Getting Started

Thank you for downloading Weather Defender. This tutorial will provide you step-by-step instructions for getting up and running with Weather Defender so you can start taking advantage of the main program benefits as quickly and painlessly as possible.

If you need help with installing the software, please read the Installation article.

NOTE: This tutorial is in reference to version 1.0. Some portions are not applicable to versions 1.1 or higher.

Step 1 - First Run
Double-click the blue-and-white shield on your Desktop to launch Weather Defender. The first time you run the program, you will be see the following screen:


Click the Sign Up button to begin your free trial registration.

NOTE: If you are upgrading from SWIFT WX Professional, you should Sign Up as a new user. You will have the opportunity to enter your product key during registration.

Step 2 - Creating Your Account
In the window that appears, enter the your First and Last Name and click Join Now.


Complete the fields on each of the following screens until you have finished creating your account.

When you have reached the last screen and finished creating your account, close the window.

Step 3 - Signing In
Enter your newly created Username and Password in the Sign In window:


Click the Remember Me checkbox if you want the application to remember your username and password so you don't have to enter it next time.

Step 4
Wait a few moments for the main program to load. After loading, you should see a map of the United States.


The house icon represents your home address as entered during the sign up process. If you do not see a house icon, you may set your home location manually by using the Set Home tool on the toolbar.

Step 5 - The Interface
Now familiarize yourself with the main interface of Weather Defender:

Main Interface Components

Main Interface Components

Identify the following interface components:
For a detailed reference of every function and window, see the Main Interface article.

Step 6 - Panning
Its time to learn basic map navigation (i.e., zooming and panning). First, hold the mouse cursor anywhere over the map. Your mouse cursor should look like an open hand.

Press and hold the left mouse button and move the mouse in any direction to scroll the map accordingly.



Practice this technique a few times.

Step 7 - Zooming
To zoom, repeat the same process, except with the right mouse button.

Press and hold the right mouse button. Your cursor should turn into a magnifying glass. Now the mouse cursor down to zoom in on the map or up to zoom out.

Scroll the mouse wheel forward to zoom in on the map. Scroll backward to zoom out.



Practice this technique a few times until you get the hang of it.

You may also use the mousewheel to zoom in or out.

Step 8 - Layers
Now you will learn how to control what is displayed on your map using the Map Layers window.

Click the U.S. Radar button in the Map Layers window to turn off Radar imagery on your map.


Then click it again to display U.S. Radar again.

Step 9 - Adding Layers

Click the Add Layer button on the toolbar, Layers section, to view the layer menu:


Click the Surface Fronts option.

You will see a new button appear in your Map Layers window, entitled Surface Fronts:


The green bar means the layer is downloading an update. Wait a moment for the Surface Fronts layer to download. When it is finished, your map should look something like this:


Step 10
Now repeat the last step (Adding Layers), but this time select the Temperature option from the menu.

If successful, your map should look like this:


Step 11 - Layer Ordering
While the Temperature map looks good, it is obscuring the layers behind it. It needs to be repositioned behind the foreground layers.

To reposition a layer, left-click the layer's button in the Map Layers window and drag it down (or up) to move it behind (or in front of) other layers in the Map. Then release the left mouse button to drop it in place.

NOTE: The white triangles indicate valid drop points when dragging a layer button. Make sure you see the white triangles before releasing the left mouse button.

For this step, move the Temperature layer behind the U.S. Radar layer:


After repositioning, the Temperature layer should display behind the U.S. Radar, Surface Fronts, and State outlines:



You have completed the Getting Started tutorial. You now have a basic understanding of:
  • Logging in to Weather Defender
  • Navigating the map (panning & zooming)
  • Adding Layers

We recommend continuing with the next tutorial: