Learning how to use Windows 8 features and apps
This document pertains to HP computers that came with Windows 8
NOTE: If you are not using the latest version of Windows 8, some graphics and information in this document may vary. You can get the latest version from the Microsoft Store.
Windows 8 is a Microsoft operating system environment based on Windows 7 but with significant changes to how you find and work with software. Windows 8 is designed especially for touch, providing easy access to the software and Internet applications that you use most often.
If you are familiar with previous versions of Windows, using Windows 8 might seem awkward at first. However, when you become familiar with the easy-to-use interface, you'll probably find yourself having more fun and being more productive.
Read this document to learn and discover more about the possibilities in Windows 8.
NOTE:Windows 8 is a dynamic environment where the Start screen is easily changed and graphics update frequently. Some screen shots in this article might appear different from an actual Windows 8 experience.
View a video to help you learn about the new features
Before you begin
The steps and graphics in this support document work with the latest version of Windows 8. Before taking the time to learn about Windows 8, make sure Windows is updated.
Make sure you update Windows!
Microsoft releases updates for Windows 8 to make it more secure and user-friendly. The first thing you should do before using your computer is to connect to the Internet and get all the latest available updates from Microsoft.
Update to the latest version of Windows 8 (if an update is available) by clicking or touching the Store tile from the Start screen. When the Store app opens, type Windows 8 update to find an update from Microsoft that will update Windows to the next version. For example, if your computer came with the first version of Windows 8, you can update it to Windows 8.1 using the Store. If you cannot find a Windows 8 update in the Store, then your computer already has the latest version of Windows 8 installed.
Next, after you have updated Windows, make sure you have all of the latest Windows update files installed. Windows updates are not the same as updating the version of Windows 8. Windows updates are software files to fix problems, make your system more secure, or update hardware drivers. Microsoft makes this easy with the Windows Update tool. To use this tool, type Windows Update from the Start screen to find and open Windows Update. From this tool you can download and install all important or optional updates. You may be required to restart your computer for any changes to take effect.
By keeping Windows 8 up-to-date, you make your computer more secure and less likely to encounter errors or problems in the future.
Click an item in the following list for more information about the new features in Windows 8.
Windows 8 has a newly designed Start screen. The Start screen contains groups of tiles that represent your software programs, similar to desktop icons but with special advantages. It takes only one click or touch to open a software program from a tile. Tiles are typically larger and more colorful than desktop icons. Many tiles are animated and can display current information directly from the Start screen to keep you up-to-date without opening the software.
By using tiles, this new Start screen puts all of your most important software applications at your fingertips and allows you to easily move and group your tiles in a way that makes sense to you.
Windows 8 comes with new apps - software designed specifically to run from the Windows 8 Start screen - such as Music, Photos, Weather, and many more. The Store app is probably the most important app because you can use it to easily download and install more apps.
Many apps are similar in design and share features to provide a more consistent experience with back buttons, full page scrolling, and a similar use of icons or buttons. These new apps are also designed for touch, to stay open for fast access, and to be viewed full screen.
Apps work well together. You can "snap" or split the screen between apps in ratios of 70/30, 60/40 or 50/50. Plus, the apps will scale properly to fit their new window sizes. If you have a 1080p display, you can divide your screen between three apps.
For example, you can snap the Music app to listen to music while surfing the Internet with the Internet Explorer app.
The Windows 8 Start screen has tiles instead of desktop icons. Tiles easily open your software programs with one touch or click. They are typically larger, more colorful, and some are live, meaning that they can provide animated, timely updates displayed directly from their tile. For example, the Mail tile shows new messages as they come in, the Calendar tile shows upcoming events, the Weather tile shows the current forecast, and the Windows Store tile shows available update notifications for all apps.
The new Charms feature provides easy access to some of your most frequently used actions. These actions are always available from wherever you are in Windows. Whether you are working from the Start screen, the Windows desktop, or an app, Charms are always available.
To open the Charms, press the Windows + C keys.
