Stardock's CEO talks to us about the company's new Windows 10 Start menu, Start10

Windows 10 won't officially be launched until sometime later in 2015, but software developers are already working on applications that will expand on the features in Microsoft's next operating system. One of the most well known third party Windows app makers, Stardock, has just launched their first Windows 10 program, Start10. The app offers users a way to bring the classic Windows 7-based Start menu to Windows 10, along with a number of other features.

Microsoft decided to add a Start menu in Windows 10 after it received a number of complaints about the company's decison to remove that feature in Windows 8. Stardock was one of many company that released a Start menu replacement for that OS and it turned into a massive hit for the company. So why would Stardock launch a menu program for Windows 10? We got the company's founder and CEO Brad Wardell to answer these and other questions about Start10, including his own feelings on Windows 10 as a whole and some hints about what the company has planned for the future.

Firstly, how many paid Start8 licences has Stardock sold since it launched three years ago?

I can't tell you the exact number but the number is in the millions.

Did the success of Start8 surprise you and do you think its success helped the Microsoft Windows team to realize adding a real start menu to Windows 10 was a good idea?

Absolutely. When the first beta of Windows 8 came out, we assumed they would add the Start menu back in a later build. But it was driving us nuts in the meantime so we put together "Start8". When they didn't put it back, we polished it up and made it available to the general public.

Start10 for Windows 10 Modern UI

Some people might question the need for Start10 since Windows 10 will have a Start menu on the desktop. Why do you think people will need Start10 for Windows 10?

I was one of those people until I started using Windows 10 a lot.

The basic problem Microsoft faces is that they want their Start menu to be usable by both desktop users via a mouse as well as via touch. As a result, they give up a lot of the usability for people who are trying to do serious desktop work.

For example, the Windows 10 start menu items lack menus. So I can't just go to a file location. The search bar doesn't allow me to pin things to the start menu, I can't organize it the way I'd like (or standardize it for an enterprise customer). There's no jump list support, there's no realistic way to integrate multiple cloud document providers together because their Start menu is launch centric and not document centric like it's traditionally been.

Moreover, there's the issue succinctness. I don't benefit from having a bunch of large blocks thrown in my face when I just want to check what type of monitor a user has on their machine via "Documents and Printers" (which isn't even accessible from the Windows 10 start menu). The "All apps" link still doesn't support a real folder concept. The list goes on and on.

Mind you, it's better than having no Start menu at all. But it's important to remember that there are decades of user experience and refinement with the traditional Start menu.

What are the biggest features in Start10?

In the first build, it's really just an evolution of Start8. But as we go forward, we want to integrate a superset of what is in Windows 10 so that it can appeal to casual users, enterprise users and power users via various customization options.

Start10 configuration screen

What will the price be like for the program?

It'll be $4.99 on its own or part of Object Desktop which is $49.99 for our entire suite of desktop enhancements (Fences, Multiplicity, Start8, Launch8, Tiles, etc.)

Does Stardock have any more plans for Windows 10 specific applications and if so can you give us any hints about them?

We do. One of the most promising features of Windows 10 is its "multitasking" feature (I wish they weren't calling it that). Basically, it's an advanced form of virtual desktops. There's a lot of interesting things you can do with that. Another example is more people are getting High DPI displays. We're working on cool stuff to make sure users can make the most of that on Windows 10.

And of course, there's all the DirectX 12 stuff we've got going but that's another story.

What do you think of Windows 10 in terms of features and has Microsoft done a better job with developing the OS compared to Windows 8?

I think Microsoft has done a remarkable job on learning from the mistakes of Windows 8. There's a lot of important under the hood work that's gone into Windows 10 that I wish Microsoft would push more. For example, Windows 10 is much better at utilizing your CPU cores than previous versions of Windows. This matters not just because of raw performance but can have a significant impact on power usage. You are actually better off using 4 cores slightly than using 1 core strongly from a power and performance perspective.

What's going to be ironic is that for a lot of users, Windows 10 will "magically" allow your devices to have much better battery life and sadly, based on the marketing I've seen from Redmond, there will be little PR in explaining why this is.

Start10 Windows 7 Menu

Does Stardock have plans to release any programs directly from the Windows Store in Modern UI format in the future?

Only if the market makes that case really. I've seen the sales numbers for a lot of "popular" iOS apps some for Windows store apps and they're not very encouraging.

What I think is going to help a lot is a single version of Windows you will see the Store app and the desktop app APIs continue to integrate further. There are good things in WinRT. But I would like to see more features from WPF and .NET integrated into it and less emphasis on Javascript or other attempts to webify Windows apps.

Finally, what else can you tell us about Stardock's plans for Windows 10?

