7 Steps in Mastering the Search Feature

Windows 8.1 has a brand new way of getting the stuff that you are trying to search in it. The search feature in previous Windows versions used to just be an ordinary one designed to search files, folders and some other stuff within the whole system and using it usually took too long before you can finally get the search results but in the new Windows 8.1 system, everything has changed and searching for some stuff is done within a specific location and not the whole system making the process a lot easier to complete. Still don’t know how this feature works? You need to learn every secret of it and that’s what we will tackle in this tutorial

1. Using Search from the Start Screen

Windows 8.1 offers brand new features that help you interact with the Metro environment. One of these is called the Start Screen and it serves as the flagship of the Metro environment in every machine. You can use the search feature from the Start Screen and be able to access anything according to a selection of categories which you can choose from. To do this, simply open the Start Screen by pressing on the Windows Key then access the Charms bar by pressing on the Windows + C keys. From the Charms bar, simply hit the icon that is labeled “Search” and you will see the Search screen appear at the right edge.


Before inputting the keyword to the search input box, you first need to select a category from the drop-down options located at the top as shown on the screenshot below. The Search screen can also be accessed by using the keyboard shortcut Windows + Q.


2. Using Search from the Desktop Screen

You can also use the Search feature while you are on the desktop screen in the same way that you used it from the Start Screen. Just press the Windows + Q keys while you are on the desktop or access the Charms by pressing the Windows + C keys and hit the “Search” charm. After doing so, the search screen will appear and you can still narrow down your search by choosing a category available on the drop-down options at the top of the search input box.


3. Using the Built-in Search in File Explorer

Windows 8 now has File Explorer which is the equivalent of the Windows Explorer Tool in previous Windows editions and it is now more improved because of the built-in search feature in it. The great thing about it is that it is folder or location specific. This means that when you open a folder using File Explorer and you want to search for one of its contents using the search feature, it will only search from within the folder instead of doing a system-wide search as what happened in Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7. This makes searching for some stuff a lot easier and faster. Try it on your computer now and see the difference.


While typing the keyword, the search result will also appear automatically without the need of clicking on a search button or any other link to initiate the search process.

4. Searching for a Web Image

If you need to download a web image which you need to use for certain purposes like setting it as a desktop background or your account picture then you can use the Search screen and change the search category into “Web images”. After doing so, you can enter the keyword for the image that you are trying to look for into the input box and hit the “Enter” key. After doing so, the Search app will open and display search results from Bing.


5. Searching for a Web Video

You can also use the search feature in looking for some videos which you might need for a presentation and other visual presentation purposes. To do this, simply open the Search screen by accessing the Search charm and once it appears, simply click the search category above the search input box and on the options that appear on a drop-down menu, simply hit the one that says “Web videos”.


All of the resulting video of your search are brought by Bing since it is the default search provider of the Windows operating system and other Microsoft products.

6. Search from within the Maps App

The Search feature also works smoothly from within mobile apps. In fact, there is a dedicated search input box in every mobile app that supports searching of its contents or locations. For instance, you can use the built-in Search feature within the Maps app in looking for a certain location. To do this, simply click on the Maps app tile from the Start Screen then once it opens; you can enter the location that you are trying to access on the input box located at the top-right portion of the screen.


7. Using Search from Other Apps

Other built-in apps such as the People, Windows Store etc. also has a search input box available within them which you can use in searching for some stuff quickly. You can also find the search feature integrated with other apps that can be downloaded from the Windows Store such as Facebook and other social media apps so if you need to find something quickly, be sure to use the search feature within the apps that are installed on your computer. Just look for the input box on the app’s screen and input the keyword of the stuff that you are looking for then finally hit the “Enter” key. After doing so, the app will just display the result directly on the screen or if you are using the Maps app, you will see that the app will move and take you to the exact location that you entered in the search input box.

Searching Made Better

As you can see, the search feature has improved from being a system-wide tool to a location and app specific one capable of displaying the stuff you are looking for in a few seconds. You can even adjust it to do a search within the whole system or be more specific by doing its job from within a folder or a mobile app. Searching for something in Windows 8.1 is really made better ad easier because if this innovation by Microsoft and if you want to try it on your machine, be sure to try all the steps that I have shown below.

Having a hard time figuring out some features in Windows 8.1? We at windowstechies.loc are dedicated to make everything easy for all Windows users and we always make sure that our tutorials are easily understood even by the novice ones. You can also get our latest tips straight to your inbox by joining out email list. Getting familiar with Windows 8.1 isn’t really that hard. It only takes a curious mind and the will to learn more about the system and before you know it, you’re already using Windows 8.1 like a boss!