Windows 7 Classic Start Menu

Discussion in 'Desktop Customization' started by NormlGuy, Jan 13, 2009.

  1. iroken22

    iroken22 Extraordinary Member
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    yes indeed i have if the government is using lower end machines otherwise no i havent. I wasnt going to argue i am just putting out the facts.
     
  2. Spartan

    Spartan New Member

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    Actually I think you missed my point, the end user test that was done had nothing to do with the speed of the machines, in fact, the testing was done on high Dells. The testing proved that users using a familiar interface were more productive than users that had to learn a new interface. Productivty cannot be measured by just giving users faster machines, in-fact a GAO report done prior cited that even though the government was buying faster machines productivity was no increasing. So I think you facts, although correct, are being mis-applied; because it is obivious that the speed of the machine had little to do with the productivity whereas, users using classic are more productive than users using "fisher price"
    as the user testing has shown...
     
  3. iroken22

    iroken22 Extraordinary Member
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    i think you missed my point. I stated that 99% of the test is on the user who is using the machine not on the computer. And the government unfortunately doesnt have the smartest people working for them........ The instant search feature in the new start menu is the killer of the classic menu. IT makes finding anything on the computer 20000x faster, especially for those users that arent very competent with computers. Another thing to look at is what is that user using on there pc at home. Many of them may have the graphical xp or vista menu and then when they come to work have the classic menu which in turn will make production less because they have to think about where stuff is each way. Let the user choose what theme they want not what theme the company thinks will make them work faster. Unfortunately though there is no correct answer to this question. Every user whether in a business or not should have the choice to use either the new or classic menu. There is no correct answer no matter the amount of research or evidence to support your case.
     
  4. john3347

    john3347 Extraordinary Member
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    I would be interested in seeing the results of an IMPARTIAL test done by a QUALIFIED 3rd party who had no "dog of their own in the fight" Gather 200 participants who had never seen either the old or the new, and all participants having equal logical skills and equal comprehension skills. Divide this group of 200 into two groups of 100 and give 1 hour training to each group, one on the old interface and the other in the new interface. Then both groups are given 100 common computer tasks to perform (The exact same tasks to both groups). Let's see which group completes the 100 tasks first. Now I understand that this whole concept would be hypothetical because there are conditions of "impartial', "qualified", "never seen the old or the new", "equal skills", etc. that would make participant selection impossible. But I still wonder what the results would be.

    I believe the old way (classic) would win hands down! I believe this because the classic was built on the concept of ancient paper filing systems where one or more folder(s) fit into another folder of a higher heirarchy (higher level). This was the concept of the original computer filing system that we have been gradually migrating away from for the last several years. The folder within a folder concept is times over more intuitive and "works the way the mind works" much better than something designed to be "spiffy". If I am looking for Houston, Texas on a globe, I first look for USA, then Texas, then Houston. I don't immediately look for Houston, Texas, the globe is too large for that system. The new filing systems have gotten too far from that original basic concept. The way the new start menu is set up also does not closely conform to this proven concept.

    As a practical matter tho personal preferences, formed by whatever events have formed a person's preferences, affect their likes and dislikes much more than efficiency does. Some people just like this and some just like that. Windows 7, probably better than any Microsoft OS previously, attempts to satisfy all these preferences.

    As for the efficiency of the search space in the start menu. I recently had a brain fart and forgot that - - DUH, a shortcut to the recycle bin is on the desktop. "Recycle bin" is not in the start menu, "recycle bin" is not to be found anywhere. I went to the much praised "search" and typed in "recycle bin" and .......HA, no recycle bin found. What benefit is this search method if it cannot even find items that are basic to the OS? What good is it if you don't know the name of the file you are looking for?
     