Our biggest endeavor for Windows 10 is going to be trying to create a single experience between Modern apps and Win32 apps. Users shouldn't care what underlying API is used. There should be a single look, feel, and functionality between them. I see our mission is to unify that experience so that the user never has to care what "type" of app it is. While power users, like your readers, can look at the title bar and behavior and go "Oh, that's a Windows store app", there shouldn't be trade offs for them, consumers, or enterprise users in what type of Windows app they use.

We would like to thank Brad for answering our questions. You can purchase and download the first version of Start10 at Stardock's website (opens in new tab).

John Callaham
139 Comments
  • Rainmeter + Stardock =
  • I love Rainmeter! I should look into stardock.
  • = Total loss of performance
  • Exactly
  • Windows 10 isn't at the RTM stage, this seems rather premature.
  • Not that surprising considering Start8 came out during the Windows 8 beta. The sooner it comes out, the sooner they can fix bugs and improve the product, before the real OS comes out.
  • Windows 10 is not going to change much from the trainwreck presented so far.  If they want to get W10 rleased in 2015, they will need to RTM in Aug, which means about five more month builds left. Not enough time to significantly turn it around. They have not yet responded to many User Voice requests. These StarDock menus represent the most effective evolved menu from Windows 7 for core desktop users.  Desktop users need deep menu structures to be fully productive. Microsoft are repeating the same Windows 8 mistake of imposing Metro on Desktop users, and desktop users on Tablets. Looks like we will have to wait for Windows 12 before Microsoft sorts their mess out.
  • How do you know any of what will change? We don't know how old 9926 is. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • 9926 took Microsoft six weeks, prior to release in mid Jan. So it does not need too much thought to work out their feature and backlog rate is nowhere near enough for any significant change before RTM in August. Remember how much Windows 7 UI changed in its nine months of consumer release , or Windows 8 ? Basically not much. Which is why the writing is already on the wall for Windows 10.
  • Seems you are arguing very hard in favor of this program, add to that the infomercial like twist to this article and it all starts to make sense.....
  • But reality is people still won't like the lack of a real start menu in W10 for desktop. So this looks like a good alternative
  • LOL I am defintely _not_ going to ask you for any investment tips Jules W. I am using Win10 all day at the moment, not sure which "train wreck" you are using, but its not the Win 10 I am using. Win 8 was not only a large leap for the UI, but it was also on the wrong clock cycle for Windows refreshes. Most firms paying the Entperise licensing (65%+ of the Windows revenue) were still rolling out 7 to kill of XP even up till early this year. Most are now looking at 8, but thinking hey we might as well wait for 10 as its so close. Win 10 also solves much of the training concerns of 8.  Couple that with Intel making great strides, Winows 10 will meet with pretty decent success especially as its being given away to most non payers for free in the first year. As has been the case for nearly 2 decade, people predict the failure of Windows or MS at their peril.
  • Hey look I love Metro on both my Lumia 925 and my Lumia 2520 devices, perfect sense and a superior UI for Touch devices. What I am arguning about is why Microsoft seems th think it is OK to compromise the desktop experiecne for all those billions of office users.  i get it that in here we are all 'fans' of Windows 8 and IWndow 10.  But to be so arrogant attitude on the Start Menu in  Windows 8 [None], Windows 8.1 [Star Button only] Windows 10 [Partial non nested menu] - It is still a compromise for Enterprise users.  Microsoft should be putting these guys out of business. But I look at it, and then its pretty obvious that what these guys have implemented wil be very effective, popular and better than all those User Design resources that Microsot could muster.   OK I get that we are all Microsoft fans here.  But Guys we need to stand back, take off our rose tinted spectacles, nd say that the Emperor has no Cloths.  Taking more than four yeras to get an effective Start Menu back for the 'normal users' is simply not good enough.
  • What the hell are you even talking about? Turning it around? They don't need to turn it around because Windows 10 has gotten near universal praise. As for Stardock, I'm not going to spend 5 bucks on that cluttered garbage they think people need. So Stardock can take a friggin' hike.
  • Haha, "trainwreck" -- you're hyperbole is assanine.
  • Nice try, but for the 'you're' ...
  • Stupid autocorrect.
  • @Adam good cover lmao
  • From what I understand they plan on releasing a build every month, so like you said that would be five or six more builds. They can change a LOT in each build with enough feedback from users, so its still possible that we can see the RTM change a lot from Windows 8(.1). Its much too early to tell how it will change right now, we're not even using the developer preview, its still tech previews.
  • Plus with Windows as a service things can change further after RTM
  • Looks like crap to me.. I'm all for the progress and Windows 10 is a promise of a progress and I like the way things are moving forward so no need to take a step back for me. No thank you Stardock
  • Options are good but I agree with you. I like the Windows 10 Start menu just fine.
  • I agree, but I also do like how Windows 7 (and Start10) allows you to open previous word documents from the start button, just from clicking an arrow. So if Microsoft could include that fuctionality back into the start button, it would make it that much better.
