How to Shut Down Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 In Just One Click

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Windows 8's Buried Power Button

Where Windows 7 displays its power button in a prominent place on its Start Menu, both Windows and the new Windows 8.1 make you perform several actions just to turn your computer off and they're all buried. To get to the power button in Windows 8, you must pull out the Charms menu, click the Settings charm, click the Power button and then select Shutdown or Restart. In Windows 8.1, you can also shut down by right clicking on the Start button and selecting Shut down from the Shut down or sign out menu, but that's still a couple of clicks away.

Fortunately, there's an easy way to put the shutdown and restart functions just one click away from the desktop and Start screen. Just create shortcuts for both actions using the following steps:

  1. Navigate to the desktop.
  2. Right click on the desktop and select New -> Shortcut. A shortcut menu appears.
     Create new Shortcut
  3. Enter shutdown /s /t 0 (that's a zero) in the location box and hit Next. 
    Enter Shutdown /s /t 0 in the location box of the create a shortcut window.
  4. Enter a name for the shortcut and click Finish. A new shortcut will appear on your desktop.
    Name your shortcut and click Finish 
  5. Right click on the shortcut and select Properties. A dialog box appears.
  6. Click Change Icon under the Shortcut tab then Click Ok in warning box that says shutdown.exe contains no icons.
    Click Change Icon
  7. Select an Icon from the list of available images Click Ok twice (once to close the Change Icon window and once to close Properties window). Your shortcut will now have an icon.
     Choose the Icon for Your Shortcut
  8. Right click the shortcut and select Pin to Start. The shutdown icon will now appear on your Start screen.
     Pin to Start
  9. Drag the shutdown icon to a prominent place on your Start screen. We recommend putting it in the first column to the left so you will always see it.
    Drag your button to a prominent place
  10. Right click the icon and select Pin to Taskbar if you want the shortcut to live on your desktop's taskbar as well.
    The Shutdown icon can be pinned to taskbar
  11. Repeat the previous steps to create a Restart button. Use the command "shutdown /r /t 0" in the location field. 
Author Bio
Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director
The official Geeks Geek, as his weekly column is titled, Avram Piltch has guided the editorial and production of Laptopmag.com since 2007. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram programmed several of LAPTOP's real-world benchmarks, including the LAPTOP Battery Test. He holds a master’s degree in English from NYU.
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director on