With the release of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Microsoft has made a big change in their operating system by completely removing the old-fashioned Windows Start button (start ORB) and start menu. However, if you are one of those who can’t go without the old fashioned Start menu and Start button in Windows 8, here are few applications to bring them back.
Classic Shell: This small application can be considered as a clone of the original Windows classic start menu. Designed for Windows 7, the new version of Classic Shell (v.3.5) will work with Windows 8 also. It brings the good old desktop feature ‘Start button’ and ‘start menu’ back to Windows 8.
Classic Shell is one of the best and neat applications available for bringing classic start menu back in Windows 8. You can download it from source here.
Startmenu7: Originally designed for Windows 7, this tool is able to bring start menu and start button back to Windows 8. Installation is just like any other program. After installation, you can customize the tool from its option menu.
This utility is available as both a free version and a paid $19.99 pro version, so you can try out the freebie first. Download it from source here.
ViStart: This small, portable program is designed to bring the Windows 7 style Start menu and Start orb back to Windows 8. Once installed, a tiny icon of the program sits in the notification area and gives you access to ViStart options.
Note: While installing the app, uncheck all toolbar and third party software installation option. Download it from source here.
Start8: This program brings the start button (start ORB) back to Windows 8. Like above-mentioned programs, this tool dose not bring the old-fashioned start menu back to windows 8, instead it displays Windows 8’s original star menu.
Final thought: A most outstanding change in Windows 8 is its new Metro Start Screen with brightly colored tiles that serve both as shortcut to programs and as live widgets. You can access almost everything from the Metro Start Screen.