  • If you have word pinned to the task bar you can right-click it for this feature.  This is in Windows 8.
  • @Khensu, definitely true, but for me (not saying this is true for everyone, but shouldn't the point be the personalizabilty for different user preferences?) I only like to pin applications to my Taskbar that I am likely to have Open. That's fine for Word, Excel, Outlook, etc. that are almost constantly running with multiple documents open, but not so good for something I may use a lot, but only open briefly then close. I frequently pop open a Remote Desktop session and then close it after performing some small task, for instance. With the traditional Start menu, I can easily access all the RDP files for each system I may need to control. Awesome. On the other end of the spectrum (don't use that often), I also run Microsoft Project, Access, CorelDraw, and Corel PhotoPaint, but I may go several weeks without opening those. Nevertheless, when I do, I like being able to go directly to the document I'm after from the Start menu, not open the program, go to the recently opened files list (or browse) to get the file I'm after. Much faster from the traditional Start menu. What I really don't understand is why Microsoft isn't bringing this back themselves. It's not like those recent files or jump lists are impossible to include with the new Start menu. I hope they find a way to integrate these still. I'd rather not use a third party desktop modification app, but might if Microsoft leaves this out. (That said, on other systems, I'm running Windows 8, and have functioned fine without installing any Start menu mod, but I do grumble every time I have to go to the Start screen to open a desktop app and find that I do pin more apps to the Taskbar than I would under Windows 7. I resent that.)
  • The old build is this way.
  • All I want is Windows 8.1 Start Screen.  Exactly like 8.1.  Not that horrid thing that is currently being used in Windows 10.  If Microsoft doesn't fix the current Windows 10 Start Screen hopefully there will be some company that will actually make a version that looks like the current 8.1 Start Screen.  And then I'm there!
  • @Whodaboss There's nothing wrong with the Start Screen in the Windows 10 builds (aside from bugs of course), I think it looks nice. It could use a couple tweaks to look better, maybe when in full screen/tablet mode get rid of the "recent/all apps" lists and just access those from swiping to the left or right or something like you do in Windows Phone, and when in desktop mode return it to where its constantly visbile. But other than that I don't see what's so different from it compared to the 8.1 version
  • @Joshua I'm glad the current version of Windows 10 meets your requirements.  As for me, I never, ever, liked the Start Menu so I don't want it.  I love Windows 8.1.  If I never had to see a Start Menu again I would be forever happy.  But since I know any version of Windows will have a Start Menu I just want an option where I can use the Start Screen and disable the Start Menu.  And with the current look of the Start Screen, not that ugly thing currently in Windows 10.  And yes, I use Windows 8.1 on a laptop/desktop (with mouse and keyboard only and it's easy)/ and Surface Pro 3.  But we all like what we like.  And we all have our opinions on what we think is good.  I wish Microsoft would have left 8.1 alone.  But I didn't have a say.
  • Yeah I know what you mean. I liked the 8.1 Start Screen as well. I just hated how people were complaining about wanting a non touch friendly start menu back, like the one from Windows XP, and that was just ridiculous. I dont mind a Start Menu, but it has to be touch friendly, and at least somewhat different. So far Windows 10 is doing a good job at doing so, though it can still use some improvements. Hopefully they'll come up with a decent compromise that satisfies everybody. If they do go back to a start screen similar to that of 8.1 I wouldn't mind that at all, as I actually enjoyed using it more than the Start Menu
  • I personally like the stock W10 menu just fine..
    .........
    But, options are good.
  • Make an app so I can keep the old 8.1 start screen and I'm happy
  • Stardock, the only successful software company in Michigan...
  • Yes, because a mega long list of program shortcut icons is better than a tile of (live) icons on one screen. /s
  • Windows Phone has a hideously ugly Long Long Long Apps list. But Stardock is offering us nested menu system,, with folder nesting under user control. Not the basic and inflexible single level W10 menu.
  • Folder nesting in the start menu is antiquated. Everyone knows you should have been pinning to taskbar and using the jumplists and recent items from the taskbar buttons since windows 7. That's why I never missed the start menu in 8 because I learned to windows properly :P
  • For me, the Taskbar is for programs that are likely to be open (Word, Excel, Outlook are almost always open with multiple documents). By pinning those, I know they are always in the same location, so they are easy to find. I know little used applications will be on the right, because they're not pinned. The Start menu lets me launch other less ubiquitous programs and directly open the relevant document -- exactly like the Jump lists on the Taskbar, but for applications that don't merit inclusion on the Taskbar. This separation is helpful for me with dual 30" 2560x1600 screens. If I put all my applications on the Taskbar, I'd be much slower at switching between them, because there would be so many icons, I'd have to spend time looking for the right one. The Start menu and it's own separate Jump list/recently used file lists, serves a vital role for my usage. Sadly, this particular feature is currently missing from the restored Start menu in Windows 10. Also, as much as I agree with aspects of the criticism of the folder structure for programs and don't really care for the the All Programs folder view of the Start Menu, it is indisputably easier to find little-used programs in that than in the All Programs equivalent of the Start Screen. This is true simply because while both are alphabetized by folder, on the Start Screen, effectively all the folders are open, forcing you to scroll through a vast list of programs and folders to find the folder containing the little-used program you may be after. Sure, you can just type its name in either system, but that implies you remember the name. Many programs install several little apps with names that only make sense in the context of their containing folder. Finding those on the Start screen is a pain in the ass and MUCH SLOWER than in the Start menu.
