Windows 8 has completely reworked its search functionality with its new release to provide smarter and more efficient search results. The Windows 8 search feature not only searches the familiar areas of Windows but also your apps for intuitive results. If you have yet to take advantage of the Windows 8 search, you will see just what it will do for you.

This guide will show you the secret to getting started with Windows 8 Search.

How to use Windows 8 search

Windows 8 search can be used to search for files, applications, information in apps and more. Just about anything on your computer can be accessed by searching for it through Windows 8 search.

There are two ways to open Windows 8 search: Charms Bar and keyboard shortcuts.

In order to open search from the Charms Bar, simply use the keyboard shortcut “Windows + C” and then click “Search.”

You can also open it by clicking the “Windows Key + begin typing what you are looking for” or “CTRL + ESC.”


This will open the Search panel on the right side of your screen.


Now, you can simply type in what you are looking for or you can start narrowing down the category by choosing one. When you search this way, Windows will intuitively try and track down what you are looking for similar to how a search engine operates. This includes giving you ideas of exactly what you are looking for before you even finish typing.


You can a generic category or you can choose an app or program to also search through for your desired result.

For this example, we are searching for the general term Windows in every category.

You can see right away on the right-hand panel that within the apps, settings and files categories, we have found a variety of results in each that we can go through to find exactly what we are looking for.

In the left-hand pane, you will see all the results pop up when you select a category. In this case, we have selected Apps.

(5) left hand pane

Now, if we select Settings, we can also go through those results to find what we are looking for.


We can then click on the desired result to gain access to it through the search results.


Some shortcuts to keep handy for Windows 8 search

These are some handy keyboard shortcuts for Windows 8 search:

  • Search directly within apps: Windows Key + Q
  • Search directly within settings: Windows Key + W
  • Search directly within files: Windows Key + F

Once you get the hang of the keyboard shortcuts for search in Windows 8, it makes using the search engine within the operating system even more efficient for users.

How effective is the Windows 8 search?

The Windows 8 Search gives users a fully immersive search experience, unlike any previous version has given users. If you are still hesitant to give the search a try, just look at what this guide shows you to do with it. Windows 8 search lets you find things faster, more efficiently and in ways, you never thought possible. Try Windows 8 search today and see exactly how it can make finding things easier on your PC.