Edit & Stylize Images The Easy Way With Photo Studio For Windows 8

A very important aspect of image editing is the tool that you're using for the job. For instance, Photoshop is one of the most famous image editing software out there, but it also has a high learning curve. If you aren't already familiar with its interface, using it to perform even the simplest editing operations can prove to be quite difficult. However, touching up photos or images to make them look better for your favorite social network does not require mastering advanced tools. Also, most of these tools aren't available on both desktop and mobile platforms. This is why apps like Photo Studio exist. This free Windows 8 and RT app provides you with basic image editing options, adjustments, Instagram-like filters and frames to make your photos share-ready. More details after the break.Read More

Follow Your Favorite Upcoming Games With GameTracker For Windows 8

There was a time when video games were considered to be something only for kids, but nowadays, games like Blizzard’s World of Warcraft, StarCraft and Valve’s Dota 2 have gained a lot of popularity across all generations of gamers. Gaming tournaments are now rewarding teams with prizes of up to US 1 million dollars making them popular with both casual as well as professional players. While some professional players, play games in order to earn money, most of us only play to relax and enjoy. With all the games, and their sequels, coming out on different platforms, it is difficult to keep a track of all their release dates and the latest news about them. Read More

Set Windows 8 Lock Screen To Cycle Through Background Images With Chameleon

In Windows 7, there are no native options to customize your lock screen. For instance, if you want to change the background, you have to use a third party application, such as Windows 7 Logon Screen Tweaker, a portable tool that lets you change Logon screen UI elements such as the background and Windows 7 logo, and perform several other tweaks. In Windows 8 & RT, you get native lock screen customization options within the Personalize section of PC Settings, one of which is setting a custom background image. Now, you can pick any image from local storage, but unlike the desktop, the Windows 8 Lock screen does not cycle through a group of backgrounds of your choice. That is where Chameleon comes in. This Windows Store app takes Lock screen background customization one step further by automatically downloading and applying a different background after a user specified time interval. The app has built-in streams for famous wallpaper sources, including National Geographic Photo of the Day and Bing Picture of the Day. More on the app after the jump.Read More

Run Modern UI Apps Within Windows 8 Desktop With RetroUI Pro

Up until now, the Start Screen replacement apps we reviewed for Windows 8 – including the ever popular Start8 from Startdock, or the more feature-laden Classic Shell – simply restore the Start Menu in Desktop mode. RetroUI Pro (previously RetroUI) is a similar application that does not merely reinstate the Start Menu, but it also keeps it persistent even in Start Screen mode. After its latest update, it now allows you to run Modern UI (Windows Store) apps in windowed mode, i.e., within the desktop environment. RetroUI packs in a plethora of features that we haven’t seen in other Start Menu alternatives. For instance, it features a TabletView window that provides quick access to some of the frequently used apps and allows you to pin your own apps and webapps of choice there too. Since it’s a paid app, we’d put it up against Stardock’s variant i.e. Start8. Read on to find out if it successfully knocks out the competition.Read More

Pin Any File To Windows 8 Start Screen Using Tile A File

Since jumping on the Windows 8 bandwagon, I spend a lot of time fiddling with the Start Screen. I don’t like the fact that Microsoft been liberal with putting certain constraints regarding Start Screen personalization. For instance, you can easily pin both Modern and Standard UI apps to this revolutionary tiled grid (no pun intended), but you’re simply not allowed to pin custom files, folders or other system tools without the use of a third party utility. Back in October, we reviewed two third-party tools (ObyTile and Start Screen Pinner) that allow pinning most of the items to the Start Screen. However, those of you looking for a way to do the same without leaving Windows 8 Modern UI environment (and more importantly, those who are on Windows RT) can use Tile A File. Tile A File is a new application that - as the name implies - lets you pin any selected file to the Start Screen, thus providing an instant way to access it right from the Start Screen.Read More

How To Disable Pin To Start Screen Feature In Windows 8

When you install an app on your Windows 8 machine, its shortcut is pinned to the Start Screen by default. It is a useful feature when you are dealing with Windows Store apps; however, the system does not differentiate between the Windows Store apps and desktop apps as well as it should. Since shortcuts for desktop applications are created by the setup process itself, many wouldn't see the need to have an additional shortcut in the form of a tile on Start Screen. The problem doesn't end here. Sometimes, multiple shortcuts are created for the same app. For instance, if you install Google Talk, one tile shortcut is created for the app, while another is added for its diagnostic tool. You can remove these tiles using the app bar menu, but it can be annoying if you have to do it often. AutoPin Controller is an app for Windows 8 that allows you to disable the Pin to Start Screen feature in Windows 8. Basically it locks the Start Screen so that no changes can be made to it, allowing you to install new applications without worrying about them cluttering it.Read More

