30 replies on Is the Windows 8 Start Screen an Improvement vs. the Start Menu?

  1. Chris says:

    Microsoft needs to ditch it completly on desktops. Windows Search was much more efficient in Windows 7 than it with this version. Too much work has been added to what used to be such a simple task

    • Ciprian Adrian Rusen says:

      I do not agree with you regarding search. The search in Windows 8 is the fastest, most precise search ever included in a Windows version. However, this article is not about search but about browsing the Start Screen and the Start Menu with the mouse and accessing shortcuts in this manner.

      • vgamesx1 says:

        well I do not fully agree with you either, while slightly faster, it also searches for your apps.
        so if I wanted it search for say.. “folder options” or something more built in, it would search my apps for folder options instead of showing me the control panel options. which thus makes it harder for me to find what I’m looking for.
        Windows 7 search is fine.

  2. Christopher King says:

    You are entitled to your opinion. I disagree with it. Simple as that.
    I used to browse the start menu using Windows Search, and I DID NOT have to click through programs, settings or files to find it. Speed comes with the natural evolution of the product, and I am not disputing that. How it’s disseminated to the public is another, and I DESPISE the way the new start screen works on a desktop.

    • Ciprian Adrian Rusen says:

      To clarify: in Windows 8, when you are on the Start Screen, you simply start typing and shortcuts are shown depending on what you type. The reaction time is instant and the search shows better results than in Windows 7. Test it and see for yourself. The Windows 8 Start Screen has no problems regarding the Search future. That’s really well done.

      • Christopher King says:

        See, I have no issues with the almost instantaneous response with shortcuts appearing on my Start Screen, but whereas before everything (files, music, docs, settings) were all listed together, it’s the extra step of having to click on Settings or Files to determine where exactly what I’m searching for has been categorized.
        I also really don’t see the point of having the metro interface on the main Start screen, and then to have the familiar old desktop hiding behind it.

        It’s like Microsoft is trying to make up for their lack of a tablet based OS by throwing everything and the kitchen sink into Windows 8. It comes off as too jarring. Too cluttered.
        Hopefully that will change by the time the RC candidate is ready to hit the market.

        • Ciprian Adrian Rusen says:

          You should have mentioned this from the beginning. Indeed, making an extra click to filter the results is a bit annoying. I also hope they will present all search results on the Start Screen, listed in a similar way to the Start Menu in Windows 7.

          • TG2 says:

            You’re all missing some key things..
            1) cluttered until you start typing? So then on a tablet device how is the TABLET user to start typing? That means the interface isn’t geared toward tablet users on that front, but desktop users

            2) cluttered part 2, if you have icons on your desktop for the things you use most, and you’ve already moved them to the ends of the earth (I always have my computer/computer at the top left, next to it is IE, then Firefox then Chrome … top 4 icons EVERY TIME .. far right hand side top to bottom … I have Secure CRT, Winamp, picasa, etc.. etc. etc..
            and under 8 I have to what? go through the start screen just to get the desktop? and when looking for NEW programs.. where are they going to be.. the far side of the desktop with my mouse?

            I’m with the Microsoft needs to scrap it all … or needs to get a better grip on how their “users” *USE* their systems.. giving the power of choice BACK to the user for how they want to interact with their computers.

            One size DOES NOT fit all and never has, and window 8 will either prove this to microsoft, or will further lead them down the path of denial! (FK MS & their dog toto too!)

  3. Octavio says:

    Microsoft needs to ditch the start screen of Win8 for desktops, it’s useless, disorganized and quite plain ugly. Other than that it is the same Win7, no improvements there. I think I’ll wait and see how Windows 9 is going to be, for now I’m sticking with Win7.

    • vgamesx1 says:

      what do you mean no improvements?
      booting faster isn’t better? or the nicely new taskmanager?
      but other than that there aren’t any major improvements… (besides the ribbon which not to many people like either)

  4. SatoMew says:

    On a touch screen-based device, no doubt the Immersive UI (officially called Metro but, IMO, that just blurs the name of Microsoft’s design language, which is indeed called Metro) is a better solution. However, on a regular PC, the Start menu is better. They just need to work a little more around its edges and add some improvements to make the Start menu the perfect launcher of files and programs on Windows.

