The Kiln Client and Tools (download this by clicking your avatar on the top-right of the UI, and then click “Kiln Client and Tools”) comes bundled with preconfigured version of TortoiseHg with some extensions to Mercurial, optimized to work with Kiln. We strongly recommend you use this version.

There is actually a pretty decent quick start guide for TortoiseHg here:

http://tortoisehg.bitbucket.org/manual/0.9/explorer.html

…as well as Joel’s generic Hg tutorial, hginit.com.

In general, there are two ways to interact with TortoiseHg. The first way is through its Explorer integration. When Tortoise is installed, it also installs a bunch of special hooks into Windows Explorer that allow it to display useful information about your repository. The details are described in the link above, but as an overview it shows:

  1. Overlays on the icons for files/folders inside a repository (shows you the state of those files and folders)
  2. New options in the Windows context menu (the one you get by right clicking on something in Explorer) to give you Mercurial controls. When you right-click inside a repository, you get access to the most commonly used commands.

In addition, you can interact with TortoiseHg through the command line. Most people familiar with Mercurial are used to typing commands like:

hg commit -m "Fixing mixed line endings that were causing diffs to look crazy"

Tortoise provides a GUI for nearly every Mercurial command. It can be accessed by replacing hg with thg. To get the GUI for the commit command in the previous example, you would type:

thg commit

The GUI gives you a place to enter a commit message, and a bunch of other useful controls (this is the GUI I use most frequently). The GUI that is least useful, for me, is the one the deals with push/pull/update. I simply find it easier to use the command line interface for these commands.

I would recommend trying them all out to find out which ones are most useful for you. For a day, simply replace your hg commands with thg. This should help you figure out which interfaces actually help you the most.