Start8 1.09 Beta available for download

Stardock Start8 lets you return the Start Button to Windows 8. Microsoft Windows 8 is shipped without the “Start” menu. Start8 brings back Windows 7-style Start menu with Windows 8 enhancements. Also you can view and launch installed applications (including Modern apps), All Programs menu. Start8 includes support for “jump lists”/recent documents for recently accessed programs (Devices, Documents, Music, Videos, Photos, Computer, and more). Pin favorite desktop and Metro apps shortcuts directly to the start menu for easy access. Start8 adds searchable Windows 8-style (Modern UI) Start menu options for Windows desktop applications, Modern applications, and documents. It allows automatically load directly to your Windows desktop on login (vs the start screen). In addition, you can also easily shutdown your PC without needing to access another menus.

Features:

  • Windows 7-style Start menu with Windows 8 enhancements
  • Pin desktop and Modern UI apps
  • Jump list support
  • Unified Search for Apps, Settings and Files
  • Boot directly to the Windows 8 desktop
  • Automatically matches the color of the taskbar
  • Skinnable Start button
  • Windows 8 Start screen accessible from the Start Menu
  • Optionally disable the Windows 8 desktop “hot spots”
  • Adds option for WinKey to show full screen metro desktop
  • Group Policy support

Control:

  • Configurable Start menu size
  • Windows 8 Start screen accessible from the Start menu
  • Clean, streamlined UI enhances Start8′s usability

Customization:

  • Optionally disable the desktop Windows 8 “hot spots”
  • Supports WindowFX 5.1 start menu animations (currently in beta)
  • Choose a custom Start button skin and color

What's new in this version:

  • NEW! Folders pinned to the Start Menu allow you to view the first X items as a jumplist
  • NEW! Custom places locations.(Add a dropbox location for example).
  • NEW! Improved "Go straight to desktop" on login feature
  • NEW! UI supports translation via lng files. See \lang\en.lng file for info.
  • Added rename support in the tree
  • Added drag & drop including rearranging items in the all programs tree
  • Search box now allows %appdata%
  • Tweaks to "Search" to reduce memory usage slightly
  • Performance enhancements in the all programs tree to work around a flaw in Windows Defender
  • Resolved a problem with the Start Menu position when the taskbar was on the right and there is a docked app
  • "Send to sub menu" now allowed on the tree right click menu
  • Tree now includes hidden items
  • When using the search box to view folders, the performance is now improved
  • "Places" menus no longer select the first entry
  • Option to make "Places" list entries and take less room, thus allowing more to show in less space
  • Rearranging pinned shortcuts is now faster
  • "Recent Items" list no longer includes folders
  • Deleting an item from the "All Programs" list will delete it instantly from the tree vs waiting until the next refresh
  • Fixed issue with Putty and jumplist not showing blank entries which did not launch the right things
  • Fixed issue with Live Photo Gallery not opening images up in preview mode
  • Added registry key option to hide tooltips in the Start Menu. This is HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Stardock\Start8\Start8.ini\Start8\HideTips = 1

Download: Start8 1.09 Beta | 4.5 MB (Free to try, $4.99 to buy)
Link: Start8 Home Page

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7 Comments

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Pokki is better. I bought the first version and did the subsequent upgrades and wasn't pleased. i think what will happen is, and this is a good thing, it will open a door for 3rd party apps to come to the forefront and allow others to make win8 work as an older version of windows.

I think these little apps are great since MS refuses to bring it back so others are making some money creating what alot of people are missing on non touch systems

ChrisJ1968 said,
Pokki is better. I bought the first version and did the subsequent upgrades and wasn't pleased. i think what will happen is, and this is a good thing, it will open a door for 3rd party apps to come to the forefront and allow others to make win8 work as an older version of windows.

I think these little apps are great since MS refuses to bring it back so others are making some money creating what alot of people are missing on non touch systems

Never heard of Pokki but after looking at it I'll pass. Just want a simple classic start menu, not a giant tile based menu with web links and junk. I think Start8 works very well myself and this update added some much requested features like drag and drop, renaming, etc.

ChrisJ1968 said,
Pokki is better. I bought the first version and did the subsequent upgrades and wasn't pleased. i think what will happen is, and this is a good thing, it will open a door for 3rd party apps to come to the forefront and allow others to make win8 work as an older version of windows.

I think these little apps are great since MS refuses to bring it back so others are making some money creating what alot of people are missing on non touch systems

Pokki is a unique approach, however, there's one big problem, it's a memory eater. With all the web apps running in the background, this will slow down your computer a notch. They did improve it's memory usage within the last few versions, but it's not perfect.

link6155 said,
Pokki is a unique approach, however, there's one big problem, it's a memory eater. With all the web apps running in the background, this will slow down your computer a notch. They did improve it's memory usage within the last few versions, but it's not perfect.

Not to mention it's bloated. I could care less for their app store. StartisBack for $1 a license on black Friday was definitely a steal.

link6155 said,
Pokki is a unique approach, however, there's one big problem, it's a memory eater. With all the web apps running in the background, this will slow down your computer a notch. They did improve it's memory usage within the last few versions, but it's not perfect.

surprised people arn't arguing with you yet lol

Pointing out bloat has in my experience been a call to arms for cheerleaders..