Hello and welcome.
How long have you owned the laptop?
Has this problem just recently started, or was it evident from first ownership?
If you know this already, I am sorry, but you do say that you are a newbie -
just above the touchpad is a small LED light. If it is red, the touchpad is blocked. Just touch the light and it will turn white (sometimes blue: mine is a HP lappy). Then it will be usable.
I do know that there was a Synaptics Pointing Device update a few days ago. Check this in <Control Pane
l> <Windows Update
> if it is not already installed.
If that does not do the trick, it may be a Driver
issue. Go here: Control Panel
> Device Manager
> Mouse and Other Pointing Devices
(or could simply say "Synaptics Pointing Device
Right-Click this, Left Click "Properties
" and check the Drivers
tab. It should show as "Working Correctly
". If not, you will need to update the Drivers.
Left Click the Driver tab, click <Update Driver
> and follow the instructions onscreen. It is advisable to let Windows find the Driver for you.