There are others available
Start Menu 8
All of which are free-reasonable in price.
Microsoft had one job to do with Windows 10 – but it looks like it's failed to get even that right. Start Menu replacements for Windows 10 are moving almost as fast as they did for Windows 8, which didn't have a Start menu at all, according to Brad Wardell, whose company makes the most popular commercial drop-in Start menu. …
Hmm. Pokki sucks the big one. It's almost malware in its tenacity to cling to your system, and in my book any software that positively begs you not to dislodge it by definition requires the bin.
I tried startisback once, but it blew chunks.
I'm an ex-Start8 user who switched to ClassicShell as soon as they fixed some initial drag-n-drop issues with it. Bloody brilliant, I put it on all my clients' W8 (& now W10) machines. They love it. Not surprisingly...
Subtle Linux trolling? Maybe some people have software that won't run on Linux. Like most large enterprises, for instance.
Maybe some other people realise that putting most genuinely non-technical users in front of Linux is a recipe for pain, misery, tears and hours - hours - on the phone trying to sort them out. For what? Geek props?
With Classic Shell you can change the Font & Size with a bit of programing, I don't think its possible with any other Start replacements.
I have a 1080 screen and as I am getting a bit old finding it had to read the screen
This is how
Big companies, government, directors, they've all got some common characteristics - the inability to listen to the unwashed masses, the inability to say "sorry, we messed up", and the inability to actually sort things out once they have messed up.
Let's ignore the start menu, and consider Cortana. FFS, why? Who wants a resource hogging, poor quality parody of human interaction? I don't see anybody saying Hi Google to their phones, nor even Apploholics talking to Siri (except when drunk). What did Microsoft think they were achieving with this?
Using "OK Google" on my phone and tablet is surprisingly useful (and faster) compared to the chore of using the onscreen keyboard. It works remarkably well in noisy environments though I tend not to do it often in the pub.
I agree though, on a device with a good physical keyboard I can't see any point to it.
In my case, heavy profanity, threats of violence and occasional pleading.
Serves me right for trying to use it while driving. (though in fairness it works great with Google maps, just shit when you want it to send a text.... Nee.'is this OK to send?' I dunno I can't read it right now on account of trying not rear end some audi driving <redacted> who's just over taken my junker and braked hard because... Reasons. Oh and I really wish it would work with the radio iplayer app.but never mind )
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When W8 arrived I wasn't sure whether to grab another Start tool or wait
I put some on machines where older people were a bit confused but never got round to it myself, ended up not needing one.
Apart from making sure I don't go for the 'quick set-up' I'll wait to see how W10 drives when it arrives. It's going to be different, that 's for sure.
"MS claim they've designed all the start menu anyone will need..."
That's because Microsoft, along with the rest of the software world, seems to have forgotten how to ask questions!
It all very nice that they've come up with this new start menu, but why not leave the old versions as well and ask which one people would like to use (just as they did in Windows XP with the classic Start Menu). AFAIC, this should be the case with all new features. Lovely that they're there, I'll decide whether I want them or not, thank you very much. Google is driving me up the wall with exactly this same mentality.
I blame Apple and the whole Steve Jobs philosophy of "user's don't know what they want until we tell them." OK. Show me your new gizmo and let me decide. Don't force me into it because it's more convenient for you!
Telemetry will only show MSFT how people are doing things in ways that have been forced upon them, rather than ways they would prefer. If someone totally can't figure out how to do something, how is telemetry going to tell MSFT what they were trying to do? Are they going to bring back Clippy to interrogate the user?
"Within 5 minutes of installing W10 in a VM, I had downloaded Start10.
Live Tiles - WTF. Start10 gets rid of those, and that makes it worth every penny."
It takes about as long to get rid of the live tiles manually. The native start menu itself is a different matter but then my preference is the configurability of the KDE classic menu.
Agreed, but the banishing of live tiles is just one advantage.
Right-click unpin, the technically literate solution to which you elude, just leaves a huge blank area where the tiles used to be. Is that meant to be a solution? And yes I know I can resize it, but I'm pretty sure the next application I install will want to plant itself there.
"Right-click unpin, the technically literate solution to which you elude, just leaves a huge blank area where the tiles used to be."
There's a technically literate solution to that as well. Drag the border of the blank area back to the actual menu. Unless they removed that from the release version.
Right-click unpin, the technically literate solution to which you elude
While we're talking about literacy, the word you want here is "allude". "elude" means "evade" or "escape".
And even allude is wrong. He didn't allude to it, which would mean he referred to it indirectly or by implication. He described it explicitly.
(None of this is meant as a comment on Live Tiles or the unpin mechanism, by the way. I haven't used Win10, but I expect that when I'm forced to do so, I'll be downloading a Start Menu replacement as well.)
Not everyone - Reg readers aside, obviously - is interested in computers. Most people use them when they have to, but don't care about them, don't understand them, and don't want to spend any more time than they have to with them.
