Upgrade Your Windows 8 to Windows 8.1

Edited by Adrian Penaflor, Eng, Melsan, VisiHow

Microsoft has recently released Windows 8.1 upgrade on Window 8 Operating System. This is the first upgrade on the Windows 8 version to smooth-en out its sharp edges or to improve its overall usability and performance. This 'How To' article will provide you in-depth and step by step instructions on how to upgrade from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1 as well as its changes and improvements.

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Requirements and Prerequisites

  1. 1
    You need a computer/Laptop that is running on Windows 8 Operating System.
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  2. 2
    You need a steady and fast internet connection
    .
    I recommend wired connection but wireless connection also works.
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  3. 3
    You need to update your Windows 8 to its latest patches or fixes.
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  4. 4
    You need to keep your battery high and steady as go through the upgrade process.
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  5. 5
    You need a lot of patient
    .
    Depending on your internet connection speed, more or less it will take you 5 hours to complete the whole upgrade process.
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How to update Windows 8 to its latest patches and fixes

It is a best practice that you update everything on your current OS version before you upgrade it into a high version to avoid complications or problems.

  1. 1
    Place your cursor on the upper-right corner of the screen to make the Charm menu (side menu) appear.
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  2. 2
    Click on the "Settings" and then "Change PC settings".
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  3. 3
    On the left, go to "Windows Update" and then click "Check for updates" on the right side.
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  4. 4
    Wait until the search is done.
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  5. 5
    Click on the update link found on the search result.
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  6. 6
    It should automatically update whatsoever is needed on your system.
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  7. 7
    After it is done, restart the computer
    .
    To restart the computer, you can go to the Charm menu, "Settings", "Power", and then "Restart" or simply go to the Desktop Screen and press Alt+F4, and then select "Restart" on the drop down menu.
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  8. 8
    During boot up, wait for few minutes as it automatically applies the update on your computer.
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  9. 9
    As soon as you got back on Windows screen then you are done!
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How to upgrade from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1

After you are done with the prerequisites, you are now ready to upgrade your Windows 8 to Windows 8.1. So let's begin:

  1. 1
    Press the Windows button on your keyboard or click the Start button on the charm menu to access the Start menu.
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  • 2
    Run the Windows Apps Store.
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  • 3
    Click on the Windows 8.1 update.
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  • 4
    Click on the "Download" button to start the download
    .
    The download size is around 3.62 GB, so that will take a while. Similar to downloading a regular app, Windows allows you to keep using the computer during the download process.
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  • 5
    It will automatically prompt you as soon as the download has been completed.
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  • 6
    Click "Restart" to reboot the computer.
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  • 7
    During boot up or the pre-windows screen, it will automatically installation the necessary things on your computer and it takes 30 minutes or longer depending on your computer speed and system specs
    .
    This is the perfect time to use your patience.
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  • 8
    After some time it will prompt you for the License agreement
    .
    Just click "I Accept".
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  • 9
    Click on "Use express settings".
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  • 10
    Login using your Microsoft account
    .
    You can login using your existing account, or create a new account. You can also bypass the account login if you click on "Continue without a Microsoft account".
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  • 11
    It will continue to set up and install more stuff.
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  • 12
    After few minutes, you can now access Window 8.1 and you're done!
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  • Changes and Improvements on Windows 8.1

    So what's new in Windows 8.1? Interface, better apps, usability, and performance? We'll those are just some of the improvements but here is some more:

    1. 1
      Tutorial
      .
      Microsoft has added a tutorial on how to use the charm menu and the apps switcher on the upper-left corner of the screen. Its good for people who are just starting on Windows 8.1.
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    2. 2
      Windows Start button is back
      .
      Windows user are familiar with the Start button usually at the lower-left corner of the screen, now it is back on Windows 8.1. Now you have two Start buttons, the new one and the Start button on the charm menu. It may seem redundant but it is there to satisfy both worlds (Desktop mode and Tablet mode). In the new Start button, you can right-click it to access some of the familiar desktop programs like Command Prompt, File Manager, Network Connections, Control Panel, as well as quick access to Run, Search, and Shut Down.
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    3. 3
      Taskbar and Navigation Properties
      .
      You can right-click the Taskbar and then click "Properties" to access "Taskbar and Navigation Properties". Here is some of interesting stuff in it:  
      1. If you go the "Navigation" tab, you can show your Desktop background on start instead of the Start menu.
      2. You can also set up the Start button as you access it. If you can go directly to the Apps menu instead of the Start menu.
      3. Search Everywhere. You can go to the Apps menu and type something, it will automatically take you to the Search. You'll notice that it can quickly suggest or find any apps on your computer plus it also searches for your files like documents, music, and videos. It is fast and very useful.
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    4. 4
      Arrow Up and Down
      .
      There is a new arrow up button on the Apps menu, and arrow down on the Start menu. You can use these buttons to switch from Start menu to Apps menu or vice versa.
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    5. 5
      Apps Store
      .
      The Store interface has been remodeled.
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    6. 6
      Start menu enhancement
      .
      I have noticed that the Start menu navigation has gone smoother and if you right-click on the apps you'll have additional options.
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    Windows 8 short cut keys

    Here are the lists of Windows key shortcuts for your Windows 8 computer. Instead of using your mouse, you can simply use the shortcut keys instead.

