Has anyone taken the plunge and upgraded to Windows 8?  Or perhaps you bought a new PC or laptop with Windows 8 preinstalled?  If so, I’m sure you are feeling a bit overwhelmed at the moment.

But don’t despair or be daunted by the changes in Microsoft’s newest OS.  I’m going to give you a few tips and share a few secrets and introduce you to your new best friend – the Windows key.

the windows key

the windows key

This handy key will help you with many tasks under Windows 8. Here are a few of the ways this key, with others, can be used:




  • the windows key = shows the new start page with your installed programs and apps
  • the windows key + m = minimizes everything showing on the desktop
  • the windows key + . = snaps a window to the right or left.  keep pressing to return the window to normal viewing
  • the windows key + , = a peek at the desktop for as long as you hold those keys down.
  • the windows key + tab = shows all open programs and will allow you to cycle through them by repeatedly pressing this key combo
  • the windows key + print screen = takes a snapshot of your desktop and stores it in the Pictures/Screenshots folder

I’m a huge fan of keyboard shortcuts and since my fingers are on the keyboard more than the mouse, I use shortcuts to cut down on excessive mouse clicking, which I find slows me down.  I’m all for working smarter, not harder.