There's no doubt that Microsoft upped its game with Windows 8. The tile-based Metro layout is stylish, yet it puts function before form. But some early adopters miss the familiar Start menu, which made its debut way back in Windows 95. Many longtime users simply don't want to make the change. Some probably can't. It could be a productivity issue. But not to worry: the good old Start menu is easy to restore with ViStart 8.1. This free app not only restores the classic Windows Start menu in Windows 8 but also lets you customize your Start menu's theme, and not just in Windows 8 but in Windows 7, Vista, and XP, too.
ViStart offers three start menu styles that we could set at startup or change at any time by clicking Options on the program's system tray menu. We began by restoring the Windows 7-style Start menu in Windows 8. The aero-style menu blends well with the new look, and it's easy to turn on and off. We could access PC controls like standby and shutdown from ViStart's menu. Opening the program's Control Panel gave us access to the Style options, including not just the three primary themes but also Start Orb choices such as Apple, Firefox, and Ubuntu. The Configure tab let us set the items we wanted the Start menu to show. It works like the Windows feature, only easier to use. The Desktop tab changes what the Start button and Windows keys show. More skins are available by following a link on the About tab; the night-look XeBlack 2.0 theme may be our favorite.
We also ran ViStart in Windows 7, which definitely improved the standard Start menu's appearance. As with Windows 8, we could customize the Start menu, too. We couldn't drag ViStart's Control Panel out from under the taskbar when we had it pinned to the right instead of the bottom of the desktop, but that was the only glitch. For anyone looking to improve older and new versions of Windows' Start menu, ViStart offers a user-friendly solution.
ViStart 8, the best FREE start menu solution for Windows.
Weather you need your start menu back in Windows 8 or want replace your old start menu in the other Windows versions with something fresh and new. ViStart 8 is the only Windows Start Menu solution that you will ever need. ViStart 8 is far more superior than even the official Windows Start Menu.
After installing ViStart you get to choose one of the 3 enhanced start menus. The new ViStart 8 is completely redesigned and rewritten with the release of Windows 8 in mind so people can have their start menu back in Windows 8. ViStart 8 is also the ultimate start menu replacement for the Start Menu in Windows 7, Vista and even Windows XP. ViStart 8 has all the functionality the Windows 7 Start menu has and then some more. ViStart 8 is completely customizable and there are already lot's of extra start menus and start buttons available to customize your Windows look that you can download from the lee-soft.com website. One of the special new start menus is our Windows 8 Metro Style that comes pre-installed with ViStart, but you're not limited to that. You can now select from 3 advanced start menus after installing ViStart.
Giving you back control of your desktop! disable annoying windows 8 features like the CharmsBar and the hot corners with our new simple and easy to use control panel. Now you can effortlessly hide unwanted items on the right hand side of the start menu. Just right click and select "hide this item" or, maybe you want it to pop out to the side, well you can even do that too!
We've ditched the "Internet" and "Email" part of the start menu to make way for personalized pinned lists. Now you can right click any program in the start menu and select "Pin to start menu". Pinned items are essentially shortcuts that appear on the left hand panel in the start menu until they are manually removed by the user. Super Indexing and Improved File Searching that's better AND faster than Microsoft's! Originally ViStart would only find files from your documents, now ViStart can find files all over your computer.
Sometimes it's handy to see the recently opened files opened for a particular program. These files now appear on the side of the start menu. When you see a small arrow on the right side of a program, click it to see the most recently opened files for that application. Better still, ViStart finds even more files than what the original Windows start menu would.
What's new in this version:
- now there's 3 advanced start menus to choose from, plus extra start menus to download
- Brand new streamlined Control Panel for easier access to ViStart's features
- Skip the Metro and boot directly to your windows 8 desktop.
- Search and start Metro apps directly from Start Menu.
- Optionally disable annoying desktop features, like charmsbar