  5. davehc

    davehc Microsoft MVP
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    I've tried to avoid this thread, but would comment on the last post.
    I really do not think the comparison betwen a paper desk filing system and a computer filing system (the latter having been around, in "classic" view, for more than a decade now!) is appropriate.
    I would perceive that many people will resist change, even computer uses with more than moderate skills. There is also a modern tenency for users to comment on forums, almost for the sake of comment. In the case of the "classic menu" I am quite sure that, there being any other radical changes in Windows 8, we will go through the identical comments again.
    "I believe the old way (classic) would win hands down" I doubt that. If you browse the forum, you will find another (overlong´) thread on this subject, in the nature of a poll. The classic menu has been firmly outvoted - at the last look, almost 3 to 1. This by a cross section of users from all experience levels.

    On the offtopic remark on the recycle bin. Well, it is a hidden system folder but, if you reveal those (Not any reason to want to do that!) the recycle bin is perfectly visible in Windows explorer. Before the recycle bin was invented, a third party program was needed to look through the hexcode for files which had been accidentaly deleted - those which started $wh..etc. This could be a long task, even hunting down one essential file. Microsoft have made the task easier, with a single mouse click. Lets give some credit for that.
     
  6. mistofeles

    mistofeles New Member

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    Start menu not important

    The start menu is not important. Discussion about old and new is only missleading the readers to forget that there is much more changes in other menus and configuration tools.
    - All the menus in Control panel have changed
    - Even the screen setup is different
    - network setup is different
    - The Accessories programs have changed:
    1. Paint has GRID after all these years
    2. Notepad has not changed. Even the line numbering is still missing
    3. WordBad and Pain has now eyecandy all over them

    Still the TitleBar and StatusBar are hanging in there. In for example Paint the title bar has some functionality, but still we have to wait Windows8 before they ove the menus there.
    -I have bought 1024x768 screen. MS has decided that about 100 pix can be spent for those bars, menu bar eats another 30 pix. The icons eat another 200 pix. What is left, is about 300 pix, under 50% of the work space. F11 doesn't help. None of the tools work, if I go to Full screen.

    So, what does it matter, what the Start Menu looks like. It is only 1% of the visual image of the system. You should go further and check more of the system. I have tried and my humble opinion is here:

    I would say I liked the old ones better. It gets more and more impossible for us in HelpDesk and Local Help to descripe over phone, what the user should do to make the changes needed. (I'm lucky. Most of my customers are in a circle with radius of 2 miles and I can go there walking.) More and more should be done over Remote Assistance, if it only were possible in all cases. In most cases the Remote Assistance is not allowed and you got to tell her how to activate it first, if she has the admin permissions. And hope the customer is in your domain.

    Try yourself to explain to your grandma how to make some configuration modifications over the phone:
    -" Move the cursor over the multicoloured circle ith a flag in the down left corner, in the up left corner or up right corner, where ever you have it, if you have the original theme and not some special. Press the left key of he mouse or trackball or touchpad or what ever you have. In case of a touchscreen ......."

    There should be simple text files for the configuration. Every user knows how to edit a text file. A text file can allways be copied to email and sent to HelpDesk where it could be edited and sent back.

    For example the network configuration is nowadays hidden in some thousand windowses. Still all the parameters could be collected to one file. Possibly old trusty comma delimited format, which can be handled with either Notepad or Excel.
     
  7. unawave

    unawave New Member

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    I contradict. For me the search feature is only faster when I know what I searching for. For me it's much faster to click on a menu entry then typing in several letters into the search box and, when Windows found more then one result, moving the mouse to the right result and clicking on it.

    Not for me. It's like Internet Explorer and Google:
    If I have 30 Internet sites which I visit often then for me it's much faster to click on a favorite link then searching it always with Google.

    I think "not very competent" user don't know what to search for.

    So for me the search function is a helpful addition if I don't know exact where I can find my wanted program. But it is not a replacement for menu entry. Clicking on a menu entry is for me always faster then searching every time.
     
  8. davehc

    davehc Microsoft MVP
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    I support unawave's coments wholeheartedly.
    I do not spend a lot of time searching at random. I usually know what I am looking for and find it quicker to go to that folder/program direct, than do a search. In the case of opening a program. My typing skilss are not of a very high quality, as long members may have noticed! By the time I have, for example, retyped Point and then piant to paint, I might as well click the menu item.
    And yes, favorites is also my " Favorite" menu.
     
