ZoomText Software License" in the preceding section.

Note:   You do not need to transfer your ZoomText license when installing Windows service packs and hot fixes.

  • What if I want to move my ZoomText software to another computer?
    Should you want to move your ZoomText software to a new computer, it is important that you first transfer your software license back to the ZoomText activation server. This preserves your software license so that it may be used to activate your new installation of ZoomText. See "Transferring Your ZoomText Software License" in the preceding section.


Registering ZoomText 10

To ensure that you get the most out of ZoomText and to protect your product license, Ai Squared recommends that you promptly register ZoomText immediately after completing the product installation. By registering ZoomText you are eligible for technical support, low-cost upgrades, and cost-saving support plans. You’ll also receive our email newsletter, providing information about new product releases, special offers, and helpful ZoomText tips and tricks.

And don’t worry, when registering with Ai Squared your personal information is always held in the strictest confidence. Ai Squared does not share customer information with other organizations, so you don’t have to worry about unwanted solicitations from 3rd parties.

There are three ways to register your ZoomText product:

  • Register ZoomText online (recommended) Registering ZoomText online is quick and easy. Just create or login to your Ai Squared customer account and select ‘Register your product’.

    With your Ai Squared customer account you can log in 24 hours a day to update your account information, view your Ai Squared orders, and retrieve your ZoomText product serial number. This is a real convenience when you need to activate your product and don’t have your serial number on-hand.

    To initiate the online registration process, do one of the following:
  • In the ZoomText Activation Wizard, select the Register online now link (in the final wizard dialog).
  • In ZoomText’s Help menu, select Register ZoomText…
  • In your web browser, go to


  • Mail in the ZoomText registration card   A large-print ZoomText registration card is included with every ZoomText product. Just fill-in the card, attach the required postage and drop it in the mail.
  • Phone in your registration   If you prefer, you can call Ai Squared to register your product – Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm Eastern Time.
  • Inside of North America 1 (800) 859-0270
  • Outside of North America ++1 (802) 362-3612.

The ZoomText User Interface

When you start ZoomText its user interface appears on the screen. This window contains all of the controls for operating ZoomText. All of ZoomText's settings can be accessed through standard menus or easy-to-use toolbars. Each toolbar features a set of buttons that provide fast access to the most important and frequently used settings. Each button contains an intuitive icon and label for easy identification. Buttons are grouped by function and each group is labeled with a clickable link that opens the group's associated dialog box (with the exception of the Finders label).

Note:   Features associated with magnification and screen reading are grouped into separate toolbars and dialogs. Features associated with screen reading only appear in ZoomText Magnifier/Reader.


ZoomText button   Enables or disables ZoomText. When disabled, all magnification and speech features are turned off without exiting the program.

Magnifier tab   Displays toolbar controls for ZoomText's magnification features.

Reader tab   Displays toolbar controls for ZoomText's screen reading features. (ZoomText Magnifier/Reader only)

Tools tab   Displays toolbar controls for ZoomText's camera and listening features and the ImageReader companion product.

Status bar   Displays the name of the active application and informs you when AppReader and DocReader ("Readers"), reading zones ("Zones") and  application settings ("App Settings") are available for use.

Minimize button   Hides the ZoomText user interface.

Minimizing and Restoring the User Interface

The ZoomText user interface can be minimized (hidden) and restored (made visible) without affecting the operation of ZoomText.

�   To minimize ZoomText


Do one of the following:

  • On the ZoomText title bar, click on the minimize button.
  • While the ZoomText user interface is active, press ESC.

�   To restore ZoomText




Do one of the following:

  • Click on the ZoomText 10 button in the task bar.
  • Press the Display User Interface hotkey:
    CTRL + SHIFT + U.

Note:   If the ZoomText user interface is already open but covered by other applications, restoring it will bring it into view.


Enabling and Disabling ZoomText

You can enable and disable ZoomText at any time, without exiting the program. When disabled, ZoomText returns the screen to its normal (unmagnified) state and all speech output is suspended.

�   To enable ZoomText

On the ZoomText user interface, select the ZoomText button.




�   To disable ZoomText

On the ZoomText user interface, select the ZoomText button.






Using the Tray Icon

When ZoomText is running, its program icon appears in the system tray (next to the clock). Clicking on the tray icon will pop up menus that contain important ZoomText settings.

By left-clicking the tray icon, you can perform the following:

  • Enable and disable ZoomText
  • Adjust the magnification level
  • Start AppReader or DocReader (ZoomText Magnifier/Reader only)


Left-click menu

By right-clicking the tray icon, you can perform the following:

  • Restore and minimize ZoomText
  • Exit ZoomText


Right-click menu

Using Tools with the Keyboard

ZoomText's Adjust, Freeze and SpeakIt tools allow you to click and drag to select screen areas associated with their respective features.  Although these tools were designed for easy use with a mouse, they can also be operated using keyboard commands that simulate mouse actions.  When these tools are active, you can control them using the keyboard commands from the following table.



Mouse Action

Keyboard Command

Move the pointer






Drag object right


Drag object left


Drag object up


Drag object down




Exiting ZoomText

You can exit the ZoomText program at any time. When ZoomText is exited, the screen returns to its normal (unmagnified) state and all speech output is terminated.