  • I agree with all of your points! There is a 'by category' sort on the all apps part of the start screen, but there doesn't seem to be any non-hacky way to organise them or change the groups. The traditional start-menu folders were far more efficient for the reasons you've already described. The start menu seems like a desktop wall-of-icons replacement, but I turned off showing desktop icons in vista or 7 (whenever it was added) so the start screen always felt like a throwback to the dark days of XP.
  • Folders in the traditional start menu are horrible. First of all, many of them are just folders that contain one program, but also contain its uninstall link and readme, etc. It's absolutely unnecessarily convoluted way to access an application. I can hit start and type the first few letters of an app, and launch way faster then digging through the folder list. Considering the improvements of the W10 start menu and the current state of W10, this Start10 app seems way premature and stupid. But I guess jf they made that much of Start8, they might as well try to with a Windows 10 version.
  • @spaulagain, I agree with you about the problems with the traditional folders, but if you're looking for a little-used app whose name you can't remember because it's just a secondary applet that accompanies the main application (like the key generator app that accompanies one of my VPN programs), finding that on the Start Screen is even harder. You basically have the same folder structure, but all the folders are "Open", so you have browse through an even more painful list.
  • True but last I checked you can use quick jump in the WP app list. Can Start10 do this? Don't get me wrong, im all for options but going backwards to that long list of installed programs is just halting progress. I personally like the current stock win10 start menu and with MS' new rapid development approach, I have a feeling that we can see improvements and refinements made at pace.
  • Why are you even part of this forum? You're contributing nothing.
  • Are you kidding me? First thing I see in one of the pictures is a HIDEOUS long list. Way worse than WP because I see no jump lists there.
    You definitely have a clear agenda of promoting this sub par program.
  • But on windows phone you can jump quickly through that list by tapping on the letters that sit above the list of apps that start with that letter, and tap the letter that corresponds with the app youre trying to open. So for instance I want to open Jetpack Joyride. I tap on the "A" that sits towards the top of the app list, it'll open all the other letters, tap "J" and I'm already at my apps that start with J. No need to scroll all the way down to them.
  • People should not judge any product until the final version (especially the stock win10 start menu). There are so many features that are yet to be shown.
  • I hope they show a lot more features for Windows 10 for phones. I was a tad disappointed at the amount of stuff they have shown off so far, though I do like the little cursor nub and voice keyboard they included. I understand that they're all still builds and there's tons more to be added, but I hope that Microsoft plans on making Windows 10 for phones stand out from Windows Phone 8. So far there hasn't been many changes.
  • I'm fine with the current look of windows 10. The only thing I'll be replacing are the stock icons. I'll be using IconPackager from Stardock to replace them ugly things.
  • Pretty sure those will all be revised at final release. Some of the Spartan leaks showed evidence of completely overhauled icons. Specifically the wirey look.
  • Lol the icons are the ONE THING if any, that are not complete at all lol its pretty obvious I mean theres flat icons here and there and you still have the glossy 2000's era icons lol its time to unify the system and get every icon flat from top to bottom.
  • @kullkid Pretty sure that Microsoft is working on doing that right now.
  • I find the fact that the Start8 does not have the Windows Logo as it is on Windows 8.1 at the bottom quite disturbing...
  • I think that's configurable.
  • This has annoyed me ever since I installed it on my Windows 8.1 PC?
  • Copyright issue. Classicshell (a similar product) had the same issue.
  • Yeah, that would they make sense. They probably can't use the Windows Logo.
  • Right-click on the Start button still gives access to many menu features as well for "power desktop users".
  • @fwalts, I think that is a nice improvement in Windows 8.1, but it's not the same as access to documents and folders without jarringly-jumping to a separate screen. I resent that a whole monitor of mine (I run dual 30" screens) gets taken over with the Start Screen when I just want to open a file. I also think it's sad, though I realize most users didn't use them, that if I want to look at my weather applet (a gadget in Windows 7), I have to go to the Start Screen to look at the Live tile, taking away a full monitor for something that only needs a few inches of space. Why can't I just keep that Live tile running all the time in a free space on my Desktop where I can see it at any time? Just like I can put static or live tiles on the Start screen, why not let us do that on the Desktop? For those of us with a lot of screen real estate, that just seems like common sense.
