New Start Menu Question

In WinXP, the Start Menu's focus was on the menu itself. If you hit 'P' it would open the "Programs" folder.

In Vista & Win7, the Start Menu's focus is in the Search feature. To get into the Programs folder you must hit 'Up', 'Enter', then 'Up'.

Is there a way to have the focus of the Start Menu be a folder structure like WinXP?

I used the old (WinXP) method to allow me to load any program I want in 3 keyboard buttons.
WindowsKey -> 'P' -> 'I' (Launches my Web Browser)
WindowsKey -> 'P' -> 'O' (Launches my Email (Outlook))
WindowsKey -> 'P' -> 'E' (Launches Excel)
WindowsKey -> 'P' -> 'W' (Launches Word)

How can I, using the new Start Menu, create simple button combinations that will allow me to launch ANY program? The searching mechanic is not a good solution, because I may have similarly named programs, like "Microsoft Word" and "Microsoft Excel", or another example may be "Word" or "Wordpad". I don't want to have to spell out entire words, and I don't want to have to change my search phrase after I install a new application.

For example, in Win7, WindowsKey -> 'I' -> 'Enter' works for running IE, but maybe tomorrow I install Illustrator, and then I'll have to change my habits to accomodate.

Thank you in advance for your help.


New Member
If I understand you correctly what you want to do is pin the programs you use frequently to the taskbar. Then you can use the Windows key on your keyboard and the numbers 1-9 to open the respective programs on your taskbar. ie Windows key + 1 will open the first program pinned to the taskbar.

Is that what you are asking for?

Pinning applications to the Taskbar doesn't sound like what I would like, for the following reasons:

1. Would these pinned applications take up permanent room on the task bar, even if they are not running?

2. Am I limited to only 9 shortcut keys? At work I have dozens of applications.

3. Hitting WindowsKey + 1, is less intuitive then a mnemonic like WindowsKey + 'I' for Internet Explorer.

Is there no way to change the focus of the Start Menu to be the menu itself, instead of the search feature?

Nobody has any ideas?


Honorable Member
what you can do is right click you programme in the taskbar goto properties and in the shortcut tab add shortcut keys. as in alt+ctrl+i for web browser.

This website is not affiliated, owned, or endorsed by Microsoft Corporation. It is a member of the Microsoft Partner Program.