Windows Threshold Start menu and windowed modern apps leak

While we all wait for update 2 to arrive, supposedly on August 12th, it looks like another set of Start menu images have appeared on the web. This time though, we get a bit more information with the addition of a windowed modern app that shows the Windows Store.

As with all leaks, take each with a grain of salt but as far as we can tell, they do look legitimate. However, anyone who spends hours in Photoshop could produce these images quite easily. The build for this image leak is 9795 and falls in-line with our expectations for a build number based on current internal builds at Microsoft.

Just because this images leaked does not mean that this build is outside the walls of Microsoft. We know that internal users are now testing Threshold and could very easily produce these images from the current builds.

While we have yet to see a full build leak into the wild, we are still optimistic that it may occur. Microsoft has clamped down on trying to prevent leaks over the past 6 weeks but no security measure is perfect.

Microsoft has kept quiet on the details of the Start menu. While they did briefly talk about Threshold at WPC14, there was not a lot of new information to share. While we keep poking around to see if we can gather up any more details about the images, let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Source: MyCE

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Looks like a "Metro" popup to me, but then again I never use apps, I utilize applications. Hope they let lowlifes like me Beta and RC it, like they did with Windows 7.

Seems nobody likes changes.... Come on its 2014. I don't hear complaints about android changes,and Mac and ios changes. Well I do hear complaints, but not as much as this. Micrsoft just trying to get rid of the old and bring in the new. And people don't like change

Yes, change is difficult. However, productivity is paramount. So, when the "change" is not helping productivity (in a huge amount of settings) users resist. MS is so very slowly recognizing their mistake and is taking steps to fix the mess they created. Windows-9 could be a defining moment. We'll see.

this design looks like a mess. they used to have a great power-off/shutdown button in vista startmenu, then in win 7 it got worse and now its just a text? no thanks...

Ewwness? Does anyone want Live Tiles on the desktop? Do they really want to replace desktop apps in which they do essential tasks today with "Modern" a.k.a ugly, dumbed down, childish apps with poor usability and all the customization, features and power sucked out? :p

How are they dumbed down? Childish?

And there is no reason you cannot have a Modern UI app with good usability and the ability to customize it.

Lamp Post said,
How are they dumbed down? Childish?

He's mad because "Grandmasoft" doesn't include 300,000+ switches, buttons, and gizmos to revert and remove all the changes back to Windows 1.0.

Dot Matrix said,

He's mad because "Grandmasoft" doesn't include 300,000+ switches, buttons, and gizmos to revert and remove all the changes back to Windows 1.0.


Well, one could have 300 000 switches, buttons and gizmos if one wanted it. It's just that most developers would find that to be a bad design.

Lamp Post said,

Well, one could have 300 000 switches, buttons and gizmos if one wanted it. It's just that most developers would find that to be a bad design.

Everyone would find that to be bad design, and kludgy to work around. Windows would be perpetually broken if Microsoft left everything in and didn't bother streamlining the code base.

Dot Matrix said,

He's mad because "Grandmasoft" doesn't include 300,000+ switches, buttons, and gizmos to revert and remove all the changes back to Windows 1.0.

Wow Dot Matrix is now putting words in others' mouth. :o

UXGaurav said,

Wow Dot Matrix is now putting words in others' mouth. :o


Feel free to come with your own words instead of whining about him putting words in your mouth.

UXGaurav said,

Wow Dot Matrix is now putting words in others' mouth. :o

It comes right from your Twitter feed. From your ranting, I've gathered that your mad at Microsoft for removing deprecated features, and "dumbing" down Windows since Vista and Office 2007.

You seem to have an illogical aversion to anything that isn't filled to the brim with options and customization switches.

https://mobile.twitter.com/UXG...statuses/491438034739396609

Edited by Dot Matrix, Jul 22 2014, 1:41pm :

Dot Matrix said,

You seem to have an illogical aversion to anything that isn't filled to the brim with options and customization switches.

