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Windows 8.x

Microsoft Support for Windows XP Ended April 8, 2014

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7/17/2024 12:20:30 PM

Windows 8.1


Upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 8.x and 7

Upgrade to Windows 8.1 from Windows 8 (free update)

See the following for instructions on how to upgrade Windows 8 to Windows 8.1:
Update to Windows 8.1 from Windows 8

Windows 8.1 Update (April 8, 2014)

Windows 8.1 Update Rollup (December 2014)

Windows Desktop and Start Button Behavior & Appearance

If you don't like the Live Tiles interface in Windows 8.x (designed more for touch screens) and want Windows 8.1 to look more like Windows 7, follow these simple steps:

  1. If you're currently in the Live Tiles interface, press Windows logo key+D on the keyboard or click Desktop.
  2. Right-click an empty area of the taskbar (bar spanning the bottom of the screen) and choose Properties. This opens the Taskbar and Navigation Properties window.
    • To have Windows launch the Desktop (nearly identical to the typical Windows 7 appearance), select When I sign in or close all apps on a screen, go to the desktop instead of Start.
    • To have the Windows logo Start button and Windows logo key keyboard key display the list of apps (programs) instead of displaying the Live Tiles interface, select Show the Apps view automatically when I go to Start.
      Note: The Apps view replaces the familiar Start menu.
  3. Click OK. Taskbar and Navigation Properties

The Apps view replaces the familiar Start menu.
You can also create a toolbar in the taskbar that resembles previous versions of Windows' Start menu's list of programs:

  1. If you're currently in the Live Tiles interface, click Desktop.
  2. Right-click an empty area of the taskbar (bar spanning the bottom of the screen) and choose Toolbars then New toolbar...
  3. In the New Toolbar - Choose a folder window, enter the following into the Address field at the top of the window, then click the Select Folder button:
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs
  4. Click on the two arrows to the right of Programs near your clock and you will see the list of programs.

Some other customizing information can be found here: Windows 8.1: Personalize your PC

Setting the proper date, time, and time zone

In some situations, Windows 8.x no longer presents an option to set the proper time zone during initial setup process. To correctly set the time and time zone:

  1. If you're currently in the tiled interface, click Desktop.
  2. Click the clock in the lower-right corner.
  3. Click Change time and date settings...
  4. If the time zone is not correct, lick the Change time zone... button and select your appropriate time zone settings
  5. With the time zone set accurately, make sure the date and time are accurate. If they are not, click the Change date and time... button and set the appropriate date and time.
  6. Optional: To force the clock to synchronize with an internet network time server immediately (it will do it on its own after a while):
    1. Click the Internet Time tab.
    2. Click the Change settings... button.
    3. Make sure Synchronize with an Internet time server is checked then click the Update now button.
    4. Click OK.
  7. Click OK.

How to shut down or log off the computer

Manage wireless network profiles

Unlike previous versions of Windows, Windows 8.x does not have a GUI (graphical user interface) for managing existing wireless profiles. In order to view the list of saved profiles, delete saved profiles, etc., these tasks must be performed from a command prompt.

  1. Press Windows logo key+X on the keyboard (or right-click the Windows logo Start button in Desktop mode) to display the Quick Link menu, then click Command Prompt.
  2. Type the appropriate command and hit Enter:
    • netsh wlan show profiles
      View a list of saved wireless profiles
    • netsh wlan delete profile name="ProfileName"
      Delete a profile, type where ProfileName represents a saved profile name (see the netsh wlan show profiles command above).
    • netsh wlan ?
      View all wireless related commands

See the following Microsoft document for more information:
Manage wireless network profiles

The Quick Links menu provides a quick way to access several administrative, advanced options.

Quick Link menu

Windows 8.1 Keyboard Shortcuts

See the following for a listing of useful keyboard shortcuts for Windows 8.1:
Windows 8.1 Keyboard Shortcuts

Windows 8.1 Tutorial

See: Windows 8.1 tutorial