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Start menu and few other questions

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  • I realize the developer preview just got released, but after working with it, I have a few things I just can't understand the design decisions on and wonder if things just aren't in there yet or will change?

    - I understand why the Metro interface doesn't have a start menu, but why when I'm in the "desktop" mode is there no Start Menu?  The problem is all my apps aren't Metro so they have to run in the Desktop mode.  So I would probably spend 100% of my time running apps in Desktop mode but there's no Start Menu to easily startup other programs!  I don't get this at all and really need a usable Start Menu.

    - Will it be possible to browse to a .EXE and right click and say "add shortcut or tile, to Metro"?

    - I see you can begin typing letters in Metro to search for installed apps.  But how do I know what apps came with Windows 8 in the first place to even know what to look for?  Things like Accessories, System Tools, Admin Tools, etc.  None of these things show up in the Metro interface and you're left wondering just what the heck you can do.  Is there a list or way to display "all" the programs you can run in Windows 8?

    - Can you change the background on the Metro interface?

    - How about customizing the 'tiles' in the Metro interface?  I have to admit I prefer the nice high color icons that can use transparency, etc. to run my apps in Win7 but in Win8 Metro, all you get is an ugly square or rectangle to click on with low quality image and text on them.  It's like a retro DOS menuing system or something.

    - Metro apps apparently get suspended if they aren't visible.  This is something that I just don't understand.  How on earth would I process hundreds of photos, have an inventory importing new records for 2 hours, have my email running and browse the internet at the same time using Metro apps if they get suspended?  Is the intent if you have more than 1 thing at a time you want to do in Windows 8 to NOT run a Metro app?  Is Metro not designed to run high end apps in the future?  (i.e. - I want to export 1,000 photos from a photo shoot I did but it takes awhile to export, so in the meantime I want to catchup on my email, browse the internet, and listen to some music all while the photos are being exported in the background.)  I take it this isn't possible with Metro apps?  If not, hopefully NONE of the apps I use will ever be ported to a Metro app.

    - I mentioned it another thread, but just can't get over it.  The inability to not be able to close a Metro app is very frustrating.  Cycling through the various Metro apps using WinLogo+Tab becomes tedious because nothing you've run since the last reboot gets closed and you're stuck cycling through them all.  (And what can I say, I just want the stupid things CLOSED when I really am done running them.)

     


    • Edited by KHemmelman Friday, September 16, 2011 4:19 AM
    Friday, September 16, 2011 4:19 AM

All replies

  • I've done more searching and it appears you can't change the Metro background or colors, and that Metro apps aren't designed to be used multitasking.

    I don't know about the rest.  I really would like to get a normal "Start Menu" when in Desktop Mode.  Does anyone know how to get an actual Start Menu when you switch over to Desktop Mode?  It seems so silly to have to switch back to Metro interface to run another application that in turn just switches you back to Desktop mode!  I'd just like a Start Menu under Desktop mode please.  People can have the new cell phone menu interface when in Metro mode and for the other 99.9999999999999% of your apps that will run in Desktop mode, you'll be able to easily run those without having to toggle back and forth.  (Functionality is a good thing Microsoft.  Please don't limit it in Win8 just for the sake of 'change'.)

     

    Friday, September 16, 2011 1:39 PM
  • Go to your desktop and add a new folder. Name it "Applications.{4234d49b-0245-4df3-b780-3893943456e1}" without the quotes. This will have all the apps in it. I don't think you can make shortcuts for any of these apps on the desktop.
    Friday, September 16, 2011 2:00 PM
  • Hi jwr7 and thank you for the reply.  I'm thinking this isn't a solution we would find acceptable.  We have a corporate style environment with over 10,000 computers and an entry on the deskstop like this, while maybe functional, isn't acceptable.  For testing purposes though at this stage, it's certainly something to consider to give some functionality to run your apps.

    I did some more searching and found a registry hack to get the Start Menu back.  (Basically you end up with the Windows 7 interface, which is a good thing.)  But the side affect is it's profile specific and it completely eliminates the Metro interface altogether.  Forced to choose between the two, it's pretty obvious at this point we would choose to get rid of the Metro interface if that's what it took to get the Start Menu back because none of the apps we have are Metro apps and won't be for a very long time.  So having a functional Start Menu in the Desktop interface is pretty important and a terrible omission.

    Hopefully Microsoft will realize having the Start Menu in Desktop mode is a good thing and put it back in.  (I can't think of any reason why you wouldn't want it there.  Offering options like this is a good thing.)

     

    On a side note, I also wonder why in the Metro interface you can't simply use your mouse and "click & drag" the screens left/right?  We don't have a single touch style computer in existance and it seems so obvious to me that a mouse/keyboard user should be able to do this.

     

    Friday, September 16, 2011 2:28 PM
  • On Fri, 16 Sep 2011 14:28:13 +0000, KHemmelman wrote:

    On a side note, I also wonder why in the Metro interface you can't simply use your mouse and "click & drag" the screens left/right?? We don't have a single touch style computer in existance and it seems so obvious to me that a mouse/keyboard user should be able to do this.

    You can do this on the Start screen with the wheel on your mouse if you've
    got one. Doesn't seem to work in the Metro apps, but it does work on Start.
    There's also a scroll bar at the bottom of the screen.


    Paul Adare
    MVP - Identity Lifecycle Manager
    http://www.identit.ca
    RAM: A male sheep.