  • Microsoft could consider giving the users a choice between the new metro style start menu and the old Win7 start menu. No need for a 3d party start menu then. Or make the new start menu so damn good we don't want the old one back.
  • Meh for Windows 8 maybe ... For Win10 no thanks.
  • Stardock's software always looks so tacky
  • This product should be outlawed and this company disbanded.
  • Why? Just because you don't like what they are doing doesn't mean people should be made redundant...
  • That was a bizarre thing to say, Arnold. Don't troll.
  • i want windows 8 style :(
  • Why would anyone pay for Stardock when Classic Shell does it better, for free?!
  • I guess they probably haven't heard of Classic shell...
  • This 10 times over. I've seen a lot of articles online which push consumers towards Stardock and even laptops bought from retailers with stardock trials pre-installed, so I've got a feeling that's a big reason why, and would explain why they've made so many sales from computer illiterate users.
  • Advert.
  • Totally agree all that article is is an ad, I wonder what they received as a "thank you". Also I like win10 start, yes it needs a few tweaks (like ability to turn live tiles off) but prefer it to 8.1
  • What happens if you unpin all the tiles? Not rhetorical, I haven't tried but if you do that on WP it disables the Start screen entirely.
  • Hey Nik great question. I just tried your experiment and sadly the start menu keeps that space there for the tiles. It'd be great if an admin can create a policy to have all tiles unpinned and the start menu dynamically adjusts and slims down. But sadly that is not the case right now. Now to pin all my tiles again lol
  • @kull I think they're adding the dynamic feature back in future builds, seeing as that they previously had it at one time but removed it for some reason. I definitely see it coming back though.
  • Interviewing a developer is not the same as an advertisement at all. That is a really strange accusation.
  • I dont understand why MS cant offer the same customizability in their products...yes i understand they are trying to push live tiles but it should be some kind of option. People would appreciate that more. I wonder why they want to make live tiles apart of the start experience rather than making the desktop area customizable with a start screen like layout instead of icons.
  • To your first thing: Gabe Aul already said too much customization makes the developement more difficult because it branches it even more. And it boggs down the OS.   To the second: Because most of the time you're not looking at the desktop. You'd have to minimize stuff to get to it instead of just pushing the start button which overlays on top.
  • So how does stardock do it? And no one seems to complain and they have millions of consumers who got start8. And in current versions of windows they have the show desktop button which brings you directly to the desktop and if you click it again all your windows are in the same place this is the same concept and wont require the user to minimize all of their windows. I think thats a better option and using then allowing fullscreen start screen in tablet mode similar to win 8...at this point this one option thing isnt going to suit everybody.They HAVE to bring greater customizability.
  • because they use a seperate program all together, where microsoft would need to put to branches of the same feature, and tie it into a setting somewhere, much mroe difficult to keep up with as time goes on, also, starsock isnt managing an entire OS ontop of their addition.   clicking botton ->looking at sometihng->clicking button again -> clicking the program i was previously using in the taskbar -> continue working VS clicking button -> looking at tile -> clicking program -> continue working   notice how theres an extra step in your idea?    and, no, clicking the "show desktop" button twice doesn't always bring up the same program you were on.
  • Start8 is one software, from a company that isn't maintaining an entire OS. And also, many people have complained that Start8 slowed down their PC's, you can read people complaining about it everywhere. It also brings incompatibility issues with updates.
    ​Also, that "show desktop" button isn't very reliable. As Asskickulater said, it doesn't always bring you back to the windows that was open. I just tested it, and it didn't for me. Stuff being on the desktop is a lot less convenient than the start menu.
  • There's a good quote, I forget the exact wording or who said it but it's something like 'too many options reveals a lack of definitive design direction'. Options are good; too many options is not.
  • I think its because users who are using Start10 don't like the new Start Menu. But if someone teaches them on his to use the new one, then people might like it.
  • thats what people said about win 8 start screen...and now MS is back to making start menus lol
  • Lol there's really not a whole lot to learn about it. All/recent apps on the left, pin able apps/tiles on the right, scrolls up and down just like the old ones do. What's so hard about that? Sometimes I think people are just civilized modern cavemen that are afraid of anything new, and condemn it. I mean they act the same way..."caveman see fire, fire scare caveman and burn him because he can't figure out how to use, caveman hate fire." Sounds kind of similar to "User get new Start Menu, new start menu frustrate user, user open wrong program and get virus, user hate new Start Menu" doesn't it? Lol.
