Well, it’s been almost a week since I upgraded my laptop to Windows 8, and it’s actually been a very smooth ride so far. However, I’ve had to deal with just a few twists in getting used to some of the new locations and limitations of the things I’ve always been used to in Windows XP and Windows 7. So, I thought I’d toss together a few tips from my first week of use, and I hope you’ll toss a few back at me!
Shutdown and Reboot buttons
Shutting down a Windows 8 computer is not as immediately obvious as it used to be. There are a couple “new” ways of shutting down your Windows 8 machine, for instance:
- Mouse to bottom-right –> Settings –> Power –> Shut down
- (Win Key) + I –> Power –> Shut down
- (Win Key) + C –> Settings –> Power –> Shut down
- (Win Key) –> Right click on username (at top right) –> Lock/Sign out –> Right-click on lock screen –> click on power icon at bottom right
But I needed an easier way. Fortunately, if you invest a few minutes now, you’ll have easier Shutdowns and Reboots for years to come. Here’s how to do it:
- In Windows Explorer, go to this folder:
- Right-click and choose New –> Shortcut
- For the “location”, type:
shutdown /s /t 00
- Click Next, and for the “name”, type: Shutdown Now
- Click Finish, and press the (Win Key).
- Right-click the new “Shutdown Now” app tile, and choose Pin to taskbar
- Resume sanity
- (Note: You can create others, like “Restart Now” with
shutdown /r /t 00and “Delayed Restart” with
shutdown /r /t 10etc.)
…by the way, that tip for adding shortcuts on the taskbar works great for other things too; effectively bringing back your shortcuts menu that you were so used to
Wireless Driver Back-Rev
Of course, I couldn’t resist mentioning our awesome post about back-revving your Windows 8 “n” wireless driver to a Windows 7 driver version — since I had to do that this week too, in order to be able to stay productive. So far this week, we’ve been noticing that this seems to predominantly affect Broadcom-based drivers, and Intel-based drivers seem to work fine in some cases. It’s only the first week, so we’ll be watching that…
VMware and Hyper-V
I was excited to find out Hyper-V was included in Windows 8. Unfortunately, I cannot use on it yet on my Windows 8 laptop. As part of my work/experimentation in my current role, I have to keep virtual machines like NetWare, CentOS, Opensuse, and other non-mainstream OS’s around for scripting, and testing automation and integrations, and such. And while I’m thrilled that Hyper-V supports a few recent versions of CentOS and the latest version of Opensuse (12.1 at this writing), it still does not support NetWare and a guest OS. As a result, I’ve had to choose VMware workstation of my hypervisor of choice on my laptop for now (since VMware and Hyper-V cannot co-exist on the same base hardware), and I’ll run Hyper-V in the dedicated lab instead.
Remote Desktop Connection Manager
The Remote Desktops snap-in for the MSC is gone! It’s not available in Windows 8. If you know what that means, then you’re probably as upset as I was. Fortunately, I discovered that the old Remote Desktop Connection Manager still works on Windows 8! Phew! Honestly, it’s a better tool anyway.
So Far, So Good…
…So that’s where I’m at so far. The good news is that just about everything I’ve brought over to Windows 8 so far from my Windows 7 world has worked perfectly. And I “get it” now; what I mean by that is that I understand and appreciate the dual layer effect of the “tablet-like” OS on top of the “traditional-style” OS. Now that I’m able to dance easily between them, I quite like it and am eager for a Windows 8 based tablet, actually. Hint, hint…
Now, share some of your tips, please!