I use this for my clients. It’s not all-inclusive or anything, but it covers enough to get people to the point where Windows 8 becomes not that big of a change from previous versions.
01. At the initial startup screen (technically, the Lock Screen) just click the mouse to move on.
02. The Start Screen has replaced the Start Menu.
03. The little pictures on the Start Screen are called tiles.
04. The tile called “Desktop” takes you to where you do almost all of your work.
05. Right-click in any blank area of the Start Screen to bring up a way to show all the programs and apps on your computer. You can also use CTRL+TAB.
06. Use the WINDOWS KEY (which I will refer to as WIN henceforth) to bring up the Start Screen from pretty much everywhere.
07. Use WIN+X to bring up a list of Windows features like the control panel, run etc.
08. Right-click any tile on the Start Screen to bring up a list of things you can do with it, like attach to the taskbar of the desktop.
09. Click and drag tiles to move them around.
10. Use ALT+TAB to switch between running programs. This is not new, but it is more useful now, I think.
11. Moving the mouse into the extreme upper-right corner brings out the poorly-named Charms Bar, which has a search tool that you will seldom use, but if you use the Store to download apps, you will use it to search for apps to buy or download. You can also use WIN-C to get to the Charms Bar.
12. Moving the mouse into the extreme lower-left corner brings up a way to get to the Start Screen when you are on the Desktop, or the Desktop when you are on the Start Screen.
13. Use CTRL+ALT+DEL to get to the Power Icon in the lower-right corner, which you can click on to restart, shutdown etc.
14. When you want to close an “App,” which is essentially any program that is bundled with Windows 8, downloaded from the Store or a unique Windows 8 feature, you click and drag from the very top of the screen to the very bottom. Makes total sense with a touchscreen, and absolutely none with a mouse.
15. For searching for files, open the Computer icon. (which you can get back onto your desktop the same way you did in Windows 7 – just right-click on a blank area of the Desktop, and choose “Personalize.” You add it under “Change desktop icons” in the left column.) Navigate to the drive you want to search and use the search tool that is in the upper-right of the window.
I want to reiterate that these tips are for general use, and while there might be more technical ways of stating things, this is meant for people who just want to get their work done.