Tip: Make life easier with Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts

Having problems finding things in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, or adjusting to the Metro menu system? Perhaps these handy Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts will make your time using Windows 8 and the Metro Start Screen a lot easier and more productive.

Windows Key → [Search Term] → Enter will allow you to launch an application very quickly. Pressing the Windows key launches the Start Screen, but immediately typing a search term for an application and pressing Enter will launch the application you desire very quickly

Windows Key + F will bring up the Metro interface to search for files. Selecting a file will open a Metro app first, but if there is no Metro app to open the file it will choose a Desktop app instead

Windows Key + W allows you to search for settings in a similar way to files. A lot of the time the selections will open the Control Panel

Esc (when on the Start Screen) or Windows Key + D immediately ditches the Start Screen for the Desktop

Windows Key + E opens Windows Explorer in case you need to browse files and either don't have it pinned to the taskbar or don't want to search for it

Windows Key + C shows the Charm Bar, which can be hard to get to display with a mouse (especially with multiple monitors)

Windows Key + I shows the information pane that usually only appears once you mouse to the Charm Bar and click Settings. This panel has handy buttons to control volume, networks and power

Windows Key + P shows multi-display options

Windows Key + H brings up sharing options for the application you are using

Windows Key + X shows a context menu filled with links to Windows related settings, such as Command Prompt, Event Viewer, Task Manager, Programs & Features, and more

Windows Key + . chucks the program you're using into either one of Windows 8's multi-tasking sidebars

Windows Key + [1-9] activates one of the programs pinned to your taskbar, with the number you enter corresponding to the location on the taskbar

Windows Key + Tab displays the new Windows 8 Metro multi-tasking sidebar

If you find any more helpful ones, let us know in the comments below and we'll add it to the list.

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