When opened, a box in the lower left appears showing the date and time, network strength, and power or battery information. The Charms menu opens on the right edge of the screen.
Charms provide access to the following actions:
- Search charm - Search everywhere - apps, settings, files, even the Internet.
- Share charm - Share photos, music, movies, or links with other apps or people. For example, when viewing a Web page, use the Share charm to send it to Facebook, or to your friends. You don't need to open email to copy and paste the link. You can send a photo directly from the Photo app instead of opening Mail, creating a message, and attaching the photo. If you don't have time to read an article now, you can share it with your Reading List and save it to read later.
- Start charm - Use the Start charm to return to the Start screen. If you are already on the Start screen, the Start charm returns to the previous screen.
- Devices charm - Use the Devices charm to print, play media on TVs and audio systems, use more than one monitor, and send content to nearby computers and other devices such as phones. For example, you can connect your computer to your television to share your vacation photos with your friends.
- Settings charm - Use the Settings charm to personalize your computer. A few examples of what you can do include: change the volume or brightness, choose your keyboard type, access the computer settings, and turn off the computer.
When you log in to any Windows 8 computer that is connected to the Internet using your Microsoft login, you are automatically connected to your own information - no need to re-enter your contacts or set up your email. Windows 8 links your LinkedIn network, Facebook friends, Twitter contacts, and all your email contacts in one place. Use the OneDrive app to easily store and access your important files from any computer you are signed into.
The tiles are easier to use so you can open the app you want the first time. Just one touch opens your app - no need to double-click. The Start screen can scroll from left to right, so it can be expanded as much as you need to keep all your apps organized.
In addition, the new apps for Windows 8 are also designed for one touch and scrolling. In the News app for example, articles are displayed in tiles, so they are easy to browse and select.
Navigating in Windows 8
Use the information in the following sections to learn how to perform your tasks in Windows 8.
The Lock screen covers the sign-in screen and displays the date and time, as well as notifications for email, calendar, and other apps. You can customize the Lock screen by changing the picture and choosing which apps display notifications.
The Lock screen can display the following information:
- Date and time in the lower-left corner.
- Network and power connection status icons.
- Detailed status from the calendar app (by default).
- Status updates such as new message notifications from apps like Messaging and Mail.
You can also choose to play a slide show on the Lock screen, and can take photos right from the Lock screen with the built-in camera.
If you are leaving your computer, press the Windows + L key to bring up the Lock screen to protect your data.
To customize the Lock screen:
- Press the Windows + C key.The Charms menu opens on the right edge of the screen.
- Click Settings.
- Click Change PC settings in the lower right, and then click Lock screen.
- Change the picture by choosing one of the pictures available, or browse your computer for a picture.
- To view a slide show on the Lock screen, move the slider to the On position and select a picture source.
- In the Lock screen apps area, choose which app you want to run in the background to provide status and notifications.To use the camera from the Lock screen, move the slider to turn on the feature.
The Windows 8 Start screen contains tiles that are shortcuts to apps. Many of these tiles are live, meaning that they can report data from the app. For example, on the Weather app tile, you can see the current temperature and forecast. On the Mail app tile, you can see how many unread email messages you have.
The new Start screen gives you a larger desktop by expanding the borders left and right. This allows you to organize your apps into groups so you can see all of them.
To navigate through the Start screen, click and drag on the scroll bar at the bottom of the screen and then move the screen left or right.
NOTE:You will see the scroll bar only if your groups do not fit on the screen.
You can customize and organize your Start screen to meet your needs and preferences. The list below shows some of the ways to do this:
- Add a tile for almost anything: Windows 8 apps, desktop apps, Web pages, people, and file folders are a few examples.
- Add new groups of tiles for similar or frequently used apps, change the order of the groups, and name your groups.
- Change the size of the tiles and set them to display updated information about the app.
- Change the Start screen background and color.
To shut down the computer, press and release the hardware power button on your computer. Windows 8 knows when the power button is pressed and safely shuts down your computer - based on the current power settings.
