Accessing the Charms

There’s a very important feature in Windows 8.1 that most people just ignore. It has a weird name but it shouldn’t become a reason for anyone to just trash it away because without it, the overall operating system will become dull and inefficient. This feature is called the “Charms”. If you are just starting to know this brand new operating system then this might be your first time of hearing about it but trust me, knowing them one-by-one and being able to use them will make a great difference in your overall user experience. Let’s take a look at these features and learn how to access them using different methods so be sure to open your Windows 8.1 machine and follow me as I run through some of the basic functions of the Charms and show some ways in accessing them.

A Closer Look on Each Charm

A lot of people are wondering why these shortcuts that are hidden on the right-edge of the screen are called “Charms” but to tell you the truth, I myself am also wondering why Microsoft called these stuff in the way that we know and call them at present but one plausible explanation is that they are called “Charms” because all of them look like symbols that we normally see on charm bracelets. We all know that this type of bracelet contain some symbols that represent things which are important in a persons life and in the same manner, the Charms in Windows 8.1 represent some very important functions and features which helps users manage the operating system easily.


Are you satisfied with the explanation? Now, we will take a look at each one of the Charms that are featured in the new Windows 8.1 operating system and see what they are used for. We will start at the one on the top which is called the “Search” charm.

1. Search

As the name itself suggests, the Search charm serves as a quick access button to the very important “Search Feature” in your Windows 8.1 machine. This works as a tool for sorting out and finding some files from all over your computer. The Search charm also works perfectly within modern-style apps. For instance, you can easily find a place while using the Maps app by taking advantage of the smart search capability provided by the Search charm.


2. Share

Again, the name itself suggests its primary use. While sharing some photos, ideas and other stuff is done commonly through browsers, Windows 8.1 offers a new and easier way with the use of the “Share” charm. This feature doesn’t work on some desktop applications but it performs perfectly when partnered with all modern-style apps. For instance, you might have a photo that you want to share on Facebook or send via email so what you need to do is open in using the “Photos” app and while it is displaying on the screen, simply access the Charms and hit on the “Share” charm so you can be able to see the sharing options that are available on your machine.


3. Start

The next Charm is labeled “Start” and clicking on it will open the Start Screen. It does this function alone and nothing else. If you click on the Start charm while you are on the Start Screen, you will be taken back right away to the previous location where you have been before you clicked it. It’s main purpose is to provide a quick button for switching back and forth from different locations to the Start Screen and the other way around.


4. Devices

Next one on the list is the “Devices” charm. Again, you can already sense its use from its name alone. This charm provides a quick access to all the devices that are connected to your computer which you can use to Play media files, Print some documents or Project the screen on a second device. This is a lot easier especially when you are using a modern-style app since you don’t need to get back to the desktop screen whenever you want to play, print or project something. All it takes is a few simple clicks and the thing that you are planning to do will be accomplished right away!


5. Settings

The last one but definitely not the least. In fact, it can be considered as the greatest! The “Settings” charm provides some quick access buttons and links to the most important personalization and security tweaks and settings available in the Windows 8.1 system. It also has a link that leads to the “Control Panel” where you can find even more tweaks which are mostly for the desktop environment.


How to Access the Charms

There are several ways of accessing these important shortcuts on your Windows 8.1 machine and we will go over each one of them so you can have a wide array of options to choose from in how you’d like to summon the ones on your machine.

1. With Your Keyboard

Keyboard shortcuts are a fast way of accessing some important features in the new Windows 8.1 system. There are some brand shortcuts which are only applicable in Windows 8.1 and one of these is the “Windows Key + C” combination. Try pressing these keys simultaneously on your machine’s keyboard and you will see the Charms bar appear from the right edge of the screen.

2. With a Mouse

The mouse is one of the oldest input hardware that Windows PCs still use until now and you can take advantage of it in accessing the Charms bar if in case your “C” or your “Windows Key” is busted and your screen is not touch-enabled. To use the mouse in accessing the charms, simply place the pointer to the top or the bottom-right corner of the screen and you will see the Charm icons appear. Move the mouse downward if you pointed on top or upward if you pointed at the bottom so that the black bar would appear and make the Charms clickable.


3. With Your Fingers.

Using the keyboard in accessing the Charms is still using the fingers  but I am referring to a more direct way in accessing the charms which is through a touch-enabled screen. To perform this trick, all you need to do is position one of your fingers near the right edge of the screen and swipe it towards the center in a leftward movement. Another way is by touching on the top or bottom-right corner of the screen.


Get to Some Features Faster With Charms

The Charms in the new Windows 8.1 system are designed to take you to different locations in a few simple clicks. It also offers easy links and shortcuts to some of the most important tweaks that you can do especially those that are related to the Metro environment. Take some time to use them and explore each one of them so you can gain a deeper understanding of how they work and finally above anything else, they will help you use your Windows 8.1 machine like a boss!