For those people, the start menu change is a real pain and an application which restores it is a good idea. As long as that application is installed by their techie friend or family member, obviously. They'd never do it themselves.
Not everyone - Reg readers aside, obviously - is interested in computers
I'm a Reg reader, with a CS degree and 27 years as a professional software developer, and I'm not "interested in computers", generally speaking.
I'm interested in computer science; I'm interested in various problems in software; I'm interested in producing a good product. I'm interested in some particular computer models of historical interest.
But "interested in computers"? Nah. Computers are ubiquitous and the vast majority of what they do is boring except to people with a vested interest in that domain.1
I'm sure as bloody hell not interested in changes to a user interface that in any way impede my work, any more than I'm interested in having the controls in my car rearranged, or my woodworking tools redesigned, or my clothing replaced with a silver jumpsuit. If you want to show me an alternative, sure, I'll take a look; but don't force it on me as a new default.
1What's the single most popular computer application in the world? Hint: Its most common UI manifestation is "12:00". There are probably two dozen instances of it running in my house. It's not interesting.
We are also the people that developed years of muscle memory in using OUR computers efficiently.
Just imagine if one of us came and screwed around with the precious 'levels' on YOUR audio kit, or changed the button assignments on YOUR gaming systems.
Live Tiles are crap because they are distracting, there is no way for your minds eye to filter the relative importance of a notification. I couldn't give a flying for the latest twitter trend but I do want to know when a works email arrives.
Old Guys (and Girls) Rule... and can be very inventive when it comes to retribution
Certain things get adopted because we either get used to an early version, even if crap, or because the early version got it right, or because it works just fine and the labour to learn the new version doesn't bring equal rewards.
I do not want to learn how to use every new system. I need totopen up and get to work. I do not have time for a learning curve. I have adapted the older way of doign things to something useful for me and now it is as engained as playing the piano. Keyborards have remained Qwerty for almost 130 years because they were just this side of good enough.
The change has to be gaspingly wonderful for most people to decide that the cost of learning is worth it.
You people clinging to your old start menu are probably the same ones hanging on to other old crap because you're too afraid of change, can't stand change, complain when something changes, and won't spend more than 5 minutes trying something new.
That's a bit short-sighted and somewhat unfair.
First of all, the start menu evolved in a fairly logical way from its inception in the 1990s to what we knew more recently, whether you have the Windows 7 version or those versions that appeared in various desktop environments in Unix and Linux. The arguable notion of referring to it as a "start" menu aside, it worked because it evolved into something that did the job efficiently.
Second, there's this notion that we should all accept something purely because it is "new". Certainly there is a point to trying out new ideas and new ways of doing things but unless that way is actually better than what we have then it is hardly likely that it would be accepted.
As somebody else in this article said, Microsoft have forgotten how to ask a simple question. My own view here can be found in my LiveJournal but to sum it up I am unwilling to upgrade all of my Windows 7 machines to Windows 10 for a number of reasons, the start menu being a niggle compared with other reasons, but in the test that I did I found that I got a lot more done with Classic Shell in place than I did with Microsoft's sop to the masses start menu.
> In comparison Windows 7 looks so dated, and navigating
> the menu structure is is inefficient...
It's instructive to note that no 3rd party ever developed a Windows 8-style Start Screen to improve our user experience on Win7 or XP. Wisdom of the marketplace?
Actually, I believe Classic Shell was originally developed when Windows 7 was released - don't know about the others. Third party replacement user interfaces (graphical or command line, complete replacements or just "enhancements") have been around for decades. They were available for DOS before windows was even developed, and unix/linux has numerous replacement interfaces (I can remember arguing over the interface to use for a SUNOS system in the early 1990's). My professor in Operating System design didn't even consider the user interface to be part of the OS - he just saw it as a specialized application program.
Actually, I believe Classic Shell was originally developed when Windows 7 was released
It was. I have it installed on one of my Windows 7 systems. It was partly designed to provide menu systems for Windows 7 that were more like the versions used on XP and earlier that you couldn't get by default and partly to change the Explorer windows to give back some of the prior functionality that things like the "breadcrumbs" sometimes interfered with.
One thing I noticed that I didn't add to my blog on my Windows 10 testing was that this latter bit didn't seem to work properly on W10. Can't check back as the test machine is now happily back on Windows 7.
I like the new start menu on my Surface Pro 3, then again I liked Windows 8.1 as well and it made me move back from OS X. In comparison Windows 7 looks so dated, and navigating the menu structure is is inefficient...
I installed OS/2 Warp on a VM the other day. Couldn't we ditch Windows and revive that instead?
But hey ho, at least there is choice.
Certainly there is. :p
I installed OS/2 Warp on a VM the other day.
Using what supervisor / hypervisor? Last I checked, it still didn't run under VMWare, and never would (for excellent reasons that are explained in the VMWare development paper).
Dunno why I'm asking this here, since you'll probably never see it and I could just search online for the answer. Well, I wrote it, so I guess I'll post it.
