|By Matt Hester||
|March 9, 2014 04:00 PM EDT||
One of the most often questions/feedback we get regarding Windows 8.1 is where is my start menu. These conversations can get very passionate, and usually turn into a commentary around on how much we miss our start menu. I am sure some folks want to punch the screen.
I totally understand your frustration and I went through this as well. While Windows 8 does provide a big change to how we do things in the interface, it did make me re-think why I used my start menu. What I learned from my own usage and talking to all you wonderful folks, is that the start menu is used for small common set of minimum tasks. Here is a list of the most common things folks like yourselves have told me, and I personally had problems finding in Windows 8.1:
- Shutdown and Sign Out
- Launch and Find Recently Installed Applications
Like all of you once I learned how to get around Windows 8 and find these basic tasks, I found that I will never need my start menu again. In this article, I am here to help show you how to accomplish these tasks with ease in Windows 8.1. In the end I hope you learn some new tips and tricks to improve how you use Windows 8.1
Last note, in another article in this series, I will talk about how as an IT Admin you can take control of the Windows 8.1 interface with our good friend, Group Policy.
Shutdown and Sign Out
This is easiest thing that was not easy to find until Windows 8. You had to use the charms bar (sliding the mouse down the right hand side of your screen or Windows +C) access it. Then you would click on settings and you would see the power icon. This is where you could shutdown, restart or sleep your system. Log off was a little harder to find, on your start screen (formerly metro) if you clicked on your name you were given a menu that allowed you log off. In Windows 8.1, you can still use the same tasks mentioned above you can use the Expert Menu. I love that name, and to access it simply right click on the start button on the lower left corner of the screen and you will see a screen similar to one below:
In addition to shutdown and sign out you also have access to many control panel applications and Explorer. So while this is different than what you are used to it is still essentially in the same location now in Windows 8.1
This is one of my most favorite features in Windows 8.1, and easily one of the best ones you can show anyone. To access from your start screen simply start typing, and you have nearly a fully federation search environment. Which BTW is the same way it has worked in previous versions of Windows, however this engine will allow you to quickly query other data sources. Not only does the search access your local repositories of information, it also will quickly extend to the Internet and beyond.
Unfortunately, this was not obvious, however once you know you can type on the screen, it really takes on a life of its own. This always seems to really please people when I show them, and for me this was my huge selling point on the new interface. The search will also query for your applications, and my search as I typed in Word is shown in the screenshot to the right. So the next time you cannot find something, simply type on the start screen, I be the results will surprise you!
Launch and Find Recently Installed Applications:
This is probably the most common thing that folks cannot find and I totally understand the frustration here. I remember the first time I installed a new application I could not find it either. It was not in the modern interface default screen, so where did it go? The answer is that it went to Apps View.
You will also notice in the all apps screen you can quickly sort your applications in 4 ways:
- by name
- by date installed (this is how find the recently install applications)
- by most used
- by category
That’s great Matt but how do I get to the all apps screen?
From the Start menu, you can access the Apps view either by clicking on the down arrow in the lower left corner of the screen. Additionally when you are on the start screen you can press ctrl + tab to access the all app view as well.
See my fun super tip below for an alternative to get to your applications off the desktop, however before you dive head long into the super tip I want to ask you a small favor. Give Windows 8.1 interface a try, and take a look at the new ways to accomplish your tasks. While they are different ways to get to the tasks, I am confident you will find these new ways that are more efficient then in previous versions of Windows.
Fun Super Tip to access applications from the desktop
Check this out:
Now I know what your thinking, what free app is that? It is not a free app, I am actually using a built-in Windows 8.1 feature, called a toolbar. This is a custom toolbar that references the Programs in the start menu folder on your system. This is how you create it:
- On your desktop, right click on your taskbar
- Hover on Toolbars and select New Toolbar…
- On the New Toolbar – Choose a folder screen browse or type in the path to your directory. If you installed on the c: drive the directory would have to be the following
NOTE: You will have to make sure you are viewing hidden items to see the folder.
- After you get the path into the screen simply click on Select Folder and your Toolbar will be created.
By default this tool bar will be all the way to the right of your task bar, but you can drag the toolbar to the left, but using the resizing icons, you may also need to drag the right hand side as well to get the button the size you need.
Lastly, I had someone ask me what my favorite application in Windows 8.1 was and my answer is it depends on if I am at work or going on vacation. Since this is a series called Windows 8.1 for business, I will give you my work answer: Desktop. That is where I spend all of my time, and if you checkout my teammates Jennelle’s post tomorrow she will show you how to go directly to the desktop and go directly to the All Apps view. This will help you save time, check out her blog tomorrow: http://www.techbunny.com/
If you miss any of the Windows 8.1 for business series you can click here
In the midst of the widespread popularity and adoption of cloud computing, it seems like everything is being offered “as a Service” these days: Infrastructure? Check. Platform? You bet. Software? Absolutely. Toaster? It’s only a matter of time. With service providers positioning vastly differing offerings under a generic “cloud” umbrella, it’s all too easy to get confused about what’s actually being offered. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Kevin Hazard, Director of Digital Content for SoftL...
