StartisBack 2.0 Windows 8 Start menu program released

There are quite a few Start menu programs for the desktop interface for Windows 8; in fact there's so many it's practically become a cottage software industry on its own. One of those programs is called StartisBack, which released its first version back in October. This week, the team behind StartisBack have launched version 2.0 of the software with a number of new features.

The release notes for the new version reveal that StartisBack 2.0 allows users to create a shortcut to the Windows 8 Start screen inside the start menu, along with an option to have a Start Screen hot corner on the desktop UI. It also has a new option to display all programs as a multi-column flyout menu, similar to the Start menu in Windows XP.

All of the "Modern" Windows 8 apps can now be integrated into the StartisBack Start menu. The development team have also improved the program's Appearance interface, along with a new skin and orb image. There are also quite a few bug fixes and improvements along with some other new features and options.

There's a free trial version available for the program and if you like it you can purchase the full version for $3 which gives users two PC licenses, or $5 for the license rights to five PCs.

Source: StartisBack | Image via StartisBack

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I have to give my 2 cents here. I have been visiting this forums for almost 5 years now. I hardly ever post anything " Obviously". But, I have to say something about this win8 so called issue. I was holding back to upgrade because of all the bad reviews regarding the missing start button. I upgraded 3 weeks ago from win7 64 bit to win 8 64 bit and I was able to figure everything out within half an hour of playing with it. I really do not see the big issue here. As pointed out by Dot matrix.."It takes 1 single click".

I am not a hater of any OS out there nor do I love any. I have 2 Windows PCs, 1 Mac laptop and a Linux pc that I play around with. They are all unique and perfect in their own way. What some consider a disadvantage I call different. Not hating on anyone here but there is too much crying about a "start button". Guys..things change and you just have to get use to it or just don't waste your time with the system. It's that simple. The only problematic OS that I have ever encounter was "Windows Me". That to me was a rushed job. Too many bugs in it. Microsoft didn't even bother fixing it because they knew it was chaos. Everything after that was
a bit unique in its own way and guess what? they will still continue to build different things. Open your minds a bit.

I still think windows 8 is more like windows me it will be a failure while true we all new any tablet in this day and age microsoft released would face better reception cause apple reinvented the tablet but lets not forget was microsoft did that years ago with dell and was a flop but now people want the devices.

I cant wait to see if we are going to get a chance in ios 7 it needs it all phones and os are starting to look identical and that does not leave much for the end users experience. I believe what would help ios is giving the user the ability to skin their phone any way this wish I think this is where htc's one dashboard is good in that respect in terms of widget style home screen.

But for me as a programmer windows 8 doesn't really matter to me most the gear i use runs on linux. I just think windows 8 should be renamed me2 lol

Why stop here? Let's see if we can just go another step back and put all the program icons directly on the desktop. Bring back the Program Manager from Win 3.1!

Nah microsoft just flew off the edge this is bringing it back on track
if anything the start menu was an advancement of the start screen they just arrived in different order

Tell me is this still using stolen reverse engineered source code from windows 7? Not that I mind specificly because it is very well done but.. is it?

It's not stolen code. Windows 8 contains start menu code, StartIsBack uses it. Interfaces and behaviors needed for start menu to work are recreated without using 'stolen' or reverse-engeneered code.

The new start menu skin that is included with this version looks an awful lot like Start8's default skin. Even down to the white-bordered square user tile. Kinda funny how it's called "plain8".

That's right. But that's a coicenence. Graphics was used to mimic existing styles in Windows, and it's just solid fill with white frame mostly. Dunno how closely it matches with Start8.

People always claim for inovation. When inovation comes, people complain because they like things the old way.
I didn't see what's so bad about the start screen. I use it a lot, and it's more useful than the old start menu. It isn't really rocket science, you don't need a 2 years training to learn how to use it. It's pretty simple to use. Maybe people is just frustrated because they can't touch it with their fingers, I guess... Well, it's just like that old saying: if you change the color of the grass, the donkey starves to death.

Filipe Ribeiro said,
People always claim for inovation. When inovation comes, people complain because they like things the old way.

Changes != innovation

He will never be able to understand that a change for the sake of change is not always a good thing. This metro debacle is not a change which favors the user but only MS. This is not a win-win situation for MS or user but it is loose situation for user to bear these fisher-price interface and loose situation for MS for having slow adaptation rate.

Dutchman01 said,
No matter what we install or mod to make windows 8 look like windows 7, Windows 8 = GUI Fail for all desktops!

If you have a touch screen desktop, it is not a total fail.

