How to create custom start menu in Windows 8

Microsoft has completely revamped the UI of Windows 8 Operating System by adding new metro UI start screen and lot of other new features. But at the same time it has received lot of criticism because of missing start menu. There are lot of third party applications available to restore the missing start menu in one form or another, but you can also create your own start menu. Here we are going to show you how to create the substitute to the missing start menu. But this is not exactly the same start menu, but comes with lot of functionalities and a big time saver.

How to create custom start menu in Windows 8

The new start menu we are going to create is actually a folder, so first we need to create a new folder on the desktop. Right click on any empty space on the desktop and select New > Folder and name the folder with any meaningful name like Start menu.

Next you need to create the shortcuts for the programs and applications which you would like to include in the start menu.

  • Open the folder which you have created and right click inside it.
  • This will open  a context menu and there select New > Shortcut.
  • You will find a box Type the location of the item and under it enter the path for the desired shortcut. By the way paths of some useful shortcuts are shown in below table. All the paths displayed are single lines and due to some limitations the table will display some paths wrapped and on two lines.
  • Click on Next and give a meaningful name for the shortcut.
  • Finally click on Finish and repeat the process for every shortcut which you want to include.

That’s it, you have created the shortcuts and once after creating the shortcuts, you can change their icons to your favorite icons. Here is the list of shortcuts for some important programs.

Folder or feature Location to be used in shortcut
Computer %windir%explorer.exe shell:::{20d04fe0-3aea-1069-a2d8-08002b30309d}
Control Panel %windir%explorer.exe shell:::{5399E694-6CE5-4D6C-8FCE-1D8870FDCBA0}
All Settings %windir%explorer.exe shell:::{F90C627B-7280-45DB-BC26-CCE7BDD620A4}
Applications (a kind of Program menu that includes Metro apps) %windir%explorer.exe shell:::{4234d49b-0245-4df3-b780-3893943456e1}
(My) Documents %windir%explorer.exe shell:::{450d8fba-ad25-11d0-98a8-0800361b1103}
Shutdown %windir%System32shutdown.exe /s /f /t 00
Program Files(x86) (for 64-bit systems) %ProgramFiles(x86)%
Program Files %ProgramFiles%

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