1. Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Getting Started
  2. Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Navigating The Desktop
  3. Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Charts And Settings
  4. Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Trading
  5. Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Checking Transaction History
  6. Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Advanced Features

TradeStation is an online brokerage firm and trading platform. TradeStation Group, Inc. through its principal operating subsidiaries, TradeStation Securities, Inc. and TradeStation Forex, Inc., offers the TradeStation analysis and trading platform to active and institutional traders. The TradeStation platform, the company's flagship product first introduced in 1991, offers electronic order execution and allows users to design, test, optimize, monitor and automate their own strategies for equities, options, futures and foreign exchange markets.

Figure 1: TradeStation icon
SEE: Investing 101: Types of Investments and 20 Investments: Introduction.

TradeStation can be downloaded on multiple computers (i.e., desktop and laptop), but only one application can be used at a time. Equities and futures clients who trade with more than one platform logged in at one time (for example, when trading with a partner) may get additional linked account service fees waived by meeting certain requirements. Software pricing varies depending on account status, trading activity, and if the trader is considered a professional or non-professional.

TradeStation Securities, Inc (Member NYSE, FINRA, SIPC, NSCC, DTC, OCC and NFA) is a licensed securities broker-dealer and a registered futures commission merchant, and a member of the Boston Options Exchange, Chicago Board Options Exchange, Chicago Stock Exchange, international Securities Exchange and NASDAQ OMX.

Software Installation
Traders must have an account with TradeStation in order to download the platform. Once an account has been established, traders must use the "Client Login" on the TradeStation website to access the download links. Enter the username and password of the account and click "Login."


Figure 2: Login

From the TradeStation Client Center, click on the "Download Software" tab, and then select the appropriate version of TradeStation. The most recent version will be at the top of the download list. Next to each version is a "What's New" link that provides information regarding each version of the platform. Read about the changes, if desired, and then click "Download" to begin the download process.

Figure 3: Download Tradestation
A pop-up will appear prompting the user to "Run" or "Save" the file. The general recommendation is to save the file to the computer's desktop. However, users may also choose to run the file. Depending on the speed of the Internet connection, this step in the process may take more than one hour.

Click "Run" when prompted, and allow the system to install the latest version of Microsoft .NET if prompted (TradeStation requires the latest version of Microsoft .NET Framework to be installed).

Figure 5: Setup popup
After Microsoft .NET is installed, the TradeStation platform installation will begin. Choose a Destination Location to save the file, or use the default location.

Figure 6: Choose destination location

Accept or decline the Desktop Customization Selections (allows the user to choose how TradeStation is accessed, such as on the Desktop or Quick Launch Bar), and proceed with the installation. The TradeStation Setup Wizard will display a green bar indicating the installation status.

Figure 7: Install status


Once the Wizard finished the installation, the program will automatically check for any updates. Open the program by double-clicking on the icon that now appears on the desktop, in the Quick Launch Bar, or in the Programs header of the Start Menu.


Beginner's Guide To Tradestation Trading Software: Navigating The Desktop
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