Applies to

Surface Pro, Surface Pro 2, Surface Pro 3, Windows 8.1.


Install and uninstall apps on Surface Pro

Some apps, like Mail, Calendar, and People are pre-installed—they're already on your Start screen. You can install more apps and programs from the Windows Store, websites, or a CD or DVD.


The Start screen has tiles for both desktop apps (programs that run on the desktop, like Microsoft Word or Notepad) and apps you install from the Windows Store. The Windows Store requires a Microsoft account and a connection to the Internet. Learn more about installing apps:

Get Windows Store apps

You can find Windows Store apps by searching from the Start screen, or you can go to the Windows Store and find them there. In the Windows Store, apps that work best your device appear first.

Sign in to the Windows Store

To browse or shop on the Windows Store, you need to be connected to the Internet and signed in with a Microsoft account. Your Microsoft account keeps track of the apps you already have, your preferences and your payment methods.

To sign in or out of the Windows Store:

Step 1: 

From the Start screen, tap or click Store.
(If you’re using the desktop, tap or click Store in the taskbar.)

Step 2: 

Swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap Settings, then tap or click Your account. Here you’ll see one of two things:

  • A Sign in button. This means you’re not signed in to the Store. Tap or click Sign in and type your Microsoft account info (email and password).
  • Your account information. This means you’re already signed in. Here you can add a payment method, sign in with a different account and see other PCs associated with your account.

Find and install apps from the Windows Store

You can find Windows Store apps by searching from the Start screen, or you can go into the Windows Store and find them there.

Here’s how to install apps from the Windows Store:

Step 1: 

In the Windows Store, look for apps in any of the following ways:

  • Browse featured apps and lists. Drag your finger across the screen to browse apps. The storefront shows popular apps, new releases, and top paid and free apps.
  • Explore categories. If you’re looking for a certain type of app (like an entertainment app or a game), tap or click the category you want.
  • Search for an app. If you know the name of the app you want or are looking for apps by a specific publisher, enter the name of the app you’re looking for in the search box in the top-right corner of the Store. You’ll see results that match your search.
Step 2: 

Tap or click an app to learn about it and read reviews.

Step 3: 

Tap or click Install, Try, or Buy.

  • Install is shown if the app is free or you’ve already bought it.
  • Try means a trial version of the app is available. You can try before you buy.
  • Buy means that the app isn’t free and the price is shown. Apps that you buy are charged to the payment option associated with your Microsoft account. To add or change the payment option on your account, see Add, edit, or remove a payment method and view billing history.

Use Apps view to find an installed app

After you install an app, your Start screen shows a message in the bottom-left corner of the screen pointing you to the Apps view so you can see what you recently installed. To find your newly installed apps:

  • On the Start screen, slide up from the middle of the screen to see Apps view. (If you’re using a mouse, click the arrow Down arrow near the bottom left corner of the Start screen.) You’ll see a list of apps that are installed on Surface with newly installed apps labelled NEW.
Tip
For even quicker access to the app, pin it to your Start screen or your desktop taskbar. For info about pinning and unpinning apps from the Start screen, see Start screen tutorial. For info on pinning and unpinning apps from the desktop taskbar, see How to use the taskbar.
Notes

Install apps that you installed on other PCs

If you’ve installed an app from the Store on another PC, whether the app was free or paid, you can install it on your Surface, too. Here’s how:

Step 1: 

Sign in to Surface using the same Microsoft account that you used on your other PC.

Step 2: 

From the Start screen, tap or click Store. Or, from the desktop, tap or click Store in the taskbar.

Step 3: 

Swipe down from the top of the screen or right-click, then tap or click Your apps.

Step 4: 

Under Apps not installed on this PC, swipe down on or right-click the apps you want to install on Surface.

Step 5: 

Tap or click Install to install the selected apps.

Install desktop apps

You can also install apps or programs from a CD or DVD, or a website.

Install an app from the Internet

Make sure the publisher or website that’s offering the app is one you trust.

In your web browser, tap or click the link to the app. To install it now, tap or click Open or Run, and then follow the instructions on your screen.

To install the app later, tap or click Save or Save as to download it. When you're ready to install it, double-tap or double-click the file, and then follow the instructions on your screen.

Install an app from a CD or DVD

To install an app from a CD or DVD, you’ll need to connect an external, optical disc drive to your Surface Pro using its USB port. Once the drive is connected, insert the disc.

If the app doesn't start installing automatically, swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap Search. In the search box, enter computer, and then tap or click Computer. Open the CD or DVD folder, and open the program setup file, usually called Setup.exe or Install.exe.

Uninstall apps and programs

App commands at the bottom of the screen

You can uninstall an app you no longer use. Here’s how:

Step 1:  Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, tap Search, and in the search box enter the name of the app you want to uninstall. (Or, find the app by swiping up from the bottom of the Start screen to open the Apps view.)
Step 2:  Press and hold the app's tile, or right-click it if you’re using a mouse or touchpad. A row of options appears at the bottom of the screen.
Step 3:  Tap or click Uninstall.
(If you want to uninstall the app from all your synced PCs, tap or click Uninstall from all my synced PCs, then tap or click Uninstall.)
Tips
  • If you uninstall a built-in app, such as Music, you can reinstall it from the Windows Store.
  • The Mail, Calendar, and People apps appear in the Store as a single app called Mail, Calendar, and People.
  • Apps that you installed will appear in the Store under Your Apps, even after you’ve uninstalled them from Surface.
  • Office apps that were pre-installed on your Surface RT or Surface 2 can’t be uninstalled.

Update apps from the Windows Store

Windows Store apps are periodically updated by their publishers, and the updates will automatically download and install as they become available

However, sometimes, you might want to check for app updates manually. Here's how:

Step 1:  From the Start screen, tap or click Store.
(From the desktop, tap or click Store in the taskbar.)
Step 2:  Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, tap or click Settings, then tap or click App updates.
Step 3:  Tap or click Check for updates.
Step 4:  If there are app updates available, tap or click Install.
Tip
It’s best to leave automatic app updating turned on. While in the Store settings, tap or click App updates, and make sure Automatically update my apps is set to Yes.

Get your apps working with Windows 8.1

Most apps and programs written for Windows 7 also work with Windows 8.1. When you install or run an older app, Windows monitors it for symptoms of known compatibility issues. If it finds an issue, Program Compatibility Assistant provides some recommended actions that you can take to help the program run properly on Windows 8.1. For more info, see Program Compatibility Assistant: Frequently asked questions.

If you're having trouble running a program that worked in a previous version of Windows, you might be able to run it in a compatibility mode, such as Windows Vista or Windows 7 compatibility modes. For info on how to do this, see Get your apps and devices working in Windows 8.1.

The Windows Compatibility Centre has info to help you identify which apps will or won't work with Windows 8.1.



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