If the power button cannot easily be accessed, you can shut down the computer in Windows using the following steps:
- Press the Windows + C key.The Charms menu opens on the right edge of the screen.
- Click Settings.
- Click Power.
- Select Shut down.NOTE:To restart, click Restart. To put the computer in sleep mode, click Sleep.Your selections might be different, depending on your Power settings.
Use the following information to navigate in Windows 8 with a mouse:
NOTE:When using a mouse in Windows 8, remember the four corners of your main screen. Each corner provides access to useful features.
- To switch between the Start screen and the desktop, move the mouse pointer to the lower-left corner of the screen, and then click the Start button that displays.
- To zoom on the Start screen, move the mouse to the lower-right corner of the screen and click the Zoom icon.
- To open the Charms with the mouse, move the mouse pointer to the upper-right corner of the screen, and then down to the Charms when they appear.
- To close an app with the mouse, place the mouse pointer at the top of the screen so that it changes into a hand. Drag the hand down and to the bottom of the screen. Your app shrinks and then disappears off the bottom of the screen.
- To switch to the previous app, move the mouse to the upper-left corner and click the thumbnail that appears.
- To see all open apps, move the mouse to the upper-left corner to display the previous app. Then drag the mouse down the left edge of the screen to see thumbnails of the open apps. Click a thumbnail to switch to that app or right-click to close the app.
- To snap an app to the side of the screen, open the app you want to run on the side. Then open the app you want to run on the main screen. Move the mouse to the upper-left corner to display the thumbnail for the first app.Drag the thumbnail to the side of the screen where you want the app. Release the mouse to see both apps on the screen. You can split the screen between apps in ratios of 70/30, 60/40 or 50/50. If you have a 1080p display, you can divide your screen between three apps.To close the snapped app, drag the divider bar to the edge of the screen.If you have a 1080p display, you can divide your screen between three apps.
Use the following information to navigate in Windows 8 using the keyboard.
|Windows key||Switches between Start Screen and the Desktop (or the last full screen application).|
|Windows key + C||Shows the Charms and the clock.|
|Windows key + H||Opens the Share charm.|
|Windows key + I||Opens the Settings charm.|
|Windows key + K||Opens the Devices charm.|
|Windows key + O||Turns the screen orientation lock on or off if your computer can detect screen orientation.|
|Windows key + W||Opens the Search charm with Search Settings selected.|
|Windows key + F||Opens the Search charm with Search Files selected.|
|Windows key + Q||Opens the Search charm with Search Everywhere selected.|
|Windows key + X||Opens the advanced menu on the desktop or the Start Screen.|
|Windows key + Z||Opens commands for the current app.|
|Windows key + Tab||Shows the most recently used running apps and Start. Hold the Windows key and press Tab to move from app to app.|
|Windows key + Prt Scr (Print Screen)||Takes and saves screenshots instantly. Windows saves the screenshot to your Pictures folder as a PNG image file.|
|Alt + Tab||Shows all open apps. Hold Alt and press Tab to move from app to app.|
|Alt + F4||Closes the software you are currently using. If the Windows Desktop is selected, the Windows Shut Down menu displays.|
|Ctrl + mouse wheel||Zooms - Hold down the Ctrl key on the keyboard while using the mouse wheel to grow or shrink an item on the screen.|
Use the following touch gestures to navigate on a computer with a touch display.
Use the following gestures to navigate in Windows 8 using the touchpad on a notebook computer.
Windows 8 provides several options for switching from one app to another.
- Windows key . Switch between Start Screen and the Desktop (or the last full screen application).
- Move the mouse to the upper-left corner to display a thumbnail image of the previous app. Click the thumbnail to switch to that app.
- To see all open apps, move the mouse to the upper-left corner to display a thumbnail of the previous app, and then drag the mouse down the left edge of the screen. Click a thumbnail to switch to that app or right-click to close the app.
- Alt + Tab. Shows thumbnails of all open apps. Hold Alt and press Tab to move from app to app. Release both keys to switch to that app.
