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Windows Start Button Gone Forever, Replaced By Tutorial

The Seattle Times reports that the beloved Start Button we've grown accustomed to pressing each and every day won't end up in the final version of Windows 8 despite complaints. Instead, Windows 7 will be its last, official home.

The news arrives by way of investment banking firm Nomura, which hosted meetings this week for investors with Tami Reller, the head of marketing and CFO of the Windows and Windows Live Division at Microsoft. The meetings talked about what's coming up for the next version of Microsoft's operating system.

According to Nomura, Reller addressed concerns that end users have raised about the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Although the new version -- which offers a complete revamp of the UI since the release of Windows 95 -- is seemingly well suited for touch-based devices, it's reportedly a headache for the desktop user accustomed to accessing the computer's installed programs through the Start Menu.

As it stands now, Windows 8 doesn't feature a Start Button, but rather depends on hot corners for essential functionality. Without any instructions whatsoever, desktop users must figure out how to navigate through the new Metro UI and access the Metro commands to get back to the Start screen. The Seattle Times calls this method "unintuitive and clunky."

Unfortunately, Reller confirmed that Microsoft has officially killed off the Start Button for good. Instead, the discoverability problem will be addressed through a tutorial "to show keyboard/mouse users the new commands that they need to orient themselves with in the new OS so they are not lost when they first encounter the product."

Isn't that nice?

Reller also assured investors that Office 15 will feel unaltered in Windows 8's desktop mode when using Office even though the new suite has been Metro-ized.

RIP, Start Button. We loved you. Honest.