You seem to think that adding more customization options is the same thing as putting 300000+ switches and reverting all the changes back to Windows 1.0? I can't help but laugh at your thinking. :p Moreover your expectation seems to be that everyone in the world should be content with the limited choice Microsoft give compared to the increased choice they used to give and yet you think I am being illogical? Nice! :p

UXGaurav said,

You seem to think that adding more customization options is the same thing as putting 300000+ switches and reverting all the changes back to Windows 1.0? I can't help but laugh at your thinking. :p Moreover your expectation seems to be that everyone in the world should be content with the limited choice Microsoft give compared to the increased choice they used to give and yet you think I am being illogical? Nice! :p


Where do you get this idea that a Modern UI app has to be more limited than a WPF application or similar?

Lamp Post said,

Where do you get this idea that a Modern UI app has to be more limited than a WPF application or similar?

One example. Google for: "Desktop apps only" site:microsoft.com

UXGaurav said,

One example. Google for: "Desktop apps only" site:microsoft.com

The are no limitations to Metro apps. It's up to the developer.

UXGaurav said,

One example. Google for: "Desktop apps only" site:microsoft.com


I mostly get MSDN documentation in the results. What am I looking for?

Enron said,
They still need to put in icons to match Metro. What's with the old Windows 7 look there?

Because, apparently, these screenshots are all fake.

At least, so says Paul Thurrott yesterday.

Meh just depends how much effort you put into getting it how you like it. There's some pretty horrific Linux desktops out there too with far less usability. I'd take this start menu and desktop over that mess that is Unity or Gnome 3 any day of the week for example.

Max Norris said,
Meh just depends how much effort you put into getting it how you like it. There's some pretty horrific Linux desktops out there too with far less usability. I'd take this start menu and desktop over that mess that is Unity or Gnome 3 any day of the week for example.

Well if all you have are official distro screenshots to go by, Linux is nothing but video players and transparent command line windows.

Dot Matrix said,
TBH, taking a second look at this, this is nothing new. We've all seen this at BUILD.

We need a video of it in action. What happens when you click all apps.

Or at least fix the black title bar text staying black when you set the window border color to black. That's a fun bug that's way too old at this point.

I was surprised to realise I can't use that black color in title bar when I tried to read the title bar after some time I have set it black. A rediculous bug. A ten-year-old one.

This is how it should been all along. Julie Larson Green must hit her head several times again for not coming up with this approach initially. Its really best of both worlds.

MS have any gut to change the whole UI any more and also have no fastion and abilty to design beautiful in details.
MS have to cut lots of their developers and designers in OS teams and pick up lots of new developers and designers which have cool ideas because we don't expect anything cool from current MS developers and designers which are coding or design Robot without any idea.

ljp882 said,
MS have any gut to change the whole UI any more and also have no fastion and abilty to design beautiful in details.
MS have to cut lots of their developers and designers in OS teams and pick up lots of new developers and designers which have cool ideas because we don't expect anything cool from current MS developers and designers which are coding or design Robot without any idea.

What?

if they make it good, i'll change, if they don't probably not.
It's as simple as that, because as much as i like the optimizations of W8 regarding responsivness and the file copy system.. i just hate Metro in my desktop.. is just ridiculous in my 23' screen that... it's just not going to happen.
And i want an 'official' start menu, not some 3rd party app, that just hides an entire UI under the carpet..

I gave them the benefit of the doubt all along. But in the end their was way to much confusion for the average joe, and if there is one place that MS needs to focus like a laser, it is consumers, NOT enterprise. Enterprise is doing just fine. People in the enterprise know exactly how to use their computers, consumers are still overwhelmed.

I am very excited to have Start, Search back where it belongs, and even though I like the current search, there is so much more that needs improving. I hope they really go to town on search.

I was excited and nervous when Win 8 first came out, but the level of un-polish, and the nerve to not even give folks a chance by including a simple tutorial was incompetence and arrogance of the highest order.

Microsoft needs to realize that the majority of consumers are still over whelmed and confused by technology in general. They need to double down on making things easy for consumers and literally push the tutorials right into their face. People don't know about all the cool stuff you can do with computers until you show them. I really hope that Win 8x was just the very uncomfortable and necessary step to get to the polish of Windows 9.

As far as Metro apps go, until we have "apps" of the quality and usefulness of QuickBooks, Quicken, and Metro Office and such Metro still has a long way to go.

What I'm waiting the most is windowed store apps. I like the stock Mail, OneNote and many others but as a heavy desktop user I rarely used them. Having them available on the desktop is a great addition and can help boost store apps usage for users like me.

