Master Windows 10 with These Tips and Tricks

Windows 10 combines the best of Windows 7 and 8 into an interface that adds new features while maintaining a familiar look and feel. It also bridges the gap between PCs and tablets, ensuring a consistent experience across devices.

The continuity between Windows 10 and older versions should make upgrading fairly painless but there are several key differences between Windows 10 and its predecessors. Here are a few ways to make the most of your new operating system:

Start Menu

After being taken away in Windows 8, the iconic Start menu is back in Windows 10.

Much of the functionality remains the same as it has for decades. Click the Start button in the lower left corner of the screen or press the Windows key on your keyboard. You can also search while the menu is open.

The new Start menu does incorporate the tiles from Windows 8. They are fully customizable; click and drag to rearrange or right click to remove a tile entirely. You can also add new apps to the Start menu by right clicking and selecting “Pin to Start.”

Another addition to the Windows 10 Start menu is voice assistant Cortana. Much like Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa, Cortana allows you to quickly set reminders, add calendar events, or access files.


Speaking of apps, this is one feature that Windows 10 borrows from its Mac OS rival. Apps are universal across devices and your content is seamlessly synced between them.

Similar to Apple’s iTunes, Windows apps can be purchased and updated through the Windows Store. From Netflix to Dropbox, everything you would expect is there, and new apps are being added constantly as developers come up to speed on Windows 10. Many apps are touch screen compatible to accommodate Microsoft’s Surface Pro and other devices.

You can use the Windows key in tandem with the number keys to open apps that are located on your taskbar. For example, If Google Chrome was the fifth app on your taskbar. If you wanted to open a new Chrome window, all you would have to do is press Ctrl+Windows+5.

Utilize Virtual Desktops

If you are a user of virtual desktops, Windows 10 makes it easier than ever to create them.

Start a new virtual desktop by one by using the keystroke Windows+Shift+D. You can also use Windows+Ctrl+left arrow or Windows+Ctrl+ right arrow to switch between desktops.

Once you’re finished in the virtual desktop, use the keystroke Windows+Ctrl+F4 to close it and return to your normal settings.

Microsoft Edge

Windows 10 marks the end of Internet Explorer, which has been a staple of Windows going all the back to the 1990s. The new web browser is called Microsoft Edge and provides another option to competitors Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari.

Edge also has the Cortana integration, so you can use your voice to conduct searches, send email, and more. Edge also has a share feature that allows you to send links to other apps, and a reading list that allows you to save articles for later viewing without cluttering up your screen.

You can also annotate pages and save them for later viewing. Highlight, underline, or even draw if you are using a touchscreen device.

Learn More

There’s a lot of information out there on how to get started with Windows 10 and make the most of its features. Here are a few tutorials that may be useful:

In addition to these resources, our team is happy to assist with your Windows 10 transition. Call us at 850.250.3210 or drop by our offices at 1330 Harrison Avenue, Panama City, Bay County, Florida.

Best wishes, Randall and Julie Garner and the entire Garner IT professional team


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