Like Windows Phone, Windows 8 offers a constant connection to all your email and social media from a single view. Here's how to get more from Facebook, Twitter and the rest using Windows 8.

Windows 8 is all about connectedness. Whenever you use it, you’re logged in as yourself, ensuring updates and messages are delivered without you even need think about them. You can always see, at a glance, what your friends and colleagues are up to and any important messages they’ve sent.

Visit Windows 8 Advisor for expert reviews of Windows 8, Windows 8 tips and tricks, as well as expert advice on how to get the most from Windows 8.

Step 1. To make the most of Windows 8 connected features, import your contacts from your email accounts and your chat sessions. You can do this when you first set up Windows 8.

Add email accounts

Step 2. Once the email address you use to log in to your Windows 8 account has been verified, Microsoft gives you the option to  import from an Outloook or CSV file, link your Hotmail account and to associate other webmails accounts such as Gmail.

Gmail Synching

Step 3. You can also connect any instant messaging accounts you may have, such as MSN, plus your Facebook, Flickr and Twitter accounts.  For each, simply enter the email address and password you use for that account, tell Windows you want to go ahead and connect the accounts and confirm it with the other app.

Facebook Windows 8 permissions

Step 4. With Facebook you get an overview of the information you’ll be able to access from your account and the details you’ll share with friends. You have the opportunity to review and edit your sharing preferences by enabling and disabling any with which you’re uncomfortable, before clicking to proceed with the Windows Live and Facebook connection.

Facebook chat controls

NEXT PAGE: steps 5-8 in our 'How to use social media in Windows 8' workshop >>

Windows 8 keeps you connected to all your social media accounts. Here's how...

Step 5. Once your accounts are connected you’ll notice that your Facebook photo albums (assuming you chose to be able to view them this way) appear in the Photos pane of Windows 8’s home screen. You can now view your albums as you would any other photo collections stored locally or on a third-party service such as Flickr.

Facebook on Windows 8

Step 6. To view your own and other people’s updates in Windows 8, click on your user name in the Messaging pane. You'll see the three most recent Facebook status updates. To the right appear any comments or notifications from friends. To see their updates, click the What’s new option at the top of the screen.

Social Media updates on Windows 8

Step 7. Click the 'All' option to view your list of Facebook friends plus options to add people to your contacts. You can also connect to other social media services such as LinkedIn and Twitter. As with Facebook, you should read the privacy statement before proceeding by pressing Connect. Enter your Twitter or LinkedIn account details, then simply scroll down to the Authorise app option.

Add more accounts to Windows 8

Step 8. You can flick between your social media accounts by clicking their respective icons at the bottom of the screen. The All button below your photo shows the personal details you’re sharing from that account. Click on My Profile for an overview of your connected services and privacy settings.

Facebook sharing options: Windows 8