  • Isn't he worried Microsoft might integrate some of Start10's features by the time Windows 10 is released? Then their product wouldn't be as useful. But choice is good, anyway.
  • Premature and pointless app, very obvious infomercial, probably mr Callahams history with Neowin has something to do with it.. The only thing these apps do is keep people stuck in a decade old way of working and flat out disallowing Microsoft to move forward. Apps like this should be blocked by the OS IMO..   Especially releasing this so early is a sign of disrespect, ignorance and self centered attitude.
  • They ought to write in to the OS a security feature stopping anything from altering start or it wont launch programs until start is restored to default.
  • This is an interview. News sites like us run interviews. Releasing Start10 prior to Windows 10's official launch is none of the things you said.
  • Or hey, just stick to Windows 7......
  • I'm all for options, it would be interesting to see what the final end product (Windows 10) turns out to be.
  • He is worried of loosing customers ... ( millions to thousands ) ... :D he tried soooo hard to make us think W10 start menu is bullsh*t and Start10 is your solution for that... Come on... Don't talk sh*t ...
  • *losing
  • Lol the start menu isn't even close to being finished in Windows 10
  • I hope you're right because I really would like to see submenus come back.
  • We've got theoretically 5 or 6 more builds worth of changes to see what they come up with, so anything is possible.
  • There's no way I'm installing such shit on my computer!
  • What I would really like is for Microsoft to get the SDK to Stardock so they would re-imagine Windows Phone 10.  That is my dream.  Love Stardock for what they do with Windows.
  • Maybe 1 or 2 of the things he mentions are valid criticisms, but stuff I see a lot like 'I just want to check what type of monitor a user has on their machine via "Documents and Printers" (which isn't even accessible from the Windows 10 start menu)' is just not a real problem. In W8 & W10 Hit the Windows key, type 'Devices' and the 'Devices & Printers' link is probably the first one in the list. Arrow key and enter or click with the mouse. Once you start using the start menu like that things become much simpler.
  • Sure there are other ways to do those things but the easiest way would be to include it in the start menu.
  • I disagree that is easier. I was actually thinking that the new way is easier. But that's just my opinion of course.
  • Yeah let's cling to the past. To hell with the future!
  • "New" isn't always "better"
  • The heck is going on with the charms bar anyway? Is it going away?
  • Idk but I want it back
  • Good riddance. It was not a bad concept but in practice it just did not make things better.
  • Charms are gone in WIndows 10.  I like what they did with them though. A simple click on the notification tray and you get them.
  • But if you don't have a mouse touching the notification tray isn't as simple. And I don't think all the charms were carried over, like the Devices - Play & Project? I also don't understand why they took the keyboard shortcuts for the charm items away.
  • Charms was a nice addition. The problem with them was that more or less the only way to access them was swiping from the right, or moving your mouse to the right side of the screen, which a lot of people didn't know about because they're too used to pecking around for an icon of some sort to access it, so they didn't use it that much. They fixed this issue in Windows 10 by adding the notification/action center in place of the Charms menu, and adding an icon in the system tray. I think what Microsoft needs to do next is improve upon the Action Center to function more like the Charms menu, where you can access settings for all apps in one place kind of like how android does, add more actions to choose from and toggle like a flashlight, volume controls, etc., maybe add a large digital clock into it to see the time easier, and just overall improve on it to make it more useful. After all, its one unified OS across ALL devices, so shouldn't there be one action center that allows you to access settings and do other things for ALL apps? It makes more sense, and it beats having to click that dumb hamburger icon to access a mini charms menu. Microsoft needs to get people to think of the Action Center as a place where you perform practically ALL of the actions for apps (or at least 90 percent of then) in one place. This way they know where to look, and they get accustomed to it without having to search around for hamburgers on certain apps.
  • I hated charms, for the simple reason that it hid options I felt should be in the app itself, and was clunky in 8.0 to open in multiple monitors.
  • How about windows 8.1 style
  • NO Stardock, your junk will never enter my system. I used to like WindowBlinds, back in the XP golden days that was that.  
  • Too premature. We still haven't seen what the Windows 10 start menu will be like at RTM. What's in 9926 is a very early build of the start menu rewritten in XAML. There are several features that have already been verified to be added and/or make a comeback in future builds (resizability, transparency, drag and drop, and even jump lists are rumored to be coming back), let alone the stuff we don't know about. And they're working on a utility to make universal apps function more like Win32 apps? Don't they think Microsoft is already working on this? I'm not saying there shouldn't be a utility like this. Options are good. Just seems like they might be spending a lot of time on features that will wind up being built into Windows 10.
  • Pretty sure they're doing this early just to make more money.
  • To convince people to buy it early before ms release the proper start menu is pure greed. Also people could get very annoyed when ms releases the final product and people realise they wasted there money. This is bad PR waiting to happen, should have released as a free time-restricted beta til win10 officially releases
