Windows 8 Tip: How To Install The Windows 8.1 Upgrade

windows81storeupdate

If you have a Windows 8 computer, laptop, or tablet, it’s time to upgrade to Windows 8.1. Here are a few tips to make the upgrade go smoothly and to enjoy the results.

Microsoft has a thorough tutorial that walks you through each step of the upgrade. It’s recommended reading before you launch the upgrade. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8.1 Now Available For Computers And Tablets

Windows 8.1

Windows 8.1 is a free upgrade to Windows 8 that is now available for all computers and laptops running Windows 8, and all Surface Pro and Surface RT tablets. In a few days, Windows 8.1 will be the version of Windows that ships on all new computers and tablets.

Microsoft has not changed the fundamental nature of Windows 8. […] continued

Read more

How To Stay On The Desktop On A Windows 8 Computer

windows8likewindows7startscreen

Windows 8 features a Start screen in place of the familiar Start menu, and many of its apps are designed with a new full-screen presentation best suited for laptops and tablets. If you get a Windows 8 desktop computer and large monitor for business use, you’re probably going to want to spend most of your time on the familiar desktop, with the taskbar on the bottom and your programs running in multiple windows. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Watch The Missing Windows 8 Instructional Video

The Missing Windows 8 Instructional Video

If you have a new Windows 8 computer or you’re thinking of getting one, please – please! – take a few minutes and watch Scott Hanselman’s presentation of “The Missing Windows 8 Instructional Video.” If the video doesn’t appear above, then click on this link to view it on his page. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Microsoft Guide To Windows 8

windows8guide

Microsoft has released a user’s guide to Windows 8 for anyone with a new Windows 8 computer or tablet. Download the Windows 8 guide from here. (If you want the abbreviated version, start with my article on the five things you need to know for your first Windows 8 computer.)

Without help, it’s difficult to discover some of the new features in Windows 8 – the things that soon become second nature once they are pointed out. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 And The Death Of A Thousand Cuts

Windows 8

Here we go again.

Windows 8 is succumbing to the pressure from too many people with too many agendas. It’s starting to get a bit of the Vista stink. Everybody seems to “know” that Windows 8 is something to be avoided. Nobody can articulate what the problems are – it’s something they heard somewhere. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Bring Back The Start Menu With Start8

Stardock Start8 - restore Windows 8 Start menu

Missing the Start button on your new Windows 8 computer? It’s easy to get it back with Start8 from Stardock Software.

Microsoft made a bold (and perhaps misguided) decision to insist that everyone use the new Windows 8 Start screen to start programs. Sure, there’s a rocky transition, but the idea is that if everyone becomes familiar with the Start screen, then two things happen: (1) the Start screen becomes pretty lovable, and (2) people will be more likely to use Windows 8 tablets and phones, since they share the identical interface. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Sign In With A Microsoft Account

Windows 8 - Sign In With A Microsoft Account

One of the first questions asked during setup of a new Windows 8 PC has particular significance. By default, you’ll be asked to sign in with a Microsoft account. If you do, you’ll be able to take advantage of one of the best features of Windows 8, the built-in ability to sync settings automatically among your PCs. […] continued

Read more

Windows Tip: Use The Browser Address Bar For Web Searches

Internet Explorer address bar

You can type web searches into the address bar of your browser and get the same results as if you had typed them directly into Google.

This is an old trick but it’s not well known – and it’s incredibly useful. I type search terms into my browser all day, without the extra clicks that would be necessary to go to www.google.com. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: What You Need To Know About Windows 8 Security

windowsdefenderlogo

Windows 8 includes antivirus software built into the operating system. You don’t have to install anything additional for malware protection on a Windows 8 computer.

Microsoft has been increasingly assertive about giving away antivirus software but this is the first time it has included this level of protection as part of the operating system. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Turn On File History

Windows 8 File History - search on Start screen

Windows 8 includes a feature that lets you recover older versions of documents or photos easily and flexibly. File History is an improved version of “Previous Versions,” a feature of Windows 7 and Vista that almost no one ever discovered in its hiding place on the Properties menu of individual files. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: The Five Things You Need To Know For Your First Windows 8 Computer

Windows 8 - Windows key to return to Start screen

When you sit down at your first Windows 8 computer, you will be disoriented. Important controls are hidden, toolbars appear and disappear in ways that are unintuitive, and the Start button is missing from the desktop.

The learning curve is not steep! In fact, a Windows 7 user can be completely comfortable at a Windows 8 computer after learning only five things. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Make Outlook The Default Program For Mail

Windows 8 - make Outlook the default program for mail

This tip is for Outlook users who want to use Outlook exclusively and bypass the Windows 8 Mail app on a desktop computer or notebook.


TIP

Open Default Programs and select Microsoft Outlook.

Click on: “Set this program as default – Use the selected program to open all file types and protocols it can open by default.”

Applies to: Outlook users on Windows 8


Windows 8 includes a simplified full-screen Mail app. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Set Internet Explorer To Open On The Desktop

windows8internetexplorertile

This tip is directed to people experiencing Windows 8 for the first time on a desktop or notebook computer who want to minimize confusion by spending most of their time on the familiar Windows 7-style desktop.


TIP

Windows 8 - Internet Explorer - open links on desktop

In Internet Explorer, click on Tools / Options / Programs.

Choose to open links: “Always in Internet Explorer on the desktop.”

Check the box: “Open Internet Explorer tiles on the desktop.”

Applies to: Windows 8 on desktop PCs and notebooks. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: Make Desktop The Default Tile On The Start Screen

windows8likewindows7startscreen

There is no shortage of guides for learning Windows 8 basics, starting with Microsoft’s guide to new features. Here’s an article that goes through the basics of the Charms bar, the Start Screen, switching apps and snapping them to the sidebar, printing from apps, and more.

Instead of writing a tutorial, I’ll be giving you a series of tips that aren’t as well known – settings that might make Windows 8 more comfortable and easier to adjust to. […] continued

Read more