Launch apps from the Windows 8 taskbar

Posted in Windows 8 by Steve Sinchak

The new full screen start menu in Windows 8 can be bypassed with a simple tweak that has been around since the XP days. The legacy taskbar address toolbar remains in Windows 8 and it can be used as a command line to launch any app or even the control panel.  Need to quickly launch Calculator? Just type in calc and hit Enter.  Want a full command prompt? Type in cmd and hit Enter. 

Originally designed to make it easy to browse the Web, the taskbar address bar is great to quickly view a Web page by typing in any URL.  You can also search the web by just typing in keywords.

Enabling the old address toolbar is very simple, just right click on the taskbar, select Toolbars and then Address.

I like to hide the toolbar label to make the interface look cleaner.  First, right click on the taskbar and unlock the taskbar. Then you can right click on address and select Show title.

While the taskbar is unlocked you can also move the address bar. I like to move it all the way to the left by dragging it over there and then resizing.

Here is a full step-by-step video:

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