The Windows 8 Developer Preview is out for all to try, and there are all sorts of hidden little features in the new OS. As you’re playing with it this weekend, here are some that we recommend checking out..
We’ll be talking more about the big stuff next week (like the new Metro interface, the new version of Explorer, and more), but as this week draws to a close we’ve already noticed a lot of cool little Windows 8 tips pop up around the net, so we decided to share them with you all at once.
While the Metro interface may be touch-oriented, it still has some pretty handy new keyboard shortcuts you can use to control it (though they’ll work on the desktop too). If you don’t like the new Shut Down menus, you can create your own shortcuts for shut down, reboot, and others, and create your own Metro tiles for them. Or, better yet, stick them on the desktop, since the Shut Down function is now a few annoying clicks away.
Of course, the Metro UI isn’t the only thing new in Windows 8. The desktop may look pretty similar to Windows 7, but its got its own little enhancements too. The taskbar jumplists come with some enhanced privacy options in Windows 8, and if you’re using dual monitors, you’ll notice that the taskbar stretches across both monitors by default. Of course, you can turn this off just by right-clicking on the taskbar, going to Properties, and unchecking “Show Taskbar on All Displays”. You’ll also notice it now supports dual-monitor wallpapers if you go into “Appearance and Personalization” in the Control Panel.
These are just a few of the new features in Windows 8, of course. We’ll be going through the big stuff next week, and you can always check out this list to see the other 300+ features Microsoft is working on, but hopefully this gives you a few things to play with on your Windows 8 system this weekend. While you’re at it, check out our other Windows 8 coverage from this week, including:
- Our first look at Windows 8 and our condensed version of Microsoft’s keynote
- How to dual boot Windows 8 with Windows 7 and seamlessly share your data between them
- How to install Windows 8 in a virtual machine (if dual booting isn’t your thing)
Have you discovered any hidden Windows 8 features in your travels? Let us know about them in the comments.