In Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7, shutting down the computer is so easy that you probably don’t need an instruction manual in order to learn how to do it. Instead, it’s a simple matter of clicking the Start button and then clicking the Shut Down button.
But Windows 8 doesn’t have a Start button, which makes simple tasks like shutting down and restarting the computer difficult for many users. In fact, even computer-savvy users are having difficulty learning how to shut down their new Windows 8 computers.
Today, we’re going to show you the way in which Microsoft wants you to shut down your computer. But we’ll also show you an easier way to makes shutting down your computer as fast as possible.

The Microsoft way: use the Charms Menu

Microsoft wants you to use the Charms bar to shut down your computer. To access the Charms bar,slide your mouse to the right side of the screen, or hit Windows Key + I. Then, tap the power button and choose Restart, Shut Down, or Sleep.

The easier way: Alt+F4

Alt+F4 is one of the oldest Windows commands in the book. You probably know it as the easy way to instantly exit out of any program. However, Alt+F4 also allows you to access the traditional Windows shut down menu in Windows 8 (as well as previous versions of Windows).
To do this, simply go to the traditional desktop view and tap Alt+F4. You’ll see the Windows shut down menu you know and love pop up.

The even easier way: create a shortcut

If neither of the two methods above sounds appealing to you, there is a third option that is even faster and easier. With this method, we’ll create a shut down command and place it directly on your Windows task bar beside your traditional program shortcuts.

To do this, right click your desktop and click on New > Shortcut. Then, type in:
shutdown /s /t 0
That will instruct Windows to create a shortcut that shuts your computer down. The 0 at the end is a zero, not the letter O. Simply drag that shortcut from your desktop onto your taskbar and you can start shutting down your computer with a single click. Or, right click the shortcut and click Pin to Start.
If you want to create a restart shortcut that does the same thing, type in:
Shutdown /r /t 0
If you want to customize the icons that are displayed for each of these shortcuts, then right-click on the shortcut and click Properties. Then, move to the shortcut tab and click Change Icon…Windows will allow you to choose your desired icon from a range of common computer icons. Look for the bigred power button and you’re done.

That’s it! You’ve now made shutting down Windows 8 as easy as possible.

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