[Guide] How to Close Metro Apps Permanently in Windows 8.1?

Most of you know that I'm using Windows 8.1 as primary OS in my computer although my Windows 8.1 build is different than recently released Public Preview build. The build I'm using is more stable and feature-rich compared to public preview build. But I can't disclose more information about this build at the moment.

Anyway let's talk about today's topic! I wonder how did I forget to post about the new way of permanently closing metro apps in Windows 8.1. Actually Microsoft has changed the old gesture introduced in Windows 8 to close metro apps and now Windows 8.1 comes with a modified gesture. I discovered it in the initial stage of Windows 8.1 development but forgot to share with you all.

Thanks to our regular reader "Addy" for reminding me about this gesture. So today in this topic, we are going to tell how to close metro apps permanently in Windows 8.1.

In Windows 8, Microsoft provided a touch gesture to close running metro apps. You just need to move the mouse cursor or your finger (if you are using touch-enabled device) on top of the screen and then click or touch and drag-n-drop the app thumbnail to the bottom of the screen. It'll close the running app permanently.

You can also use the good old "Alt+F4" keyboard shortcut to permanently close the apps as mentioned here.

In Windows 8.1, Microsoft has slightly changed the way to permanently close metro apps. Now if you follow Windows 8 method and drag-n-drop app thumbnail from top to bottom, it'll not close the app permanently. The app will continue running in background and will continue consuming system resources. You can check it yourself using Task Manager. The closed app will keep showing in Task Manager's "Apps" section. If you re-open the closed app, it'll open from the point where you closed it.

Now the question comes how to close an app permanently in Windows 8.1? Its simple actually! Just follow the steps given below to permanently close metro apps in Windows 8.1:

1. First of all move your mouse cursor or your finger on top of the screen as you used to do in Windows 8.

2. Drag the app thumbnail to the bottom of the screen BUT DO NOT release the cursor or your finger. Keep the app thumbnail on bottom and wait for a while. The thumbnail will turn into the original app icon and now you can release it. As soon as you drop the icon on bottom, it'll permanently close the app.


3. The app will take a few seconds in terminating. If you check Task Manager, it'll still show the app running in "Apps" section. But within a few seconds, the app will disappear from the list i.e. the app will permanently close.

Useful Registry Tweak for Advanced Users

When you drag the app thumbnail to bottom, you need to wait for some time until the app thumbnail converts into app icon. After that you release the icon to permanently close the app.

Following Registry tweak can disable the delay time so that when you drag the app thumbnail to bottom, it'll immediately convert into app icon without any delay. Then you can release the app icon to permanently close the app. In this way, you'll not have to wait for the app thumbnail turning into app icon.

Just follow these simple steps to decrease or remove the delay time:

1. Type regedit in RUN dialog box or Start Screen search box and press Enter. It'll open Registry Editor.

2. Now go to following key:


3. Create a new key Switcher under ImmersiveShell key so the final key path would be:


4. Now in right-side pane, create a new DWORD CloseDwellTimeout and keep its value as 0

Here CloseDwellTimeout represents timeout value expressed in milliseconds which is set to 1000 ms by default. Settings it to 0 will completely remove the waiting time. You can set it to any desired decimal value.

That's it. Restart your computer or restart Explorer as mentioned here. Now try to permanently close a metro app using the above mentioned method and there will be no waiting time and the app thumbnail will immediately turn into app icon.

What do you think about this new way of closing metro apps in Windows 8.1? Feel free to share your feedback in your comment...

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Posted in: Troubleshooting, Windows 8 / 8.1

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