How To Improve Audio Output & Experience In Windows 8

One of the things most people do after upgrading to Windows 8 is to check whether their devices are in working condition. In most cases, some drivers might be required. While some devices (like Audio) apparently start working without drivers, some might require drivers to be installed before they’re functional. But did you know that Audio is one of the things that require proper drivers in order to perform efficiently? Would you like to know how you can enhance the audio output on your Windows 8 computer? In what follows, we’re going to show you how you can make sure it delivers the best audio experience! Read More

Turn Photos Into Realistic Paintings With Lazy Paint For Windows 8

Previously, we covered a stunning oil painting app for Windows 8 called Fresh Paint - a Modern UI app from Microsoft with incredibly realistic oil paint effects. Fresh Paint is awesome, but not all of us have got what it takes to be a great painter. If you have been looking for something beginner-friendly, try your hand at Lazy Paint. Although it's not like you'll be creating another Mona Lisa any time soon, it may give you a head start. And did I mention it’s quite fun to use? Lazy Paint lets you brush over your regular photos to turn them into realistic paintings. The app takes full advantage of Windows RT tablets, meaning, you can employ multi-touch gestures to boost your productivity. Read More

View Live Cricket Scores With The ESPN Cricinfo App For Windows 8

Cricket might not be the most popular sport in the world, but whatever fans it has are downright crazy about the game. With teams from all regions of the world, such as Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa, fans like to follow the performance of their favorite players and teams, and apart from the television, one of the best ways to do so is the cricinfo.com website. It provides cricket fans with a huge database of news, articles, statistics and other information. Windows 8 and RT using cricket fans would be delighted to know that the official ESPN Cricinfo is now available in the Windows Store. The app allows you to view Live scores, Headlines, Featured articles, Latest news and stay up to date with Current series. Like its iOS, Android and Windows Phone variants, it gives you the option to view news stories related only to your national team or the entire cricket world. You get complete scorecards, along with the latest news and photos of ongoing matches.Read More

Give Windows The Macbook Touchpad Treatment With TwoFingerScroll

You've just been shot back up to the top of an article because you touched the touchpad funny. In an attempt to scroll back down, you accidentally enlarge or shrink the text by 450%. After grumbling about it, you repair it and start again. You never noticed it before, but scrolling down makes huge jumps and leaps like taking steps on a ladder.Enter TwoFingerScroll.Read More

Copy Path, Resize Images & Install Fonts From Windows 8 Context Menu

Some elements of Windows drastically improve productivity. The right-click context menu (a unified feature that is also present in Linux and Mac OS X) proudly stands among those elements. Earlier, we covered various applications that let you edit the context menu and push in various shell extensions and program shortcuts, not available by default. For instance, Menu Uninstaller adds uninstall command to the context menu to remove an application without going to Add / Remove Programs in Control Panel. Likewise, Context Menu Editor can add app shortcuts for quick access. Today, we stumbled upon another one such tool called ShellTools. It’s a powerful yet lightweight shell extension that can add a set of useful options to right-click menu. It can enable a wide-array of commands, such as Resize image, Install or Uninstall font, Copy size, Copy path, Show hidden files, Show file extensions, File note and Refresh icons.Read More

How To Disable “Drag To Close” For Modern Apps In Windows 8

Windows 8 includes a lot of changes in the way apps are handled. Since the OS is created for both tablets and PCs, some of the UI enhancements are suitable more towards a certain device. For instance, in order to close the apps, there is no longer the famous “x” button. Instead, you have to grab the app from the top and pull it down to close it. Another major change in Windows 8 is that desktop also works as an app. So, you can close the desktop app in the same way (by dragging from the top). It is possible to close it accidentally, say, when you quickly drag your mouse to take a screenshot. In this post, we will explain how to disable the "drag to close" feature of Windows 8 to avoid accidental closure of apps.Read More

Give Your Windows 8 Desktop A Makeover With Rainmeter & RocketDock

I've always wanted to customize my Windows 7 desktop using Rainmeter to add some interesting look and feel to it, and RocketDock to get rid of the taskbar. But it has never been possible to totally neglect the taskbar, only due to the start menu, which held so many applications in place. In short, I gave up on the idea of customizing my desktop. But since Windows 8 has replaced the Start menu with the Start Screen, I can continue with the customization, and you too can learn how it's done!Read More