Linux on the desktop has a market share that basically renders it irrelevant. And despite Microsoft's best efforts to mess everything up, that continues. It's partly because - whatever you say - the experience is too damned fiddly.
Linux on the desktop would be better if it just came out and admitted that it's by geeks, for geeks, and didn't try to be all things to all people. It's not like that's a bad thing.
Methinks you're confusing Linux as a whole with individual Linux distros. Individual distros tend to concentrate on particuar usage cases, so Linux Mint and Ubuntu are the best known amongst the beginner-friendly distros, although there are numerous others just as user-focused (eg; PCLOS, Mageia). Then there are Server editions of some distros, and I think some (Suse, Red Hat?) also have workplace editions, although it's been so long since I've looked at that kind of thing (I'm firmly in the 'user' category in wat I want from an OS) I may not be correct on that last. Not to mention the various distros focused on recovery and security tools.
Also, how quickly some people forget the amount of pain techies went through trying to get non-techies to learn how to use Windows PCs in the first place! I well recall showing folk how to use Win 95 and Win 98.'Slow' and 'Painful' come to mind. Yes, it may take a little instruction to point out those areas where Linux does things differently to Windows, but (a) even Windows keeps doing things differently to Window (hence the article this is the comments to) and causing mass confusion/disgruntlement, and(b) once one has given that instruction, it's my experience that the amount of problems new Linux users get compared to what they were having on Windows drops dramatically. Your milage may vary.
So, no, Linux isn't just for geeks. It's for everyone, kindly stop with the disinformation, please.
Sorry, Esme, but it is highly unlikely that this sort of FUD aimed at Linux will stop. It has been too ingrained into Microsoft users (and Apple users but to a slightly lesser extent) for them to stop any time soon.
A shame really because they don't know what they are missing!
(Yes, this is being typed in from a Linux system!)
My sister, who has a mathematical backgroudn and is pretty good around computers, got interested in Linux and gave it a go. A week later, fed up and raging, she ditched it. If Linux wants to be a competitor, it cannot stay as it is. It's just too bloody hard for the normal punter. Of course, it doesn't have to want to be a competitor, but it would be nice if there were something out there people like my sister could use.
So, your sister tried "Linux" for "a week." Without knowing what distribution/desktop combination she tried that doesn't really tell us very much. I know of people who did the same thing with Windows 8/8.1. What does it mean in that case?
I've put Linux on computers for people who have no interest in computers beyond them being a means to get certain things done or access certain information. I've later asked them if they were using it because they never came to me with a problem and was assured that they were using it, and it was working fine.
The most instruction I've had to give to a new Linux user was about using Google Play rather than iTunes.
Anyone claiming to be pretty good at computers that can't manage to use Linux Mint isn't pretty good at computers, full stop.
The biggest hurdle for newbies to Linux in my experience tends to be to do with codecs. Whereas Windows tends to come with all the paid-for codecs needed, Many Linux distros don't by default either because they are closed source and they want to give users the choice of whether to use closed source binary blobs or not, or (b) somebody somewhere has to pay for the thing.
Second biggest hurdle seems to be getting over the 'the website tells me I need to download xyz, so I'll go google xyz and download it from there' thinking, or even the 'this site is offering me a download but it isn;t working'. This is because of websites doing things the Microsoft way (understandably, given how things panned out), so newcomers to Linux need to have it explined to them that they should get software only via the software manager program for their distro (at least until they get to a greater level of expertise).
I'm not saying your sister didn't have problems, nor am I denigrating her in any way (other than to suggest she's not so good with computers as you think she is) ; I am saying that the problems she had are likely to bes because no-one gave her the kind of basic intro to Linux that she will have had at some time for Windows. As I said earlier, Windows users seem to have short memories when it comes to how much effort it took to get the hang of Windows.
Ability to use ANY computer system is not something we are born with. Ability to LEARN how to use one IS. And there's beeen much greater opportunities for people to learn Windows than Linux, and if they've known Windows for quite some time they're liable to have forgotten what it was like to find Windows new and strange.
Comparing install rates from the point of release of Windows 8 to the point of release of Windows 10 isn't a very good measure. Win8 wasn't a free upgrade and already had a lot of people grumbling about pre-release versions and the new UI - therefore takeup was relatively slow. Win10 is a free upgrade (to most relevant users) and there's a pent-up demand from both people wanting to get off Win8 and those who've stayed on Win7 to avoid the Win8 debacle, as well as the usual "ooh, shiny" brigade. Therefore I would assume that a LOT more people have jumped to Win10 in the same period than jumped to Win8, which combined with the lower Stardock install rates means that the percentage of Win10 users "hating" the new UI and wanting something different is quite a lot less.
Basically, another story anticipating a major Win10 problem that is largely a non-story. From what I can tell, the roll-out has gone reasonably smoothly so far, despite the clamouring amongst journalists for a disaster to report on.
