How to add the start button back to Windows 8

Windows 8 logoAfter my first installation of Windows 8 I was a bit disappointed by the lack of a start button.  After performing some research I found a couple of options.  Of them Classic Shell seems like the best application.  Classic Shell offers the same functionality of the classic Windows start menu button, it’s open source and completely free.  A full list of features is available on the Classic Shell web site.


Classic Shell Start Menu

Download Classic Shell to a location you can easily find the file.  Install the program by double clicking on the downloaded file and following the instructions on screen.  There is no malware or hidden toolbars in this application so you can choose the default options.

Once you have completed the installation log off of your computer.  When you log on next time you will see the desktop instead of the tile start menu.  The classic start menu will appear on your taskbar’s left side where the start button traditionally would be, and offer a variety of options to further customize your experience.

I recommend clicking on the bottom option to enable all settings and then navigating to the Windows 8 Settings tab.  In there I ticked the option called “Disable active corners” to All so that the screen would not activate the sidebar menu if I navigated the mouse to a corner.  This seems to make the desktop less quirky since we may hit the edges while working with applications.

Further customization

Under the “Start Menu Style” tab there are several options to change the look of your start menu.  I prefer the default, but it’s nice to have these options available if you wanted to revert to a Windows 7 or Windows XP style start menu.

There’s also an option under the tab called “Skin” where it’s possible to change the look of the menu.  Smoked glass is my favorite look.  I unchecked the box called “Reduce Glass Color” as it makes the menu integrate its color-scheme with the Windows theme.

We hope this information helps you get started with Windows 8.  At Arlington Virginia Computer Repair we are prepared to tackle all the issues that come with running Windows 8, so if you run in to trouble us contact us anytime.