DSLJay said,

If you have a touch screen desktop, it is not a total fail.


How many people have a "touch screen desktop"?

This program is the best out there. StartisBack has no processes or extra things running in the background. This program uses what Microsoft left behind from Windows 7.

wolftail said,
Something is weird about those office Icons... They look like Metro Apps.

Icons looking like apps? LOL

No, those one the standard icons used by Office 2013.

I'd like to see a program bring metro programs to 'windowed' mode on the desktop.

This is the beauty of windows though, you can have great customization with it.

ObiWanToby said,
I'd like to see a program bring metro programs to 'windowed' mode on the desktop.

This is the beauty of windows though, you can have great customization with it.

Metro programs in windowed mode and a start menu would probably have made all the difference if windows 8 would have been like that from the beginning.

Order_66 said,

Metro programs in windowed mode and a start menu would probably have made all the difference if windows 8 would have been like that from the beginning.

And how would that allow Windows to be used by touch? That would have done nothing to allow Microsoft to install Windows on new hardware. It's the same reason Windows XP, Vista, and 7 tablets FAILED. Doing the same thing and expecting different results would have been asinine.

[quote=ObiWanToby said,]I'd like to see a program bring metro programs to 'windowed' mode on the desktop.
/quote]
Already done by RetroUI...


He didn't say that he wanted Metro programs to always run in windows...

Dot Matrix said,

And how would that allow Windows to be used by touch? That would have done nothing to allow Microsoft to install Windows on new hardware. It's the same reason Windows XP, Vista, and 7 tablets FAILED. Doing the same thing and expecting different results would have been asinine.

And that's why windows 8 should have had to ability to distinguish between touch and non-touch during install to give either the full metro experience or a more user-friendly experience for non-touch users.

ObiWanToby said,
This is the beauty of windows though, you can have great customization with it.

Great customisation? I think you are confusing windows with linux!

Order_66 said,

And that's why windows 8 should have had to ability to distinguish between touch and non-touch during install to give either the full metro experience or a more user-friendly experience for non-touch users.

What about devices that are sometimes touch and sometimes mouse? The Surface Pro being an excellent example. While the current solution is not ideal in every situation, it opens many new doors to where Windows can go. As it gets refined and more apps become available it will get better. Having one Windows that works on ALL devices, from traditional PCs to phones to tablets to any future device that uses mouse, touch, pen, anything, and having apps that will just work on all these devices is a huge leap for computing. Being a developer excited about technology I see Windows 8 as the biggest (and most innovative) paradigm switch since we created GUIs.

BannanaNinja said,

What about devices that are sometimes touch and sometimes mouse? The Surface Pro being an excellent example. While the current solution is not ideal in every situation, it opens many new doors to where Windows can go. As it gets refined and more apps become available it will get better. Having one Windows that works on ALL devices, from traditional PCs to phones to tablets to any future device that uses mouse, touch, pen, anything, and having apps that will just work on all these devices is a huge leap for computing. Being a developer excited about technology I see Windows 8 as the biggest (and most innovative) paradigm switch since we created GUIs.

There would be nothing wrong in letting the user decide if they want windows to boot to metro or a desktop with start menu depending on their needs.

Order_66 said,

There would be nothing wrong in letting the user decide if they want windows to boot to metro or a desktop with start menu depending on their needs.

And, Windows 8 doesn't let you do that how? So, you have a fullscreen Start Menu, you can cry more like a two year old, or pin your app shortcuts to it (like in Windows 7) and move on.

Dot Matrix said,

And, Windows 8 doesn't let you do that how? So, you have a fullscreen Start Menu, you can cry more like a two year old, or pin your app shortcuts to it (like in Windows 7) and move on.

Windows 8 boots to metro by default, the average user has no way of changing this without resorting to third party programs.
Also there is no start menu without again resorting to third party programs.

And if I'm crying "like a two year old" then I must not be alone since windows 8 has failed faster than vista ever did because microsoft decided to go completely against what the average user wants and/or needs.

Order_66 said,

Windows 8 boots to metro by default, the average user has no way of changing this without resorting to third party programs.
Also there is no start menu without again resorting to third party programs.

And if I'm crying "like a two year old" then I must not be alone since windows 8 has failed faster than vista ever did because microsoft decided to go completely against what the average user wants and/or needs.

It takes one click, *one click*, to get to the desktop, and, as a bonus, if you have your desktop apps pinned, it still takes one click to launch your app, AND go to the desktop at the same time! Same amount of clicks if I was starting off on the desktop.

