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How to use Windows 8

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How to use Windows 8: In recent days you have had the opportunity to read my guide on how to install Windows 8 and, still not very confident about the much more recent Windows 10, you have therefore decided to install the operating system in question on your trusted computer. Following my instructions you did not have the slightest problem in completing the whole procedure however if you are now here, reading this guide, most likely it is because once the main OS screen is displayed you have gone into total panic not knowing where to get your hands. If things are actually this way and if you therefore need some advice, know that you can count on me. In fact, I can explain to you how to use Windows 8 .

Before you can be alarmed and think about the worst, I want to clarify right away that contrary to appearances, using Windows 8 is not complicated at all. You just need to do a little, so to speak, the eye and you’re done, you have my word.

That said, if you are really interested in finding out how to use Windows 8, I invite you to take about ten minutes of free time and focus on reading this tutorial. Clearly I do not promise you that after reading these lines you can call yourself a “geek” but I’m sure you will have much clearer ideas on how the penultimate operating system from Microsoft works. So, ready? Yes? Very well … let’s start!

Start Screen

To understand how to use Windows 8 I suggest you first of all pay a little attention to the Start Screen , the Windows Phone-style menu that replaces the Windows Start menu on the operating system in question and which allows users to access the programs that are installed on the computers, apps from the Windows Store and most of the OS features.

To access the Start Screen, simply press the “usual” Start button on the taskbar attached to the Windows desktop.

Windows 8 screenshot

The Start Screen looks like a set of blocks of various colors. These blocks can be static or dynamic and in this case they take the name of live tiles and automatically show specific information that it can be useful to have always and in any case within reach … look! For example, the live tile of the Money application shows the situation of the securities on the stock exchange while the live tile of the News application shows the most relevant news of the day.

Depending on what your preferences and needs are, you can move, resize and / or eliminate the plugs attached to the Start Screen. To move the tiles, you just have to click on them and drag them with the mouse from one point to another on the screen while to resize a tile you just need to right click on it, move the mouse cursor over the Resize item attached to the menu displayed and select an option to choose from  Small , Medium or Large . To delete a piece, instead, right-click on the element on which you intend to go and then select the Remove from Start item attached to the menu that is shown on the screen.

Windows 8 screenshot

If you deem it appropriate, after having moved, resized and / or eliminated the pieces attached to the Start Screen, you can organize the app tiles in groups so as to be able to identify more easily what you actually need. To perform this operation, you must first click on the button   located at the bottom right, in order to activate the panoramic display of the screen, then press the right mouse button on the group to be renamed and select the  Assign group name  item from the menu that appears at the bottom of the screen.

Then know that you can view a “classic” list of all the applications installed on your computer by clicking on the button depicting an arrow pointing downwards that you can view by moving the mouse cursor to the bottom left of the Start Screen. You can then restore the default Start Screen display by pressing the button depicting an arrow pointing upwards, always attached to the left.

Windows 8 screenshot

If then, regardless of the motivation, it is not your intention to view one or more animations of the dynamic tiles, you can deactivate them by clicking with the right mouse button on the element on which you intend to go to act and select the Disable box item  animated  from the menu that appears.

After logging in to the Start Screen you can then display the desktop again using the combination of Windows Key + D buttons or by clicking on the Desktop tile , by default present in the first group on the left of the Start screen.

Search for applications and files

In order to better understand how to use Windows 8, I also suggest that you pay a little attention to the system used to  search for applications and files  that has been implemented in the operating system and that you can take advantage of by simply clicking on the lens-shaped button. enlargement located in the upper right part of the Start Screen. This system allows you to find all the programs, data and information you want instantly, without having to open various applications, menus and sub-menus. In short … it’s a great comfort!

To perform a search with Windows 8 then access the Start Screen, press on the magnifying glass located at the top right and type the terms to search. Once this is done, a tab will automatically open containing all the results. Depending on the keyword entered, the search results may include applications, control panel elements, files and Web pages. For example, if you type the term video you will first see the Video app appear among the search results, after which you will be shown the corresponding Windows settings as well as the results of online searches which are presumably more relevant.

Windows 8 screenshot

Charms Bar

Another element on which I invite you to dwell in order to understand how to use Windows is the  Charms Bar . This is a special panel that allows you to quickly access various system resources.

To display the Charms Bar, simply move the mouse cursor to the top right or bottom right corner of the desktop or Start Screen.

Windows 8 screenshot

Once the Charms Bar is displayed, you can then select the Search item  , to start a new search for data and information, or the Sharing item  , to share online or with other applications the elements currently consulted in the applications from the Windows Store. By pressing instead on the Start item,   you can instantly call up the Start Screen while the Devices  and  Settings  options  allow you to manage the devices connected to the computer and access the system settings respectively (for example, you can manage network settings, notifications , turn off or restart the computer and so on).

Programs and applications

Unlike the previous operating systems made available by Microsoft, Windows 8 supports two types of software: the classic programs , i.e. the executable files with the .exe extension  and  which were already supported by all the other versions of Windows, and the applications of the  Windows Store , i.e. universal applications that work only from the Start Screen and which are also compatible with mobile devices.

As for the classic programs you can find and install everything you need as it has always been possible on other versions of Windows (maybe you can find some useful tips in my guide on how to download programs for free ).

ImgBurn screenshot

As for the applications of the Windows Store these work in a very similar way to the applications for Windows Phone on smartphones. These apps can in fact be downloaded and installed in a matter of clicks using the  Windows Store , the application store which you can access simply by pressing the appropriate link attached to the taskbar or by clicking on the tile Store which you find by default on the Start Screen .

Windows 8 screenshot

The Windows Store works like the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store and contains many applications for all tastes, both paid and free. All the apps on the Windows Store can be installed and deleted very few steps.

To install an app from the Windows Store you just need to click on its name and press the Install button   located on the left side of the screen. To remove an app, just click with the right mouse button on its tile and select the Uninstall item   from the menu that appears at the bottom of the screen.

Windows 8 screenshot

Keep in mind that all the apps downloaded and installed on Windows 8 through the Windows Store are connected to your  Live / Hotmail address . As a result, all applications installed through the Windows Store are automatically synchronized on all computers and devices with Windows 8 used with the same account.

Then know that by moving the cursor down or up to the left and moving the arrow up or down, thumbnails of the running apps are shown so that you can switch from one program to another faster.


At this point I would say that we are there, you finally understood how to use Windows 8 or at least how to make the most of its basic features. Before leaving you free to have fun with your computer, however, there are some guides that I would like to point out to you if, in the future, you wish to deepen your knowledge about the OS in question and in case you want to perform some specific operations.

In case you want to perform burn operations I suggest you consult my guide on how to burn with Windows 8 while if you need to activate and use Bluetooth you can take a look at my tutorial on how to activate Bluetooth Windows 8 . If instead you want to avoid typing the password to access your account every time you turn on the computer, take a look at my guide on how to remove Windows 8 password while reading my tutorial on how to speed up Windows 8 you can find out what to do to make faster and more efficient the operating system. Among the other guides concerning the use of the operating system that you might find interesting, I’ll point out later how to scan with Windows 8  and how to customize Windows 8 .