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We hear a lot of people complaining about Windows 8 since Microsoft launched their new flagship operating system. Stupid touchpad operation, stupid charms, stupid start screen and stupid apps are all common complaints of Windows 8.

The problem is, if you buy a new computer, the chances are that the OEM operating system on it is going to be Windows 8 – so what do you do?

We at TechyGeeksHome actually like Windows 8, the functionality and speed of Windows 8 is excellent and in some ways is a great improvement on Windows 7. To be fair – a lot of time has had to be spent learning the new operating system, but if you do take the time, you will be rewarded.

However, we know that there are millions of people out there that are furious with Microsoft and want their Start Menu back! So, if you are one of those people, what do you do?

There are many solutions out there for bringing back the start menu – a lot of the technical world thought that Windows 8.1 would be the saviour and this would include the start menu, however we were wrong and a little Windows button that was added to Windows 8.1 is simply a shortcut to the Metro screen.

So software developers have stepped in and created a large range of Windows 7-like Start Menus, some are open source, some are advert driven and some are purchasable, but which one should you install on your Windows 8 machine?

We have tested a range of these Windows 8 Start Menus and have come up with what we believe to be the best option also taking into consideration that it is open source (unlike Start8  which is also great (and probably the best all round – but you have to pay for…). We have chosen Classic Shell which allows you to have your Start Button (albeit a custom shell-like icon) back and also the Windows 7 Start Menu. But on top of that, there are also many options that become available to you by right-clicking on the Start Button – like disabling the charms…



To use this software, you should download from the developer using the Download button above, then run the installer. When you run through the installer wizard, you will be given a list of options to install…

Windows 8 Start Menu Button - Just like Windows 7! 1

You can select whichever options you want, but we would recommend that you install all of them even if you do not use them – at least they are available to you if you do want them in the future.

Once installed, you will notice a shell-like Start Button in the bottom right hand corner. You can right click on this button and select the Settings option. You can then firstly choose what start menu theme you want, Windows XP, Classic or Windows 7/Vista.

Windows 8 Start Menu Button - Just like Windows 7! 2

Once you have selected your start menu theme, you can browse the other tabs to select what options you want to set – one of the options is “Windows 8 Settings” where you can disable the active corners (charms).  

Windows 8 Start Menu Button - Just like Windows 7! 3

Click ok on the settings when you are happy and that’s it – classic Windows operating system start menus for your Windows 8 machine.   But please – do only use this solution whilst getting to learn Windows 8 – it is worth the time and effort in the end!

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Andrew Armstrong

Founder of TechyGeeksHome and Head Editor for over 15 years! IT expert in multiple areas for over 26 years. Sharing experience and knowledge whenever possible! Making IT Happen.

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