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Cheat Sheet

Microsoft Surface For Dummies

From Surface For Dummies, 2nd Edition by Andy Rathbone

No matter which version you're using — Microsoft Surface RT, Surface Pro, Surface 2, or Surface 2 Pro — to get the most out of your device, you'll want to keep your system updated and know how to navigate your tablet using the Charms bar in Windows 8 or Windows 8.1.

Keep Your Surface Current via Windows Update

Your Microsoft Surface automatically downloads waiting updates from Windows Update, but it doesn't always install them until you restart your Surface. To be on the safe side, follow these steps to download the latest updates and restart your Surface.

  1. From any screen, slide your finger inward from the screen's right edge to fetch the Charms bar, and then tap the Settings icon.

  2. When the Settings pane appears, tap Change PC Settings.

  3. At the PC Settings' screen's bottom left edge, tap Windows Update.

  4. Tap Check for Updates now, install all waiting updates, and restart your Surface, if requested by Windows Update.

Navigate Your Surface with the Windows 8 Charms Bar

The Charms bar, an icon-filled strip that appears along the screen's right edge, works throughout your Microsoft Surface, from the Start screen to the desktop.

You'll find yourself constantly summoning the Charms bar to move quickly from one place to another, as well as to search and send information other places.

To summon the Charms bar, slide your finger inward from the screen's right edge. The Charms bar appears, with its five icons:

  • Search: Tap this, and a Search pane appears. Type a word in the Search box, and your Surface lists any matching apps, files, or settings, as well as a list of websites dealing with your search term.

  • Share: When you want to share what you're seeing with friends, tap the Share icon. The Share pane appears, listing all the apps capable of sharing what you're seeing.

  • Start: Tap this for a quick way to return to the Start screen.

  • Devices: This gateway to devices attached to your Surface offers three options: Play lets you stream music or video to other computers; Print sends documents to the printer, and Project sends your screen's contents to an attached projector or TV.

  • Settings: Tap this to see all of your settings, different ways to change either the app you're seeing, or your Surface's general behavior.

All of the Surface click-on keyboards include keys dedicated to the Charms bar's all-important icons. Look along the top row for keys dedicated to Search, Share, Devices, and Settings.

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