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Windows 8: How to re-enable the classic start menu

The Windows 8 developer preview is now out in the wild. Many have you, including almost all the Neowin staff, have downloaded the new preview and are getting used to the many new features in the OS.

One common request that has hit our forum (and inboxes) is how to bring back the classic start button in the developers preview. If you find that you want to experience Windows 8 DP without the new start button interface, follow the steps below to regain the classic start button functionality.

To get back the old start menu, open regedit, goto


change value of RPEnabled from "1" to "0"

close regedit, you get your old start menu......the catch is, no more metro UI because you just disabled it. To get back the Metro UI, change the value back to "1"

We should note that the DP is not intended to be an everyday OS, it is far from complete and there are many bugs and other logistical issues to be resolved.

Making changes to the registry is always a risky adventure and you should not do so unless you are confident in your ability to make the correct adjustments.

While the classic start menu is not present in the DP, it is speculated that Microsoft intentionally did not make the option available to force developers to adopt the new UI. The classic start menu could return in native fashion at a later date.

Thanks for the tip FaiKee

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