    Basic keys for Windows 8

    1. 1
      Press Windows Key plus letter D
      :
      Go to your desktop screen
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    2. 2
      Press Windows Key plus letter C
      :
      Launch charms menu
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    3. 3
      Press Windows Key plus letter F
      :
      Launch Charms menu search
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    4. 4
      Press Windows Key plus letter H
      :
      Launch Charms menu Share
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    5. 5
      Press Windows Key plus letter K
      :
      Launch Charms menu Devices
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    6. 6
      Press Windows Key plus letter I
      :
      Launch Charm menu
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    7. 7
      Press Windows Key plus letter Q
      :
      Look for your installed applications
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    8. 8
      Press Windows Key plus letter W
      :
      Search Settings
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    9. 9
      Press Windows Key plus Tab
      :
      Cycle through the latest User Interface Apps.
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    10. 10
      Press Windows Key plus Shift and Tab
      :
      Cycle through the latest User Interface Apps. But reverse
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    11. 11
      Press Windows Key plus
      .
      (Dot): Multitasking to snap applications to the right screen
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    12. 12
      Press Windows Key plus shift and
      .
      (Dot): Multitasking to snap applications to the left screen
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    13. 13
      Press Windows Key plus , (Comma)
      :
      Lets you view your desktop, temporarily.
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    14. 14
      Press Alt and F4
      :
      Exit the new User Interface of the applications
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    15. 15
      Press Windows Key plus letter E
      :
      Open the Windows explorer
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    16. 16
      Press Windows Key plus letter L
      :
      put the computer screen on lock
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    17. 17
      Press Windows Key plus letter T
      :
      Cycle all icons from your task bar and hit enter to launch it.
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    18. 18
      Press Windows Key plus letter X
      :
      Open the Advanced settings window.
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    19. 19
      Press Windows Key plus page down
      :
      Simply move the applications to the second monitor on the right screen.
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    20. 20
      Press Windows Key plus letter M
      :
      Minimize all opened Windows.
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    21. 21
      Press Windows Key plus Shift and letter M
      :
      Restore all the Windows you minimized.
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    22. 22
      Press Windows Key plus Letter R
      :
      Launch Run box.
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    23. 23
      Press Windows Key plus Up arrow
      :
      Maximize the current window
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    24. 24
      Press Windows Key plus Down Arrow
      :
      Minimize the current window
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    25. 25
      Press Windows Key plus Right Arrow
      :
      Maximize window going right side
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    26. 26
      Press Windows Key plus Left Arrow
      :
      Maximize window going left side
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    27. 27
      Press Ctrl plus Shift and Esc
      :
      Launches your Task Manager.
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    28. 28
      Press Windows Key plus "Print  Screen / SysRq"
      :
      Automatically save your print screen to pictures folder
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    29. 29
      Press Windows Key plus Page up
      :
      Moves the applications to the other screen, left side screen.
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    30. 30
      Press Windows Key plus Pause or Break
      :
      Simply displays your system properties
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    31. 31
      Press Shift and Delete
      :
      Delete selected files permanently. Meaning, not sending to recycle bin
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    32. 32
      Press Windows Key plus F1
      :
      Launch your Windows help support
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    33. 33
      Press Windows Key plus letter V
      :
      Cycle through your notifications
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    34. 34
      Press Windows Key plus Shift then letter V
      :
      Cycle through your notifications, but reverse
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    35. 35
      Press Windows Key plus any number of 1 to 9 or 0
      :
      Launch any applications from your task bar.
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    36. 36
      Press Windows Key plus Shift and any number of 1 to 9 or 0
      :
      Opens new applications that are indicated with number.
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    37. 37
      Press Alt then enter
      :
      Show the selected file explorer properties you selected.
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    38. 38
      Press Alt plus arrow Up
      :
      In the file explorer, display upper level of the current folder.
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    39. 39
      Press Alt plus Right arrow
      :
      Display the next folder from file explorer
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    40. 40
      Press Alt plus Left arrow
      :
      Display the previous folder from file explorer
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    41. 41
      Press Windows Key plus letter P
      :
      Select secondary display modes
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    42. 42
      Press Windows Key plus letter You
      :
      Launches your computers ease of Access Center
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    43. 43
      Press Windows Key plus Space bar
      :
      Change the language input and so as the keyboard layout.
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    44. 44
      Press Windows Key plus Shift and Space bar
      :
      Simply reverts the language input and keyboard layout
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    45. 45
      Press Windows Key plus Enter
      :
      Launches the narrator
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    46. 46
      Press Windows Key plus the + (Plus sign)
      :
      Zoom in while using the magnifier
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    47. 47
      Press Windows Key plus the - (Minus sign)
      :
      Zoom out while using the magnifier
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    48. 48
      Press Windows Key plus Escape
      :
      Simply exits the magnifier
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    While you are at the Windows Explorer

    1. 1
      Press Windows key plus letter E
      :
      Launches Windows explorer
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    2. 2
      Press Alt plus Up arrow
      :
      Up on one folder
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    3. 3
      Press Alt arrow Left or Right
      :
      Go Next or Previous folder
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    4. 4
      Press Tab or Shift then Tab again
      :
      switch to Address bar, Tool bar and any other in the browser that can be selected.
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    5. 5
      Press Alt then letter D or F4 button
      :
      Directly select address bar, highlight the link in blue to copy.
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    6. 6
      Press Ctrl then letter E or letter F
      :
      Go to search in the explorer
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    7. 7
      Press Ctrl then Letter N
      :
      Launches new instance of your Windows explorer
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    8. 8
      Press F11
      :
      Change the Windows Explorer to full screen.
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    Shortcut keys while on file list views

    1. 1
      Press Alt then Letter P
      :
      Show or hide preview
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    2. 2
      Press Alt plus letter V then Letter D
      :
      Show details for additional options
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    3. 3
      Press Alt plus Letter V then Letter X
      :
      Display large icons then show details for additional options
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    4. 4
      Press Ctrl plus the mouse wheel changes the icon size.
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    If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.

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    Article Info

    Categories : Operating System

    Recent edits by: Melsan, Eng, Adrian Penaflor

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