    Windows 8 has a lot of improvements but as long as they don’t allow the flexibility of having the Start menu there and allowing the user to disable the Immersive UI, it just doesn’t cut it. And they have already done a Metro-style Aero interface on the desktop with Windows 8. And it’s not the regular Aero, which was also a little Metrofied. Try enabling the Windows Basic theme in Windows 8. It’s actually Aero Lite and has all the same goodies of Aero like hardware acceleration, live previews, etc. that were impossible with the Aero Basic theme from Windows Vista and 7.

  5. donahugh says:

    What matters is MS moves the steering wheel with each new version. Nonsense.
    On top of it all we will be going thru hundreds of updates because they couldn’t get it right in the first place and blame it all on security. Ever notice car manufacturers don’t pull this crap off.

    • CarlM says:

      “Ever notice car manufacturers don’t pull this crap off.”
      Sure they do. Ever noticed that there is more and more auto recalls to fix what appears to be basic design issues? The auto industry has had more than 100 years to get their act together and still can’t do it.

  6. Kenny says:

    If microsoft is smart it will leave an option to bring the old start menu back, and everyone that will have a desktop and is not a fanboy, will revert to that (if they do it you will see the statistics). If they want to force this stupid start screen on people it will cost them billions. The start screen is badly designed and implementing, confusing and aggravating even with experienced users…. I find it funny, that many people after seeing this new horrible interfaced, asked me if its a good idea to switch to mac.

    • vgamesx1 says:

      why mac though? obviously you/them still have a computer so why not keep windows 7 till at least windows 9…
      and if still not satisfied then linux is just a download away, if they don’t change back though, I will setup a shinny new Ubuntu desktop in the next 2 – 5 years.
      plus with linux, if I do need windows VMware has always worked on it (that I know of..)

  7. Nick says:

    The start screen is useless. I run a high res multi monitor setup and resize programs in their window to get as much displayed on those monitors as possible. Basically I can view multiple programs on one monitor AND use the start button well still viewing those programs in windows 7. In windows 8 the entire screen is needed to do what just a corner of it once did. Its a waste or screen realestate. Windows for me was always good because of its ability to run and view multiple programs at the same time. Windows 8 is a step backwards as far as I am concerned. And the Aero interface in windows 7 is much more pleasing then the Commodore 64 style graphics of the windows 8 interface. Metro Ui is garbage for use on desktops. And even though people may not realize it yet it will be garbage on tablets to as many people are replacing full size PCs with tablets and expecting them to do the same tasks as they could with a full PC.

    • WillCroPoint says:

      I could not agree more with you!
      I don’t understand why now, we are forced to waste our entire 24inch screen to run an app, loosing sight of other running applications. Really too bad..
      On top of all, the Vista and 7 Start Menu was a great extension of the task bar as far as pinned applications and recent document launching were concerned, all in just the corner of the screen.

  8. Bob Wareham says:

    Its all to much why is it so hard to find the folder you want and how many short cuts to it do you need it must be easy to find a folder than Windows makes it and so much wasted space on the screen do we really need to see an icon in a box ?
    The more you have on the screen the more memory you use, Speed is what we need and that = memory

  9. smittt says:

    The Biggest problem is the missing Menu Start Buttom on Windows 8. What I’ve read reference Windows 8 not having a start button is that it is made for all persons who have touch screens. (all 32 people). What were they thinking. Probably more then 75% of computer owners, desk top & lap top, are not touch screens. Apparently Windows has way to many customers, buyers, and are looking to cut back on their work force. No really I am sure this is just an oversite by some newby hire and wil be fixed by the time the full version comes out. Another problem is a lot of software is not compatible with windows 8 including AOL and printer – scanner software. I hope this gets fixed or many people will be looking for a different OS. Smittt

  10. pc user says:

    I think MS will bring back classic start menu in windows 9 just like they changed the default action of start menu power button from sleep (in vista) to shutdown (in windows 7). MS please don’t force us to use windows phone UI. We are not using phone but PC. I feel Linux LXDE and KDE better than this

  11. john3347 says:

    This whole discussion thread predominately verifies a statement I made when I first read a preview of Windows 8 even before the Developer Preview went public. “One OS cannot be optimized for all applications from cell phones to corporate desktops. If it were possible, Microsoft would NOT be the developer who produced it.”

