Windows 8 Operating System has changed the Windows users Computer experience to the new level. Windows 8 has lost the Trademark Start Button, Start menu and got the New Metro Apps with stylish Start screen and more. These multiple changes have been made to bring the Mobile computing experience to the Desktop Users. It’s because, the whole world is changing to Smartphones, Tablets and so on. To catch these Mobile Market, Microsoft has taken the bold step and bring the much polished and advanced Windows 8.
Now, the Windows 8.1 has also out to the market that fixed and enhanced the issues in Windows to please the Windows loyal users. However, You need some handful guide to use the Windows 8 and 8.1 to get the Premium Computing experience. Windows 8 has two customizable interfaces, one is familiar Windows Desktop and Other One is Live Tiled Modern Start Screen. This dramatic change in Windows needs the steep learning curve to understand the things better.
This is where our Windows 8 / Windows 8.1 Tips and Tricks complete guide comes in and will take you to inch closer to this modern Operating System. Windows 8 guide also applies to Windows 8.1. Since Windows 8.1 is an Update of Windows 8.
Windows 8 / 8.1 Tips and Tricks
1. Top Windows 8 Keyboard Shortcuts
Windows 8 has changed the tradition of Windows by Introducing the new Interface and has brought many aesthetic features. So, Windows 8 has got some new shortcuts that will be useful to you to make things easier. Let’s see the new windows 8 Keyboard Shortcuts,
WinKey + C = Will Open the Charms Bar WinKey + F = Search Files WinKey + W =Search Settings WinKey + Q = Windows 8 Search Field WinKey + I = Opens the Settings Menu WinKey + D = Opens the Devices menu WinKey + H = Brings the Share Menu
2. Access All Settings in Windows 8 with “GOD MODE”
Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 has many basic to Advanced Settings that can be used to control and Tweak your system. However, accessing the all settings in Windows 8 under the one roof is not available. Even though, you are the Geek, You can’t remember all those settings in Windows 8. They can be organised into one handy folder that is called “God Mode” by the Users.
How To Create God Mode in Windows 8 and 8.1
Creating the God Mode needs few steps,
1. Open the Windows Explorer, and tick the Check Box “Show File Name Extensions and Hidden Items”.
2. Now Create the New Folder in Anywhere and Rename the folder by Pasting the Following text as it appears
3. That’s it, Now You will get the Control Panel Icon and Opening that will fetch all the settings that available in your Windows 8 System including Administrative Settings.
3. Directly Boot to Windows 8.1 Desktop
Windows 8.1 offers the two Interfaces: Start Screen With Apps, Traditional desktop. Windows 8 always boot into the New Start Screen, there you can access the Desktop. Windows 8.1 offers the Boot to Desktop Feature, which will give you the option to directly boot into Desktop rather than the Metro UI.
To Access the Boot to Desktop Option,
Right click or Tab on the Empty Space of Taskbar and Open the Properties. A Pop up window will open with Tabs. Now, Select the Navigation tab, there Under the Start Screen, Tick the Checkbox showing “When I Sign in or Closing the Application On a Screen , go to the Desktop instead of Start”.
Hereafter, Whenever you sign in or closing the App, you will be taken directly into the Desktop bypassing the Metro UI.
4. Sync Everything and Access Anywhere
In this latest Windows Operating System, Microsoft has integrated the Online Accounts of Hotmail (Outlook), Live and Other MS Accounts. To access all Microsoft Online Services, you have to sign into any of the above account. This integration has brought many online and cloud services to Windows 8 and 8.1. Your favorites, email, One Note and other Data are synced with all your devices including Android and iOS.
Just setup Your own Microsoft Account with Local account in Windows 8 system. It will get you a lot of services and flexibility. This also enables the SkyDrive Cloud Storage Integration in your Windows 8 system. You can access all your cloud files, also Save the files through SkyDrive Storage from Windows 8.
5. Move the SkyDrive Location
SkyDrive is the Cloud Storage Service from Microsoft that has been deeply integrated in Windows 8. Moving SkyDrive to another location can be helpful for maintaining files. If you have more than one drive, SD card, then moving the SkyDrive will be useful.
To move the SkyDrive to Different Location in Windows 8 follow the steps below,
1. Open the Windows Explorer , in the navigation view, Right-click on the SkyDrive Folder.
2. Select the Properties from the menu.
3. Now, Select the Location Tab from the SkyDrive Window, and You can choose the move button to move the SkyDrive to different Directory.
6. Get the Hidden Start menu in Windows 8.1
Microsoft has removed the start menu in Windows 8, and most of the users miss that too. However, you can get the Start Menu in Windows 8 .1 that is you can emulate the Start Menu in Windows 8.1 using the Options available in the Taskbar. Windows 8.1 Operates differently than Windows 8. You can access the all apps screen by Swipe Up or Click on the down button on the screen. You can also get the Other option to get the All apps in Windows 8.1.
