Photo of Windows 2000 product box

Accessibility in Windows 2000

Make computers easier and more comfortable to use with accessibility features and utilities built right into Microsoft® Windows 2000 (Professional and Home versions).

Display and Readability

Windows 2000 includes options to increase visibility of items on the computer screen including:

  • Display options—choose screen elements and schemes, adjust the screen area and font sizes, select a screen saver, change the size and color of icons, and smooth the edges of screen fonts.
  • Icon size—make icons larger for visibility, or smaller for increased screen space.
  • Screen resolution—change pixel count to enlarge objects on screen.
  • High contrast schemes—select color combinations that are easier to see.
  • Microsoft Magnifier—enlarge portion of screen for better visibility.

Sounds and Speech

Windows 2000 includes options to make computer sounds easier to hear or distinguish—or, you can choose visual alternatives to sound. Options you can adjust include:

  • Sound options—assign sounds to events, choose sound schemes, adjust sound volume, show volume control in the taskbar, and select audio devices.
  • ShowSounds—display captions for speech and sounds.
  • SoundSentry—display visual warnings for system sounds.
  • Notification—Get sound or visual cues when accessibility features are turned on or off.

Keyboard and Mouse

In Windows 2000 you can choose a number of options to make your keyboard and mouse faster and easier to use. Options you can adjust include:

Mouse options:
  • Choose right-handed or left-handed mouse button configuration
  • Adjust the double-click speed
  • Change the pointer scheme
  • Adjust the pointer speed and acceleration rate.
Keyboard options:
  • Adjust the character repeat rate and repeat-delay speed.
  • StickyKeys—allow pressing one key at a time (rather than simultaneously) for key combinations.
  • FilterKeys—ignore brief or repeated keystrokes and slow down the repeat rate.
  • ToggleKeys—hear tones when pressing certain keys.
  • MouseKeys—move the mouse pointer using the numerical keypad.
  • Dvorak Keyboard Layout—choose alternative keyboard layouts for people who type with one hand or finger.

Accessibility Wizard and Utilities

The Accessibility Wizard can help new users quickly and easily set up groups of accessibility options that address visual, hearing and dexterity needs all in one place. The Accessibility Wizard asks questions about accessibility needs. Then, based on the answers, it configures utilities and settings for individual users. The Accessibility Wizard can be run again at any time to make changes, or changes can be made to individual settings through Control Panel. To learn about the Accessibility Wizard, see:

  • Opening the Accessibility Wizard
Windows 2000 Accessibility Utilities:
  • Magnifier—a display utility that makes the computer screen more readable by creating a separate window that displays a magnified portion of the screen.
  • Narrator—a text-to-speech utility that reads what is displayed on the screen—the contents of the active window, menu options, or text that has been typed.
  • On-Screen Keyboard—displays a virtual keyboard on the computer screen that allows people to type data by using a pointing device or joystick.
  • Utility Manager—enables administrator-level users to check an accessibility program's status and start or stop an accessibility programs-automatically, if required.

Related Accessibility Links:

Note to Assistive Technology Users

If you use assistive technology, be sure to contact your assistive technology manufacturer to check compatibility with Windows 2000 and to learn how to adjust your settings to optimize compatibility.