I'm having a sweepstake at work to guess the number of downvotes this will get... :-)
"Win8 was damn close to free at launch - $39.99/£24.99 - for the Pro version. Still didn't sell, hence actually free this time."
Yep, I moved from Win 7 Home Premium to win 8 Pro for the figure you quote. I am now on 10 Pro. Not bad really. Still, not as good value as the other option on GRUB.
I'm new to The Register... just signed up to comment on this "article". Why is it that your logical and objective post is receiving more downvotes than upvotes? Is this forum just one of those places full of Microsoft haters? Because that would be quite childish.
Oh, the Register isn't full of Microsoft haters, it's full of people who hate everything. Go look at a story about linux, or OSX and see how many comments there are slagging off those OSes.
If there's one thing you can rely on, it's for elReg commentards to hate everything and to tell you that you're wrong.
It's not that we hate everything it's just that getting a considered opinion heard in the modern world is quite hard, you are just a number, part of the feedback. There are self confident well paid arseholes in corporations making our days work so much harder, but we have to just take it, except on the reg.
A bit of ranting takes the edge off the daily grind of relearning what we knew yesterday, before the arseholes got involved.
I hate you for saying what I would've said if only I hadn't been wrong with my timing. . .
But a big upvote for the commentard earlier who said there's nothing wrong with Microsoft's innovations where they're optional, but that as they never have been (and probably never will be) then Microsoft is a fat arrogant dictatorship peopled by self-regarding fails who know for a fact that a car is better driven if the steering wheel is moved to the back seat.
Libraries, any one?
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>Oh, the Register isn't full of Microsoft haters, it's full of people who hate everything. Go look at a story about linux, or OSX and see how many comments there are slagging off those OSes.
I think most of us like Linux, especially the Mint distro ;-) Most on here are not window cleaner and surface specialists who managed to fool HR into an IT position.
Win8 wasn't a free upgrade and already had a lot of people grumbling about pre-release versions and the new UI
To an extent, the new UI is a lot closer to the Windows 7 UI though it is different enough to cause people to install alternatives even now.
Win10 is a free upgrade (to most relevant users)
Yes, it is. That wouldn't be enough to skew the comparison, however, since users will still want to compare and contrast the use against what they had before. For example, I much prefer WIndows 10 to Windows 8 but I'd still prefer to stay on Windows 7, and I'd probably install Classic Shell or whatever else to make up for what is missing on any of these.
But then I normally use openSUSE...
I'm having a sweepstake at work to guess the number of downvotes this will get... :-)
I was downvote 37. Did you win? ;)
"Learning how to do things is an investment of peoples' time."
Learning how to do things keeps the brain alive -- O.K., for a commercial environment it could be a pig, having to explain the same things time and time again to those who get paid substantially more than oneself -- sticking to the same ol' same ol' is not always a good thing.
But rumours have it they've buggered up the Solitaire games AGAIN -- if so I will not be a happy bunny.
Do what I do and copy the PROPER ones from Windows XP - they still work ok (the sound on Spider Solitaire is a bit crappy under W10 but I usually turn that off anyway). For Spider you just need to copy across the spider.exe file and for normal Solitaire you need the sol.exe and cards.dll files. Just shove all three in a folder somewhere - I usually chuck them in Program Files (x86)\Games and then add shortcuts (placed on Quick Launch*).
* Yes, that still just about works in Win 10 as well.
"Learning how to do things keeps the brain alive"
Doing things keeps the brain alive. Having superfluous learning dumped on it is just a barrier.
The heart of good interface design is consistency. Consistency between applications means that what you learn from one application is instantly applicable to another. But consistency should also include consistency with the past.
How about putting the brake on the left and the gear change in the roof ??
And PCs - maybe change the layout of the keys on computer keyboards too - swap the top and middle row ???
Slightly different I know, but people could just get on with learning the new layout. And once they had learned it we could change it again to something else for a bit of a larf...
Drive a European car and the indicators on the left stalk, drive Japanese and it is on the right, Parking brake in the middle unless it is an extra foot pedal and on new Subaru's a switch on the dash, Horn maybe? On the center of the steering wheel unless it is several buttons around the edge of the steering wheel or maybe on the end of a stalk. How about gear changing? Manual or auto floor mounted stick, column change, flappy paddles etc. Key to start in the dash, on the steering column or on the floor in the case of some Saab's or maybe a button on a newer car.
You Sir, are an ignorant twerp when it comes to vehicle control layout as they are as inconstant as the wind. Apart from the steering wheel, accelerator and brake pedal almost everything else moves according to individual manufacturers taste or fashion demands. I also think that as drive by wire evolves it unlikely that even these constants will remain indefinitely.
Tee hee, has one upset Mr/Mrs/Miss/Ms./Whatever Cowardly Anonymouth creature???
Jolly good, carry on...
BTW: I once attended a lecture on design and marketing given by the MD of a Cambridge audio company. She identified three types of features in a new product...
