Several Windows 8.1 questions

BY J. CARLTON COLLINS, CPA

I have received multiple questions concerning Windows 8.1, as follows.

Don’t Get Me Started

Q: How do I make Windows 8.1 boot directly to my Desktop view?

A: To set the Desktop as your default view in Windows 8.1, right-click on any unused portion of your Taskbar, select Properties, and from the Navigation tab, in the Start screen section, check the boxes labeled When I sign in or close all apps on a screen, go to the desktop instead of Start and Show my desktop background on Start, as shown below.

 

Tile Tips

Q: How do you reorganize the Start screen tiles in Windows 8.1?

A: To reorganize your Start screen in Windows 8.1, right-click the screen and select Customize in the lower-right corner. This action will pop up text boxes for naming your groups as I have done in the screen image below.

 

Next, right-click each app and select Resize in the menu (located near the bottom-left corner of the Start screen) to change the size of your tiles, as shown below; I prefer using the medium-size tiles.

 

Finally, click and drag each tile to reposition it to a new group or new location within a group.

Changing Your Image

Q: I am used to displaying a personalized background image on my Windows 7 desktop, and I am able to do this in the Windows 8.1 Desktop view, but is it possible to also change the background image in the new Windows 8.1 Start menu screen?

A: To set a personalized background image in your Windows 8.1 Start menu screen, begin by making your desired image the default background in Desktop view as you normally would. Next, with the Windows 8.1 Start screen displayed, press Windows Logo Key+C to pop up the Charms Bar, select Settings, Personalize, and then select your current desktop background image from the Personalize list. (Your current desktop background will be the last image option, as circled below, the results of which are pictured in the following topic.) 

 

I Got Your Silly Button

Q: I updated my computer from Windows 8.0 to 8.1 because I was told that Windows 8.1 restored the Start button functionality. However, clicking the new Start button doesn’t seem to do anything except pop up the Windows 8 Start screen, which seems rather silly. Am I missing something?

A: It’s silly, I agree. When you install an application in Windows 8 or 8.1, the application’s icon is no longer added to the Windows Start button; however, the following small tweak will give you instant access to all of your applications. Right-click any unused portion of your Taskbar, select Properties, and from the Navigation tab, in the Start screen section, check the two boxes labeled starting with Show the Apps… and Search everywhere…, as pictured below.

 

Thereafter, clicking the Start button will display all of the applications and apps installed on your computer, as shown below.

 

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