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Windows 8: The Missing Manual by David Pogue

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Chapter 8. Redesigning Your Desktop World

As you now realize, TileWorld doesn’t look anything like the Windows the world thought it knew. The bright colors, the lack of window buttons, the crisp rectangles everywhere—that’s all new, and especially great on touchscreens.

But the desktop world is still there, and it’s every bit as tweakable as previous versions of Windows. You can change the picture on your desktop, or tell Windows to change it for you periodically. You can bump up the text size for better reading by over-40 eyeballs.

As Microsoft might say, “Where do you want to redesign today?”

Note

Customizing the Start screen is described in Chapter 2; customizing the taskbar is covered in Chapter 6.

Turning Off the New Look

The Windows 8 desktop doesn’t look much different from the Windows 7 desktop. (There’s no Start menu, there’s a Ribbon in Explorer windows, and window edges are no longer transparent—but that’s about it for changes.)

But if you’re used to anything earlier, things look a lot different. You may love the changes; you may miss the less flashy, more utilitarian look of Windows Vista or XP. If you’re in that category, don’t worry; Windows comes with a whole trainload of Off switches.

Turning Off Window Snapping and Shaking

If you drag a window close to the top edge of your screen, the window expands to fill the whole screen. If you drag it close to a side of your screen, the window expands to fill half the screen. If all this auto-snapping makes you crazy, turn it off as ...

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