Microsoft brings in the concept of a redesigned user interface with the launch of Windows 8. The Start Menu has been replaced by Start Screen. This interface contains the apps and programs in the form of tiles.
You can customize the Start Screen by selecting the apps to be displayed and changing their sizes. Group the apps of the same category together or unpin any app from it.
This brings us to the concept of the Windows Store and the Desktop apps in Windows 8. Windows Store apps are the newer apps which are developed specifically for the Windows 8 interface.
Pin favorite apps and places to Start Screen
Let us start with the first step of pinning any app to start screen. There is a huge collection of apps in Windows 8 and you will definitely not wish to clutter your Start with irrelevant apps. So, make a choice of the apps you will keep on the Start Screen.
- Press Windows Key + Q to open the All Apps
- Right click on the app
- A bar will appear at the bottom
- Select ‘Pin to Start’
- Your app is successfully pinned
After viewing so many apps you may be thinking that you can pin only Windows Store or Desktop apps on the ‘Start’ interface. Let me tell you that you can pin any file, folder or program to ‘Start’ without getting into any technicalities.
- Press ‘Windows + E’ to open Windows Explorer
- Select the file, folder or program to be pinned
- Right click and select ‘Pin to Start’
Change tile size and set tiles
You can also customize the Start Screen by arranging the tiles. You can drag and drop the tiles and arrange them as you like. As discussed above, desktop apps don’t provide any customizable option. However, you can change the tile size of Windows Store Apps.
- Right click on the Windows Store app tile
- The options menu appears at the bottom
- I have selected the ‘News’ app which is a larger tile so the ‘smaller’ option is displayed
- Similarly, if you select a smaller tile, it will display the option of ‘larger’
- Click on ‘smaller’ or ‘larger’ to change the tile size
Unpin apps and places from Start Screen
Just like you pin your favorite apps to Start UI, you have the complete freedom to unpin them as soon as they drop out of your interests.
- Right click on the app tile
- Select ‘Unpin from Start’
- You may like to un-install any app directly by selecting the ‘Uninstall’ option
Switching quickly from one app to another
Windows 8 open Windows Store apps in the full screen mode. Since there is no taskbar at the bottom so you cannot switch between apps as you can do with Desktop apps. So, how to switch quickly from one app to another? Oh yes, the combination ‘Alt + tab’ stands valid in windows 8. But, we have another simple way:
- Move your mouse to the top-left corner of the screen
- You will see a thumbnail of any opened app
- Place your mouse properly and a panel will appear containing thumbnails of all opened apps
- Click on any thumbnail and switch to that app
Close a Windows Store app
Closing Windows Store apps is a little different than closing Desktop apps because there is not X button at the top as Windows Store apps always run in full screen mode. To close Windows Store apps, do the following:
- Move your mouse to the top left corner to see the thumbnails of apps in panel
- Select the app and right click to close it
We hope that these simple tips will help you manage your apps much effectively. Are you facing any problem in handling apps of Windows 8?
You may also like to read: How to access files, folders and programs quickly.