You probably know by now the ins and outs of Windows 8. Although there may still be some great ways to tweak this system in order to improve its functionality, especially when you want your computer to run faster or turn into a more convenient OS for you. So let’s have a look of the some amazing tweaks you can perform on your Windows 8 computer.

1. Use a 4-Digit PIN to Log In to Windows Instead of a Password

In Windows 8, you can log in using a 4-digit PIN code. Since several applications in the banking and telecommunications industries rely on PIN codes for security purposes, it has now become a common way to log in using this kind of authentication. However, this authentication method is mainly designed to make it easier for touchscreen users, who would take upwards of 30 seconds to type in a complex alphanumeric password.

To use the 4-digit PIN authentication method, go to the Control Panel tile from the Metro UI, then under the Users section, tap or click the Create a PIN button.


A screen will appear asking you to authenticate using your existing password. Follow the instruction, and then click OK. Now, you’ll be able to enter your PIN and proceed from there.

2. Log In With a Picture

Another way of logging in to your Windows 8 system using an authentication is via a photograph. You can use any picture you want and apply different combination of hand gestures onto it as a form of PIN or password. For example, you can use your picture as the logon picture, and then you can configure it with different gestures such as circling your finger or mouse cursor around the eyes, and then poking your nose. This authentication method is much faster than the traditional alphanumeric authentication, almost at the same level as the PIN authentication discussed previously.


To use this kind of method, simply go to the same location, but instead of choosing Create a PIN, select the Create a picture password option. Just walk through the steps and you’ll have your own picture password configured in no time.

3. Eliminate Visual Effects for Improved Performance

Since the release of Windows XP, Microsoft makes it a point to have visual effects in order to provide users a more fluid experience. The only downside to this is that your computer may freeze or hang if it’s not equipped with high specifications. This is also a fact with Windows 8, which is actually an operating system that is full of visual effects.

While it’s important to remove visual effects in Windows 8, you must do this if you encounter slight skipping when modifying a window. This is a common experience, especially on computers that have low amounts of physical memory, graphical memory, and slow CPUs.

To configure this, search for “SystemPropertiesPerformance” then press [Enter]. Once you’re in, click the Visual Effects tab, and then configure the visual effects from there.

4. Configure Metro App Links to Open in Your Desktop

When Windows 8 was rolled out, the Metro UI was also introduced, an interface that runs above the desktop. It allows you to have full screen applications that operate on cloud storage and include tons of other features that give you a very unique experience. Although you might like use some apps in the Metro, you might not like them opening a full-screen version of Internet Explorer every time you click a link. Luckily, you can configure the Metro to open the desktop version of Internet Explorer instead.

To configure Metro applications to open the desktop version of IE, first you need to go to your Internet Options. To do this, open the Search charm, then look for “inetcpl.cpl” and then go to the Programs tab. UnderChoose how you open links, select Always in Internet Explorer on the desktop. Once you click on OK, you’ll see links open up in the desktop instead.

5. Configure OpenDNS to Browser Quicker

OpenDNS is a fast DNS server that is more reliable than what some ISPs have to offer. If you notice that you’re taking a long time to connect to a web page (right before the web page start to load), then there’s a possibility that you have a weak DNS server on your ISP. There are lots of service providers that have heavy DNS resolution traffic, which makes it difficult to hold their own. It’s better to give your ISP a break and configure OpenDNS on Windows 8 instead.

To configure OpenDNS on your computer, first thing you need to do is to search for “ncpa.cpl”. Once you’re in the network interface window, right-click on the network interface that you use to connect to the Internet, and then select Properties. Select Internet Protocol Version 4, then select Properties. Choose Use the following DNS server addresses, and then input the following two addresses: “” and “” then click OK to save your changes.


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This entry was posted by Staff Writer on Thursday, January 29, 2015 at 9:27:22 AM and is filed under Tech Tips & Tricks.

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