The word on the street is the next version of Windows 8.1 codename “Blue” could be bringing back a Start button. Whether this will allow you to shutdown Windows 8 and RT easier isn’t yet known. Currently shutting down Windows 8 is not intuitive and requires more steps that it should. If you think shutting it down is a pain, you can set the Power button on your machine to shutdown Windows 8/RT by pressing it.
Windows 8 Shutdown Options
If you’re new to Windows 8, make sure to check out our guide: How to Shutdown, Restart, Sleep, or Hibernate Windows 8.
Set Physical Power Button to Shutdown Windows 8
From the Desktop or modern-style Start screen, use the keyboard shortcut Windows Key + X to bring up the so-called power user menu and select Power Options.
The Power Options screen opens on the desktop. Click the “Choose What the Power Buttons Do” link on right side.
Now change the action you want to happen when you press the power button. Set it to Shut Down if you want to use the physical power button to shutdown Windows 8.
Now when you press the power button on your Windows 8 system, it will go through a proper shutdown process. This is not a hard shutdown where you hold the power button down for 10 seconds and completely cut power to the machine.
You can also do this with Windows RT systems, but since those are mobile and you want access to them quickly, you can leave it set to Sleep – which is the default on a Surface RT.