- Windows key + Tab. Shows the most recently used running apps and Start. Hold the Windows key and press Tab to move from app to app. Release to switch to that app.
- If your screen is wide enough (1366 pixels), you can use snap to keep two apps on the screen. With snap, you can move an app to either the right or left side of the screen and open another app. For example, you can snap the Music app to the side so you can listen to music while surfing the Internet on the main screen.
To find anything from the Start screen, just start typing. You can search for anything from Start by typing on the keyboard. For example, to search for an HP app, type HP on the keyboard. A list of all HP apps displays.
You can also search using the Search charm:
Windows 8 apps do not have close buttons. When you change to another app, the previous app is suspended and continues running in the background using very few system resources. If your system needs resources, Windows automatically closes the apps. When you re-open that app, you can continue where you left off.
If you want to completely close an app, use one of the following methods:
- Move the mouse cursor to the top of the screen. When it changes from an arrow into a hand, drag it down to the bottom of the screen. The app shrinks and then disappears off the bottom of the screen.
- Move the mouse to the upper-left corner to display a thumbnail of the previous app. Then drag the mouse down the left edge of the screen to display thumbnails of the open apps. Right-click a thumbnail to close the app.
- With the app open on the screen, press Alt + F4.
Use the following information to customize your tiles.
- Right-click a tile to see the tile commands. Not all commands are available for each tile.
- Unpin from Start - removes the tile from the Start screen. This does not uninstall the app from the computer.
- Uninstall - removes the app from the computer and uninstalls the app from the computer.
- Resize - Increases or decreases the tile size. Depending on the tile, choose from large, wide, medium, and small.
- Turn live tile off or on - displays information from the app when turned on. For instance, on the Weather tile, see the current temperature and forecast.
- Unpin from Taskbar or Pin to Taskbar - pins (or unpins) tiles for desktop apps such as Paint or Notepad to the taskbar on the desktop
- Open new window - opens a new blank window in desktop apps such as Internet Explorer and Paint.
- Run as administrator - available on desktop apps such as Paint and Notepad. Use when necessary to access or modify files or system configurations.
- Open file location - available for desktop apps such as File Explorer to open to that folder.
- Pin an app to the Start screen:
- Right-click anywhere on the background of the Start screen to display the All apps icon in the lower-right corner.
- Click All apps arrow to see a list of all your installed apps.
- Find the app you want to pin to Start, and right-click it. At the bottom of the screen, click Pin to Start.
- You can organize your tiles into groups, arrange the groups, and assign names to groups. Use the following steps:
- To create a new group, select a tile, drag it to an open space, and drop it. You can have many groups on the Start screen. If the groups don't fit on one screen, scroll right or left to see your groups by clicking and dragging the scroll bar at the bottom of the screen.
- To change the order of your groups, first click the Zoom button in the lower-right corner of the screen.
- Drag the group to a new position.
- To name a group, right-click anywhere on the background of the Start screen, and then click Customize.
- In the Name box, type a name for the group.
- Click the screen two times to return to the normal view. The new name for the group displays.
Using Windows 8 apps
Use the following information to learn how to use the new Windows 8 apps.
Alarms is an app that provides you with alarms, timers, and a stopwatch to help you manage and keep track of time.
The Calendar app is part of the Windows 8 Communications apps that are designed to help you stay organized and connected with the people in your life.
- Click the Calendar tile to open the calendar, and then right-click the screen to select your view - Day, Week, or Month.
- To add an item, click the New item button.
- If you have more than one calendar, such as Hotmail, Outlook, or Google, you can view them all by adding that account to the Calendar app. Use the Settings charm to add accounts and set calendar options and permissions.To add a calendar, open the Settings charm, and click Accounts.
- Click the type of account you want to add.
- Enter your email address and password, and click Connect.
- Click the account name to set download frequency and the content you want to sync.
- Close the Settings. The Calendar app retrieves your information.
