Find Lost Windows on the Windows 8 Desktop - dummies

Find Lost Windows on the Windows 8 Desktop

By Andy Rathbone

As opposed to the full-screen Start screen, the Windows 8 desktop works much like a spike memo holder. Every time you open a new window or program, you toss another piece of information onto the spike. The window on top is easy to spot, but how do you reach the windows lying beneath it?

If you can see any part of a buried window’s edge or corner, a well-placed click will fetch it, bringing it to the top.

When your window is completely buried, look at the desktop’s taskbar — that strip along your screen’s bottom edge. Spot your missing window’s name on the taskbar? Click it to dredge it back to the top.

Still can’t get at that missing window? Hold down the Alt key and press Tab. Windows 8 shows thumbnails of all your open windows, programs, and apps. While holding down the Alt key, repeatedly press Tab (or roll your mouse’s scroll wheel); the highlighted app or window fills your screen with each press of the Tab key.


Spot your window? Let go of the Alt key, and that window appears atop your desktop.

If you’re convinced a window is open but you still can’t find it, spread all your windows across the desktop by right-clicking a blank spot on the taskbar along the desktop’s bottom and choosing Show Windows Side By Side from the pop-up menu. It’s a last resort, but perhaps you’ll spot your missing window in the lineup.

For more information about Windows 8 and its features, explore Windows 8 For Dummies, available online.