How to Shut Down, Sign Out or Restart Windows 8 the Easy Way

Friday, January 11, 2013
Here's a quick tip on how to sign out, shutdown or restart Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 from the desktop the easy way.  Simply click the Windows Taskbar to give focus to the desktop and press Alt-F4.

Windows 8 presents a dropdown dialog box like this where you can easily switch user, signout, sleep, hibernate, shutdown or restart the computer:

Windows 8 Shut Down Dialog

Windows Server 2012 presents the following dialog box where your can disconnect (if connected via Remote Desktop), sign out, shut down, or restart the server:

Windows Server 2012 Shut Down Dialog
That's a heck of a lot easier than navigating through the charms, especially if your connected via RDP!


  1. Very cool. I also use this on each server and workstation:

  2. I use WinKey+C then go to settings, Shutdown, Restart, etc.

  3. Simple but powerful. thanks for sharing.

  4. Windows + r, shutdown /s /t 0 for shutdown.

    Windows + r, shutdown /r /t 0 for restart.

  5. Thanks, but neither of these alternatives are easier or better than the solution I posted.

  6. I prefer ctrl-alt-del, click the Shut Down button in lower right and chose option.

    1. Almost none of the special key combinations, like Ctrl-Alt-Del, are available in an RDP session.

  7. in RDP, it is CTRL-ALT-END to bring up CAD options


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