Lock & Login ScreensThe Windows 8 Lock Screen has been completely redesigned. The icons on the bottom of the screen, in the Metro Apps Notification Area, will change as system events trigger notifications, in real time.
The standard Login Screen has been redesigned too. During initial login, you enter your Windows 8 user account password. Each time you restart or login to Windows 8, you will log into your Windows Live Account, as Windows 8 will use it to sync your key account attributes (settings, favorites, etc.) so that any Windows 8 computer you log into will have your consistent look and feel.
Those familiar with Windows Phone will recognize the new Start Menu and Windows Live Tiles. Each tile is a shortcut to the associated program and is updated with notification information as new/updated data is received by the connected program. Notice the weather information on the Weather Live Tile.
Getting Metro Apps to run can be a bit of a challenge on legacy equipment, especially if you’re using a netbook, or a display that isn’t setup for at least 1024×768 resolution. Metro App screens are static and not resizable below 1024×768, so if your screen is smaller than that and you can’t force the resolution change, as I did, you may be out of luck. (The Start Menu above is displaying 1024×768. The one immediately below is 1024×600.)
If you’re looking for the rest of your installed programs, and you don’t see them in a Live Tile, don’t worry. The Start Menu can still get you there. Simply bring up the Start Menu and start typing the name of the program you wish to run. Windows 8 will search your entire computer, matching all the executables to the character’s you’ve typed. The count of the different matches will be displayed on the categories under the search field.
Start Menu and other related settings can be found by dropping your mouse cursor to the lower right corner while the Start Menu is displayed. From here, you can get access to Start Menu specific settings, help, screen and volume settings as well as the power button. The Metro App styled Control Panel is also accessible by clicking the More PC Settings link.