Cortana, your digital assistant, helps you get more done by allowing you to create to-do lists and reminders, to ensure nothing falls through the cracks. By configuring a few additional settings in the Notebook, you’ll help make Cortana even more attuned to your actual goals resulting in you getting even more done.

Set up Cortana’s Notebook

To set up Cortana on your Windows 10 PC select the Cortana icon on your Taskbar.

Talk to Cortana

Next, select the Notebook icon on the left side of the Cortana window.

Cortana Notebook

Cortana will ask if you would like to use the Notebook. Agree then select Personalize.

To get the most out of Cortana’s Notebook, allow access to that information you feel comfortable sharing. This could be access to your calendar, for example. Please note that some features will be limited if you do not allow her access.

To change Cortana’s permissions, type Cortana Settings into Windows search, open it, and select Permissions.

Cortana Settings

Select which permissions you wish to assign to Cortana. You have the option of allowing Cortana to respond to “Hey Cortana,” allowing her to listen to your command when you press the Windows key + C, the ability to let Cortana assist even when your computer is locked, and allowing Cortana to access your calendar, email messages, and other data when your computer is locked. You can opt to share all or none of the above depending on how much assistance you hope to receive.

How to use her Notebook

Cortana’s Notebook is separated into three main sections: Lists, Reminders, and Suggested tasks. Lists and Reminders are sections where Cortana will help you manage the information that you give it. In Suggested Tasks, Cortana will automatically create useful tasks for you.


Cortana’s lists are simple. You can type or say to Cortana, “Create a list,” to get started. Next, add a title and items to your list. Your lists will sync with Microsoft To-Do and Outlook where they can be edited and completed as well.

Cortana Lists


It’s easy to create reminders for yourself with Cortana too. You can type or say, “Create a reminder.” Tell Cortana what you would like her to remind you to do. She can remind you in three different ways. Ask her to remind you at a selected time, when you arrive at a location, or the next time you speak to a specific person. You’ll receive notifications from the Cortana app on any device where you have Cortana installed and in Outlook.

Cortana Reminder

Suggested Tasks

With Suggested Tasks, Cortana can help you when you’re at your busiest. She automatically assigns you tasks based on conversations you have in your email. She’ll even provide helpful notifications and emails to assist you in completing these tasks.

Once you’re finished with a task, you can select I’ve already done this, to identify it as complete.

Cortana Suggested

Cortana takes the worry out of everyday life of keeping track of your Calendar, Lists, Reminders, To-do lists, and Suggested Tasks when you assign permission levels and share only the information you feel comfortable sharing.

With so much to keep track of in life—and with little available time in which to get it all done— a digital assistant can really come in handy—even more so when it’s in sync with the rest of your digital world.