You can use the Charm Bar that appears at the right side of the Windows 8 application to search for content, share content within apps, return to the “Start” screen from an app, manage connected devices, and access your device settings. You can access the Charm Bar at the right side of the window by simply rolling your mouse pointer over to the upper-right or lower-right corners of the screen. The charm bar will then appear and you can roll your mouse pointer over it in order to access its content, displayed as buttons within the Charm Bar. You can also open it by swiping in from the right edge of a touch screen, or by simply pressing the Windows + C keys on your keyboard.
To search for content on your computer, click the “Search” button within the Charm Bar. This will display a “Search” pane at the right side of the window.
To search for an item, type the text that you are searching for into the text box shown at the top of the “Search” pane. You will then see any matching results for the three categories of results shown immediately below the text box. These categories are “Apps,” “Settings,” and “Files.” The number shown to the right of each category shows the number of matches within that category. You can click on any category shown to then display the matching results in the window to the left of the search pane. You can then click into this window to hide the search pane and scroll through the results. For “Files” you will also see the results, broken down by general file type as subcategories, displayed at the top of the “Files” window. You can click on any one of the subcategories to further filter the matching results shown. When you find the item you want, simply click on the result to open the associated file. If you don’t find a match, you can open the Charm Bar to search again, or simply click the “Start” screen in the lower-left corner of the screen to exit.
Within apps that support sharing, such as “Photos” or “Videos,” you can select a photo, video, or other shareable item, and then click the “Share” button within the Charm Bar to open a side pane to the right that shows the available apps that you can use to share the selected item. Simply click on the name of the app that you want to use to share the selected item in order to open that app and attach the selected item for sharing.
Note that if you click the “Share” button within the Charm Bar within an app that doesn’t support sharing, such as the “Desktop” app, you will see that information displayed in a message within the side pane that appears. You can then click into the area of the window where the pane does not appear to hide the side pane again.
You can click the “Start” button within the Charm Bar to display the “Start” screen again whenever you need it.
You can click the “Devices” button within the Charm Bar to display a listing of any connected devices whose settings you can change. For example, if you happen to be running dual monitors, you can click the “Devices” button to display the secondary monitor. You can then click on any device shown to alter its available settings within this pane. Using the example of a secondary monitor, you could then choose how you wish to extend your primary display onto the secondary monitor.
You can click the “Settings” button within the Charm Bar to display a listing of computer settings at the bottom of the side pane that appears. You can also click on the commands shown at the top of the pane to open the various “Control Panel” windows for the associated computer settings, or to access “Help” within Windows 8.