Barnes & Noble Releases Official NOOK App For Windows 8

When Microsoft struck a $300 million deal with Barnes & Noble early last month, it was speculated that the software giant was getting serious about making a mark in the eBook business. The launch of Surface tablets further cements this fact. Even though it was absent during the Windows 8 launch, Barnes & Noble has finally let out their NOOK app for Windows 8 and RT. No, it’s not another eBook reader that lets you open your EPUB files. The purpose of the application is to let users manage their Nook account, purchase new books and read purchased content within the Modern UI environment. You can choose from 3 million titles, including all types of books, magazines, newspapers, and comics. What’s more, it offers downloading of free book samples before purchasing full versions, and free, 14-day  trials for newspaper and magazine subscriptions.Read More

How To Add ‘All Apps’ Shortcut To Windows 8 Desktop & Taskbar

Continuing our series of how to guides related to Windows 8 hacks, we’ll be talking about how you can create a shortcut to easily access All Apps in this post. This ‘hack’ reduces the number of steps it takes to open Windows 8’s All Apps menu from three – pressing the Windows key, right-clicking on an empty areaa and clicking on All Apps – to just one: clicking on an All Apps shortcut. Check out how you can do this after the jump!Read More

Watch High Definition Videos On Windows 8 With The Official Vimeo App

Being a software reviewer, you learn to read between the lines. You can tell at first sight what an app does and little explanation is required to introduce it to the readers. Vimeo for Windows 8 is exactly one such case. You might be living under a rock if you’re unfamiliar with this far-famed video streaming service. Although, YouTube has cleverly dominated the video sharing realm, there’s something interesting about Vimeo, which makes it stand out – and that is the indie filmmaker’s attraction. It’s not like any other website to share some random video clips, but rather targeted at auteurs around the globe. And might even help you go viral within a few hours. The Windows 8 app of the service looks equally appealing. It allows you to upload and watch videos, as well as browse a number of channels that suit your taste.Read More

Stop Mouse Cursor From Slipping To Secondary Monitor In Windows 8

The personalization menu of Windows 8 is designed to accommodate multiple monitors. The new Charms bar and Switch List, accessible by moving the cursor to the right and left corners of your screen respectively, appear on both monitors. Accessing them can sometimes be a tricky if you are running a multi-monitor setup. For instance, if you have a secondary monitor on the right side, the cursor might slip into the secondary monitor when trying to bring up the Charms bar from the lower right corner. So, you can either waste your time by trying to get the cursor in the perfect position, or move it to the other monitor to easily bring up the bar. Another way is to restrict free movement of the mouse cursor between the screens so that you can easily move it to the screen corners. Mouse Trapper is one such tool that restricts free mouse movement between the connected screens and trap the mouse inside one display. You can still move the cursor to the other monitors by pressing a pre-selected key giving you control of when to free the cursor.Read More

How To Sleep, Restart, Shutdown Windows 8 via Right Click Context Menu

Accessing power options in Windows 8 takes way too many steps. You first drag your mouse to the top right corner to activate Charms, click on Settings, click on Power and then click on Sleep, Shutdown or Restart. This can be reduced to just two steps by using Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts like ALT+F4 or Win+I, but it still isn’t as quick as one would like. With that in mind, SkyKOG on XDA Developers came up with a simple solution: put the Power options in the right click menu. Find how how to apply his ‘hack’ after the jump.Read More

/r/etro Is A Dual-Pane Modern Reddit Browser For Windows 8

Browsing Reddit on Windows 8 is a lot more fun. Windows Store apps, like our previously covered Snoo, Narwhal or ReddHub, provide a snappy Reddit experience. /r/etro is yet another one that has popped up in the Windows Store. I typically like simple and clean applications, but that doesn’t mean any compromise on options. /r/etro apparently, wins in both aspects. The app lets you check your subscribed subreddits, comment on posts, upvote or downvote posts shared by others, and even open a selected post in a web browser. Akin to other Windows Store apps, it can be snapped to the right or left of the screen. In addition, you can browse subreddits without requiring a user account.Read More

Windows 8 Start Screen Personalization With Decor8

Most of you would probably have made a switch to the heavily advertised Windows 8 by now. Admittedly, Microsoft’s latest incarnation feels so nice once you get the hang of it. One of Windows 8’s distinctive features is the Start Screen. It’s been both lauded and loathed by users around the globe. And I have personally found it a good move from Redmond. Even though, I like the new Start Screen, I also hate the lack of some customization options. For instance, the OS doesn’t allow swapping Start Screen background with a custom image, which makes me wonder, why would Microsoft not include something this very basic. I have tried a couple of freeware tools to change the background, but none of them really worked for me, until I came across Decor8, a new app from Stardock.Read More