Accessing the various power options on your PC has always been quite convoluted in Windows, and Windows 8 doesn’t exactly make things easier: open the Charms bar, select Settings, click the Power button and click on your chosen option.
Zebnet Shutdown Manager 2012 is one of a growing number of utilities designed to speed up the process by providing a quick and convenient Taskbar Notification area shortcut to the power options: right-click the red power button, then choose to log off, restart, sleep, hibernate or shut down from the pop-up menu.

It’s really that simple: click the Settings button to make sure the app starts with Windows, plus introduce a fail-safe confirmation dialog in case you want to avoid accidentally powering off your PC. You’ll also find the button may disappear into the hidden realms of the Notification area – just click the ^ button and click and drag it back on to the Taskbar to pin it permanently for easy access.

This simple and fuss-free utility doesn’t offer some of the more sophisticated options available from a tool like AMP WinOff, and it rather annoyingly tries to install two extras, both of which are offered before the setup process begins proper: make sure you click Decline at the first two screens when offered additional software you probably don’t want or need.

Nevertheless, if all you want is a small, simple utility that lets you access the shutdown options without jumping through hoops – Windows 8, we’re looking at you – then Zebnet Shutdown Manager fits the bill.

Verdict

A simple, small and fuss-free utility that will appeal largely to Windows 8 users frustrated at having to navigate the Charms bar.