10 Great Windows 8 Apps - InformationWeek
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Jeff Bertolucci
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10 Great Windows 8 Apps

Transitioning to Windows 8 isn't easy, but these apps can help.
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The Start menu -- the essential navigational tool that has graced the Windows UI from Windows 95 through Windows 7 -- is missing from Windows 8. Rather, the new Start screen is the go-to spot for finding apps and files. Longtime Windows users may struggle with the new paradigm, however, particularly if they decide to spend most of their time in the comfortable confines of the Desktop UI. One of the more annoying aspects of using Windows 8 is the need to switch back and forth between the Desktop to the Start screen to do simple stuff, such as searching the hard drive for a file or tracking down a legacy Windows program.

The solution: Install a third-party utility such as Classic Start 8, which brings a Windows 7-style Start menu to the Desktop. In addition to providing fast access to programs and files, it offers a faster way to shut down your PC than the multi-step Windows 8 method, which is a bit confusing.


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User Rank: Apprentice
11/17/2012 | 9:33:29 PM
re: 10 Great Windows 8 Apps
Win8 Desktop did -not- have to remove the Start button/menu... it seems obvious MS decided to force the issue of using "Modern UI". As I use Win8, I've come to appreciate the Modern UI side and Apps... but I also downloaded 'Classic Shell' to restore the Start button/menus to Desktop (it also allows skipping the Modern UI Start screen, booting somewhat directly to Desktop).
With Classic Shell, I have no problem accessing my old Desktop programs, and add/removing shortcuts, etc... and I still investigate and make increasing use of the Modern UI side, but I'm not forced to it or the confusion of using non-touch workarounds. And the Apps have limitations compared to Desktop programs... many Internet Explorer settings (shared by the App version) have to be set from within the Desktop version; Skype and TeamViewer desktop versions are more powerful (more already existing features). It still seems UNnecessary to me for MS to have removed the Start button/menus, as I come to like things about Modern UI.
MS is apparently betting touchscreens and Apps are going to supplant old mice and desktop programs a lot earlier than they should have. Perhaps they'll service pack the Desktop back to normal use, until possible improvements in Windows 9 might make a true Desktop replacement (by better incorporating Desktop). Win8 is an unfinished transition. Perhaps they should change the name to Windows Touch. There is still something to be said for mice... as the new Logitech T620 touch mouse shows.
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