Since the Consumer Preview of Windows 8 got released, there have been a lot of complaints from users related to different menus and options missing, or moved to new locations. For instance, the Shutdown options, which were accessible directly from the Start Orb in Windows 7, now requires you to first open the Settings menu of Windows 8 from the Charms Bar in order to Shutdown, Restart, Sleep or put your computer in hibernate mode. We still don’t know if this is the final shape that the interface of Windows 8 is going to take, as Microsoft might make some small changes till the final version is released, based on user feedback. Till then, what the users of Windows 8 Consumer Preview can do, is use third party apps to get the features not available by default. If you are also one of those people who are annoyed by the “hard to access” nature of power options, try NPowerTray. It is an open source application for Windows 8 that adds a shutdown menu to the system tray of Desktop, and allows you to perform all the shutdown functions, including Shutdown, Reboot, Hibernate, Sleep, Lock and Log Off without having to open the Settings menu.
Other than the normal shutdown options, the program also features a Force feature that allows you to perform any of the shutdown operations, even when the system is waiting due to an application running in the background (a feature available in Windows 7). As soon as you run the program, an icon is added to the system tray. Double-click this icon to directly shutdown the computer without the program asking for any confirmation. Right-click it to open up a menu with Shutdown, Reboot, Hibernate, Sleep, Lock, Log Off and Special Options buttons available. The Special Options menu further reveals more options, such as Force Shutdown, Force Reboot, Force Hibernate, Force Sleep, Force Log Off etc.
NPowerTray provides users with a non-memory intensive way of shutting down the PC from the Desktop. It is a portable application and works on both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows 8. You can also install this tool in the previous versions of Windows using the link provided on the product page.