With the Camera app, you can take photos or shoot video using the camera in your computer or with an external USB webcam. When you open the app, the camera displays an image preview. Tap or click anywhere on the screen to take a picture. The following commands are available:
- Video Mode: Switch Camera from taking still photos to recording video. Tap or click the screen to start recording, and tap again to stop.
- Timer: Delay for three seconds before snapping a picture or starting the video recording.
- Exposure: Move the slider up and down to change the exposure setting.
- Camera roll: View the pictures you have taken.
To view your pictures and videos, click Camera Roll. Then continue clicking the left and right arrows to browse all of the images and videos that have been taken with the Camera app.
To edit your pictures, right-click the screen to see the commands. To delete pictures or videos, click the Delete button.
Use the following steps to crop a picture:
- Click the Crop button to display the four dots on the screen.
- Drag the dots to select the area of the picture you want to remain after cropping.
- Select Apply to complete the crop.
Use the following steps to edit videos:
- Tap the screen to play the video.
- Tap the screen again to show the Play button in the center of the screen, the media slider bar, and the Trim and Delete buttons.
- Click the Trim button.
- Drag the white dots on the slider bar to your new beginning and ending positions, and then click Save a copy to save the trimmed video.
Your pictures and videos are saved to the Webcam folder in your Pictures library: \Pictures\Webcam. Pictures are saved as JPEG. Videos are saved as MP4.
The Finance app provides information and news about business and the stock market. The data in the app is updated every 15 minutes. The data on the Finance tile is updated every 30 minutes.
- Click the tile to open the app. The app opens to the main page, showing current top stories, the stocks on your Watchlist, market indices, rates, and top movers. Scroll to the right for more information.
- You can view a quote by searching for the business using the Search box. Type the company name or symbol in the Search box, and click the Search icon.
- To open the app commands, right-click anywhere on the screen. The following options are available:
- Today: Switches to the main page showing current top stories, Watchlist stocks, market indices, rates, and top movers.
- Watchlist: Takes you to tiles for the stocks in your list. You can also pin items from your Watchlist to the Start screen. Use the following steps to customize your stock Watchlist.
- To add a stock, click the Plus button.
- Type the company name in the box, select it from the list, and click Add.
- To remove a stock, right-click a stock tile, and click Remove in the lower-left corner of the screen.
- News: Switches to a page with business-related news stories.
- Tools: Use the mortgage calculator, currency converter, or retirement planner, figure auto payments, and track your savings.
The Food & Drink Bing app offers access to a variety of recipes from recipe Web sites, popular cookbooks, and food bloggers. The app includes a wine encyclopedia with information on over 1.5 million bottles of wine and hundreds of popular cocktail recipes.
With Food & Drink you can browse recipes by cuisine, level of difficulty, preferred cooking method, or by specific ingredients. In addition, you can browse pictures of meals and then click the image to see the full recipe.
Figure 68: Bing Food & Drink app
You can also save your own recipes into the app, and easily save other recipes in your collection. The app includes a meal planner, the ability to create shopping lists to email or print, and a hands free cooking mode.
Scroll to the right to reach the Next Steps menu and make a selection.
With the Game app, you can get games from the Windows store or from the Xbox Live Marketplace. You can also customize your avatar and manage your profile and other account settings.
Open Games by clicking the app tile in the Start Screen. The Games welcome screen shows your Xbox avatar and your profile details.
You can create a new avatar, customize your existing avatar, or edit your profile details. Scroll to the right for the following sections:
- Friends: Shows your Xbox friends.
- Game activity: Shows games that you have purchased recently.
- Home: Lists some of the games available in the Windows Store specifically for Windows, as well as your achievements, messages, and friends.
The Bing Health & Fitness app features diet, health, and exercise trackers, plus step-by-step instructions and videos for hundreds of exercises and workouts.
Use the Diet Tracker to help you calculate your daily food and stay on your eating plan.
Use the Health Tracker to record your weight and see graphs of your progress. You can also track your cholesterol, blood pressure, and pulse.
