The steps involved in playing online texas hold em are usually well-described by the website you choose. Commonly this involves downloading the site’s poker interface, depositing some money via a credit card or third-party provider, and then taking your digital bankroll into the game of your choice.
Online Texas Hold’em sites will often have hundreds, even thousands, of games going at once. An average site would have perhaps 5-40 different “tables” of $10/$20 hold ‘em going at once. You often have a choice of how many people you want to play with–4-player to 10-player tables are typically available.
The Online Texas Hold em site will usually have a neatly designed interface that allows you to browse through the various games going on until you find the limit, number of players, so on, that suits you. You will also be told the screen names of the players at the table (before entering it) and the amount of their stack. Very often you will get stats telling you how fast the hands go at a particular table, how many are played in an hour, on average, and what the average pot is. These should all factor into your decision of where to “sit.”
Once you click on a particular game, the table interface will open up. The graphics usually include a table, chips, cards, and avatars representing the players at the table. Often you’ll click on an empty seat, taking the form of whatever avatar you or the interface chooses, and then buy in. The buy-in is generally a range, such as $100-$1000.
Once you’ve done that, all that’s left is to wait until the next hand, when you’ll be dealt in. Some websites will give you some starting options to choose from governing game play and what to do on your behalf in the case of a disconnection. Others do not. (How does the website make money? On the “rake,” usually only a few dollars, which they pull out of the pot when it reaches a certain level. This amounts to quite a bit when you’ve got hundreds of games going on at once.)
Cards come quick at Online texas hold em tables, and people are generally antsy–especially at the play tables. You might get rude comments or even an “abusive” vote if you take too long. You don’t have to pay too much attention to this, though if you’re sitting at a table where everyone’s going fast, and then you think for 30 seconds each time, you might consider switching tables–not least because the torrent of criticism you’re likely to get could very well throw you off your game.