Question of the Month for May

Question: I don’t like the Windows 8 Home Screen, is there a way to get the Start button back? surface_Web_pressimage

Answer: One of the biggest issues of Windows 8 was the difficulty of navigating one’s own computer. Gone are the days of easily accessing frequently used programs by simply clicking on the start button or going to the Control Panel. With the advent of Microsoft’s new operating system, not having the Start button has been an issue for a great number of people! Even Windows 8.1, which brought the Start button back, made this menu function entirely different. You are not alone in your frustrations.

Fortunately, you can reclaim your beloved Start menu without reverting to an earlier version of Windows. With the free utility Classic Shell 4.0, you can have the best of both worlds with the Start button and all the improvements masked beneath a new façade in Windows 8. In fact, you can choose one of three styles of Start buttons, depending on your preference of look and functionality in Windows XP or 7.

Classic Shell 4.0 may look old school to foster a sense of comfort in the wake of technological change, but it includes features in its Start button that weren’t present in older Windows versions. You can easily customize your Start button to feature your most-used programs at the top, delete links you never click, and even specify command-line options. Ivo Beltchev, the author of Classic Shell 4.0, offers this stand-alone application that was once open-source entirely free for download, but he does accept donations as a token of appreciation for bringing the Start button back.