Services & Software

If Windows 8 baffles you, here's some free training

Anyone who needs to learn the new OS can take a free four-hour course through the online training site All it will cost you is a Facebook "Like."

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

People new to Windows 8 can get a helping hand via a special course from the online training site

Dubbed Windows 8 Essential Training, the four-hour course is available for free to the public until November 23.

The online course covers a variety of topics, including how to upgrade to Windows 8, how to organize your files and folders, how to print, how to use the Mail app, how to back up your files with File History, and how to use Internet Explorer 10.

People can sign up for the course by "liking" its Facebook page. Clicking on the "watch course now" button displays a table of contents with access to all the course lessons. Each individual lesson offers a video tutorial explaining a specific feature in the new OS. You can segue from one lesson to the next or jump around the entire table of contents.

The only items you don't get are exercise files. Ordinarily, allows users to download the files its course trainers use in their demonstrations, which lets students follow along in real time. But exercise files are only available for premium memberships, which start at $37.50 a month.

Much of the information is the course is geared for newbies. But even experienced Windows 8 users will find some useful tips and tricks. is a well-known and established training site with around 1,500 online courses on a wide variety of products and technologies. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial or pay for a basic membership of $25 a month ($250 a year) or a premium membership of $37.50 a month ($375 a year).