The biggest complaint we’ve heard regarding Windows 8 is the change in the Start Menu functionality. With the introduction of Windows 8.1, Microsoft attempted to meet users half-way by offering a start menu that returns the user to the desktop.
If you are still unhappy with this change, there are several alternatives to hide it and or change it. Below are some of the suggestions that we have:
If you dislike pointless functionality, StartIsGone is a good alternative to the Window 8.1 start menu change. Available from WinAero.com, this is a small download with no installation necessary.
While not ideal for multiple screens, StartIsGone may be a good option for anyone looking to get rid of the start menu.
2. 7+ Taskbar Tweaker
If you’re looking for an alternative, or you just want more options that are not present in StartIsGone, then 7+ Taskbar Tweaker has plenty to offer.
7+ Taskbar is available both as a standard and a portable install. You can choose between these options in the installation wizard, which unpacks the app either to the default address (normally somewhere in the C drive) or to a folder of your choice which you can then move. You will also need to ”Run as administrator” to launch the setup.
This is a great tool that – as the name suggests – enables you to introduce a selection of useful tweaks to your Windows desktop.
To use 7+ Taskbar Tweaker to remove the annoying new Windows 8.1 Start button, simply open the utility and locate the group of options labelled ”Other”, which is located in the lower-right corner of the window. All you need to do here to check the ”Hide the Start button” option and the start button will be immediately removed.
Again saying, the results aren’t perfect on multi-monitor setups, and if you hit the “sweet spot” on your desktop, the Start button will again appear, but at least it’s removed from the taskbar.
Meanwhile, if you want to replace the Start button with something a little more traditional, the Pokki tool is ideal. Designed to restore the classic Start menu, Pokki will also allow you to kill the new Start button in favour of adding a compact, Modern-themed replacement.