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Start Menu Could Return to Windows in Spring 2014

Last week, there was talk that Windows would receive two key user-interface changes in an upcoming update. One of these is the ability to "float" Modern UI/Start Screen apps on the desktop, and the other is supposedly the return of the classic Start Menu.

According to sources close to the Windows team, the Start Menu goes by the codename "mini-Start" because it won't fill the entire screen like the tile-based Start Screen. There's also talk that unlike the new Start Button introduced in the Windows 8.1 update, this Start Menu will only reside on the Desktop. A link will likely take the user to the full Start Screen, as seen with third-party apps like Start8.

So what will this Start Menu look like? How will it work? The name seems to imply that the Start button will pull up a miniature version of the Start Screen, which will have Modern UI app tiles and tiles for desktop applications. This may be where the "floating" aspect comes in. Click on the miniature Facebook tile and launch a "floating" app on the desktop.

That said, then why would Microsoft need the Start Screen if the Start button launches a miniature Modern UI menu? Remember, this is an operating system built for different form factors; the Start Screen is better equipped to handle touch on tablets and touch-based hybrids. Of course, this is all mere rumor and speculation anyway, so take it with a grain of salt.

Microsoft may be adding the Start Menu back to Windows because it wants customers to upgrade from Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7. Microsoft doesn't want these specific customers to shy away because it looks too unfamiliar. The Start Menu made its debut in Windows 95, meaning customers have grown accustomed to launching the Start Menu to access their programs and system tools for eighteen years.

So when will this new Start Menu make an appearance? That may happen during the Update 1 wave reportedly coming in Spring 2014, as Microsoft may be wanting to address the issue as soon as possible. Then again, the company may hold off on adding this feature until the larger "Threshold" wave, which is expected to bring the operating system up to version 8.2.

  • How about the bring back the unbloated OS? Notice how fast 95/98/XP are, and then you try out Vista or Win7, even on a multicore machine and it lags behind, not nearly as snappy.

    Just spend time to give us a quick and unbloated operating system, with a classic interface. Even XP loaded with updates and patches is so much responsive than the newer versions of windoze.

    Let have a smarter, quicker, classic OS, not a bloated, dumbed down, limited OS.
    Reply
  • b23h
    Please deadmeow tell me more stories!! I want to hear about running Win95/98 on a modern machine. Sing praises of XP!! Sing sing sing a laud to Linux, that is what's next on your calendar, no?
    Reply
  • b23h
    Yes, stripping out the Start Menu was a blunder. I am uninterested in Sinofsky styled rationalizations about how the start menu was used or how some people filled their desktop full of shortcuts.

    Nor do I want to engage those Windows 8 people who claim that anyone who is interested in a old style Start Menu is stupid and do not know how to use their PC. I am running Windows 8.1 and am uninterested in other people's opinion on how I prefer to organize my PC.
    Reply
  • de5_Roy
    tech-backtrack of the year. :lol:
    i wish microsoft made metro optional and regular desktops. at least give users to choose instead of forcing metro on them.
    Reply
  • b23h
    12186915 said:
    tech-backtrack of the year. :lol:
    i wish microsoft made metro optional and regular desktops. at least give users to choose instead of forcing metro on them.

    It's not going to happen nor should it. I spend 98% percent of my time on the desktop, yet I see no reason why MS would reinforce the idea of a wholly non-Metro PC.

    I view Metro/Modern UI on the PC as the keystone of the shared Market/Store push. MS has every reason to stay the course and look towards acclimatizing people over time to using Metro applications, especially as a shared Market across platforms comes to fruition.
    Reply
  • goodguy713
    My stance on this is this. I admire innovation however we should have the freedom of choice. Its not the lord of the rings here one ring to rule them all. I get the concept of the metro ui and the desire to do away with desk top short cuts plus the user friendly tablet and touch interface. to make a cleaner more organized look but some people have their own sense of organization. They do things in their own way and some people just think differently.
    Reply
  • albert 89
    Fortunately win8.1 uses more power than win7 ! Which makes win7 like XP but 10X better, not to mention a hassle free start button.
    Besides M$ are too stupid to get people to adopt win8 because of one reason & one reason only. Give up ? Its that win8 is toooooooo expensive. M$ should revert back to $29.99 for a full stand alone OS not a watered down upgrade, before I reconsider.
    For the idiots who like win8 it appears that you are to few for anyone to care. And to think M$ made windows more compatible with Intel is a never ending list of disasters this company has brought on the public !!!
    Reply
  • shadownet666
    Our entire IT department with the exception of one of them is running windows 7, Linux or OS X because of windows 8's start screen.

    The switch to an optional metro interface and gadets would actually make it an option for us to migrate workstations to windows 8 due to no training needed for our users. We have better things to do than respond to trouble tickets of people that don't know how to use the interface because it is different from what they're used to.

    This is a huge win for Microsoft if they pull it off and if they had this from the beginning then windows 8 would've been a huge success.
    Reply
  • viometrix
    I have a nokia lumia 1520 and on it I love windows 8 on it and tablets. on desktops I can see its uses but find the start menu a cleaner and faster approach to get what I need. where I see metro ui good for some older or less experienced folks to not be afraid of their computers
    Reply
  • Freakboi_pa
    I was against Windows 8 since the beta release.... up until I actually started sing it with Classic Shell for a start button. Even though I don't like Metro, it does have its good points. I personally think it is a very good built OS, since it was designed for MULTIPLE different devices <PC, Phones, tables> It actually runs VERY well on my PC, but then again, I am sure I have an above average PC, but most PC's will have SSD's by next year as a boot drive, or they should.
    Reply