Windows 8 I am off to a very frustrating start...


New Member
Jun 3, 2013
I hope to gain a working understanding of Windows 8 that came on my new laptop. I had no problems learning XP, Vista, Windows 7 and the earliest versions of Windows. Windows 8 totally confounds me and makes me feel like the aged senior I am. Everything seems “hidden” , the color tiles seem to be useless to me (when I click on them I get taken to a big icon and nothing more), and I cannot figure out how to access my email through the mail tile as it is not clear how to configure this . When I go into desktop mode I constantly get into menus triggered by cursor moves by accident. I read that this version is designed for touch tablets. I have an android tablet and this does not seem to be anything like it. It is taking me so long to learn how this works and how to navigate through it that I am quite frustrated. I am used to just sitting down and being able to use new versions, but this is taking me ages. I am short on time so this is a problem.

To address the issues you are experiencing with triggering unwanted menus and such you may want to investigate the touch gesture features that likely are part of you're laptop's trackpad software package. There may be a way to either turn them of or reduce, to some extent, their sensitivity.
Regarding mail you may want to download Live Essentials 2012 from here Windows Essentials - Download Windows Live Essentials perhaps just the Live Mail Component.
And with reference to your more broader frustration you may want to consider going with something like Classic Shell if you don't feel you have the time or patience to devote to learning the new interface. Out of the box you'll likely find it a bit more to your liking.

Thank you, the Classic Shell sounds good. (I was not using the trackpad of my laptop; I was using my favorite wireless mouse when trying to navigate.) I am going to continue to try to learn my way about when I have spare time, but thankfully I still have a Windows 7 laptop for my work. In addition to accidentally getting into the menus in the corners when I don't want to, I am having trouble figuring out how to get to the Control Panel quickly. I had to click several layers to change my screen saver; you will laugh when you find out how long that took!

I am having trouble figuring out how to get to the Control Panel quickly.
The quickest way into the control panel that I have found is to hover your mouse down at the extreme bottom left corner of your screen. You will see the toggle widget (for bouncing back and forth from desktop to start screen) appear. Simply right click that and it will reveal what some have come to call the "super users menu" which includes a direct link to many things including the control panel.
Holding down the windows logo key between the Ctrl and Alt keys on the bottom left of your keyboard while simultaneously striking the "x" key will reveal the same menu.
And we don't laugh at anyone here, we've all felt a bit of exasperation learning the new interface.
Welcome to the forums and
Best Regards

In addition to navigating to the lower dormer, you can press Win+C to being up the charms menu where you can search within metro apps, share whatever you're viewing via email, social networks, etc, access application specific settings or PC setting including the metro Control Panel depending on if you're in an app or at the start screen/desktop.

there are lots of new keyboard shortcuts in W8:

but thankfully I still have a Windows 7 laptop for my work.
Given that particular piece of information, then in a very similar fashion to Windows 7, right clicking any blank area of the desktop (not the start screen) and choosing "Personalize" should get you to that area where you can make adjustments to your screen saver.

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I , maybe, can add further. The popup menus you refer to are built in as part of Windows 8, but specifically for touch screen use. The four corners, and the (useful) right click power menu, to which Trouble referred, including the "Charms" bar, all have functions which can be accessed by the more familiar Windows 7 means. I am not using it right now, but I think I remember that the classic has options to turn these clicks off? It will also take you through directly to the legacy desktop, and you may never need the "Metro" screen again, if this is your wish. You will read comments such as "why use windows 8 and turn it back into windows 7" etc.. That, imo, is precisely what the new OS is designed for - dual purpose.


I use Rocket Dock and have a icon for the control panel on it.
One click and I'm there.

Do try Classic Shell, it will get rid of most of the frustration instantly.
Set it to boot to the desktop, use the Windows XP interface, and then learn to use the Windows 8 features at your own pace.

My pace is pretty slow. LOL

I can work from the desktop the way I always have and pretty much ignore the Metro screen.