Handy quick-start guide so you don't get lost in Windows 8

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Handy quick-start guide so you don't get lost in Windows 8

Stop, or at least, limit the cries of "how do I…" by giving your staff this free quick and dirty guide to getting around Windows 8.

If you're buying a new computer and it has Windows 8 installed, this "Exploring Windows 8" document might be the most useful thing you'll download all day.

The list is handy because it covers the absolute basics of getting around in Windows 8, which looks different to earlier versions and will take a bit of getting the hang of.

We've quoted some of the most useful tips below, but there's a lot more in the document, which we highly recommend you download [we've added quote marks where the words are from the Microsoft document]

  • Unlocking the lock screen - "Tap the Lock screen and slide your finger up. With a mouse, click the screen and drag it up. With a keyboard, press any key."
  • The Start screen replaces the Start button - a basic one, but something that helps new users get their head around the menus. There's no button in corner of screen, your programs are laid out all over the Start screen. Or, you get to them by searching for them (see below).
  • How do I get to the menu for the program I'm using? - Swipe from the right, which brings up a menu. Or, use the mouse to put the cursor in the upper right or lower right corner. Or press Windows key +C.
  • How to search - To search, start typing when you are in the Start screen. This searches across the whole computer. If you want to search within a particular program, click that program from the list on the right.
  • How to get to the "desktop" - want to see a screen that looks like Windows 7 or XP? "Tap or click the Desktop tile. You can also swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap or click the Start charm if the desktop was the last-opened app. With a keyboard, press Windows Key +D. If you open a desktop application like Microsoft Outlook 2010 or Word 2010, it automatically opens in the desktop."
  • How to get back to Start screen from desktop: "Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap or click the Start charm. With a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, and then click the Start charm. With a keyboard, press the Windows key.
  • A quick way to find app - Start typing its name in the Start screen.
  • How to see a list of all the programs - swipe up and tap All Apps, or right click anywhere three isn't a tile, and click All Apps.
  • How to lock the computer - "In the Start screen, tap or click your user name in the upper-right corner of the screen. In the drop-down menu, tap or click Lock or Sign out. With the keyboard, press Windows Key +L to lock the computer and go to the Lock screen."
  • How to shutdown the computer - "Shutdown or restart: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, tap the Settings charm, and then tap the Power button icon. With the mouse, point to the upper-right or lower-right corner of the screen, click the Settings charm, and then click the Power button icon. With the keyboard, press CTRL+ALT+DELETE, and then select the Power button icon."
  • Apps take up the entire screen.
  • Al-Tab still works - Or, you can "Swipe in from the upper-left corner of the screen. A thumbnail of the most recently used open app will appear. OR Nudge back slightly to the left to display the thumbnails of open apps. " With a mouse, you point the pointer at the top left corner, or move pointer down left side of screen to show all the open apps.
  • Close an app - "With the app thumbnails displayed, flick the app that you want to close from the top of the screen to the bottom. With a mouse, right-click the app that you want to close, and then click Close."

As we said, this is a selection of quotes from the Microsoft document, but there's more tips. You can download it here.


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