1) Wow feature - great idea, why didn't anyone think of that before, realy great, etc.
2) Yehbut feature - ahhh - yeh - but where's the steering wheel? (or start menu, whatever)
3) Engineer thinks "what can we put in this empty bit of panel? - I know..."
The way to a good product was maximizing 1), ensuring you kept 2) and avoiding 3) like the plague.
Not sure if M$ think this way ;-)
Yeah, 'tards, because people with different opinions must be stooopid and deserving of pejorative description, amirtie?
Not you though, obviously. You're a winner. One that the term "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" definitely applies to unlike like that archaic start menu from Windows 7. That was rubbish.
"Yeah, I hate that real-estate hogging ribbon.
ExAAAActly. People want to hate on the ribbon because it's the cool thing to do, but don't use their brains and remember what we used to have. The ribbon is 12 times better than the endless menus.
Yeah, getting rid of menu's and introducing the ribbon caused me to change to OpenOffice, or LibreOffice these days. Likewise, Word seems to come across weird formatting issues which LibreOffice doesn't have. I still save everything in Microsofts formats, though I don't use their productivity suite. No need
Why should I 'get on with learning and using the new layout'?
The old way of working was just great.
Besides, I have a job to do that pays the bills.
That job involves using that antique OS called Server 2008R2. The Windows 7 desktop works fine for us but you seem to be saying that I should ditch everything and move it all to W10?
Like hell I will.
Besides, more than 70% of the software that we use to run our Industrial plant won't and probably never will be certified for use on W10.
If anything we will migrate towards running Server 2012 on our development desktops. That is only half borked (IMHO) from a usability POV.
Ok, I admit that I do have it running in a VM. Like many here who have rejected Window 8/8.1 and 10 tiles we installed tools like Classic Shell to make our use at least a little less painful than it would have otherwise have been.
It is early days yes and we don't really know what other surprises MS has in strore for us with W10.
Because they have given themselve basically a carte-blanch permission to mess with our computers as they seem fit (inclusing (AFAIK) reversing the privacy settings we have set) they we well on the way to becoimng BB in reality. Just my 2p worth (probably not even that much really)
I never even liked the Windows 7 version of the start menu. To me cramming it all into the bottom corner of the screen instead of the XP and earlier cascading style seemed a poor use of the available screen space.
When I first saw the Win 7 start menu I assummed it's design was to enable it to work on the smaller screens of mobile devices without space for the earlier cascading version. Windows 8 seemed to disprove that theory, so I've still no idea why they did it.
"Do you 'have' any applications called gggrrrrrrr?"
Definately, at the moment I have lots of them because that is the sound that I make wheen I can't find any of them.....
I also have an application that is called "c**t", although some might know it as Cortana because I blame the problems on it ( I refuse to call it a he or a she, inanimate things should never be given a gender, I hate the French for giving everything a gender, why is their no neutral like in German)
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I like your 7 downvotes for managing to install Win 10 and then having your own opinon that you like it.
Perhaps the Open source community are not so open to opinions that do not match their own?
My guage of computer usability - my parents - has shown that they have managed the transition from 7 to 10 better than they did from XP to 7. Their intensive training included "here is how to switch users" and being on hand while they setup onedrive. Since they have no other backup it seems better than nothing.
"""Over the years, Microsoft has recruited heavily from Stardock to beef up its own UI development teams (for the Longhorn/Vista compositor, for example), apparently having forgotten how Windows works. ®"""
This is a common tactic with large companies, rather than train someone to be an expert on a field poach someone from another company who has become an expert in the field and knows your product from A to Z.
They have done the same with the security software they bundle with windows and many other components over the years.
If there was no star menu programme that could change it back to Windows XP, people would just figure out how to use the new start menu.
People, strongly, dislike change. You would have had people going from Windows 98 to XP and thinking "what the hell?" and trying to change it to look like 98 as much as possible, when Windows 7 came out, they would have tried to make it look as much like Windows XP as possible.
Hands up, how many people here have, since Windows XP, changed their desktop colour to the old Windows green/blue for familiarity?
We just don't like change, we don't like it when things we are used to alter slightly, let alone a complete overhaul. A hell of a lot of people here have been using Windows since the 3.0 era, but we'll skip that and go to the 95 era, so we're talking 20 years of having a start menu which looks like the Windows 95 start menu, so whats the first thing these people are going to do when they suddenly find their start menu isn't what they are used to? Change it to what they are used to.
I find the new start menu interesting, but then I use a Windows phone so I'm already used to having this sort of interface, I also used Windows 8 so I'm used to not actually having a start menu and just winkey/type-what-I-need method, so I'm just getting on with it, though where are the posts about Edge being the buggiest browser MS has ever made?
Oh, that bloody excuse again: "People, strongly, dislike change."
Well sometimes people are right.
