How To: Work with Metro Tiles in Windows 8/RT

StartYou’ve gotten your Microsoft Surface and you’ve installed your favorite applications. Now you want to group Metro tiles so that you can organize your desktop and find things quickly and easily. This how-to article will have you working with Metro tiles in Windows 8/RT like a pro in no time.

For the purposes of this how-to, I’m going to assume that you are using a touch screen but, it works pretty much the same way with a mouse if that’s what you have.

Select a Metro tile

Before you can do anything with a tile, you’ll need to select it. Selecting a tile is pretty easy. Just touch it and pull it down slightly like you’re flipping a light switch. You’ll know it’s been selected when you see a check mark appear in the upper right corner of the tile.

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How Can I Backup My Surface? (Windows 8.1)

If you’ve been using computers for any length of time and you have a Surface RT/2 or Surface Pro (1,2 or 3), you’ve probably already asked yourself “how can I backup my Surface?”.

If you haven’t you really should.

You need to protect your data in case something bad happens. This is especially true with tablet computers (like the Surface) and laptops since they are more likely to be dropped or stolen.

In this post, We’re going to be covering functionality built into the Surface you can use to make sure your files and operating system are recoverable if the worst happens. Continue reading How Can I Backup My Surface? (Windows 8.1)

How To: Easily access SkyDrive in Desktop mode.

Although SkyDrive won’t let you see your data when you’re not connected to the internet from a Surface RT device (see my post on that here) it is still a valuable tool when you have an internet connection.

While Windows RT has a SkyDrive Metro application installed by default, it doesn’t allow you access content from the Windows RT desktop. You can, however, setup a mapped drive that will allow you to do so while you’re in desktop mode.

Continue reading How To: Easily access SkyDrive in Desktop mode.

Netflix Review

Netflix ReviewedI’m reviewing the Netflix application available through the Microsoft Store for the Surface RT and Surface Pro. This happens to be my first software review on this blog and I thought Netflix would be a good choice since it was the first 3rd party app I installed after getting my Surface.

The app loads pretty fast on my Surface RT and it is very responsive. The menu is intuitive and pretty easily lets you look through your Top 10, New Releases & Genres. It’s also nice because as you scroll left and right, the menu shrinks up to the top and gives you the whole screen to look at the different categories for movies.

Continue reading Netflix Review

Getting started with Surface

Getting Started with Surface: So you’ve gotten your Surface and the first thing that’s going through your head is, “OK, now what?”

Well, getting started is pretty simple and we’re going to cover the things you should do right away to make sure you have the best experience getting started with your new Surface tablet.

 These 8 steps should get you up and running on either The Surface RT (running Windows RT) or Surface Pro (running Windows 8) so, I’ll sometimes refer to Windows as “Windows 8/RT” just to signify that it is the same thing for the purposes of this getting started guide.

OK, ready? Let’s go….

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First Impressions: Surface RT

“The UPS guy was here!!!”

Jo (my wife) and I were very excited last Friday. We had ordered a brand new Surface RT 64GB tablet with a baby (don’t know if they meant it to be that color but it is) blue touch keyboard and were very anxious to play with it.

Both of us work as IT pros and were looking forward to seeing how it measured up to other tablets we’ve used in the past like the iPad and Kindle Fire.

Like you, we saw all of the happy dancing people in the trendy, Apple-esque commercials and heard all the early reviews (both good and bad) and we were ready to see if it lived up to the hype. So, since we were both looking at it independently, we figured we could give you the his and her first impressions of the Surface RT.

Continue reading First Impressions: Surface RT

Skydrive won’t make an offline copy on Surface

UPDATE: Microsoft has corrected this with the Windows 8.1 Update. If you need this functionality, upgrade your device to the latest version of Windows. Please see our post Windows 8.1 Quick Start Guide for instructions.

One of the most appealing features of the Surface RT tablet is Skydrive. Skydrive is a program that allows you to automatically sync data between your Surface and the cloud.

If you’ve used Skydrive in the past with your PC or laptop you might remember that it keeps a local copy that you can access when your computer isn’t connected to the Internet.

Unfortunately with the Surface RT tablet Skydrive does not keep a local copy of your files, though some folks at Microsoft say they’re looking into changing it so it can cache locally.

Continue reading Skydrive won’t make an offline copy on Surface