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April 14, 2014updated 22 Sep 2016 1:18pm

Top 5 secret features of Windows 8

Dig a little deeper and there's loads to love about Windows 8 and 8.1.

By Ben Sullivan

Got a new Windows 8 tablet or desktop? Finding it hard to adjust, or know there’s more you can do with the operating system but just don’t know how? Here’s CBR’s top five Windows 8 and 8.1 secret features.

Need a recipe? Hands free mode for the kitchen!

In the new food and drink app, there’s an option to enable hands-free mode, so you don’t get any of your recipe that’s stuck to your hands on the computer or tablet. You can wave your hand to the webcam so the recipe turns pages for you!


Quiet Hours

There is an option to turn off the notifications you get with apps during preset hours of the day, meaning you won’t be bothered by noises when you’re at work or even reading. Windows 8.1 has the Quiet Hours setting under change PC settings > search and apps > notifications.

quiet hours


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3D printing support

Microsoft has now included 3D printing support in Windows 8.1, so when you do eventually have enough money to buy that 3D printer you have your eyes on, you know you’ll be sorted with Windows 8.1 It also stuck in support for NFC tap-to-print and Wi-Fi direct printing too!


Boot straight to the desktop

If you’re not too fond of the Windows 8 start screen, in 8.1, there’s the option to boot straight to the dekstop that you’re familiar with.

Right click on the taskbar, then go to properties > navigation > check ‘show the apps view automatically when I go to start’ and then pressing the start button will show you your installed apps rather than app tiles.

To boot to the dekstop straight away, select properties > navigation > and check ‘when I sign in or close all applications on a screen, go to the dekstop onstead of start’.




Set a picture password

In Windows 8 and 8.1, you can create a picture password. This means you choose an image, then draw on it a combination of lines and taps, something that only you can remember and draw. Then when this is done on the lock screen, you’ll be able to log in.

To enable this, go to Win + I > more pc settings > users > create a picure password.



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