Also, I genuinely liked the change from 98 to XP, but wouldn't have touched ME if you'd paid me. I liked the change from XP to 7 even more, but absolutely hated every second I had to deal with the wife's Vista laptop. So, personally I just don't like change for the worse.
I've used all of them, and not found any to be inherently bad. 95 was okay, 95 when you installed the update with IE was better. 98 was okay, SR2 or whatever it was called way okay. ME was okay. 2k was okay (and you had people who used that, they refused to go to XP), XP was okay, Vista was okay, a bit slow but not terrible. 7 was okay, 8 was okay, 8.1 made 8 better but was still okay. 10 is okay.
I wouldn't say any are a pleasure to use, or a pain to use, they are just tools for doing a job. The question you could ask if "would I go back to using the previous version after using this version for an extended time", if you're in the "I wouldn't use X OS!" but only use it occasionally, then yeah, you're going to have pre-conceived notions that the OS you hate, sucks.
I wouldn't go back to 8 from 10, but then, I wouldn't go back to 7 from 8. Certainly wouldn't go back from 7 to Vista, but then again, I didn't go back to XP from Vista either, and I alternated between Me or 98 or whatever I was using then, and XP, until I got used to XP in which case I wouldn't have gone back.
Disliking change for change's sake? Well, explain to be how selecting an MS app to make it the active window and showing the title bar to be just 1% slightly darker grey than an unactive window?
I liked things more when the active window was more obvious rather than impossible to detect.
What sort of improvement was that?
Well, I thought the change from 95 to 98SE was good (never had occasion to use 98 before SE).
I thought the change from 98SE to 2000 was great. I wasn't so thrilled going from 2000 to XP, but altogether it was minor other than aesthetics and activation (which can really be a pain at times).
I didn't like Vista much for the following reasons: It used a lot more resources for no substantial purpose; some settings/menus were changed, but there was no consistency, so they were sometimes more obvious and sometimes much more obscure, and you had to relearn them regardless; it broke when running updates much more often than recent versions of Windows, sometimes requiring a re-install to fix.
Windows 7 was only an improvement over Vista; it had some of the shortcomings, but at least it tended to work right and update correctly.
Windows 8 was incredibly annoying because of its split personality, and its switching between personalities without warning. The Modern UI interface was not terribly practical for the desktop, but it would not stay in the desktop interface without a great deal of cajoling (for one thing, setting default apps to not be Modern UI ones, which a lot of them started out as). Also, the start screen never fit in with the desktop and never properly separated desktop apps from Modern UI apps. Windows 8.1 was a slight improvement.
I haven't yet tried Windows 10. This is mostly because I'd like to have some idea where the garden path Microsoft is leading me down actually ends up before I take up the "free" upgrade. I expect it to be an improvement over 8, but I'm not expecting it to be as no-nonsense and practical as Windows 2000, for example, was during its support period.
I'm somewhat insulated from this issue since at home I'm in Linux 99 percent of time (probably more than that), and at work my Windows virtual machine will be version 7 for a while yet, and I use Linux a lot there as well.
between the inline search button and frequently used things on my task bar I don't use the start menu anymore.
Let's be honest how many of us used the windows 7 start button for much more then running cmd / a an other thing. I can't remember the last time I crawled through hierarchical menus for a program.
The live tiles could do one just on principle as could cortana... and a few uninstalls of stupid default windows software and all was barely acceptable with 10 interface.
Sure took another three hours of digging to disable as much of the spy ware as possible and knowing not to install geforce experience and just leave windows to fuck things up of its own volition and I was able to play games and use visio again.
People continue to forget that the *HIERARCHICAL* start menu is there for the times pinning to the taskbar, desktop or using search doesn't do the job, not the primary way to launch things. And because it's hierarchical and easy to organise by drag'n'drop it's a hell of a lot better at those edge cases than the Start Screen or it's dumbed down menu replacement.
The new version makes those edge cases harder and more tedious without making anything any easier. Design driven by Microsofts desperate need to go mobile and touch over what works.
On my testing VM of W10 I've disabled the search thingy, re-instated the Quick Launch and loaded that area up with pretty well all the progs I need to use.
People tend to forget that pinning an app to the taskbar only starts one copy of the application. Pinning them in the QL bar allows you to start multiple copies of an app with a single click. No key presses, just a single click.
Oh and don't try talking about keyboard shortcuts. All the standard ones are designed for those who are right handed.
I use the mouse in my left hand. My workspace is designed so that I do as little typing as possible to start stuff.
Some of the programs I need to run are not GUI based so are really suited to a tiled interface.
The only thing I can say as a positive for W10 is that MS has not seen fit (so far) to stop the sort of customisations that people like me do to their desktop. Other than that... Meh!
Yes, I really like this idea of typing in the commands you want to run.
As other have said, people really hate change so it is very comforting to be typing commands into a little box at the bottom left of a flat-looking bar that runs across the screen, just like the Apollo DM that we had when I started working in 1988.
For a follow-up I want a keyboard that has a navigation keypad on the left hand side as an adjunct to my right-handed mouse.