  12. archiegoodwin says:

    Microsoft is making the same asinine mistake that Ubuntu did with Unity and Gnome did with its new Shell. Enamored by the growth in use of tablets and smart phones, they are trying to force users into using touch-screens and a mouse-less desktop. If you want a tablet, buy a tablet, but for desktops or laptops, it is absolutely idiotic.

  13. thebigbadonion says:

    I’ve not actually used windows 8 yet, so my comments are totally off impression of what i’ve read on here and other sites. However, even with that in mind, I dont understand why they’ve changed what was an efficient way of launching new programs while still using currently running programs. As a avid user of photoshop, and premier pro. Multi tasking is very important to what I do on a day to day basis on my computer. Having to open an entirely new screen, every time I want to launch a browser window to grab source image or just check my email or whatever, while I’m doing a bunch of other things at the same time will just be distracting, and I’ll probably lose my thread where I was up to on another open program. This start screen thing, regardless of how well or how badly laid out it is, should only be an option, for those who want to use a touch screen interface, but having to let go of the mouse and use the keyboard just to launch another program makes the whole experience inefficient, and from the sound of it it takes longer just to use it

  14. gareth says:

    Hmm I liked the developer preview, where you could turn off metro 😉 so I think I will like windows 8 when it arrives and you will be able to turn metro off.

    Metro .. I have installed windows 8 on a windows tablet and its very very sluggish and unresponsive, it is missing some key features. e.g. the keyboard will not open when using the metro rdp app, and in fact there is no option to open the keyboard so this app is completely useless. There are probably a few more like that that I have not found yet.
    Also the metro interface is very wasteful, there is buckets of screen real estate going unused and unable to use. On Android tablets there is also some parts of the screen you cannot use, but this is minimal compared to windows 8 metro. Its also very restrictive in how the apps look, all in these childlike colour blocks. Its like one of those toy computers you get your 3 year old, not a productivity suite.

    It seems to be the way of things lately, just make a shiny device that can facebook and thats all you need.

    in my opinion metro is a gargantuan failure. But Windows 8 booting in no time and being like Windows 7 is a winner.

    I have a 4 year old desktop that boots in under 15 seconds, which is amazing I am looking forward to seeing it boot on a solid state drive. With these sorts of boot times it might kill off the tablet completely ( yay )

  15. Alex says:

    I am agree with you. I need “Collapse items” feature to decrease items in Start menu. I may forget app name. I meant this should show “folders” only and expand when User clicks. Likely it was in old “Start” menu.

  16. Joseph Judge says:

    Not trying to sound like a walking advertisement or anything, but Start8 works really well if you don’t like the start screen (or prefer that it doesn’t fill your whole screen).

  17. avalon says:

    I cant understand why my windows live email has a tile but my windows messenger doesn’t. Is anybody able to advance my intelligence?

    • Ciprian Adrian Rusen says:

      Are you sure Windows Live Mail has tiles?
      Anyway… tiles are added only by apps with support for this feature of Windows 8. Your usual desktop application doesn’t install tiles but shortcuts on the Start screen.

  18. skye08 says:

    im using win8 for almost half a year now. after that i tried using a third party start menu and all i could say is that i’m not missing it at all. i uninstalled the 3rd party app *immediately* and returned to startscreen. if there’s an app not pinned to the screen, i just type it (ex: run or update). it makes me know more about the name of the apps hehehe. i always forget the names cmd, run, disk management, device manager, until i use win8. before i always google whenever i need them. but now, i can easily remember hahahaha startscreen kept my memory working and i liked it 🙂

    there’s things that i don’t like abt win8. but i’m with MS for replacing the startmenu with startscreen. 🙂 i liked how i can personally arrange the pinned apps and make them larger/smaller, and with the 8.1 update, i like it even better now i can make them even smaller or larger.

  19. shubham says:

    MICROSOFT WINDOWS 8

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