- Drag the title bar of an open window to either side of the desktop to align it there, or
- Drag it to the top of the desktop to maximize the window.
- To expand a window vertically using Snap, drag the top edge of the window to the top of the desktop.
- To return the window to its original size, drag the title bar of the window away from the top of the screen.
- Just click the title bar of the window you want to keep open and drag (or shake) the window back and forth quickly, and the other open windows are minimized.
- To restore the minimized windows, shake the open window again.
- Press Windows logo key +Home to minimize all windows except for the currently active window. Press Windows logo key +Home again to restore all windows
- The Show desktop button has been moved the opposite end of the taskbar from the Start button, making it easier to click or point to the button without accidentally opening the Start menu.
- You can temporarily view or peek at the desktop by just pointing to the Show desktop button. When you point to the Show desktop button at the end of the taskbar, any open windows fade from view, revealing the desktop. To make the windows reappear, move the mouse away from the Show desktop button.
- Press the Windows logo key +Spacebar to temporarily preview the desktop. To restore the desktop, release the Windows logo key +Spacebar.
To minimize open windows so that they remain minimized, click the Show desktop button, or press the Windows logo key +D. To restore the open windows, click the Show desktop button again or press the Windows logo key +D again.
- Your desktop background doesn't have to be a single picture anymore. With Windows 7, you can display a slide show of pictures, instead. Some Windows themes include a slide show, or you can create your own slide show from your personal collection of pictures.
- Jump Lists are lists of recent items, such as files, folders, or websites, organized by the program you use to open them.
- In addition to being able to open recent items using a Jump List, you can also pin favorite items to a Jump List, so that you can easily access the programs and files you use every day.
- A library gathers files from different locations and displays them as a single collection, without moving them from where they’re stored. There are four default libraries (Documents, Music, Pictures, and Videos), but you can create new libraries for other collections. The Documents, Music, and Pictures libraries appear on the Start menu by default. Like other items on the Start menu, you can add or remove libraries, or customize their appearance.
- The Start menu includes a search box that you can use to find files, folders, programs, and e-mail messages stored on your computer. When you start typing a word or phrase in the search box, the search begins automatically, and the search results temporarily fill the Start menu space above the search box.
- Taskbar buttons have a new look and do more than just show you which programs are running.
- In the default view, each program appears as a single, unlabeled button—even when multiple items for a program are open—for a clean and uncluttered look. You can customize the taskbar appearance to change how buttons appear and how they group together when you have multiple items open. You can also choose to see individual buttons for each open file.
- You can also rearrange and organize buttons on the taskbar, including pinned programs and running programs that aren’t pinned, so they appear in the order you prefer. To rearrange the order of buttons on the taskbar, drag a button from its current position to a different position on the taskbar. You can rearrange buttons as often as you like.
Previewing open windows with Aero Peek
- When you open multiple windows on the desktop, sometimes it can be a challenge to view separate windows and switch between them.
- You can use Aero Peek to take a quick look at other open windows without clicking away from the window you are currently working on. Point your mouse at a taskbar button, and thumbnail previews of any open windows associated with that button appear above the taskbar. If you want to open a window you are previewing, just click its thumbnail. For more information.
- Pinning programs to the taskbar complements pinning programs to the Start menu, like in earlier versions of Windows. When you pin a favorite program to the taskbar, you can always see it there and easily access it with a single click. Windows 7 also includes Jump Lists, so that in addition to launching a program from the taskbar, you can now launch favorite and recent items from that program, just by clicking the same button.
- Jump Lists are lists of recently or frequently opened items, such as files, folders, tasks, or websites, organized by the program that you use to open them. In addition to being able to open recent items using a Jump List, you can also pin favorite items to a Jump List so you can quickly get to the items that you use every day.
- On the taskbar, Jump Lists appear for programs that you've pinned to the taskbar and programs that are currently running. You can view the Jump List for a program by right-clicking the taskbar button, or by dragging the button toward the desktop. You open items from the Jump List by clicking them.
- A new way of managing the notification area on the end of the taskbar means you get fewer notifications, and the ones you get are collected in a single place in Windows.
- In the past, the notification area could sometimes become cluttered with icons. Now, you can choose which icons appear visible at all times. And you can keep the rest of the icons on hand in an overflow area, where they’re accessible with a single mouse click.
- Action Center is a single area that collects important notification messages about security and maintenance settings. You can review these messages later if you don’t want to be interrupted. When you click the Action Center icon and then click Open Action Center, you’ll see information about the things you need to take action on, and find helpful links to troubleshooters and other tools that can help fix problems.
Viewing the desktop
- The Show desktop button has been moved to the opposite end of the taskbar from the Start button, making it easier to click or point at the button without accidentally opening the Start menu.
- In addition to clicking the Show desktop button to get to the desktop, you can temporarily view or peek at the desktop by just pointing your mouse at the Show desktop button, without clicking it. When you point at the Show desktop button at the end of the taskbar, any open windows fade from view, revealing the desktop. To make the windows reappear, move the mouse away from the Show desktop button.
- This can be useful for quickly viewing desktop gadgets, or when you don’t want to minimize all open windows and then have to restore them.