Behold the age old relic of 640x480 computing returns, Sigh oh well at least chances are it sucks less than the old start menu with its endless folders and readme.txt's

Ian William said,
I really like that sharp look of the Start menu . . . That shade of blue looks awesome.

I really hope you can change the color of it like in the last "screenshot".

But in all honesty, I want the Start Screen to remain.

Dot Matrix said,

I really hope you can change the color of it like in the last "screenshot".

But in all honesty, I want the Start Screen to remain.


Of course. I certainly want the Start screen to remain as an option. It would return some of the customization options lost in Windows 7.

Dot Matrix said,

I really hope you can change the color of it like in the last "screenshot".

But in all honesty, I want the Start Screen to remain.

I hope we can have transparent tiles like we have on Windows Phone 8.1. That is extremely cool.

To be honest, I think they should do this in windows 8.1.whatever they want to call it. I for one, haven't been using the start menu on 8.1, it took me a while, But I have gotten really productive around metro/whateverinterface, specially all you do is hit windows key and type app name and voila!

Yes, and that's why steam is one of the annoying programs, ironically along with office, which is otherwise great.

Their window widgets are the wrong size and shape and thus in the wrong place. So when I have a bunch of windows maximized and I'm minimizing them one by on checking what each is, the minimize button is in the wrong place on those, also hard to see on office with the grey on grey button graphics.

I still want the opposite - desktop programs on the Modern side. Maybe Modernmix will be redefined once apps on the desktop becomes built-in . . .

Could work, especially if the white bar on the left can be suppressed to allow more room for tiles.

I'd still prefer the screen, but I might be able to live with this.

Studio384 said,
The startscreen will still be available for everybody.

I hope there is an potion to remove it and never see it again.

Dot Matrix said,

Yeah, the new Mini Start.


The "Mini Start" is bad but is way better than the full screen pup-up one that even adblock cannot remove. Why would i want my entire screen blocked with slow and ugly tiles?

DaveBG said,

The "Mini Start" is bad but is way better than the full screen pup-up one that even adblock cannot remove. Why would i want my entire screen blocked with slow and ugly tiles?

It's not blocking your screen. Sounds like user error. Adblock, seriously?

DaveBG said,

The "Mini Start" is bad but is way better than the full screen pup-up one that even adblock cannot remove. Why would i want my entire screen blocked with slow and ugly tiles?

How are the tiles slow? Even on my budget laptop the Screen popped up instantaneously. Can't say the same about the Win 7 Menu.

And of course it's much faster in my experience to scan the screen than to navigate the multiple layers of menus. If the screen is slow for you then you didn't take the time to organize it. 5 minutes is all it takes.

The fact that Microsoft is having to backtrack so much with Windows 8 saddens me, but what saddens me so much more is just how fast they dropped Windows 7 like a virtual hot potato. Windows 7 really needs a proper Service Pack 2 and they just won't do it, and I'm really irked about it but whatever. I'll be running Windows 7 till 2020 and probably beyond - it's the best thing they've ever created in my opinion and I am sticking to it.

That sounds nice until all the cool new apps use the Windows Store and you're unable to use them. Hey, but to each it's own.

It's overwhelmingly likely that you replied to a desktop user, and as such, Store apps are n/a. And I doubt there will ever be many (any?) "cool" apps coming to the Store even for the handful who live and die by Metro.

Yes, I know what type of user I probably I replied to. Seeing that Threshold will have the ability to run Store Apps on the desktop, it basically becomes the new standard for apps going forward (note he/she stated till 2020). I don't see great new apps being built specifically for Win32 and I wouldn't see why would they at this point. Unless you are in enterprise...I see no benefit in staying at Windows 7 for THAT long.

There isn't coming another Service Pack, not to Windows 7, not to any future version. The reason those things existed where because a lot of people had a slow internet connection and with SPs, could download a lot of updates at once. It just isn't from this time anymore.

br0adband said,
ll be running Windows 7 till 2020 and probably beyond - it's the best thing they've ever created in my opinion and I am sticking to it.

That was my opinion too - until I got a Surface Pro 2 and was forced to use Windows 8.1. Now I can't imagine going back to 7. It was so slow by comparison. I don't spend much time in the Modern UI at all, so I've set it up to ONLY be my Start screen replacement. I've added Tiles for This Computer, Control Panel, etc. plus all the apps I use regularly. Works just fine - but far faster than 7. I actually prefer it now and I find it difficult to go back to 7 which I still use on my desktop.

rseiler said,
It's overwhelmingly likely that you replied to a desktop user, and as such, Store apps are n/a. And I doubt there will ever be many (any?) "cool" apps coming to the Store even for the handful who live and die by Metro.

