This question is not about how to close metro apps, but how to close them from the desktop using a shortcut.

I can close metro apps from the desktop by right clicking on them in the snap view, but I am looking for a shortcut that can do this.

enter image description here

Please see in the top left of the screenshot. Also the shortcuts for snap left and snap right will be helpful.


  • You should clarify that you want a shortcut file. Shortcut can refer to a keyboard shortcut, mouse shortcut, etc. "Desktop using a shortcut" can refer to a shortcut file on the desktop or performing a shortcut in the desktop view.
    – XP1
    Nov 7 '12 at 1:36

Short answer! There is no shortcut to do it.

May be someone do it with autohotkey script when they will give a support to Modern UI apps.

Edit: According to your last lines for snap shortcut there is

Win+. for snap current Modern UI to right side

Win+Shift+. for snap current Modern UI to left side

  • @Vishnesh check the edit for snap shortcut.
    – avirk
    Nov 7 '12 at 2:03

If you want to close all the Metro apps from the Desktop at once, you can see this question.

On Windows 8; all "modern" applications seem to be dependent on explorer.exe. Restarting the process from Task Manager seems to stop all Windows 8 (modern) applications.

So restarting the explorer.exe process should close all Metro apps immediately.

If you want to create a shortcut to restart explorer.exe from the Desktop, you can create a batch file with these commands:

taskkill /IM explorer.exe /F
START explorer.exe

Or if you want to only kill explorer.exe and start it manually later:

taskkill /IM explorer.exe /F
START taskmgr

and then:

  1. FileRun new task.
  2. Type explorer and hit Enter.
  • 3
    I think user is asking for per app not for all at the same time. But if he demands the same as you suggest then IMO this is the right answer.
    – avirk
    Nov 6 '12 at 13:10
  • AH! you should have to correct the info here too. ;)
    – avirk
    Nov 13 '12 at 3:36
  • @avirk I should probably delete this.
    – amiregelz
    Nov 13 '12 at 12:20
  • I wouldn't say that. If you really feel that you can't improve it then that's is the last way you have as in currently state it is misleading according to me. :)
    – avirk
    Nov 13 '12 at 14:35
  • @avirk I edited my answer. I hope this is useful, as I haven't tested it yet.
    – amiregelz
    Nov 13 '12 at 14:56

Aside from the answer "it's not possible" other people already gave, I want to make sure that everybody understands that there is no need to close a Windows 8 app because they are automatically closed for you by the OS. Much like iOS and Android handle this.

  • I like to know when they close by OS like Android?
    – avirk
    Nov 6 '12 at 17:33
  • 1
    That depends on the OS and its version and a lot of other stuff. But basically, the OS terminates an application because it wants to free up memory or because the app hasn't been used for a while. Then it sends a message to the application saying "I'll kill you in a few seconds. Better save everything before I do." And then it closes the app. Nov 6 '12 at 21:03

As, @Rudolph said, the metro apps in Windows 8 are in Suspended Mode when you are on your Desktop.Meaning they behave as processes in Suspended Mode. You can see this in Task Manager also.

enter image description here


You may be interested in terminating a specific Metro app by doing something like this:

Win8AppLifecycleManager.exe /terminate Microsoft.BingNews_1.2.0.98_x64__8wekyb3d8bbwe

You may have to enable debug mode. I have not tried it, but you can take a look at the section "Automating lifecycle state of your app" in this article:

The keyboard shortcut for Metro snap is Windows key + . (full stop character).

Here is a more detailed article:

More keyboard shortcuts can be found here:


This article from 2006 explains how to close a window from a vbscript script.

I am not sure that it will work for Windows 8 apps (feel free to try it though), but the process of making it work will be similar. That is, find what Windows 8 API call closes an app, wrap it in a ActiveX dll and then load the dll from your script.

I am not very familiar with vbscript or Windows API, so stackoverflow might be more helpful here.

  • What I'm understanding with the script is that you have to add manually per app to close it. It is a good idea but I don't think its good to keep too many script files for per program.
    – avirk
    Nov 6 '12 at 13:13

If you have a middle mouse button, you can click the thumbnail of the application you want to close in the snap view.

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