There are two versions of Internet Explorer in Windows 8: Internet Explorer 11, the touch-optimized version on the Start screen, and Internet Explorer for the desktop, the desktop version of Internet Explorer.
- Click the tile to start Internet Explorer.
- Right-click the screen to display the app commands at the bottom of the screen:
- To open a new tab, open the commands and click the plus sign.
- Click the address bar at the bottom of the screen to type an address or search term, or select a tile from your Frequent or Favorites to go to a Web page.
- If you have problems viewing a Web page in Internet Explorer 11, click Page Tools, and then click View on the desktop. Internet Explorer for the desktop automatically opens to the Web page you were viewing.
The Mail app works with several mail providers, including Google, Hotmail, Yahoo, and Outlook.
- To add a mail account, open the Settings charm, click Accounts, and click Add an Account.
- Click the type of account and then follow the instructions to add the email address and password.
- Click the tile to open the Mail app, and click Inbox to see your messages.
- To send a message, click New in the upper-right corner.
- Type a name in the To box, or click the plus button to see your contacts. Then type the subject and message.
- To format your message, highlight the section or right-click in the message. Mail opens the formatting commands at the bottom of the screen.
- When done, click Send.
- To print a message, open the Devices charm and select the printer. Click Print.
The Maps app uses Bing Maps to provide information such as driving directions, and traffic or aerial views.
Right-click on the screen to see the app controls. The following options are available:
- Pin to Start
- Add a pin
- Map style: Change between road view and aerial view.
- My location: To center the map on your location, click My location.NOTE:Open the Settings charm and click Permissions to allow Maps to access your location.
With the Music app, you can play music files from your computer or you can buy and download music from the Xbox Marketplace.
NOTE:The Music app does not play traditional music CDs. To listen to songs from your CDs using the Music app, the disc tracks must be converted to files. Use Windows Media Player to convert the tracks on your music CDs to music files such as WMA or MP3. These files can then be played by the Music app.
- To play music already on your computer, click the Music tile and then click Collection.Click an album tile to play it.
- Right-click the screen to display the Music commands. You can play, add a song to a playlist, delete, shuffle, and perform other actions with the music track.
The News app provides news gathered from a variety of sources across the Web. News stories are grouped into categories such as World News, Business, and Technology.
- Click the News tile to open the app.
- Scroll to the right to see top stories in other categories such as World, Technology, and Business.
- Select a category to display stories from that category on a separate page. Select a tile to open and read the new story.
- Right-click the screen to open the app commands.
- Bing News: see top news stories in predetermined categories such as World News, Technology, and Politics.
- Topics: create and add new categories to fit your interests. To create a new category, click Add a topic.
- Sources: a list of all the news sources sorted by category such as National and World News, Business, Entertainment, Sports, and Science. Click individual tiles to see news in that publication.
With the People app, you can keep track of all of your contacts from your Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and email accounts in one central location that is automatically backed up. When you sign in from a new Windows 8 device, your contacts are available - no need to enter them again.
NOTE:The People app has a memory cache so you can add or edit contacts while you are offline. When you go back online, the changes are synced so your updates are backed up.
- Click the People tile to open the app.
- To add another account, click the Settings charm, click Accounts, and then click Add an account. Select the type of account.NOTE:The account list you see might be different, depending on what accounts are already installed in the People app.
- Type your email address and password. The app automatically retrieves the contact information and adds it to the People app.
- Click a person to see their individual contact information. From this page, depending on which services you have linked to People, you can:
Right-click the screen to see the app commands. You can:
- send them an e-mail
- view their profile
- pin to Start
- Edit the profile
- Delete the profile
- Add the profile to your Favorites category on the People home page
- Link multiple profiles for this person
With the Photo app, you can keep all your photos in one place. Upload photos from other devices such as your cell phone, external hard drive or memory stick, or digital camera. You can also connect the Photo app to your OneDrive and to your social media services such as Facebook and Flickr.
- Click the tile to open the Photo app. Click the down arrow to choose between your Pictures library and pictures on your OneDrive.