This is the kind of short-sighted opinion held by people who are genuinely incapable of thinking of the Windows Store being a source of anything other than tablet apps. People who don't realize that WinRT is just another runtime, and like .net before it, will eventually be able to do pretty much any kind of app the developer wants to do with it.

There is literally no reason whatsoever to think 'metro' apps and 'desktop' apps are inherently incompatible metaphors.

br0adband said,
I'll be running Windows 7 till 2020 and probably beyond - it's the best thing they've ever created in my opinion and I am sticking to it.

TBH, it'll look as exciting as using XP today. And considering the lifecycle, I doubt you will find compatible software and hardware for Win7 past 2020. You're not gaining anything by limiting yourself like that.

dead.cell said,
How is ModernMix anyway? Debating on getting it.

It's nice enough, but definitely a hacky feel to it. There are behavior quirks aplenty, especially if you get into mixing full screen (normal metro mode) and windowed modern apps.

But for the price, it's worth trying out. I've thrown more money than that away on Android apps I'll never use again.

michael1989 said,
ui stuff is mostly the last step so....

I believe this to be a myth going back to Windows XP's Watercolor theme. Windows 'chrome' elements, flat, seamless or otherwise, are more than just a 'theme'.

I doubt this UI is the one that has generated the remarks about flat/seamlessness of Modern windowed apps, and therefore suspect/hope this is not real, or isn't a "Threshold" candidate at least.

The clash of transparency/opaqueness of the Start Menu and bar is just gopping.

michael1989 said,
ui stuff is mostly the last step so....

In this case, most likely not so much. The UI in Windows 8 very much more than just a skin or theme to be applied.

michael1989 said,
ui stuff is mostly the last step so....
The next major UI refresh will come with Windows 10.

I wonder what the "All Apps" view will look like once it's clicked on? How will the Charms function for windowed Metro applications?

Ian William said,
How will the Charms function for windowed Metro applications?

The same way your keyboard works for normal windowed applications, I'd expect.

rfirth said,

The same way your keyboard works for normal windowed applications, I'd expect.


I understand that the current Win + C shortcut may continue to work. What I wonder is how one will swipe with the mouse to bring up the Charms.

Ian William said,

I understand that the current Win + C shortcut may continue to work. What I wonder is how one will swipe with the mouse to bring up the Charms.

This really is the next big issue once you have modern apps in windows then what about the charms? Place them in the right click menu perhaps? I always figured you could place them in the start menu somewhere or maybe even in the taskbar. If you're going to add a notification center then you can replace the systray and place the charms where the systray is/was.

Ian William said,
I wonder what the "All Apps" view will look like once it's clicked on?

I can only presume the same as windows 7

Ian William said,
I wonder what the "All Apps" view will look like once it's clicked on? How will the Charms function for windowed Metro applications?

I really don't want to loose the Charms Bar. I use many of them quite frequently. :/

Josh the Nerd said,
I think the charms bar could just remain on the side of the desktop and would simply work for which ever app is the active window.

This is a real possibility, and not an unusual way to do things. Would remind me of the Mac OS menu bar. Doesn't have to be anywhere near the active window, but it always reflects the context of that window.

Dot Matrix said,

I really don't want to loose the Charms Bar. I use many of them quite frequently. :/


People, I think the charms bar will remain as it has been. If we use Stardock's ModernMix the charms bar is untouched and can be used while the window is active.

So expect no issues here ;)

Dot Matrix said,

Share, Settings, and Search

Just hit search on keyboard and there you go, don't need useless annoying bar.

Auditor said,

Just hit search on keyboard and there you go, don't need useless annoying bar.

Charms is far from useless, even on desktop PCs, it is quite useful.

Dot Matrix said,

Charms is far from useless, even on desktop PCs, it is quite useful.

No it's not, on Desktop that is pain in a neck. Annoying bar has no place in modern day productive computing.

Auditor said,

No it's not, on Desktop that is pain in a neck. Annoying bar has no place in modern day productive computing.


