Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Getting Started With Windows 8

Windows 8 is an exciting new operating system from Microsoft. It comes with a lot of awesome features and quite a number of changes which makes some people find it hard to navigate succesfully around it. This short tutorial will attempt at getting you started in Windows 8. Lets get started.

1. Overview Your Entire Start Screen By Semantic Zoom
If you’re using a touch screen, squeeze the Start screen with two fingers to receive a bird’s eye view of your entire screen contents. This is useful when you have a lots of apps/programs installed and want to see all the apps without scrolling the contents up and down. But if you are using a laptop, you can click on the "-" at the bottom right corner to have a bird's eye view of your start screen. The more apps you have installed, the longer the scroll bar. ;-)

2. Use Windows Hot Corners
The corners on your screen provides you to different Windows features. Below, is a brief explanation of each of these corners.

Bottom Left-hand corner of the screen will allow you to access the Start screen, if you’re in the Start screen and have the Desktop open, this corner will open the Desktop from the Start screen.
Quick Tip: Right-clicking in the left hand corner will open the power user menu.

Moving the mouse to the top-left corner and then down will display all the apps running on the computer. Clicking and dragging any of these apps to the left or right-hand side of the screen will snap that app to that side of the screen. Each of these open app icons can also be right-clicked to close or snap.

On the full right-hand side of the screen will be given access to the Windows Charms.

3. Why Close Buttons Are Hard To Find?
Closing a program seems easy, but you might have noticed that close buttons are hard to find in Windows 8. That’s because Microsoft encourages us to run apps in the background where they’ll take up minimal resources, but still be accessible at any time!
Still, anyway, you can close an app 1) by dragging it from top to bottom, or 2) using Alt+F4 keys or 3) using the task manager.

4. Find Anything Using Power-packed Search
Search looks power-packed. Start typing anything you are looking for in the search bar and it will search in the apps, files/folders and emails too.

5. PC Slowed Down? Get Fresh Windows 8 Easily in Minutes!
In Windows 7 and previous versions, you had to format and re-install the entire OS to get a fresh feel. This was a tiresome and time-wasting process. Windows 8 provides an in-built way to refresh your computer!

In order to perform the Windows 8 refresh, go to Settings and click the Change PC Settings tab near the bottom. Select the General tab and find the “Refresh your PC without affecting your files” section near the middle (you may also select “Remove everything and re-install Windows” to get the true factory settings treatment). Select “Get started” and press “Refresh.” After a few minutes the PC will restart, and you will have a fresh copy of Windows 8.

6. Shut Down Shortcut:
Windows 8 hides the Power button in the Settings menu, so it takes multistep process just to shut down your PC. But you can pin a Shutdown button right onto the bottom of your desktop using following trick:
Create a shortcut on your desktop (right-click, go to New, then Shortcut). Enter “shutdown /s /t 0″ (with no quotes, and, yes, that’s a zero not an “O”) as the location of the item, and press Next. Now name the shortcut (preferably “Shutdown”) and press Finish.

Right-click the shortcut, and navigate to Properties. Choose Change Icon in the Shortcut tab, and then OK to leave the warning box. Choose an icon of your choice from the list. In the screenshot above, you’ll see we chose a Power button.
Right-click the shortcut again, and select Pin to Start. You can place the icon on your Start screen wherever it’s convenient. Clicking it will instantly shut down your computer.

But which one is the easiest and fastest way to shutdown? Hit power button on your computer!

7. Classic Start Menu
This is the thing many people keep missing on Windows 8. If you want to anyway want the Start menu on Windows 8,
ViStart, a free utility will do a good job.

8. Fun Way To Password-protect
Windows 8 enables you to create a picture password, where you choose an image, then draw on it in a combination of taps, lines and circles – only someone who can reproduce this pattern will be able to log on. Select Win + I > More PC Settings > Users > Create a Picture Password to give this a try.

9. Mount ISO files in Windows 8
Right-click it in Explorer, click Mount and you can view it as a virtual drive, launch the files it contains, or add more if you like.

10. List of Most Important Hotkeys
Here is a list of hotkeys to make your Windows 8 experiece even a fun:

Win : switch between the Start screen and the last-running Windows 8 app
Win + C : displays the Charms: the Settings, Devices, Share and Search options
Win + D : launches the desktop
Win + E : launches Explorer
Win + F : opens the File Search pane
Win + H : opens the Share pane
Win + I : opens Settings
Win + K : opens the Devices pane
Win + L : locks your PC
Win + M : minimizes the current Explorer or Internet Explorer window (works in the full-screen IE, too)
Win + O : toggles device orientation lock on and off
Win + P : switch your display to a second display or projector
Win + Q : open the App Search pane
Win + R : opens the Run box
Win + U : open the Ease of Access Centre
Win + V : cycle through toasts (notifications)
Win + W : search your system settings (type POWER for links to all power-related options, say)
Win + X : displays a text menu of useful Windows tools and applets
Win + Z : displays the right-click context menu when in a full-screen app
Win + + : launch Magnifier and zoom in
Win + – : zoom out
Win + , : Aero peek at the desktop
Win + Enter : launch Narrator
Win + PgUp : move the current screen to the left-hand monitor
Win + PgDn : move the current screen to the right-hand monitor
Win + PrtSc : capture the current screen and save it to your Pictures folder
Win + Tab : switch between running apps

On Tablet:
To take a screenshot on a Windows 8 tablet, simultaneously press the Windows button and the volume-down button on the tablet chassis.

Check out this cool video from Lifehacker for more



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