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Learning How to Use Windows 8 Features and Apps

This document pertains to HP computers that came with Windows 8
 note:
If you are not using the latest version of Windows 8, some graphics and information in this document may vary. You can get the latest version from the Microsoft Store.
Windows 8 is a Microsoft operating system environment based on Windows 7 but with significant changes to how you find and work with software. Windows 8 is designed especially for touch, providing easy access to the software and Internet applications that you use most often.
If you are familiar with previous versions of Windows, using Windows 8 might seem awkward at first. However, when you become familiar with the easy-to-use interface, you'll probably find yourself having more fun and being more productive.
Read this document to learn and discover more about the possibilities in Windows 8.
 note:
Windows 8 is a dynamic environment where the Start screen is easily changed and graphics update frequently. Some screen shots in this article might appear different from an actual Windows 8 experience.
Before you begin
The steps and graphics in this support document work with the latest version of Windows 8. Before taking the time to learn about Windows 8, make sure Windows is updated.
Make sure you update Windows!
Microsoft releases updates for Windows 8 to make it more secure and user-friendly. The first thing you should do before using your computer is to connect to the Internet and get all the latest available updates from Microsoft.
Update to the latest version of Windows 8 (if an update is available) by clicking or touching the Store tile from the Start screen. When the Store app opens, type Windows 8 update to find an update from Microsoft that will update Windows to the next version. For example, if your computer came with the first version of Windows 8, you can update it to Windows 8.1 using the Store. If you cannot find a Windows 8 update in the Store, then your computer already has the latest version of Windows 8 installed.
Next, after you have updated Windows, make sure you have all of the latest Windows update files installed. Windows updates are not the same as updating the version of Windows 8. Windows updates are software files to fix problems, make your system more secure, or update hardware drivers. Microsoft makes this easy with the Windows Update tool. To use this tool, type Windows Update from the Start screen to find and open Windows Update. From this tool you can download and install all important or optional updates. You may be required to restart your computer for any changes to take effect.
By keeping Windows 8 up-to-date, you make your computer more secure and less likely to encounter errors or problems in the future.
New features
Click an item in the following list for more information about the new features in Windows 8.
Navigating in Windows 8
Use the information in the following sections to learn how to perform your tasks in Windows 8.
Using Windows 8 apps
Use the following information to learn how to use the new Windows 8 apps.
Frequently asked questions

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