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How to enable a proper start menu
Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and Windows 2013 do not have a start menu, but have a start page instead. (Windows 8.1 has a start-button but still lacks the start menu.)
If you find Windows difficult to use without the traditional start menu, then all is not lost. Sadly you cannot do this without third party software, but on the plus side it is free.
So, to restore the start menu simply download and install Classic Shell from http://www.classicshell.net/
Classic Shell is free, and provides the missing start menu functionality that was present in previous versions of Windows. Personally I find that it turns Windows 8 from a very poor operating system into a very good and usable one.
These notes have been tested with Windows 8, 8.1 and Windows Server 2013.
About the author: Brian Cryer is a dedicated software developer and webmaster. For his day job he develops websites and desktop applications as well as providing IT services. He moonlights as a technical author and consultant.