  9. jimbo45

    jimbo45 New Member

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    In a Work environment people usually are only using a few applications anyway. Usually WORD, EXCEL, POWER POINT, E-MAIL and some corporate ERP / CRM systems.

    Just stick them on the Desktop -- then you don't even NEED a start menu - classic or otherwise.

    If you want to fiddle around with GUI's choose Linux as there's a whole slew of them (XFCE, KDE, GNOME etc) just to name a few.

    You get the X-server app and you can choose the GUI you want.

    Now what WOULD be nice would be for certain Key combinations to start applications so you wouldn't even need apps on the desktop (for those who don't like stuff on the desktop) -- this probably can be done anyway -- I haven't really done any research into this area - but I'm sure you could at boot up start an "Application Launcher" which would have a configuration file in it which would issue the correct command to start your chosen application when you press the relevant keys.

    Most people only use a very small subset of the total applications available on even a "standard" windows system anyway - probably about 5 or 6 -- and even in these "bite size nibble twitter days" people should have that much memory retention.

    Cheers

    jimbo
     
  10. MikeH

    MikeH New Member

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    Actual Progress?

    This seems to have turned into a philosophical discussion about people's preferences and mindsets. Has anyone made any progress on actually bringing the Classic Start Menu back? It is the subject of the thread, after all.
     
  11. Kylethedarkn

    Kylethedarkn Senior Member

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    Yes there is a program that simulates it. There's a thread about it on these forums somewhere. XD
     
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  12. MikeH

    MikeH New Member

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    I don't care about emulation. We want an option or workaround to enable the real missing code in Win 7. Hopefully Microsoft is monitoring these forums and will go forth with the idea of bringing back the real start menu.
     
  13. 51Cards

    51Cards New Member

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    Microsoft isn't listening. I have posted it to their engineering blogs, I have emailed them, I have promoted threads all over the web on the topic (there are dozens and dozens of them)... the only response I get from Microsoft (and yes, officially) that the Classic Start Menu is not coming back.

    Frankly they don't monitor forums like this. If you want to do something about it go to the Microsoft Windows 7 blogs and start emailing them about it. Ranting on a forum does nothing, they don't ever see it. I've tried to alert them as much as I can to the hundreds of users I have seen complaining but frankly they don't want to listen.
     
  14. techgorilla

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    superior for the kiddies maybe

    The new start menu (which isn't new by the way, it's exactly the same worthless new menu thing as in XP or Vista) is seriously crippled when compared to the classic start menu. The classic start menu is fully configurable and it utilizes the whole screen if necessary. In the new thing everything is confined with a lot of space wasted on the right side for just a few items and the rest stuffed into a tiny matchbox forcing the user to click all over the place in that tiny space where the clicking isn't necessary in the classic menu. So tell me, what's so superior to the old new menu kiddo ???
     
  15. whoosh

    whoosh Cooler King
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    View attachment 471
    You can to a small extent get some classic features like the favourites and control panel but not much else .
    Right click on the start button and go configure but its far from the classic style some want :)

    Make them display as a menue not much else you can do .
     
    #115 whoosh, Apr 26, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2009
  16. techgorilla

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    Whoosh, it still isn't the same thing but looks like it to some extent: using the Start Menu configuration editor to add the Documents or your %userprofile% directory to the crappy thing. Add it as a menu, not a link. In the directory you just added, enter the following command:

    mklink /j _Start "C:\programdata\microsoft\windows\start menu"

    I use the underscore only so it appears at the top of the list. The _Start should appear in the menu you added to the crappy startmenu and can be used as something that resembles the good old classic start menu. You can create a similar junction to the perdonal part of your start menu with (call it whatever you like):

    mklink /j _MyStart "%userprofile%\appdata\roaming\microsoft\windows\start menu"

    In the real classic start menu the two are automigically merged but I'm afraid that can't be done using this workaround.
    Alternatively you can put the two junction points on your desktop and then add the desktop to your taskbar. I like this option more because in that way a can stop using the new start menu altogether and use the Desktop thing, which appears on the right side of the taskbar as an alternative.
     