Jul. 1, 2015 01:15 PM EDT Reads: 2,129
"A lot of the enterprises that have been using our systems for many years are reaching out to the cloud - the public cloud, the private cloud and hybrid," stated Reuven Harrison, CTO and Co-Founder of Tufin, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 16th Cloud Expo, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
Jul. 1, 2015 12:54 PM EDT Reads: 338
One of the hottest areas in cloud right now is DRaaS and related offerings. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Dale Levesque, Disaster Recovery Product Manager with Windstream's Cloud and Data Center Marketing team, will discuss the benefits of the cloud model, which far outweigh the traditional approach, and how enterprises need to ensure that their needs are properly being met.
Jul. 1, 2015 12:15 PM EDT Reads: 2,020
The time is ripe for high speed resilient software defined storage solutions with unlimited scalability. ISS has been working with the leading open source projects and developed a commercial high performance solution that is able to grow forever without performance limitations. In his session at Cloud Expo, Alex Gorbachev, President of Intelligent Systems Services Inc., shared foundation principles of Ceph architecture, as well as the design to deliver this storage to traditional SAN storage co...
Jul. 1, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,969
"Plutora provides release and testing environment capabilities to the enterprise," explained Dalibor Siroky, Director and Co-founder of Plutora, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
Jul. 1, 2015 11:45 AM EDT Reads: 981
To many people, IoT is a buzzword whose value is not understood. Many people think IoT is all about wearables and home automation. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, discussed some incredible game-changing use cases and how they are transforming industries like agriculture, manufacturing, health care, and smart cities. He will discuss cool technologies like smart dust, robotics, smart labels, and much more. Prepare...
Jul. 1, 2015 11:30 AM EDT Reads: 720
It is one thing to build single industrial IoT applications, but what will it take to build the Smart Cities and truly society-changing applications of the future? The technology won’t be the problem, it will be the number of parties that need to work together and be aligned in their motivation to succeed. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jason Mondanaro, Director, Product Management at Metanga, discussed how you can plan to cooperate, partner, and form lasting all-star teams to change the world...
Jul. 1, 2015 11:30 AM EDT Reads: 2,219
SYS-CON Events announced today that JFrog, maker of Artifactory, the popular Binary Repository Manager, will exhibit at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit Silicon Valley, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Based in California, Israel and France, founded by longtime field-experts, JFrog, creator of Artifactory and Bintray, has provided the market with the first Binary Repository solution and a software distribution social platform.
Jul. 1, 2015 11:30 AM EDT Reads: 934
In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Simone Brunozzi, VP and Chief Technologist of Cloud Services at VMware, reviewed the changes that the cloud computing industry has gone through over the last five years and shared insights into what the next five will bring. He also chronicled the challenges enterprise companies are facing as they move to the public cloud. He delved into the "Hybrid Cloud" space and explained why every CIO should consider ‘hybrid cloud' as part of their future strategy to achi...
Jul. 1, 2015 11:10 AM EDT Reads: 472
"We have a tagline - "Power in the API Economy." What that means is everything that is built in applications and connected applications is done through APIs," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at Akana, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 16th Cloud Expo, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
Jul. 1, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 494
"We got started as search consultants. On the services side of the business we have help organizations save time and save money when they hit issues that everyone more or less hits when their data grows," noted Otis Gospodnetić, Founder of Sematext, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
Jul. 1, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 919
Internet of Things is moving from being a hype to a reality. Experts estimate that internet connected cars will grow to 152 million, while over 100 million internet connected wireless light bulbs and lamps will be operational by 2020. These and many other intriguing statistics highlight the importance of Internet powered devices and how market penetration is going to multiply many times over in the next few years.
Jul. 1, 2015 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 2,105
Containers are changing the security landscape for software development and deployment. As with any security solutions, security approaches that work for developers, operations personnel and security professionals is a requirement. In his session at DevOps Summit, Kevin Gilpin, CTO and Co-Founder of Conjur, will discuss various security considerations for container-based infrastructure and related DevOps workflows.
Jul. 1, 2015 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 751
Internet of Things (IoT) will be a hybrid ecosystem of diverse devices and sensors collaborating with operational and enterprise systems to create the next big application. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Bramh Gupta, founder and CEO of robomq.io, and Fred Yatzeck, principal architect leading product development at robomq.io, discussed how choosing the right middleware and integration strategy from the get-go will enable IoT solution developers to adapt and grow with the industry, while at th...
Jul. 1, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,917
The most often asked question post-DevOps introduction is: “How do I get started?” There’s plenty of information on why DevOps is valid and important, but many managers still struggle with simple basics for how to initiate a DevOps program in their business. They struggle with issues related to current organizational inertia, the lack of experience on Continuous Integration/Delivery, understanding where DevOps will affect revenue and budget, etc. In their session at DevOps Summit, JP Morgenthal...
Jul. 1, 2015 09:32 AM EDT Reads: 479