  • All companies want to make money. Also, Start10 will be updated through the Windows 10 lifecycle just as Start8 was.
  • This lie... I mean, ad. only belongs to Neowin, because they have a deal with Starsucks. Some people love to defend this stuff "options" but if they install Technical preview and want to replace the start menu, they are using it wrong... because this version is to give feedback. it's like WIndows Feedback state, forget about alpha or beta label.... it's just in development and Microsoft is looking for people to contribute with their feedback directly or indirectly (with the ones windows send by it self). when it hits RTM or something, if people want to waste money they should... I mean this won't be free, I don't know why people would want to pay for something that is brought to W10 anyway, based on haters.
  • Simple, Microsoft notifies those luddites with starfock installed that they have been found ineligible to continue participating in the preview program due to intellectual inadequacies and their machine will be wiped in 3, 2, 1...
  • I've been using Start8 since the beginning and it is a fine piece of software. It's reasonably priced, and so well integrated, most of the time I forget it's not part of Windows 8. Brad Wardell seems well-spoken and intelligent based on this interview, so I am looking forward to what they have in store for Windows 10. Being able to pin live tiles to the desktop would be a great choice. They could take the place of the now defunct Gadgets from Vista and 7 for info like weather, email, news, etc.
  • They should remake the Start Screen for Windows 8 users, along with charms and what not, lol.
  • So...why doesn't Microsoft just buy Stardock?
  • This is why people say Microsoft isn't innovative. It's because they can't. They've got dead wood customers that won't move forward and do something new. Customers that think Microsoft should've left windows 95 alone. So those of us that liked & loved the stuff that came with windows 8 like the charms bar and a real start screen will soon have to suffer with a tabletish windows experience: windows 10 may satisfy the crowd that still remember their beige boxes from the 90's fondly but their gonna lose a lot of people like me that want to MOVE forward. It seriously worries that me stardock has an audience. Anyone so stupid that they'd buy, download and install something that will drag their PCs' performance down rather than learn something new is someone that ruins computers for all of us.   metroheads dot wordpress dot com
  • Agree with you but still hoping the current version of W10 is still focusing on the mouse and keyboard crowd and will start improving for touch users soon
  • @Kj Windows 10 is already a huge improvement for mouse and keyboard users. There could be a couple more things added for them, but I think Microsoft proved well enough that they still care about mouse and keyboard users, and its time for them to prove that they care about touch users like me and lots of others just as much. Sure they improved the OS to make it useable for their core mouse/keyboard users, I understand that. But if they plan on being a "mobile first, cloud first" company now, they need to focus on mobile/touch users, and not just desktop users. So far the changes they have made for touch users were very minimal, and still requires using the taskbar and desktop oriented menus at times, which is very unintuitive. Odds are these issues will be resolved overtime, but I just feel that these are current issues that need to be brought out.
  • I didn't like the CEO's comments he just seemed very anti windows 8 very anti live tile very Windows 7 desktop focused this guy rubs me the wrong way and I feel like he is one of the contributors to the downfall of Windows 8 or this new desktop focused windows 10 with a watered down version of Windows 8 that we get Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • How is anyone supposed to read that without any punctuation at all?
  • For me no thanks
  • I have been put off by Brad for a bit now. His actions that involved GamerGate were jaw dropping which brought out his bullying and misogynistic viewpoints...
      He arbitrarily jumped into GamerGate by attacking neutral people and then going after the louder personalities that were defending women. It wasn't until his sexual harassment lawsuits were brought into the news again for his attacks to stop, revealing he had a history of sexism.   GamerGate aside, just Bing/Google “brad wardell sexual harassment”. Not a good man, and his name is crippling Stardock, and I don't think the people associated with StarDock have any clue.   Sad/Disgusted/Sick
  • Personally I don't see the need for this; I like the way Win10 combines the two different type of starts menu's / screen. I tried Start8 when i first switched to Win8 & it was very buggy & not that impessive; I'll be leaving well alone
  • No need for their crap menu... Windows 10' s evolutionary start menu is just fine... Rather I like Windows 8.1 like start menu...it's beautiful and effective to see the news or many more things at a glance from the live tiles. For some morons it's bad. Because they called themselves hard-core PC user. I'm using Windows since 98.. But never faced any problem when I upgrade to Windows 8.1 from Windows 7. Yes Windows 8 had some problems. Microsoft had to name Windows 9 instead Windows 8.1.
  • Yup. Lets install a third party application that does exactly what the actual OS does (but slower) so we can devote precious onboard resources and battery life to this feat! That menu on Windows 10 is about as perfect as it gets. Yes, there are many quirks and glitches needed to be taken care of but the fundamental design is great. This useless piece of software is only going to slow your PC down and get in the way as opposed to helping you. I get the point on Windows 8 but here? No. Go away.