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  17. reghakr

    reghakr Excellent Member

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    WOW, I really can't believe this thread is still going on.

    For those of you who know me, know that I was probably the strongest advocate for the return of the Classic Start menu.

    For you newer members, it may take a while, but I suggest you look over each page and look at each perspective views.

    At you point I thought I had it, I hacked the shell32.dll and shell32.dll.mui files using Resource Hacker where the code and dialog boxes appear for the Classic menu. I also copied all registry information from my Vista machine. I worked on this for over a week and then realized the Explorer.exe file did not contain the taskbar information as in Vista, but only the graphics for the Start Button. I then realized there were at least 4 other .dll files and related .dll.mui files that had dependencies directly related to shell32.dll and functions and variables inside those dll's and these do not exist in Vista.
    Here was my result:

    http://geocities.com/reghacker/BlueClassic.jpg

    I'm known for not giving up, but it would have taken months and then probably wiped out by a newer build.

    I tried an old version of an Explorer replacement called Powerdesk and was able to achieve a "sort-of" Classic Style look.

    I then tried an old version of Winstep (Windows Blinds) that I had purchased years ago and this worked as well.

    It came to the point where I knew Microsoft wasn't going to bring it back, so I accepted that fact. I'm certainly not going to not purchase an operating system just because of the absence of the Classic Style. There was actually a thread about a guy bitching and moaning because the circular Start Button appeared to large to him. Give me a friggin break.

    As i said in my later posts, some developer is probably working on it and will come up with an exact alternate interface with the look of 2000, XP.

    An apology goes out to the members I had a slight battle over.

    Will this thread ever end?......................Probably not:rolleyes:
     
    #117 reghakr, Apr 26, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2009
    whoosh and (deleted member) like this.
  18. cmn

    cmn New Member

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    If the classic menu lovers would be happy with the image of the Start Menu on one of my Win 7 Beta System that I have attached as a JPG Image, you can change your's using a Modified Vista Classic Start menu creator.

    It's available as a freeware and just download and click the EXE for changing the Start Menu.

    If hope this software will help to end this long thread or the apparent "feud" :)))between the Classics and the Moderns, by serving as a catalyst for the needed compromise. If I get brickbats for this, I am prepared for that too:).
    The credit goes to the Freeware's creator.
    You can find the freeware if you click the following link.
    Vista Start Menu SE 3.15 Download - Freeware Files.com - Utilities Category
     
  19. john3347

    john3347 Extraordinary Member
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    The above start menu is what I have been using for several weeks now. It pretty well equals the functionality of the classic menu. It would be even more "efficient" to use if the expanded program list started at the lower left and expanded upward rather that at the top left and extends downward. If you open a directory with only 3 or 4 folders in it, they are all at the top of the screen and you are looking at the directory list at the bottom of the screen. It takes a few milliseconds to wake up and raise your head to look at the top of the screen.

    I think that there are optional skins available for this application, but I have not experimented with them. I am more concerned with the efficiency of the folder/sub-folder file system that the application offers than colors and frills.
     
  20. jimbo45

    jimbo45 New Member

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    Hi all

    I HATE NAGWARE -- for example the PRO button on the top right hand side of the menu.

    Also how do you disable that Irritating sound when you exit etc.

    This must have been one of the FASTEST UNINSTALLS I've ever done -- good idea and concept but REALLY IRRITATING.

    To any developer

    1) If it's FREE make it FREE -- No If's and Buts.
    2) If you have a PRO or "Enhanced version" specify that CLEARLY on the download web site.
    3) Don't EVER EVER add "Nagware" to a product -- (put stuff in to make you buy the "Pro or Superior version").
    4) For XXX'S sake do we always have to have irritating music or sound clips to stuff without any obvious method to switch this stuff off. - It looks (and sounds) hideously amateurish and won't get you any more customers.

    Cheers
    jimbo
     

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