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Windows Calculator: Simple. Or is it?

Everyone is familiar with that trusty old standby – the Windows Calculator.  If you don’t use specialized software, Excel, or your real world physical calculator (does anyone still use one of those?) when adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing, you probably use the built-in Windows Calculator.

Did you know that the Windows 7 (and Windows 8 for those brave, adventurous souls) Calculator has, in addition to that basic functionality, some other very useful bells & whistles?  If you haven’t poked around in the guts of the Windows 7 Calculator, here’s a look at those additional goodies:

Date Calculator

Windows Calculator opens with its basic functions displayed, but you aren’t limited to those in Windows 7.  Go ahead and click on ‘View’, then ‘Date Calculation’:

calculator1

And you’ll see the Calendar’s Date Calculator, which you can use to calculate the difference between two dates or to add or subtract days from a date you specify.  Go ahead and plug in some dates and see what you get.  In the example below, I let the Calculator tell me how many days from Feb 24, 2013 to the end of the year:

calculator2

In this example, I asked the Calculator to tell me the date 60 days from today:

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Much better than pulling out the paper calendar and adding it up (and then repeating, because it’s so easy to miscalculate).

Unfortunately the Calculater doens’t provide a business day calculator, only calendar days.

(If you’re looking online for date calculators, and don’t mind some advertising TimeandDate.com  and WorkingDays.us provide some free alternatives.  If you’ve discovered one you’re partial to, please drop it in the comments)

Mortgage Calculator

Under ‘View’ ‘Worksheets’ the Calculator also contains a very,very basic mortgage calculator that may be helpful for the simplest mortgage calculations.  (Some other possibly helpful worksheets are available in the Worksheets also, including Vehicle leasing).

calculator4

Unit Conversion

To be honest, I’m in the habit of using Google for Unit Conversions, but the Windows Calculator can do a surprising number of conversions, and you may find it more convenient than heading out to the internet.  Just click ‘View’ then ‘Unit Conversion’.  Choose the type of Unit you wish to convert from and to, and plug in your number, and the Calculator will instantly convert:

calculator5

Yes, the Windows Calculator is still simple to use, but so much more useful to use than just for basic arithmetic.


  • http://www.revrob.com Rev. Rob

    The best calculator is Google. Try it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jenniferjator Jennifer Ator

    Wow, great post. I did not even know this was there.

  • William Eadie

    Had no idea this was all there, and I use the darn thing regularly.