After making the switch to Windows 8, I hated the look and feel of it. The desktop was okay, but without a proper start menu, what’s the point? Classic Shell helped me love Windows 8. It make the non-user friendly OS seem more like Windows 7, but with even more customization options. While it may seem like a simple program, it will change how you see Windows 8.
Long Live The Classic Start Menu
The thing I missed most when switching was my start menu. I had my most frequently used programs pinned to the top for easy access. Plus, I had an obvious way to shut down my computer without Microsoft thinking I’d magically know to hover my mouse in the corner. Classic Shell brings back the start menu and it’s better than ever.
You can choose between the Windows logo that comes with Windows 8 or use a Shell icon for your start menu button. You can also download other button styles for a completely new unique start button. The program is actually three in one. The first is Classic Start Menu. It’s designed to replicate the start menus from Windows 95 to Windows 7.
I highly recommend taking a few minutes to explore the customization features such as different skins and shortcuts to Favorites. If you still like being able to switch between the desktop and Metro UI, no problem. Either press Shift while clicking the start menu icon or press Shift + Win Logo keys to switch back and forth easily.
Take Control Over Windows Explorer
Okay, so it’s actually called File Explorer in Windows 8, but with the Classic Explorer portion of Classic Shell, it doesn’t really matter what you call it. It brings back the toolbar from Windows XP with functions such as copy, paste and delete. It’s actually pretty useful for Windows 7 users too as it addresses several file listing bugs.
You’ll also notice the status bar is missing in File Explorer that shows how big selected files are. Once again, problem solved. As with the Classic Start Menu, every feature is customizable to give you the perfect look and feel for your needs.
Makeover Internet Explorer
One final feature of Classic Shell is Classic IE. While I don’t really use it, IE fans might find it useful. It’s a simple plugin to show you the full title of a web page, the loading progress of pages and the security zone. Think of it as a throwback to the Internet Explorer we used to have several versions back.
Start Customizing Now
If you’re ready to transform Windows 8 or even customize Windows 7 a little, download Classic Shell for free. Close all other windows before installing. Install, choose your options and restart. It’s that simple. I can’t tell you how big of a difference it’s made in helping me transition from Windows 7 to Windows 8.