Open the Taskbar and move to the Navigation Tab and Tick the checkbook of “Show the Apps view Automatically when I go to Start ” . Hereafter, Whenever you click the start button, you will be presented All apps views Instead of StarScreen.Though It’s not the Traditional Start menu, you can consider this as Modern Start Menu.
7. How to Shutdown Windows 8 and 8.1 Quickly
If you are the new to Windows 8.1, One thing you may have noticed that You can’t Shutdown the machine so quickly like before you have done in previous Windows versions. However, an easy Workaround will give you the Metro Option in Start Screen.
For that Create the New shortcut in the Desktop Screen. In the text field, type the ‘shutdown /s /t 10‘. The ‘t’ denotes the time delay in seconds in which your PC will shut down. You can change the time as per your wish. Then, Right Click on the Shutdown shortcut and select the Pin to Start option to show Shutdown in Start Screen.
8. Get the Admin Tools in Start Screen All Apps View
You may be noticed that in the All Apps view, all of the Administrative tools are not present. You can get them by changing settings of Tiles. To Unhide them, Open the Charms bar and Select ‘Settings’ and then ‘Tiles’. There you can change the settings. Now, you will get all admin tool in all Apps view.
9. Lock Screen Notifications
If you are a Smartphone user, Lock Screen Notifications are not new to you. Yes, Like you get the missed calls, Email, SMS Count in Lock Screen of mobile, In Windows 8 and 8.1, You can get the same. You can also customize the Lock Screen notifications by adding and removing the Apps there.
To do that, in Charms bar, Select Settings and Open the “Change PC Settings”. if you are the Windows 8 user, Go to General Settings and Lock Screen. For Windows 8.1 users, Shortcut of Lockscreen image will be there already. In the Lock Screen Page, You will be presented a list of apps with ‘+’ Sign. Click the ‘+’ Sign to get more apps.
10. Your Picture on Lock Screen
You can change the Picture of Lock Screen like any Mobile Devices. To Customize the Windows 8 and 8.1 Lock screen, Open the ‘Change PC Settings’ like above. Now Tab or Click the ‘PC and Devices’. You will now get a preview of your current Lock Screen with some options to Customize the Screen. Now, you can change the Background picture of Lock Screen from Your Computer, SkyDrive Images.
11. Use the Task Scheduler to Run Apps Automatically
Task Scheduler is a Powerful Tool for Windows users. The Task Scheduler is the utility that enables you to automatically perform an action at a specific time or when something happens. For example, you can start your Favorite Programs automatically when you sign in to Windows 8. You can run the Maintenance tools and Anti Virus Applications at a specific time.
Open the Task Scheduler Tool and You will be presented with the ‘Create basic Task’ and ‘Create Task’. Choose the first one which is simple, and you can create tasks with the Task creation Wizard. Just follow the Wizard and complete the Schedule Tasks setup.
12. Make a Quick Search Using “Smart Search”
There are new ways of working with Windows 8.1. In the Start Screen, you will get the Metro Windows 8 Apps, Settings and more. You can use the Smart Search feature to search anything offline and online. Windows 8.1 Smart Search is now powered by the Bing Search engine. It will show the web results with the Internal Apps and settings. To Perform a Search, Simply start typing in the Start Screen, the Results will be displayed from the PC and Web. Press H and the search Panel appears with app, settings and Files. In Desktop Mode, Press WinKey + Q to show SmartSearch screen.
13. Refresh Your PC
To Speed Up your Windows 8 and 8.1, Microsoft has added many new features to this Operating system. ‘Refresh Your PC’ is the important addition to restore your PC’s Speed like the Fresh Windows.
To Refresh your Windows 8 and 8.1 PC, Access your Charms Bar and then Click ‘Settings’ followed by ‘Change PC Settings’. There you can get the ‘Update & Recovery’ section with three options. One of the Option ‘Recovery’ is useful when you feel your system sluggish and hangs often. It will offer you three methods to fresh up your Windows 8 PC. Your System will be refreshed without affecting your Music, Videos and other files. The other Option should be only used at the last resort, it will completely remove your Windows and will start from Setup.
14. Create the Tile Groups With Name
In the Start Screen, the apps you have pinned will be displayed without any alignment. In Windows 8 and 8.1, You can create the group of Tiles for personalization. That is you can create the Group of tiles with name like ‘Social’, ‘Games’, ‘Fun apps’.
To Create the Tile Group in windows 8, right-click on the Start Screen and access the Customization option. Now the Tile Groups in the Start Screen will be faded, and text field will be shown for each group. You can assign the tiles to any group and also you are free to create a new group as well. When you finished, left-click the mouse button on the blank screen will finish the naming of groups.
15. Secure Your PC with
Security is one of the essential thing which should be integrated with any device to safeguard your personal information. Microsoft has done a good thing by adding the Windows defender as a default App for removing unwanted files. In Windows 8 and 8.1, the Windows Defender is even more efficient, that monitors network behavior as well incoming connection and outgoing connection. Add more protection by turning on the firewall which is essential to block malicious connections to your computer.