God how dare people express a personal preference, in much the same reason as I couldn't give two shits about how anyone else uses their system.
Pretty sure that's the most downvotes ever for expressing a personal and very rational preference.
Guess what, you can install a free app and have a hierarchical menu, you can use tiles, you can use quick launch, you can do it however you please.
Personally I think its OK. However, I never used Windows 8 for any length of time. I tried but stuck on Classic Shell straight away, but even then went back to 7.
Having spent a few moments removing live tiles, rearranging and creating my own, I think its pretty good, but MS could have scored extra brownie points for just having a "classic start menu" option.
Pin your favorite apps to the Start (after getting rid of the defaults).
Right click on an icon to use the option to make them small size, drag them into groups, move the pointer to the right of the groups until 2 small horizontal lines show up, click it and a box will appear. Type the name for your App groups! Some that I use are: Internet, Utilities, Graphics, Business and Personal Finances.
Mr. Orlowski, I haven't read such a petty article in quite a while. With statements such as, "Microsoft had one job to do with Windows 10 – but it looks like it's failed to get even that right", your bias is so obvious that it erases the option of having any credibility. Perhaps a less aggressive tone would make your opinion that Windows 10's start menu falls short able to be digested by more than just Apple fanboys.
You know how MS got it right up until recently? They gave you the current start menu and the previous one. On XP/Vista you could choose it right-clicking on it, choosing preferences, and choosing classic start menu. Even on Windows 95/98/Me you could use Windows 3.1's Program Manager and File Manager if you were that masochistic. With time people ended up on the latest one but they weren't forced to be at the start.
But both 8 and 10 are "our way or the highway". People don't tend to like that.
I have a Stardock subscription, and I've used Start8 for a couple years now on Win 8.x .. and I downloaded Start10 and quite like it on Win 10. It is a little different, actually better, than Start8., It has three major modes: classic, the full on Windows 10 Start Menu (I think it just uses Windows built in version there), and a hybrid "modern" modes that enable you to really set things up the way you want, including translucency and backgrounds. So it looks good. My only criticism, and it is a weak one, is that the "modern" mode is not fully resizable .. it resizes according to how many icons or classic tiles are showing. Yup, you can use the menu to search your computer.
Anyway, I haven't tried other start menu replacements on Windows 10, but I am enjoying my experience with Start10.
I am FAR more concerned about the privacy (or lack of it) in Windows 10. I don't like how MS is hoovering up everyone's data, and I certainly don't like the part where they will give your data to the government if they feel you are a "threat"! I don't like that they are "backing up" your encryption key to the cloud, either. They can take this horrible OS and shove it. It will be a cold day in hell before I install this on any machine of mine!
I wonder how many people that are investing on Start10 on the basis that either...
a) They needed it for Windows 8
b) They were on version 7 and heard the newer version needed it.
...Without actually trying the new Start menu to see if they prefer it or can get as used to it as they were the last version they used.
Never underestimate user intransigence or doing what they expect to have to do.
Feel free to down vote, but I got quite used to the Windows 8.1 start screen. However, I quite like the new Start menu in Windows 10 and see no real need to use Classic Shell or the other replacements.
That being said, I'm still testing it out and my opinion may change. On an unrelated note, Windows 10 is really quite stable for me, considering it is a fresh release.
I had to take a flamethrower and a barrel of bleach to it, since it came stuffed with all manner of garbage apps, but once I did, and pinned the apps I use to it in it's place, I like it better than the win7 start menu. The tiles are a more comfortable size, since you can resize the menu. The cascading menus of the old start menu really did kinda suck - they're nice to have there to find stuff if you have to, but it's now out of the way, and you use the tiles for the common stuff.
It's a shame most of the live tiles apps that come with windows are kinda lame. Only one I use is the weather one (though like everything in win10, it's sorely lacking in customization) - but they're kinda neat, and I'd use more live tiles if they became available and showed things I cared about.
Hence Windows 10 is used as a platform to impose Microsoft's cloud (data mining) and mobile (tiles, app store) ambitions onto you. That is the future, the brave new world of 'Windows as a Service'.
One of my friends who's not too knowledgeable about tech stuff had bought a notebook which was pre-installed with Windows 8. I listened to his complaints and immediately helped him download/install Classic Shell. I never forgot the look of delight, satisfaction and relief upon his face when Classic Shell was installed.
P.S: Those self-selecting 'Insiders' Win10 fanbois are really annoying, and deluded. I bet making the default desktop theme emo black and the 'laser show' default wallpaper were their ideas too.
I was in the test program and complained about the Start menu three times. Eventually removed all of the live tiles and reduced the space available for them to zero. Which seemed OK but tiresome. I saw plenty of other people with the same complaints as me, so I guess that MS just didn't want to know.