  • Agreed
  • Interesting but I like windows that is why I buy it
  • Cool.
  • Pretty decent interview. But this is just retarded: "and less emphasis on Javascript or other attempts to webify Windows apps". Providing more options for developers to make apps how they want is not a bad thing but a good thing. Plus it has different purposes and opens up the store to more developers. I also cannot keep wondering why they aren't making something like Actual Multiple Monitors to improve multi monitor usage. Something Windows keeps improving on, but only takes babysteps. I've never seen the need to use Start8 or similar tools as i can just work fine with the new startmenu's. I don't mind them being there (they serve a purpose) but i don't think it is needed to act like the current or future start menu's are broken. Changing your perspective on a functionality isn't a bad thing but people need to realise things can change and they shouldn't immediately try to block that and should try it properly. People have a tendency to follow others and i've seen a lot of powerusers trying to force casual users to do things their way, not how they would themselves. For example: i still see many office installations of Windows force users to use the ugly gray classic theme. I hate that and it doesn't make any difference whatsoever for the security, stability or managebility to be able to change it. And Stardock isn't gonna change that
  • I'm wondering about pinning things as tiles? Can't he do that instead?
  • They should have a more productive but not Windows 7-style start screen, with metro tiles on the desktop in a similar way that gadgets work on Windows 7
  • EXACTLY!!! More than anything else, with changes to the Start screen approach, what I would like is the ability to put Live tiles on my desktop. With dual 30" screens, I resent that I can no longer have a "Gadget" (as they were called and built into Windows 7) running with a clock or the weather or cycling through my pictures and neewsfeeds. This is EXACTLY what Live tiles do well, but they are concealed on the Start screen or Start menu where you only see them on command. Yet their value is as a constant running mini-stream of information. This just seems mind-bogglingly stupid to me that Microsoft understood this for Windows Phone -- the home screen is the equivalent of the Windows Phone "desktop" in that it's what you see when you quickly look at your phone so you can get your info at a glance w/o opening individual programs, but on PC's, they mangled this by burying the value in the isolated and only-briefly-opened Start screen. Restoring the Start Menu is good for other reasons, but you still have to pop it open and it will go away as soon as you're working in an application again. If I'm on a 12" screen, I get that one or two apps may fill the screen. But with acres of screen space, even with multiple windows in active use, I generally still have screen space to spare to watch the pictures of my family and a news feed cycling off to the side. I want those as Live tiles on my desktop.
  • I've thought this but the problem with the idea is that putting live tiles on the desktop itself requires the minimisation of all open programs to see what's happening. That in itself is a chore, requiring a button press. Putting live tiles in the start menu is a good compromise. However it would be nice if they allowed the user to drag a live tile to the desktop and leave it there. That would add a bit of customisability for users like yourself.
  • 41b, my point is that for those of us with large multi-monitor desktop configurations, parts of the desktop are frequently visible. I don't need to minimize anything to view the Live Tiles. I actually don't see how putting them on the Start Menu is a compromise. I'm not unhappy they've done that, because it means we get the Start Menu back, which I think is a good thing. Again, with a large monitor, forcing me to sacrifice an entire 30" screen to simply pop up icons to launch a program was a horrible UI crime. As a broader rule, NEVER take over an entire screen for ANYTHING (except maybe games that need full screen for DirectX code to run properly). It should always be at the user's discretion if something goes full screen. That MS did this with the Start Screen was monumentally stupid, violating their own long-standing UI and UX principals. Restoring the Start menu corrects this. However, for the Live Tiles themselves, if they're not on the Desktop, you still have to hit a key or tap the Windows button to reveal them, which still maintains the same problem with putting Live Tiles on the Start Screen -- you can't see them unless you go looking for them, which defeats the whole point of Live Tiles as we know and love them on Windows Phone. So, yes it fixes the problem with an entire Start Screen, but for those who like the Start Screen for the big Live Tile display, putting them on the smaller Start Menu will be a step backwards. There is no downside I can see to enabling us to put Live Tiles on the desktop, other than the development effort on MS' part to do it.
  • There is info out there that says Microsoft wants Windows 10 devices on sale by the start of the next school season. that means we are going to see fast and furious changes to the current Windows 10 tech preview edition and probably a few totally new versions of tech preview will have to be installed on our microsoft insider Windows 10  testors computers. Perhaps Microsoft will use some of start10's features Only time will tell
  • I don't need a start menu, and another app to tweak that. Im fine with what Windows 10 start button gives. I am even fine without it. I have already learned how to work around just about everything on Windows 8.1