    Friday, September 16, 2011 2:34 PM
  • Hello Paul.  Thank you for the reply.  You are correct, the mouse wheel does work.  I have Win8 installed on a HP 8460p laptop with a large style touchpad mouse.  I had the 'mouse cursor' on the top part of the screen because to 'scroll' with this touchpad you have to use two fingers.  Sometimes when you tap and hold with two fingers, you get a 'click' instead of the mouse wheel scrolling, so of course I didn't want the cursor on top of a tile.  Turns out the mouse scrolling works if your mouse cursor is over the top of the tiles to scroll the window left/right.
    Friday, September 16, 2011 3:08 PM
  • I like this OS, so I would hope the development team reads what we discuss. Access, opening and closing apps and a direct shut down icon. Simple but required things for sure.
    Friday, September 16, 2011 5:26 PM
  • It's not the Start menu, but...

    You could make a custom toolbar on the Desktop Taskbar... point it to:

    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

    ...then you can size it down to just the title, "Programs", and clicking the >> pops up a list.

     

    Monday, September 19, 2011 7:11 AM
  • It is quite possible to have the menu on the desktop version.


    For that you need to create a reg file that will modify the registry and have the menu and in contrast to another event at Metro menu.

    For the normal menu, open your ediiteur text and add lines:

    For the menu desktop:  

     

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer]
    "RPEnabled"=dword:00000000
     

    (Please leave a blank line at the end of texte)

    To return to the Metron

     
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer]
    "RPEnabled"=dword:00000001
     

    (Please leave a blank line at the end of the text.)

    That is simple.

    Just rename them .reg and run them for this to take effect.

    I hope the solution has not been given, I must do aps have yet read.

    Sorry for my English

     

    Georges Christophe



    • Edited by Georgeschris Monday, September 19, 2011 12:54 PM changing the appearance of the code
    Monday, September 19, 2011 12:47 PM
  • Registry hacks are great for power users, but most consumers don't know what the registry is or how to edit it. 
    Monday, September 19, 2011 1:07 PM
  • Totally agree with you, I give this idea to people more aware that the common user ...
    We must not forget that this OS is a version "Alpha" so normally public informed: p
    Monday, September 19, 2011 1:16 PM
  • I honestly doubt Microsoft would isolate the IT market so drastically. The fact that it's even in the Preview right now (albeit through a registry hack) is great news and means it's probably going to be a feature. Even if they purposely disabled it for the preview or it's still a WIP.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 1:56 PM
  • It's not the Start menu, but...

    You could make a custom toolbar on the Desktop Taskbar... point it to:

    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

    ...then you can size it down to just the title, "Programs", and clicking the >> pops up a list.

    I thought of doing something similar, but the button you have to click is only about 5 pixels wide and is annoying to try to click.

    With the startmenu button in the corner you didn't have to look at it to click it, you could just flick the mouse down and left and click. You couldn't miss it.

    If people are going to this much effort to get back a lost feature, then it should be obvious to Microsoft that it shouldn't have been removed in the first place.

    Monday, September 19, 2011 2:17 PM
  • Windows is still in beta is a lot of things will change again with the menu
    Monday, September 19, 2011 2:29 PM
  • Windows is still in beta is a lot of things will change again with the menu

    I hope that's true.  But I'd like to hear something official from Microsoft acknowledging our concerns and that they will be addressed.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 3:06 PM
  • I'm quite used to using the 5-pixel? >> (chevrons) to open a program list... such as with the Quick Launch bar, which is easily recoverable as it was in Win7.  Usually I leave the bar open enough for a few favorites.  I don't care to enable a Start button which disables something else though :)... this is a Preview ...not a how-can-I-make-it-like-Win7 launched product.  Not -even- a beta... perfect time to make good-natured suggestions, but not get all bent about the form as if final... yet.

    I do like Metro even though I have no touch...

    To digress... I just wish that Desktop was part of the Metro 'wall'... a 'landing' spot to wrap Metro around. At either end... a two finger swipe for touch users to get into, or a semi-'resistant' bump on the Metro ends edges with a mouse.  I think that would be more 'seamless' than a separate app.

    But the Start menu is a Desktop feature they should retain... on the Desktop  ...with Metro charms as well. 

    Tuesday, September 20, 2011 9:31 AM
  • Hello Paul.  Thank you for the reply.  You are correct, the mouse wheel does work.  I have Win8 installed on a HP 8460p laptop with a large style touchpad mouse.  I had the 'mouse cursor' on the top part of the screen because to 'scroll' with this touchpad you have to use two fingers.  Sometimes when you tap and hold with two fingers, you get a 'click' instead of the mouse wheel scrolling, so of course I didn't want the cursor on top of a tile.  Turns out the mouse scrolling works if your mouse cursor is over the top of the tiles to scroll the window left/right.


    what driver are you using for your 8460p?  we have an 8460p - ran the update for the Mouse and it now has the Synaptics v7.5 - closest thing I could find for the touchpad was the LuxPad 7.5 - scrolling left/right and zooming work with the built in test window but not in the OS.

    any tips?


    friends don't let friends do instant
    Thursday, September 22, 2011 9:09 PM
  • what driver are you using for your 8460p?  we have an 8460p - ran the update for the Mouse and it now has the Synaptics v7.5 - closest thing I could find for the touchpad was the LuxPad 7.5 - scrolling left/right and zooming work with the built in test window but not in the OS.

    any tips?


    friends don't let friends do instant

    Sorry for missing your question.  I am using the Windows 7 Synaptics driver downloaded from HP for my model.  I simply expanded the file and did not run the setup.  To update the driver I did a "update driver" on the device and pointed to the folder.  You could try the Windows 7 driver directly from Synaptics too if you wish and see if that works for you too.  http://www.synaptics.com/resources/drivers
    Tuesday, September 27, 2011 1:26 PM
  • Hello KHemmelman,

    You might be interested in the Blog on Evolving the Start menu. I don't know if you have seen it yet. It should be of interest.
    http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/10/03/evolving-the-start-menu.aspx

     


    Marilyn
    Tuesday, October 4, 2011 8:47 PM
    Moderator