�   To exit ZoomText



Do one of the following:

  • In the File menu, choose Exit.
  • In the ZoomText title bar, click the close box.


Uninstalling ZoomText

If you no longer need ZoomText on your system, you can uninstall it at any time. Uninstalling ZoomText erases all its program files and returns your system to the state it was in before installing.

Before you uninstall ZoomText, you should be aware of the following:

  • If you are running ZoomText in its 60-day trial period, uninstalling the software will result in loss of all remaining trial days. Reinstalling ZoomText will not restore the trial days.
  • If your installation of ZoomText has been activated, you should transfer your software license back to the ZoomText activation server before uninstalling. This will preserve your software license so that may be used to activate ZoomText on another system. For more information, see "Transferring Your ZoomText Software License" in this chapter.


�   To uninstall ZoomText

  1. In the Windows Start menu, choose Programs� ZoomText 10 � Other � Uninstall ZoomText 10.
  2. Follow the on-screen instructions.

The ZoomText Uninstall program starts.

Windows Logon Support

ZoomText’s logon support provides essential magnification and screen reading features when logging into Windows. You can zoom in and out (up to 36x), invert the screen colors, and enable screen reading so that each control is spoken as you navigate the logon dialog box.

Note: ZoomText’s xFont text magnification is not available during Windows logon; therefore the quality of magnified text will be degraded. ZoomText will also use the default speech synthesizer configured in Windows.

The ZoomText Logon Support Toolbar

When ZoomText’s logon support is enabled, the ZoomText Logon Support toolbar appears automatically each time the Windows logon screen is displayed. The Logon Support toolbar provides controls for enabling, disabling and adjusting the available magnification and screen reading features.


ZoomText Logon Support toolbar



ZoomText button   Enables or disables ZoomText. When ZoomText is disabled, all magnification and screen reading features are turned off without exiting the program.

Enable ZoomText: ALT + INSERT
Disable ZoomText: ALT + DELETE

Power   Sets the magnification level from 1x to 36x.

Increases magnification: ALT + NUMPAD PLUS
Decreases magnification: ALT + NUMPAD MINUS

Invert   Enables and disables color inverting.

Hotkey: CTRL + SHIFT + C

Speech   Enables and disables speech output.

Hotkey: ALT + SHIFT + S


Note:   Each time you log into Windows using ZoomText’s logon support, the selected logon support settings are automatically saved and then restored the next time the Windows logon screen is displayed.

Enabling and Disabling ZoomText’s Logon Support

Enabling and disabling ZoomText’s logon support is performed in ZoomText’s Windows Preferences dialog box. When ZoomText’s logon support is enabled, it is available to all users in the Windows logon screen.

�   To enable ZoomText’s logon support

  1. In ZoomText’s Settings menu, choose Program…

The Preferences dialog appears with the Program tab displayed.

  1. Make sure the Enable Windows logon support box is checked.

Note:   You must be logged in with administrative privileges to adjust this option. If you are not logged in with administrative privileges this option will be grayed out.

  1. Select the OK button.


Windows User Account Control

One of the important security features in Windows 7 and Windows Vista is “User Account Control”, referred to as UAC for short. UAC is designed to prevent malicious programs from damaging files, changing system configurations, and even transmitting confidential data outside the system. To accomplish this task, UAC forces all of your applications to run as a standard user, even if you are logged in with administrative privileges. As a result, when you run a program that requires administrative privileges, a UAC prompt appears requesting your permission.

With the Windows UAC feature, many legitimate program processes will generate a UAC prompt, even for common tasks such as changing the clock’s time or installing a new printer driver. UAC prompts may also appear when adjusting or using the following ZoomText features, all of which are completely safe to run on your system:

  • Running the Activation Wizard
  • Running the ZoomText updates wizard
  • Transferring your ZoomText software license
  • Downloading and installing program components
  • Using certain Fix-It commands (in the Support dialog)
  • Changing ZoomText’s program or user interface preferences


For more information on User Account Control, refer to the Windows Help system.  If you have questions or concerns about ZoomText that generate a UAC prompt, please contact Ai Squared’s Product Support department.


Getting Help

ZoomText provides the following documentation and tools to help you learn and work with the program:

  • ZoomText 10 User's Guide   Contains complete information on using all ZoomText features and commands.
  • ZoomText 10 Quick Reference Guide   Provides concise, user-friendly instructions for each of ZoomText's essential features.
  • ZoomText 10 Online Help   Contains all of the information in the ZoomText 10 User's Guide, optimized for use online. You can access complete documentation directly from the user interface and find topics using the Contents, Index, and Search tabs.


�   To use ZoomText Online Help

  1. In the Help menu, choose ZoomText Help.
  2. In the Help window, click one of the following tabs:
    • Contents   Lets you choose a topic from a section of the online Help.
    • Index   Lets you use the index to find a topic.
    • Search   Lets you find a topic by searching for a particular word or phrase in the online Help.

Note:   Each ZoomText dialog box also contains a Help button that, when selected, displays context-sensitive Help for that dialog.





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