Dot Matrix said,

And how would that allow Windows to be used by touch? That would have done nothing to allow Microsoft to install Windows on new hardware. It's the same reason Windows XP, Vista, and 7 tablets FAILED. Doing the same thing and expecting different results would have been asinine.

simple solution, ever heard of MAXIMIZE button? forcing poorly designed touch interface on PCs that don't have touch, and on users that don't want touch is asinine

stop acting like a spoiled 5 year old

Dot Matrix said,

It takes one click, *one click*, to get to the desktop, and, as a bonus, if you have your desktop apps pinned, it still takes one click to launch your app, AND go to the desktop at the same time! Same amount of clicks if I was starting off on the desktop.

And even MORE of a bonus you have your other programs pinned to the horrid start screen and now you have to bounce back into metro to launch them because you are using an os obviously made for touch and not a regular desktop.

Oh wait but there's more!

You have no start menu so (once again) you click to go back into the user-hostile metro environment because you want to shut your computer down, instead of 2 clicks you now have to perform a total of 4 clicks plus move the mouse to the far right bottom and pray that the ridiculous "charms" crap appears on the first try.

Yeah real intuitive there...

Order_66 said,

And even MORE of a bonus you have your other programs pinned to the horrid start screen and now you have to bounce back into metro to launch them because you are using an os obviously made for touch and not a regular desktop.

Oh wait but there's more!

You have no start menu so (once again) you click to go back into the user-hostile metro environment because you want to shut your computer down, instead of 2 clicks you now have to perform a total of 4 clicks plus move the mouse to the far right bottom and pray that the ridiculous "charms" crap appears on the first try.

Yeah real intuitive there...

Does "Pin to taskbar" not mean anything to you?

Also, you don't need to go to Start to shutdown. The settings Charm is accessible from the desktop. Or power users can go straight to Alt-F4.

Dot Matrix said,

Does "Pin to taskbar" not mean anything to you?

Also, you don't need to go to Start to shutdown. The settings Charm is accessible from the desktop. Or power users can go straight to Alt-F4.


Well what does Ballmer want me to do? should I pin 30 programs to the taskbar?
If so then I must hunt them all down, differentiate each program from its uninstall or help files or whatever other unnecessary garbage that metro has decided to pin a tile for.

User-hostile environment any way you look at it...

Order_66 said,


Well what does Ballmer want me to do? should I pin 30 programs to the taskbar?
If so then I must hunt them all down, differentiate each program from its uninstall or help files or whatever other unnecessary garbage that metro has decided to pin a tile for.

User-hostile environment any way you look at it...

Good grief, dude. Must you make everything 10 billion times harder than it needs to be?

If you want to pin Skype, type S-k-y-p, right click the icon, and hit "Pin to taskbar".

Yeah, that's so "hostile".

Also, not sure what crap you install, but newer apps don't pin unnecessary garbage. Microsoft included a way for Start to differentiate all that. Just saying.

Dot Matrix said,

Good grief, dude. Must you make everything 10 billion times harder than it needs to be?

That's exactly what microsoft did with windows 8.

Dot Matrix said,

And how would that allow Windows to be used by touch? That would have done nothing to allow Microsoft to install Windows on new hardware. It's the same reason Windows XP, Vista, and 7 tablets FAILED. Doing the same thing and expecting different results would have been asinine.

WHAT IF YOU MADE THE OS DO TWO THINGS. WHOA THAT WOULD BE CRAZY.

nekrosoft13 said,
simple solution, ever heard of MAXIMIZE button? forcing poorly designed touch interface on PCs that don't have touch, and on users that don't want touch is asinine

Ever heard or app guidelines? Metro apps are always guaranteed to have a minimum of 1024x768 resolution. Having resizeable Metro app windows would completely screw this up. Theres a reason touch UI's generally don't allow resizeable windows. And as already pointed out you can't just have a UI function like Win 7 on a touch device and expect it to work, this is why all previous versions of Windows failed on touch devices.

If you want resizeable windows that you can drag then these this thing called the "Desktop". It's sole purpose is for mouse/keyboard. You have this thing called "choice". What would even the point of making Metro UI function like the desktop when you ALREADY have the desktop? It would make the new UI pointless.

nekrosoft13 said,
stop acting like a spoiled 5 year old

Take your own advice. You sound way more like a spoiled kid than he does.

Order_66 said,

That's exactly what microsoft did with windows 8.

