Windows 8: Stardock’s Start8 Brings Back the Start Menu (Freeware)

Announced 24 hours after Microsoft made available its beta Windows 8 Consumer Preview at MWC 2012 on February 29, Stardock today released its Start8 utility. Available today, freeware will bring back the familiar Start menu and button Microsoft took out of Windows 8. Here’s how to get it.

Utility maker Stardock today officially released its Start8 — freeware that lets Windows 8 Consumer Preview users easily bring back the Start Menu. Announced on March 1, the software is up now and available for download here.

Microsoft eliminated the Start button and menu in its Windows 8 next gen OS, which it unveiled as a beta available for anyone to download on February 29, 2011 at a Mobile World Congress (MWC 2012) press event in Barcelona. Stardock announced its freeware app 24 hours later in a blog post on March 1. An exec wrote:

“The lack of a Start button and start menu in Windows 8 has made using Microsoft’s new OS a non-starter for me and a lot of other people.

I like Metro, I really do – for tablets. But as a desktop user, I need a consistent work flow that lets me have my windows together on my desktop and don’t want to be jerked out of that environment every time I want to start some new program.”

So here’s a free utility we put together that brings the Metro start menu onto the Windows 8 desktop …

Here’s a video Stardock posted on YouTube.

Our How-To partner has continuing coverage on this. Here’s the first screen you’ll see when you load Stardock’s new freeware utility Start 8.

Check out this piece at and let us know what you think.