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Windows 8 Start Screen

Windows 8 Start Screen Tips

Load up Windows 8 and you will immediately notice the biggest cosmetic change to its interface: the Start Screen. Let’s look at some tricks to bend the new customisable Start Screen to your will…


Start Screen Tips (© Microsoft)


If you are using a touch screen, getting around the Start Screen’s tiles are easy – just swipe. But keyboard and mouse users might find that a bit hard to do. Fortunately you can still get the same interaction: use your mouse’s scroll wheel to move through the tiles. On a keyboard, tap the Home and End keys to navigated from side to side. To toggle between the Desktop and Start Screen, just tap the Windows key on your keyboard. You can also toggle this by clicking on the bottom left corner of the screen.

Start Screen Tips (© Microsoft)

Rearrange The Tiles

There is no doubt that you’d like to arrange the tiles to fit your tastes. This is very easy: by clicking and holding, you can drag any tile to a different spot. Tiles can also be resized: just right-click on a tile to select it, then choose ‘Resize’. You can follow the same steps to remove a tile, but select ‘Unpin’ instead. And if you want to see more of your start screen, hover at the bottom right corner of the screen, wait for the zoom icon to appear (a box with a minus sign) and use it to zoom out. Note, though, that you cannot move individual tiles while zoomed out.

Start Screen Tips (© Microsoft)

Making Groups

If you look at the start screen, you’ll notice there is a gap between groups of tiles. In Windows 8 jargon that is called a ‘speed bump’ – a useful way to keep your tiles separated. This is also key to making groups: create one by simply dragging a tile to the far side of a speed bump. You’ll see a vertical translucent white bar appear to show the gap between the groups. To make things easier, use the zoom out command in the bottom right corner for a better view. While zoomed out, you are able to select a group by right clicking on it. Now you have the choice to name a group.

Start Screen Tips (© Microsoft)

Add More Tiles

Adding tiles to the Start Screen is very easy: simply right click and select ‘Pin To Start’. This can be done with almost everything in Windows 8: from apps to folders and even web pages. The easiest way to find something an pin it is through the search feature. While viewing the Start Screen, just begin typing. A search will begin, showing you what matches your phrase. Once you found what you want, right click on it and and then pin it. Naturally you can do the same to get rid of a tile – just right-click, then unpin it.

Tue, 17 Dec 2013 05:30:00 GMT | By James Francis
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