We all know that Microsoft has completely removed "Start button" and "Start Menu" from Windows 8. Actually the new Start Screen has replaced the old Start Menu and Start button has been replaced by a hidden square thumbnail which appears when you move your mouse cursor to bottom-left corner of screen.
ViStart already provides a Windows 7 look-like Start Menu and Start button in Windows 8. Start8 provides a combination of new Start Screen and classic Start Menu in Windows 8. On the other hand, Classic Shell provides a classic Start Menu and its own custom Start button in Windows 8.
If you are using Classic Shell in Windows 8 to get Start Menu and Start button back but not happy with its Start Menu UI and Start button look, here is something interesting for you.
Did you know Classic Shell's Start Menu is highly customizable and supports 3rd party skins and you can change Start button image using its Settings?
Today we are going to release a free skin for Classic Shell which will provide Windows 7 look-like Start Menu and Start button in Windows 8. This skin has been shared by our good friend "Gaurav Kale" who is also a part of Classic Shell development team. We have tweaked the skin a little bit to perfectly match Windows 7 Start Menu.
Following is a preview of this skin in action:
To enjoy this skin, you just need to follow these simple steps:
1. First of all download and install Classic Shell if you are not using it:
2. After installing Classic Shell, download our Windows 7 look-like skin for it:
PS: You'll find the download link in the right-side section of the above mentioned page.
3. Once you download the above mentioned ZIP file, extract it and you'll get following 3 files in it:
4. Copy SevenVG.skin and Start_Button.png files to following folder:
C:\Program Files\Classic Shell\Skins
Here C: is the system drive where Windows is installed in your system. If you installed Windows in any other drive, replace C: with the correct drive letter according to your system.
5. Now open Classic Start Menu Settings window. You can open it either by going to "All Programs -> Classic Shell -> Start Menu Settings" option or by right-clicking on Start button and selecting "Settings" option.
6. Now go to "Skin" tab and select "SevenVG" skin from the list.
7. Now the important part! Click on "Backup" button given just before OK button. It'll show a drop-down list, select "Load from XML File..." option.
It'll open a browse dialog box, select "Settings.xml" file present in downloaded ZIP file and click on OK button.
8. That's it. You might need to log off your system or close and restart Classic Shell Start Menu to enjoy Windows 7 look-like Start Menu and Start button in Windows 8.
NOTE: This skin will also work in Windows Vista and Windows 7.
NOTE 2: You can add/remove items to Start Menu using "Special Items" and "Customize Start Menu" tabs in Start Menu Settings window.
PS: You can also check out following video to see the above mentioned method live in action:
Feel free to share your feedback or suggestion about this skin and Classic Shell in your comment...