How To Restore The Missing Windows 8 Start Button

The Start button in Windows has changed in form over the years, but we could always count on it to function as a convenient launch pad for all our programs, applications, and tasks. So what does Microsoft do now that we're all addicted to using the Start menu? It removes the item in Windows 8, of course, hoping to nudge users into sticking with the Metro Windows 8 UI -- boo!

Don't worry if you're not as stoked as Microsoft about ditching the Start menu. It turns out you can have your cake (Windows 8 and all the speed improvements that come with it) and eat it, too. There are a handful of ways you can restore the Start menu in Windows 8, provided you're willing to install a third-party program.

One of those programs is Stardock's Start8. Currently in beta, Start8 is free to download but will cost $4.99 in final form when Windows 8 ships later this month. The neat thing about Start8 is that the Start menu automatically matches the color scheme you have selected. There's also a handy option to bypass the Windows 8 UI completely and boot directly to the desktop, complete with Start menu, though be warned the feature doesn't work in virtualized environments.

Image Source: ClassicShell

Two other popular programs include Power8 (open source and free to download) and ClassicShell (also free). None of these three programs should affect the overall performance of Windows 8, minus the miniscule amount of resources they consume.

If you're not feeling any of those, yet another options is ViStart 8, which the developers bill as being "The ultimate Start menu for Windows."
Via:  ITWorld
MCaddick 2 years ago

So have Stardock finally stopped incorporating spyware into their crappy little toy utilities yet?

anonymuos 2 years ago

Wow Classic Shell looks amazing with those skins. Where to download them?

JDiaz 2 years ago

Everything you need is on the site...

It comes with a few skins and on that link, scroll down for "Additional Skins for the Start Menu" to download more.

Mind it's all open source and they even got a tutorial on making your own skins...

realneil 2 years ago

I'm using Classic Shell and it works great

xxxdoylexxx 2 years ago

Why do you even need this. People don't relize that they hardly even changed anything once you use W8. They didn't "take" the start menu away...they merely moved it to make an entire START SCREEN for you.

ricofrost 2 years ago

Sweet i guess everyone can stop crying about it now and move on :)

fat78 2 years ago

One of the biggest reason why windows 8 is bad is because you are forced to tab between screens. Having the start menu pop up in the corner allows you to quickly open it up and then close it. The user doesn't have to waste time tabbing between screens to perform a simple task. A good User interface is a simple and efficient one and although windows 8 has some nice features that improve user experience, the metro UI isn't good for desktops. I understand that new user interfaces require time to adjust to them, but windows 8 needs a start button.

Also the price to upgrade to windows 8 is ridiculous because as xXxDOYLExXx said " they hardly even changed anything once you use W8". I would rather not spend money to upgrade if all i am getting is a bad metro user interface. 

SmogHog 2 years ago

What are the speed improvements in Windows 8?

Who started this myth,Microsoft?

Almost all the benchmarking I have done on my notebooks and desktop show Windows 7 x64 to be faster.

realneil 2 years ago

Win-8 isn't faster for me, but it isn't slower either. (but I haven't run Benches)

I have it installed on an i7-870 system with 16GB of RAM and an SSD.

No speed problems at all.

mhenriday 2 years ago

[quote user="realneil"]

I have it [Win8] installed on an i7-870 system with 16GB of RAM and an SSD.

No speed problems at all.


Realneil, that comment about not having speed problems with Win8 on an i7-870 system with 16 GB RAM and an SSD was meant ironically, was it not ? I mean, you could have added that you were cooling the system with liquid nitrogen and overclocking the CPU to 7 GHz or so....  Wink


Anonymuos 2 years ago

Actually Classic Shell also matches your Windows color scheme. And it's far more customizable and bug-free.

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