When you introduce yourself, there are many more options than just the standard "how are you". Here are some alternatives:

  • How've you been/How've you been doing? used when we actually want to know. "How are you" is usually used as a greeting.
  • Americans and the British will ask "How's it going?" Australians will ask "How are you going?". This is informal and can be used with friends and classmates.
  • Americans will ask "what's up?" which is VERY informal. In Britain, however, this usually means you look unhappy and they want to know if there's a problem.
  • "How's things/How are things?" Very informal.

Difficult Questions:

Question: "How do you do?" Answer: "How do you do".
Question: "How are you?" Answer: "Fine, thanks"
Question: "What do you do?" Answer: "I'm a student"
Question: "What are you doing?" Answer: "Reading a Wiki article"