Don't waste time arguing with DotMatrix, he's a Win8 fundamentalist, one of the Win8 taliban. Reason doesn't work, they just don't see it.
Many of us know that basing the UI for a large desktop screen on a phone metaphor is ridiculous, and led to a host of usability problems for desktops, but you won't shift his opinion.
What is scary is that the UI designers in MS itself may have the same stubbornness, which bodes ill for Windows Blue.

gb8080 said,

Don't waste time arguing with DotMatrix, he's a Win8 fundamentalist, one of the Win8 taliban. Reason doesn't work, they just don't see it.

Pot, Kettle, Black.

It is still a pain in the butt. My metro interface keeps opening up while using the mouse in the edges. And adding desktop icons is a hassle since i have no start bar to move them and the metro buttons right click only options to put on task bar

torrentthief said,

Great customisation? I think you are confusing windows with linux!

Indeed... What's the great customisation? The fact you can change wallpaper? All other true customisations are kind of "hacks" in order to work... Windows related files are all locked down.

I'll try to write this without insults or such... quit sad how limited people tend to think (not all ofc, but many)...

Windows 8 has problems, like any other OS. Those aren't any major problems though. It fixes loads of problems w7 (and previous versions) had, improves on a great many things.
The only new "problems" that came with W8 are potentially a few compatibility issues, and the fact that it's a transition OS (meaning it introduced new concepts that aren't as polished yet). And no, I don't mean the lack of start menu.
Any windows user with half a brain can easily adapt to Win8, without sacrificing any productivity, and even without changing their workflow at all.

The problem is that people are just too lazy, and too afraid of any little change... Windows 8 isn't the first OS to be hate-rushed. The same thing happens every time there is a change (DOS to Windows, the great WinXP, Vista... to name a few). Eventually, people realize that they need to move on, and that the changes are in most cases for the better... History suggests that the same will happen again with Windows 8.


nekrosoft13 said,

simple solution, ever heard of MAXIMIZE button? forcing poorly designed touch interface on PCs that don't have touch, and on users that don't want touch is asinine

stop acting like a spoiled 5 year old


1. Maximize button isn't a solution for touch, has been done, didn't work, failed
2. Windows 8 doesn't force anything, you still have the same desktop UI as before, but now you also have a touch-friendly UI to use, if you want to (and btw, I really cant see any problem with using the mouse in modern UI either)
3. wonder who is acting like a spoiled 5 year old...

nub said,

WHAT IF YOU MADE THE OS DO TWO THINGS. WHOA THAT WOULD BE CRAZY.

Windows 8 does do 2 things (more than 2 really)... but people just looove their start menu...

Order_66 said,
...

Won't bother much responding to you... I can't remember seeing any reasonable comment from you on any topic. And your win8 hate comments deserve some kind of medal - for stupidity or something like that...
O wait, I forgot, you're an expert on all things OS, since you work at a retail store...
You sure love your start menu...

gb8080 said,
...

The haters here wouldn't recognize a real problem if it was poking them in the face, they just keep whining about the damn stupid start menu... get the hell over it already.


Well, I too lived in the 90's, was OK-ish. Then the 90's passed and I decided to move along. Didn't look back (at least technology-wise).

[Quote] The problem is that people are just too lazy, and too afraid of any little change... Windows 8 isn't the first OS to be hate-rushed. The same thing happens every time there is a change (DOS to Windows, the great WinXP, Vista... to name a few). Eventually, people realize that they need to move on, and that the changes are in most cases for the better... History suggests that the same will happen again with Windows 8. [/Quote]

It is not that I am against learning new ways of doing things. It is that it keeps the deskstop and forces me to use another layer onto it that is not needed (on a computer). It would be fine if I could remove it. Right now it is a hassle and added clicks and maneuvers to get work done. It does not save time or make anything easier.

The metro interface is a PITA on a laptop EVEN with touch screen. VIPS and VVIPS do not want to spend time learning new GUI to do work and I do not want to train them.

moloko said,

It is not that I am against learning new ways of doing things. It is that it keeps the deskstop and forces me to use another layer onto it that is not needed (on a computer). It would be fine if I could remove it. Right now it is a hassle and added clicks and maneuvers to get work done. It does not save time or make anything easier.

The metro interface is a PITA on a laptop EVEN with touch screen. VIPS and VVIPS do not want to spend time learning new GUI to do work and I do not want to train them.


\
Fear of change is not a valid excuse. You're ALWAYS going to have change, no matter how small in new versions. Look at the changes from XP to Seven alone. Those didn't stop adoption, nor did the changes XP brought before that.

Currently my favourite replacement for Windows 8. I quite like Start8, too, but this one has the edge. Looks more natural, more 'native'.

So happy it exists though.