I actually don't dislike the Windows 10 Start button/menu. I just prefer Classic Shell, as I'd gotten accustomed to using it with Windows 8.1. I occasionally exit Classic Shell and use the Windows 10 Start button, in case I ever have to support Windows 10 for users who insist on using the Windows 10 Start menu. A right click of that gives options that are helpful. Otherwise, Classic Shell works just fine for me.
Re: "Windows 95 had a search button"
It had a "FIND" button (Luckily I've got a Win95 box handy so I could make sure I wasn't mistaken)
It promised that it would do the job, it wouldn't just look for things it would actually FIND them.
Ever since then Windows hasn't been quote so positive and the action has become "Search"...
I've been using windows 10 for a while, and been through all the OSs since 3.1 WfWG change is nothing new, and anyone working in IT ought to get used to it.
also complaining about the change on here takes just as much time as learning where the new stuff is stop complaining and get on with it
Not aware of the deeper thoughts behind it all, it seems MS is in a kamikaze dive atm. Who asked for Windows 10, when 8.1 + Classic shell does the job ?, MS could have made that, even my mother of 74 is a happy 8.1/Classic shell user after upgrading from Vista. Now they have to support W7, W8.1 and W10 for the coming years. Including fixing all the future +9 rated CVE's resulting from it.
Maybe the world asked for Windows 8, but probably in the form of a layered and securely designed O.S., not something evolved from 640KB, EMM386.SYS and HIMEM.SYS.
But O.K. they chose to march on for good ole' times sake, confusing users in the process while their PC's are free game. This link says more then 1000 words https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=69RllXjCL6o
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Start menu was just about ok 20 years ago, but never really rocked my world.
Earlier this year I was "forced" to buy a win 8 machine to work with with one of my customers (personally I use os-x, professionally I am more flexible) and much to my surprise I actually, and actively, like the windows 8 (metro) paradigm. I know ... heretical.
I just wish MS had the strength to say, "Do you know what, UI's have moved, this really is worth trying." rather than caving after just one (major) release.
Hey ho .. I'll suck it up and carry on
I could, and did, cope with things like the menu and everything else others appear to have mentioned, what I could not accept was WIndows 10 phoning home to Microsoft 24/10.
The rmere thought of being bombarded with, "Targetted Advertising" or still worse thought police gave me the shivers.
If I should install it again it will be in a virtual machine with no access to any of my real time information.
I've been using Windows 10 for about a day, and I don't know what all the crying is about. It's a massive improvement over the user interface for Windows 8/8.1 (which 50% of commentators on here didn't use for more than 5 minutes before dismissing it) and is intuitive. Why would you want to turn off live tiles? Are you so enamoured with your iphone that you don't believe in icons that can update themselves, save a little number in the top corner?
Try it, you might like it. And try it before all the usual suspect reg commenters ("Linux is awesome, I wish it was like KDE") tell you what to think.
I actually really like the Windows 10 start menu entirely. Except it has one critical flaw. I can't find anything without scrolling to it to click on it. If I search for any program I've installed, I'll get files scattered throughout my hard drive, and I used to get web hits till I turned that off, but Start menu search can't even find most desktop apps I've installed that have icons in the start menu. If I could turn off ALL OTHER search results in the search feature including documents and more, I would. All I ever want from the search functionality is to find my installed programs, PERIOD.
Long time reader, first time poster. One thing about these Reg comment sections is the relative entertainment value. The articles themselves are typically just unhelpful sarcastic whinging but the comments just ramp that up even more! Hilarious!
I've grown up with Macs and OS X as that's what was at home and throughout school, so that's probably what I know how to use best. Now that I work, I have use Windows. The bravehearts could opt-in and install Windows 10, so I did. I personally don't have a problem with Windows 10 because the live tiles gives me a quick glance at what's going on without having to launch anything. Not every tile I have is 'live', but things like exchange rates, news headlines, new emails, it works great for me. Anything programs I use often, they are pinned to the taskbar and launch in a single-click.
Being a non-IT bloke, I personally like Windows 10. There's an equivalent OS X feature for everything that Windows 10 has, Siri - Cortana, OneDrive - iCloud, iTunes - Groove Music, App Store - Windows Store, etc. Since IT blokes seem to be the audience here, what I like is relative, and probably translates more into what I'm comfortable with, which is OS X. If I had to use Windows 10 full time, I'd be cool with it. I think Microsoft's unenviable problem is they are trying to make pizza for a billion people, which means a couple of hundred million will hate it, a couple of hundred million will stay with just pepperoni, and 50 million won't eat the pizza and go out and get a burger instead. I think they will backflip on the forced automatic updates at some point, and maybe some of the privacy stuff.
I used Start 8 and it was great. I BOUGHT Start 10 but it was a huge mistake and I'm going to demand a refund. Stardock pops up "PAY ME" windows CONSTANTLY starting with Day 1 of the "30 day free trial". Furthermore, every attempt I made to register FAILED.
Stardock is a Microsoft shill.
I've been a software engineer for many years and Windows 10 is the WORST OS yet.
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