Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

Summary: Microsoft Windows 7 allows you to customize the Start Menu in many different ways. Mark Kaelin shows you how this relatively simple process works.

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  • Third, we will add Administrative tools to the both the Start Menu and the All Programs list by clicking the appropriate radio button.

    This gallery is also available as a TechRepublic blog post and download. Image created by Mark Kaelin for TechRepublic.
  • Click OK twice to put the changes into effect. Now, when we go back to the Start Menu you can see several new items in the list.

    This gallery is also available as a TechRepublic blog post and download. Image created by Mark Kaelin for TechRepublic.
  • Likewise, the All Programs list now has an entry for Administrative tools.

    Choices
    The examples in this document are just three of many customizations you can make to the Windows 7 Start Menu. I am sure if you look through the Customization list you can find some changes you’d like to make to personalize your Windows experience.

    This gallery is also available as a TechRepublic blog post and download. Image created by Mark Kaelin for TechRepublic.

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software

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12 comments
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  • Any way to make it taller?

    So, is there an easy way to make the menu taller, so that one does not need to use scroll bars so much to find a program?
    pkngresq34
    • To make it taller

      @carlolsen@...
      Just increase the "Number of recent programs to display"
      Slurpdog
    • RE: Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

      @carlolsen@...
      If you still have too many programs after increasing the "Number of recent programs to display", create category folders in your Start Menu.

      Right click "All Programs" and choose "Open All Users".
      Create your category folders and move the program shortcut folders to the desired locations.

      You will probably have to delete a bunch of empty folders (for some reason move and cut don't necessarily remove the old folders).

      I have 12 category folders in my Start Menu.
      My 53 installed programs are distributed amongst them.
      lehnerus2000
  • RE: Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

    Not very helpful. This was very basic.
    alkolkin@...
  • RE: Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

    Works the same way it did in XP...
    EricP_KY
  • Classic Menu for Win7

    There is also a free add-on for Win7 that converts the start menu to the older XP style called CSMenu, available at:
    http://www.csmenu.com/

    Many other handy Win7 tips may be found at:
    http://www.howtogeek.com/tag/windows-7/
    jaybyrd
  • Free XP style start menu with Aero support

    There is a free open source version:

    http://classicshell.sourceforge.net/
    rchan@...
  • RE: Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

    This is what I use---the free version:http://www.startmenu7.com/index.html
    The windows 7 start menu is absolutely horrible as was Vista's. I have many Clients that were very happy with Windows 7 at first, but have come to the same conclusions as many other people I know, and that is Microsoft seems to enjoy disfunctionality and confusion. Is it "Documents" or "My Documents" or "Public Ducuments" or "Documents and Settings" etc., etc. etc.. No, the Windows 7 start menu is a giant step backwards but, as usual, leave it up to third party solutions to fix the messes that Microsoft makes. As for most of my Clients, after months of enduring windows 7, they have installed the Windows XP start menu the easy way---they got rid of Windows 7 and reinstalled Windows XP. Talk about happy people, I didn't realize how much better I actually like XP until I reinstalled on a few machines. I'm sticking with XP until open source matures a bit more.
    warnerpeter@...
    • RE: Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

      @warnerpeter@... Just because you don't know how to use it, doesn't mean it is horrible. There is nothing wrong with the Windows 7 start menu and it's actually very intuitive. Maybe you should try to learn new technology before you discount it.
      chipthamac
  • RE: Customize the Windows 7 Start Menu

    I just installed Windows 7 a couple of days ago upgrading from XP and had done all this already. I even did a few extra options he has not got listed here like adding the downloads folder onto the menu list under the oned normally there
    NZJester
  • SWEET!

    I can't wait for the one on how to tie my shoes, I can never do that all by myself :(

    Thanks for wasting 10 minutes of my life with a tutorial on something that even my Grandmother already knows.
    erma.tate@...
    • WTF

      "I can't wait for the one on how to tie my shoes, I can never do that all by myself :("

      Why are you on this page if its so frickin easy? Why didn't you leave after the first minute?

      Sounds like this was exactly what you needed.
      Alfred Hardy