How to add a Shutdown, Restart and Log Off shortcut to the Start screen in Windows 8

Start screen shutdown button

After 15 years, making the transition from the good old Start Menu to the Start screen in Windows 8 can take some time, for both, tech-savvy and end-users. But it does not take too long to get accustomed navigating the new Windows Modern user-interface. People will discover that after a period of time switching between the Desktop experience and the Start screen, pinning sites or settings, or searching — just to name a few — is almost the same to what we were used to with earlier versions of the OS.

For people already using a Surface with Windows RT, other kind tablets, and even those with touch-enabled full-desktop PCs, the Start screen is really easy to use (fast and fluid) and navigation is quite intuitive. At the end of the day the new Windows UI has been optimized for touch first enabled devices.

However, for those users that are moving to Windows 8 in non-touch-enabled laptops and desktop computers, they have a bit of a learning curve. Also many users will find that the Start screen now lacks of essentials visible options like the Shutdown, Restart and the Log Off button. Of course, you can use the Windows 8 Key +I keyboard shortcut and click the Power icon to get access to these options, but what about if users could add those options directly to the Start screen easily and quickly?

Now anyone can, thanks to a convenient script that was built by Steve TH from Microsoft. Follow the step-by-step instructions below:

Instructions

1. While in Windows 8, of course, open Notepad.

2. Copy and paste the code below into the Notepad document.

set WshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
strStartMenu = WshShell.SpecialFolders("StartMenu")
set oShellLink = WshShell.CreateShortcut(strStartMenu & "\Shutdown.lnk")
oShellLink.TargetPath = "%systemroot%\System32\shutdown.exe"
oShellLink.Arguments = "-s -t 0"
oShellLink.WindowStyle = 1
oShellLink.IconLocation = "%systemroot%\System32\shell32.dll,27"
oShellLink.Description = "Shutdown Computer (Power Off)"
oShellLink.WorkingDirectory = "%systemroot%\System32\"
oShellLink.Save
Set oShellLink = Nothing
set oShellLink = WshShell.CreateShortcut(strStartMenu & "\Log Off.lnk")
oShellLink.TargetPath = "%systemroot%\System32\shutdown.exe"
oShellLink.Arguments = "-l"
oShellLink.WindowStyle = 1
oShellLink.IconLocation = "%systemroot%\System32\shell32.dll,44"
oShellLink.Description = "Log Off (Switch User)"
oShellLink.WorkingDirectory = "%systemroot%\System32\"
oShellLink.Save
Set oShellLink = Nothing
set oShellLink = WshShell.CreateShortcut(strStartMenu & "\Restart.lnk")
oShellLink.TargetPath = "%systemroot%\System32\shutdown.exe"
oShellLink.Arguments = "-r -t 0"
oShellLink.WindowStyle = 1
oShellLink.IconLocation = "%systemroot%\System32\shell32.dll,176"
oShellLink.Description = "Restart Computer (Reboot)"
oShellLink.WorkingDirectory = "%systemroot%\System32\"
oShellLink.Save
Set oShellLink = Nothing
Wscript.Echo "Created Shutdown, Restart and Log Off buttons in your Programs Menu. You can now pin them to the Start Screen of your Windows 8 computer."

3. Save the file as Shortcuts.vbs to your desktop and close Notepad.

4. Now simply double-click the Shortcuts.vbs file, and click OK.

5. Finally, go to the Start screen, move all the way to the end and you’ll find the three shortcuts tiles — they even have familiar icons that indicates what each tile does –. Note that you can click the tile and drag it to any place you want.

Source Microsoft

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows expert and the Editor-in-Chief who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He is also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 12 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows, software, and related technologies, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and About.me.