That darn start menu..

For the months leading up to the release of Windows 7 RTM, I have been working out ways to try to emulate the old Classic menu. It was an important feature of earlier Windows versions. I like stuff in small compartments, and being able to create folders in the old menu which would flip out revealing the entire contents was good. I am a protagonist of partitions on hard drives too. For me, it is the first stage of organisation.

It is now eight days since I installed Windows 7, and only now have I created folders of my own and moved programs of similar genre to the respective folders.They do not flip out, but it surely saves scrolling down a long list of default folders.

If you want to do this too, you have to show hidden files and folders, so your first stop will be :

Control Panel > Folder Options > View tab > check ‘show hidden files and folders and drives’

OK, next :

Double Click on ‘Computer’ > C Drive > Program Data > Microsoft > Windows > Start Menu.

The ‘Programs’ folder is where all of the default folders are after you have installed your operating system and supporting software. After you have opened the Start Menu folder, you right click and select NEW > FOLDER and then give the folder a name. I use Communications, Graphics, Multimedia, Office, and Security labels for my new folders and then I drag the default install folders and icons into the newly created appropriate folders. This shortens the ‘All Programs’ listing and saves a fair amount of time scrolling through a long line of folders which may contain something that I only use once yearly.

The big difference between back then (Vista, XP) and now is that everything happens in a small box top right of the screen instead of cascading out in an eminently more readable form.

Other ways to overcome the ‘small box’:

  • Create ‘user pinned’ tool bars and the old Quick launch tool bar, both of which save scrolling through the default program folders
  • If you have a keyboard with programmable keys, set them such that you can quickly access your most used applications.

I have a keyboard with five such programmable keys, and until Windows 7, I have never had to use the facility. I do now..

I am going to put together a tutorial on the above fairly soon, so if you are relative newbie and interested enough, email me and I will see what I can do for you

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