Sunday, November 25, 2012

Windows 8: Some Useful Keyboard Shortcuts

You are thinking about getting Windows 8? My "typical home user" customer with years of experience in how to use a keyboard and mouse and working on a conventional monitor (screen) will be surprised and to some extent frustrated, trust me.

The new Windows 8 User Interface, originally called Metro and now renamed Modern UI, was definitely designed for tablet computers and/or smartphones, that is for touch enabled devices. But my above mentioned typical customer has no touch enabled devices connected to the computer at all. And I have already seen the confusion that can arise from having a touch oriented screen in front of you but no touch screen  

So if you are going to buy that shiny new computer, laptop or tablet with Windows 8 pre-installed or if you already have bought it you may have use for a few very handy keyboard shortcuts that can save a lot of navigation with the mouse. You may not have known about keyboard shortcuts yet but using Windows 8 you will want to learn at least a few of them.

Microsoft has published in several locations and in different formats lists of all keyboard shortcuts for Windows 8. One such list was published on the Windows Experience Blog. You can download the list either in PDF format or in XPS format (XPS is explained here). 

As an example of what keyboard shortcuts can do for you I want to list only a few of them:
  • Windows key+D  Takes you to the desktop
  • Windows key+R  Opens the Run box
  • Windows key+ I  Opens Settings. You can reach Control Panel from here if you are on the desktop when you use this shortcut
  • Windows key+Q  Opens a Search screen.
  • Windows key+X  Very useful for the more experienced user. It opens the Quick Access menu with many useful system tools that in previous versions of Windows mostly where accessible only from within the Control Panel. Here is a low quality (sorry) screen shot:
    Windows 8 Quick Acess menu 
Caution if you have downloaded the list of keyboard shortcuts from above links and want to print them:
The font on the printed page is very small..But still I think the list is a must have for everybody with Windows 8.

As usual I welcome suggestions and comments right here in the blog. 
Click here for a categorized Table Of Contents.
Print this post

No comments: