Following the release of the Consumer Preview of Windows 8 and with many folks trying it and feeling terribly lost without their beloved Start Menu, a third party has come to the rescue and provided a free substitute that does its best to mimic the Start Menu as closely as possible.
That third party is none other than Stardock who has been providing end users with alternative interfaces and desktop oriented software utilities for many years. Their latest sidekick for use with the consumer preview of Windows 8 is called “Start8” and gives you a fully functional Start Menu (complete with the same looking Start Orb in the bottom left corner) and blends well into the Windows 8 environment with a Metro-inspired aesthetic appearance.
Not unlike the Start Menu in Windows 7, Stardock’s Start8 will let you launch apps and perform searches as well as being able to use “Run” and “Shutdown” functions when right-clicking.
“The Windows 8 Consumer Preview is available and has taken the Windows interface to a whole new level. Unfortunately, the preview did not come with a desktop feature that the world makes use of billions times a day, the “Start” menu. Luckily, we have a solution!
Start8 from Stardock brings the “Start” menu back to Windows 8. This product is free and is available now!”
Features of Start8:
• Adds a “Start” menu to the Windows 8 taskbar
• – Enables quick access and searching of your installed applications
• – Adds Run… option via right-click menu
• – Adds Shutdown… option via right-click menu
• – Choose a custom Start button image
Start8 for the Windows 8 Consumer Preview is a free download, available directly from this page.
KitGuru says: Ideally Microsoft would have provided an option lurking deep within Windows 8′s settings to re-enable the Start Menu if a user simply can’t live without it. With that said, it is obviously their belief that by forcing users to go cold turkey in efforts to steer things in an entirely new (and improved? hmmm) direction is the answer.