Windows 8 Quick Tip: Add A Start Menu Without Any 3rd Party Application

We’ve been whining about the missing Start Menu on Windows 8 since day one, and we’ve also been offered many alternatives by many 3rd parties. But if you are not interested in using any of those 3rd-party alternatives just to get a Start Menu, you can build one for your own without any tools and hacks, though you won’t nearly get a full feature-packed one the same as the traditional one with Search button, recent list, control panel, etc.etc. What you do get is a menu that lets you browse through applications installed on your Windows 8 computer.

And here is what it looks like.

Taskbar Toolbar - Start Menu

If you are interested in having the similar one on your Windows 8 computer, follow along.

First, right click on the empty space of Task Bar, Select Toolbars, and go to New Toolbar…

New Toolbar on Taskbar

On the New Toolbar dialog box, type “%appdata%” in the Folder textbox, and hit Enter, which will directly point you to the right folder under your user profile.

New Toolbar - Choose a Folder

Double click folder Microsoft, Windows, and Start Menu, and press Select Folder button.

New Toolbar - Choose a Folder

And done. If you want to remove it later on, you can right click the Taskbar, go to Toolbars, and uncheck the Start Menu option there.

As a related note, what it really does is to pin the Start Menu folder as the Toolbar on the Taskbar. The Start Menu folder can be found from the following location.

C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu

It’s not perfect, but better than nothing.

Kent Chen

Microsoft MVP, IT Professional, Developer, Geek, and the co-founder of Next of Windows.

Last updated: 08/04/2014

Posted in: Tips & Tricks , Windows 8
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Ribbed for her pleasure

If you have to modify it then it’s not user friendly!

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