- To add photos from another device such as a digital camera or memory stick, first connect the device to the computer. Then right-click anywhere on the screen and click Import.
- To share your photos, first select a photo, and then open the Share charm.You can post to Facebook or email the photo. You can also upload the photo to your OneDrive from the Photos app.
- To print a photo, open the Devices charm, select a printer, and click Print.
- If you want to see a thumbnail view of your pictures, click the thumbnail button in the upper right corner.
Use the Reading List app to bookmark or save articles you find on Web sites that you would like to return to. Reading List is synchronized between apps - you can start reading an article on your computer at work, add it to your Reading List, and finish reading it at home on your tablet.
- When you find an article you want to add to your Reading List, swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and select the Share charm.
- Then select Reading List.
- Click Add to add the article to your Reading List. Open Reading List and read the article.
With the OneDrive app you can easily view the data stored on your OneDrive, upload and sync files, and then access them from anywhere.
Click the OneDrive tile to start the app.
Right-click the background to open the app commands.
The following commands are available:
- Select all - select all the files in the folder.
- New Folder - create a new folder that will appear in the file column on the left.
- Add files - transfer files from the computer to OneDrive.
Right-click an item to select it and open additional commands. The following commands are available:
- Delete - remove the currently selected item from OneDrive.
- Open with - select a software program to open the file for editing.
- Set as Lock screen - use the photo for the Lock screen background.
- Slide show - add the current selections to a slide show.
- Rotate - rotate the item.
- Crop - crop the item.
- Edit - edit the photo with auto fix, basic fixes, adjust the light, color, and add special effects.
Use the following steps to post a photo to Facebook:
- Right-click an item to select it. Note the check in the upper-right corner.
- Press the Windows key + H to open the Share charm, and click Post to Facebook.
- In the Add a message area, type your message, and then click Send.
The Sports app makes it easy to keep up with your sports teams. Get news stories, scores, schedules, league standings, and more. You can personalize the app by adding a tile for your favorite teams.
Open the app by clicking the tile. Sports opens to the home screen with today's news stories, and schedule and scores for any games that are playing today. Type a team or player name in the Search box.
Scroll through the app for top news stories, scores, schedules, videos, and slide shows. You can add your favorite team to get their latest scores. To add a team, click the Add button under Favorite Teams.
Type the team name in the box, and click Add.
Scroll to the right to see the video and slide show selections.
Use the travel app to plan your vacation, book flights and hotels, and decide what to see when you get there.
Click the tile to start the app. Scroll to see featured destinations, panoramas, and magazine articles. To search on a particular destination, type the name in the Search box.
Right-click anywhere on the background to open the app commands.
- Search flights. Search for flights, look up schedules and see the status of a particular flight. When you are ready to book your flight, Travel automatically takes you to a third-party site to make your reservations.
- Flight status. Check the status of your flights.
- Flight schedules. Check for flight schedules.
- Search hotels. Search for a hotel based on price, class, and amenities. Get information for each hotel including a description, maps, and photos.
If you want to update Windows or get more apps, go to the Windows store where you can get free apps or purchase apps.
- To open the Windows Store, click the Store tile on the Start screen.
- The Windows Store opens to the home page of the Windows Store. Scroll sideways to see more categories. Tiles for individual apps show the name and logo for the app, as well as the price and current rating.
- To browse all of the apps that fall into a category, right-click an empty space on the Windows Store home page and select the desired category from the list.
- To search in a category, scroll all the way to the right, and then click See all.NOTE:These subcategories will be different based on the category you are searching. For small categories, the subcategory setting might not be available.
- Choose a subcategory such as Card to browse all the card games.
- For more information about an app, click the tile.
- On this page, you can find more information, or purchase and install the app. When you click Install, text displays on the upper-right corner indicating that the installation is in progress.
- When the installation is complete, Windows displays a notification stating that the app was installed and adds a tile to the Start screen. Click the tile to open the new app.
With the Video app, you can play movies already on your computer or buy and download movies and TV shows from the Xbox Marketplace.
