When you need to take a break from your computer and Windows 8, perhaps to shop for computer books, you should consider how long you will be away and in what state you should leave your computer. For example, if you are going to be away from your computer for a short period of time but you are working on sensitive information, you should lock your computer. Locking your computer immediately displays the Lock screen without affecting the programs running or the files that are open. This enables you to get back to work quickly as soon as you sign back in. With the sleep option, there are four choices available to manage your computer while you take a break.
Signing Out of Windows 8
You leave no trail behind when you sign out of Windows. Any programs running when you signed out are shut down, and any connections you had open are closed. If you attempted to sign out with unsaved work in either a Desktop or Windows 8 app, Windows 8 prompts you to save the work, as shown in Figure 1.13.
Figure 1.13. You see a warning on the Start screen if you try to sign out with unsaved work.
To log out of Windows, use one of these methods:
- On the Start screen, select your portrait, and then select Sign Out.
- From the Desktop, press Alt+F4. Then, select Sign Out and tap or click OK.
Locking Windows 8
Locking Windows 8 is useful if you are going to be away from your computer but you want to resume your work or play when you return. Locking also prevents strangers from accessing the information on your computer.
To lock Windows 8, use one of these methods:
- Select your portrait on the Start screen and then select Lock.
- Press Windows+L.
Putting Windows 8 to Sleep
Windows 8 does not have a sleep command. You cannot put your computer into sleep mode with Windows 8. Instead, you must press the Power button on your computer to put it to sleep. However, your computer must be set up to put itself to sleep when the Power button is pressed, as shown in Figure 1.14. If your computer is instead set up to power down when the Power button is pressed, you could lose important unsaved data. You can put your computer to sleep with a few other options, but the Power button option seems like a good one to standardize on and that most computers support.
Figure 1.14. Two options are available to configure what happens when your computer sleeps and wakes up.
Shutting Down Your Windows 8 Computer
You have a number of options available to shut down Windows 8. Regardless of the option you use, when you shut down Windows 8, your computer powers down. You don’t need to close any running programs or apps, but you must save any unsaved work or you will lose your changes since the last time you saved.
To shut down Windows 8 if you use a Windows 8 application or are at the Start screen, do the following:
- From the Settings charm, choose Power, and then select Shut Down.
To shut down Windows 8 from the Desktop,
- Press Alt+F4. Then, select Shut Down and select OK, as shown in Figure 1.15.
Figure 1.15. You may also issue the Shut Down command from the Desktop.
Restarting Windows 8 to Install Updates
A program as large and complicated as Windows is bound to have some unexpected problems, such as features that do not work as promised, programs that don’t work at all, and conditions that cause Windows or your compute to shut down suddenly. In the software world, these problems are known as bugs. Don’t worry. Microsoft, like most software companies, anticipates bugs. Short of an infestation, the engineers at Microsoft squash bugs and release small software programs that automatically update your computer with fixes to the bugs. Your computer must be restarted for the updates to take effect. You receive a notification that you must restart your computer, as shown in Figure 1.16. If you do not restart your computer soon enough, you are alerted again, this time being informed that Windows will automatically restart shortly.
Figure 1.16. Windows alerts you that you must restart your computer for updates to be applied.