20 must-know Windows 8 tips and tricks

With just a little hand-holding, the OS suddenly becomes much less mysterious.

By Jon Phillips, Alex Cocilova, Loyd Case, PC World |  Windows, windows 8

  • Press (Windows) to enter the tiled Start screen.
  • (Windows) + M minimizes everything that's showing on the desktop.
  • (Windows) + E opens Explorer for quick access to folders.
  • On the Start screen, press (Windows) + D to instantly get to the desktop.
  • (Windows) + Tab opens a list of currently running programs.
  • (Windows) + Print Screen takes a screenshot and saves it in a Screenshots folder nested in your Pictures folder. 
  • To take a screenshot on a Windows 8 tablet, simultaneously press the Windows button and the volume-down button on the tablet chassis.
  • (Windows) + Q opens a global search menu. Type what you're looking for and where you would like to look.
  • (Windows) + W opens a search in your system settings to quickly locate and change system properties.
  • (Windows) + F opens a file and folder search.
  • (Windows) + Pause opens the system properties page to show you a quick rundown of your specs.
  • (Windows) + "," (that's the comma sign!) makes all current windows transparent, giving you a peek at the desktop as long as you hold down (Windows).
  • (Windows) + "." (the period) snaps a window to the right or left side (toggling each time you press ".").
  • (Windows) + R prompts the Run commanduseful for quickly launching apps and other routines with a command prompt.
  • (Windows) + X opens the Quick Access Menu, exposing system functionality such as the Command Prompt, Disk Management, File Explorer, Run, and more. It's perfect for people who Start Menu. Alternately, you can right-click on the bottom right corner of the screen to spawn the Quick Access Menu.
  • (Windows) + I opens the settings menu, giving you quick access to the Control Panel, Personalization, and your Power button, among other features.
  • (Windows) + O locks orientation on devices with an accelerometer.

Zoom in tight

The Start Screen is full of nice, big, chunky tiles that represent all your apps. The tiles are easy to see in small groups, but what if you have hundreds of apps installed? Most will be hidden from view, unless you want to do a lot of scrolling. Enter the new semantic zoom feature. If youre using a touch display, simply squeeze the Start screen with two fingers to receive a birds eye view of your entire screen contents. And the feature is also available to mouse and keyboard users: Simply hold down the Ctrl button, and use your mouse wheel to zoom in and out.

Categorize your apps


Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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