- To play videos that are already stored on your computer, click the Video tile and scroll to the left to see personal videos.Click a tile to play it.
- Right-click anywhere on the background to display the Video commands.The following commands are available:
- Previous: Move to the previous video
- Pause: Pause the video
- Next: Move to the next video
- Volume: Adjust the volume
- Play to: Play on a connected device
- Playback options: includes repeat and closed captioning
- You can also buy movies and TV shows in the Xbox marketplace. When you select a video in the marketplace, you can:
- Play a movie trailer.
- See TV series descriptions and links to episodes.
- Buy or rent the video. Media that you purchase is downloaded to your video library.
The Weather app provides the current weather in your location. You can scroll to see more information such as the hourly forecast, weather maps, and historical weather data.
- Click the tile to open the app.
- To add a location, right-click to open the commands, and click the Add button .
- Type the city name and then click Add.
- You can also use the Search feature to get weather. Open the Search charm, type a name, and click Search.
- To change the temperature units, right-click to open the commands, and click Change to Fahrenheit (or Celsius).
Frequently asked questions
In Windows, the Start menu has been replaced with the Start screen. However, In Windows 8.1 there is a Start button. You can use the Start button to switch between the Windows 8 Start screen and the desktop, move the mouse to the lower left corner until the Start button displays, and then click it.
There are three different places in Windows 8 where you can change the background picture: the Start screen, the Lock screen, and the Desktop. Use the following instructions to customize your computer backgrounds.
- To change the background for the Start screen, use the following steps:
- To change the background picture for the Lock screen, use the following steps:
- At the Windows Start screen, type change lock screen picture to open the Search charm, and then click Change the picture on your lock screen.
- Click Change PC settings in the lower right, click Personalize, and click Lock screen.
- Click Browse to select one of the pictures available or find one on your computer.
- To change the background picture for the Desktop, use the following steps:
- On the Start screen, type Change desktop background. Then click Change desktop background in the Search results.
- Select a new picture from those displayed or click Browse to find a picture in another location. Click Save changes when done.
Use the following steps to change your account picture:
- Click the Settings charm, click Change PC settings in the lower right, and then click Account Picture.
- Click Browse to find another picture or click Create an account picture to use the camera to create a picture.
- When done, click Choose image.
Use the following steps to add a folder to the Start screen. The following instructions show how to pin the Documents folder to Start; however, you can add any folder to Start from File Explorer.
- On the Start screen, type Documents to open the Search charm, and the click Documents in the Search results.
- File Explorer opens in the Documents folder. Right-click Documents, and then click Pin to Start.
- The Documents tile displays on the Start screen.
In Windows 8 you can use two types of software programs. Software programs designed specifically to be used with the Windows 8 Start screen are called apps. Programs designed to be used from the Windows desktop or for previous versions of Windows are called Desktop apps.
Use the desktop for Desktop apps or software that was designed for previous versions of Windows. You will notice that when you click on some types of software from the Start screen that Windows switches to the Desktop. When this happens, you are using a Desktop application.
Desktop gadgets are not supported in Windows 8.
To unlock the Media Center features, you need a separate product key for the Windows 8 Pro Pack and the Windows 8 Media Center Pack. These can be purchased and downloaded from Microsoft in much the same way that Windows is activated.
Use the following steps:
- Right-click in the lower-left corner to open the menu, and click Control Panel.
- Click System and Security, click System, and click Get more features with a new edition of Windows.
- If required, type an administrator password, and then click Yes.
- Click I want to buy a product key online and follow the instructions.
Windows Movie Maker was not included in Windows 8. However, you can download Windows Movie Maker from the Microsoft Web site for free. To download and install Movie Maker, go to www.microsoft.com (in English) and search for Windows Movie Maker.
Windows DVD Maker is not included in Windows 8. To create your own video discs using the DVD format, use another software program such as CyberLink Media Suite.
The DVD function is not included in Windows Media Player 12 which comes with Windows 8. To view DVDs, use another software program such as CyberLink Power DVD.