Classic Shell 4.0: Get Classic Start Menu, Classic IE and Explorer Toolbar Buttons Back in Windows 7, 8 and 8.1

UPDATE: New version 4.0 released which comes with many new features and improved support for Windows 8.1. Please scroll down to read the complete changelog.

The most annoying problem faced by Windows Vista or later OS users is the removal of classic toolbar buttons e.g. Cut, Copy, Paste, Delete, etc. Windows Explorer in new Windows versions doesn't provide these basic toolbar buttons and users have to use keyboard shortcuts keys or menus to perform these operations.

Another annoying problem is the removal of Classic Start menu. New Windows versions don't contain the good old Classic start menu.

Today we are going to share an awesome free utility which brings back the Classic Start menu in Windows Vista and later Windows versions. It also adds good old Explorer toolbar buttons in Windows.

"Classic Shell" is a free small utility which provides:

  • Classic Start Menu
  • Classic Windows Explorer toolbar buttons (Cut, Copy, Paste, etc)
  • Classic IE (titlebar text, progressbar in statusbar in Internet Explorer)

Following are a few screenshots of Classic Shell in action:

Classic Start menu:


NOTE: You can access the default Windows 7 Start menu by pressing "SHIFT" key while clicking on the Start ORB (Start button). You can also change Classic Start menu settings by going to "Settings -> Classic Start Menu" option.

Classic Explorer toolbar buttons, XP style navigation pane, titlebar text and icon:


Its highly customizable, so you can select which buttons should appear in Explorer toolbar by clicking on the "Classic Explorer Settings" button present at last of the toolbar in Explorer.

If you don't get the Classic toolbar in Explorer after installing the utility, press "ALT" key to show Menubar, right-click on it and select "Classic Explorer Bar" option.

Following are a few exclusive features of Classic Shell which you should definitely know about:

Now a new version 4.0 of Classic Shell has been released which comes with following changes:

  • New "Windows 7" menu style that replicates the look and feel of the Windows 7 Start Menu
  • Programs show in a tree inside the main menu
  • Search results and jump lists show inside the main menu
  • Dedicated shutdown button
  • New shortcut in Start menu to open Start screen
  • You can search for files as well as programs using the Windows indexing service
  • The menu can show the most frequently used programs
  • Programs can be pinned directly from Windows Explorer
  • New programs are automatically highlighted in the menu
  • The list of Classic Shell settings can be searched
  • New more reliable way to start on Windows 8, that doesn't use a service
  • New turn off monitor command that can be added to Shutdown submenu
  • Improved compatibility with Windows 8.1
  • Many improvements to performance and responsiveness

You can download the latest version of Classic Shell using following link:

Download Classic Shell for Windows 7, 8 and 8.1

NOTE: Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 are no longer supported by this new version. Version 3.6.8 was the last version to support them. Windows Vista users can download the old version using following link:

Download Classic Shell for Windows Vista

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