Hey, you can see a giant and non-obstrusive clock!

Jose_49 said,

Hey, you can see a giant and non-obstrusive clock!

Joke all you want but I bring up the Charms just to look at the big clock often, like it better then the tiny one by the systray.

Auditor said,

No it's not, on Desktop that is pain in a neck. Annoying bar has no place in modern day productive computing.


Just because you don't find any use in it doesn't make it useless. If it was useless, no one would find use in it. But some of us do, hence it's not useless.

Auditor said,

No it's not, on Desktop that is pain in a neck. Annoying bar has no place in modern day productive computing.

Yes, because having settings, printing, 2nd screen setup, and all that stuff accessed in one consistent location regardless of what program you're in has no possible productivity benefits.

Dot Matrix said,

Share, Settings, and Search

Why would you click the charms bar to Search??? That's probably the longest way round. I have Settings directly macro'd to a key so I guess I will give you that one. Share does not work on the desktop? Its always empty.

What other features does it have. A big clock... And another Start Button.

All in all. Totally useless and annoying when it pops up accidentally.

Joswin said,

Why would you click the charms bar to Search??? That's probably the longest way round. I have Settings directly macro'd to a key so I guess I will give you that one.

Win+S, and I can search from anywhere in the OS without having to go to Start. Why wouldn't I use it?

Joswin said,

Share does not work on the desktop? Its always empty.

Works beautifully with Metro apps.

Joswin said,

What other features does it have. A big clock... And another Start Button.

Settings, Metro Control Panel, Networking, etc. All essential.

Joswin said,

All in all. Totally useless and annoying when it pops up accidentally.

It's far from useless, as I have described above.

George P said,

Joke all you want but I bring up the Charms just to look at the big clock often, like it better then the tiny one by the systray.


I wasn't joking! I use it all the time to look at it. It's very very useful when you're far away from the monitor, late at night watching a movie or series.

You can then check the monitor by going to an edge and moving the cursor up

Joswin said,

Share does not work on the desktop? Its always empty.

Yeah, it would be nice if you could use the Share charm on the desktop. I imagine it would require the programmers to support the feature if it were added. It's already built into the Modern side.

If charms support could be added to the desktop/desktop programs, it would make the Charms bar effectively a universal toolbar. Which would be a dramatic improvement over the "every developer for himself" philosophy we traditionally see on the desktop.

The desktop could use some more of the structure and consistency of Modern/Metro, to be honest. It's time to move on from the "Wild West" days of computing. :-)

DConnell said,

The desktop could use some more of the structure and consistency of Modern/Metro, to be honest. It's time to move on from the "Wild West" days of computing. :-)

This. QFT.

Dot Matrix said,
Win+S, and I can search from anywhere in the OS without having to go to Start. Why wouldn't I use it?

Because you can Win + then start typing. Instead. Why would the "Charms" bar have anything to do with the search Dialog anyhow? If you are not actually going to, you know, open the Charms bar to get to it.....

Works beautifully with Metro apps.

You were talking about the desktop though. So that's irrelevant.

Settings, Metro Control Panel, Networking, etc. All essential.

You don't need the charms bar to have that though. Just press Win + I. Why move my mouse to the side of the screen, wait, then move it to the cog, press and get to it when I can open it directly?

It's far from useless, as I have described above.

Actually what you described above pretty much shows how it is useless...and serves as a poor shortcut to things that do *something*. So much so that you yourself even use key combinations because its quicker than opening the charms bar.

I don't think even Microsoft know what the hell its purpose is, which is why its got another Start Button stuck on it. Hopefully in Windows 9 it goes the way of the Vista side-bar.

Joswin said,

I don't think even Microsoft know what the hell its purpose is, which is why its got another Start Button stuck on it. Hopefully in Windows 9 it goes the way of the Vista side-bar.

*facepalm*

The Charms Bar is a universal launcher for everything in the OS. It not only allows quick access to key features, it also serves as a universal area for apps to store settings and other options. It was designed so that users can go to one spot for things, rather than hunt and peck for wherever the developer might have added them in their less than standard application.
*No matter what application I use*, Charms > Settings is where I'll find Preferences and Settings. It's always there, and easy to access.

Second, it was designed to be easily accessible by people holding a tablet with the swipe of a thumb (same with the new task switcher).


This is nothing new.