When you are a first time user, you have to select first the correct equipment drivers and set some settings.
The first time it is run the program will automatically open the File→devices setup menu.
Create a new profile for your equipment.
All the devices and all the program options will be stored in this profile, allowing to have completely different settings for your different equipment or locations.
The devices can be connected locally to your computer, or remotely via a INDI or ASCOM Alpaca. You can mix devices using different protocol and managed by different server.
For ASCOM it is important you install the ASCOM platform and every required driver before to start CCDCiel.
Be sure to select the mandatory camera driver and other equipment like mount or focuser but that can also be done later.
Click okay and program will create a new default profile for your equipment. You could later create an additional profile with different settings, equipment or location.
Next menu will show the default options. The first thing to do is to set the capture folder to something like like in Linux to /home/username/capture which or for windows from the default C:\ to something like C:\CCDciel
When ready click the OK button.
Select the left tab (pointer icon) and locate the Connect button at the top. The red dot indicates no connection to any device. Below the connect button you will see the mandatory camera, mount if selected and any other equipment.
Click on Connect and after a few seconds the light should change to green if all listed equimpment is connected.
In the connection phase, the indication light will first turn orange and finally green if all equipment is successfully connected. In case of a connection failure or if an error occurs, the indication light will turn red. All program activities and errors will be logged, so in case of device connection problem have look to the log for an error indication.
Devices with a connection problem could be disabled temporary in File→devices setup menu. As a bare minimum only an imaging camera is required to operate.