Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Working with the little icons at the bottom left

  1. #1

    Posts : 1
    win 8

    Working with the little icons at the bottom left

    I've had this new HP desktop from Best Buy for about three days and I'm having so much trouble with Win 8 I'm wondering if something is defective. I've read the start up guides, quick guides, watched the videos and all that more than once. This is getting very frustrating. I have a lot of work to do but basically I can't even use the computer other than for fun browsing but that's not what I need it for. I realize part of this is just learning the ropes of Win 8. I've used PC's since they were born and have no problem with earlier versions of Windows.

    Most things are hit and miss on opening and using an app or program. I can go to search at the Charm lineup and find for example Note or Wordpad but it won't open the program. I've tried many times in different ways here.

    Restarting the computer seems to help on some of this-sometimes. I couldn't even restart it last night with mouse clicks. I had to press the power button and wait probably 15 minutes. It kept saying 'updating Windows'. One thing that does work is that if I get to a website, for example Yahoo or YouTube then I can browse around at different things successfully. Yahoo Mail, That's a joke. Usually the cursor will lock up and I have to hit f4 or somehow close mail. Could there be a conflict in mail programs running? I don't even try to read my mail on the new computer.

    Maybe my first concern- the little icons that appear at the bottom of the screen, and I'm not even sure what that particular screen is called, once I get them there won't open the file, app,program they represent. I don't care if I right or left click. When I do a small menu will appear above that row of icons saying minimize, maximize etc. but it will just revert back to the original icon if I click on it. Like I said 'usually'. There have been occasions where clicking on one of these icons will open the app or whatever it applies to.

    I wanted to open Notepad earlier to make an addition to what I wrote yesterday and in the process I noticed Journal Writer in the list of about 140 apps. I thought okay i'll try that. It opened right up. I didn't use it because I can only find and use the pen and not text. On top of that I can't get it's icon off of the bottom of the screen. I gave up on trying to open Notepad. Thank you for any help. I've tried to be concise but...

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  2. #2

    Posts : 660
    windows 8.1
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3

    Harrisonburg, Va.
    Posts : 10,488
    Windows 8.1.1 Pro with Media Center
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4

    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2

    Another vote for Classic Shell, or Stardock Software's Start8 & Metro Mix.
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  5. #5

    Windows 8 can be a bit difficult to use compared to Windows 7. It can be tamed though.

    Start Button:
    If you install Classic Shell (free) or Stardock's Start8 ($4.99) or similar software then you can have the Start button as it was in Windows 7 and boot directly to the Desktop. You can still play with Metro stuff but it's not forced on you.

    Windows 7 Gadgets:
    Windows 7 Gadgets are also available if you want them: 8GadgetPack - Gadgets for Windows 8

    I find UAC extremely annoying. If you do too then to (mostly) disable UAC, Press Windows key + R to open the Run window.
    Type msconfig and press Enter.
    Click on the Tools tab.
    Select Change UAC settings and click Launch.
    Move the slider all the way to the bottom then click OK.
    Some parts of UAC will still be alive, so to completely disable it you need to change a registry key.

    Key: EnableLUA
    Set the value to 0

    You cannot use any Metro Apps or the App Store when UAC is disabled. If you've gone this far, you can also disable all hot corners so you will not get any of the Windows Charms popups. Just check the Classic Shell and Start8 options to do this.
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  6. #6

    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2

    Ztruker, 8 is not that difficult to use. It is actually easier to use for someone that may not be comfortable with the conventional desktop, or are say young children, or for people that are disabled. It is just that when you are so used to working in the desktop, and all of a sudden you are getting a interface meant for touch screens, some people do not grasp the concept of clicking on the icon that states "Desktop" or email, etc, will take you into the desktop.

    Or even just pressing the Window key on the keyboard, will switch you from Desktop to Metro. Now with 8.1, you are in the desktop, but your All programs are presented as a touch screen type interface.

    I hated the whole concept of having Metro when 8 came out. But as soon as I found out that Stardock Software had the Start8 interface along with Metro8, it made me more relaxed in using. I have also used Xubuntu on the same machine that I am on now, that is running Windows 8.1. I would say that Xubuntu's XFCE interface is like telling a person that it is like XP.

    I personally though would not disable UAC. It is like going and taking the door locks & dead bolts off of your house, and just making it that you only have to turn the handle. UAC was implemented due to the human species has this thing called curiosity. It causes them to just start clicking on anything and everything. Having UAC adds an extra layer of security that needs to be there.

    I never have had UAC come up on my machine, but have had the Smart Screen come up quite a few times. My UAC is set as it is out of the box so to speak.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7

    I was forced, kicking and screaming into learning how to subdue Windows 8 (and 8.1) because most of my old customers are upgrading from an XP PC that no longer runs.

    As was mentioned, the very first thing to do with a new install of 8 or 8.1, is to install the "Classic Shell" then set up the desktop to look and act like whatever previous OS you desire....XP or Win-7.
    Once a working Desktop is set up and loaded with all your old favorite programs, it's easy to forget that there ever was a Metro Screen.

    Windows 8.1 is really better than 8.0, because they have added even more compatibility option to make it more acceptable to XP users. There is even the option to run old 16 bit programs, which I could not do in Win 7 or Win 8.

    For those who like to tweak and tune their OS, almost everything that worked on Win-7, will work equally well on Win 8 and 8.1.

    Cheers Mates!
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  8. #8

    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2

    I was too when we got these two Satellite's. First thing I did was install Start8 & Metromix, and I am fine now. Only reason I did not stick with Xubuntu was that the Realtek wireless adapters are not playing nice with the newer Kernel. Both units though now have the Intel 7260 Dual-Band Wireless-ac minicard in them, so 8 is here to stay.

    I do nothing but work in the desktop all of the time. So to me Metro is not even something I see, unless I have to change PC settings, or advanced user properties. Then I get the Metro window for that, or with the store, which I never use, due to hate the fugly tiles that they use for the apps.

    Hopefully when 9 comes out, MS will make the tiles on the desktop look like regular Icons, instead of the fugly Metro interface tiles.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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