Start multiple instances of an application in Windows 8

Problem

Windows 8 runs non-Metro applications in the desktop. By default, if a second instance of an already running application is started by typing its name and pressing Enter, Windows 8 just switches to the already running application. For example, if you have one window of Notepad open, running Notepad again from the Start screen by typing its name and pressing Enter switches you back to the Notepad window already open.

Solution

To indicate to Windows 8 to open a new instance of the application, use Shift + Enter instead of Enter.

Tried with: Windows 8 Pro

Win + Break on Dell Vostro 3300

Problem

In Windows, the keyboard shortcut to display the System Properties is Win + Break. There is no Break key on the Dell Vostro 3300 keyboard.

Solution

Pressing Win + Pause seems to simulate the above shortcut. Since the Pause key is shared with F12 key, the keypress is essentially Win + Fn + F12.

Tried with: Windows 8 Pro

How to view the time in Windows 8?

Charms bar in Windows 8

Problem

In older versions of Windows, you could see the time and date in the system tray on the taskbar. You can still do that in the Desktop mode of Windows 8. But, when you are in the Start screen of Windows 8, this information is missing. The tile of the Calendar application show the date, but what about the time?

Solution

If you bring up the CharmsΒ Bar, which appears on the right, the current date and time is also displayed in a box on the bottom left corner. The easiest way to bring up the Charms Bar is to use the keyboard shortcut Win + C.

Once I learnt about this, I felt that this was more convenient than a date-time display that is omnipresent on the Start screen. This is less distracting.

Tried with: Windows 8 Pro x64