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Windows 8 Tips Part 7 – Organize and Group Apps on the Start Screen

Windows 8 Start Screen Office GroupedThe Windows 8 Start Screen can become cluttered with all the Apps you install and download from the Windows Store. Did you know that you can create groups and name them? It kind of reminds me of the excellent Fences app by Stardock. The only difference is that Fences organises your desktop, while in Windows 8, you are grouping and organising your Start screen tiles. You can start organising your apps by dragging them into neat groups on the Start screen.

But groups don’t really help much if you can’t label these groups. To do this, start by zooming out. If you are on a Tablet, just pinch in and out to zoom in and out (yes, like on the iPad). But when you are on a PC without a touch screen, have a look in the bottom right hand corner. It is slightly less intuitive than on a tablet, but there you will see the zoom out icon that you can click on. The zoom out icon is a minus sign which is universally the zoom out symbol, but it is not highlighted in any way and is easy to miss.

Windows 8 Zoom Out Button

Doing this will make your Start screen zoom out to give you an eagles eye view of all the tiles on your Start screen.

Windows 8 Start Screen Zoomed Out

As you move your mouse over each group, they will highlight. Right click on the group you wish to create a label for.

Windows 8 Start Screen Name Group

I have cropped the screenshot to make all the items appear closer together. A check mark will appear on the group you right clicked, and the “Name Group” icon will appear in the bottom left of the screen.

Windows 8 Start Screen Group Name

Click on the “Name Group” icon and give the group a suitable name. Since I am renaming a grouped set of Office 2013 icons, the name for me was pretty obvious. But you might be surprised that as your groups grow, the naming of them might become slightly more challenging. Don’t try to be too specific. Rather try to name groups such as “Everyday Apps” or “Work apps”. The idea is not to clutter your Start screen with labelled groups of apps, because that will sort of defeat the purpose of grouping and labelling in the first place.

Windows 8 Start Screen Office Named

When you click on Name, your label will be applied to your group. You can repeat this process for different groups and create a neat and tidy Start screen in no time.

Dirk Strauss
Dirk is a Software Developer and Microsoft MVP from South Africa. He loves all things Technology and is slightly addicted to Twitter and Jimi Hendrix. Apart from writing code, he also enjoys writing human readable articles. "I love sharing knowledge and connecting with people from around the world. It's the diversity that makes life so beautiful." Dirk feels very strongly that pizza is simply not complete without Tabasco, that you can never have too much garlic, and that cooking the perfect steak is an art he has yet to master.
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