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Make Windows 8 Look Like Earlier Versions of Windows with Classic Shell

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Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVE
50+ years in computer industry. Everything from development to sales. CIO. Document imaging. EE MVE 2015, EE MVE 2016, EE FELLOW 2017.
Windows 8 comes with a dramatically different user interface known as Metro. Notably missing from the new interface is a Start button and Start Menu. Many users do not like it, much preferring the interface of earlier versions — Windows 7, Windows XP, and even (my personal favorite) Windows 2000. This video Micro Tutorial explains how to achieve the W7, XP, or 2K interface on your Windows 8 computer with an excellent, free product called Classic Shell.

Video Steps

1. Download the installer for the software



Visit the Classic Shell website at:

http://www.classicshell.net/

Click the Download Now button.

Save the downloaded installer (ClassicShellSetup_latest_version_number.exe) wherever you want.

Step1.jpg

2. Run the installer



Locate the downloaded installer in Windows/File Explorer (or whatever file manager you use) and run it.

Step2.jpg

3. Select the options



There are four main options: Classic Explorer, Classic Start Menu, Classic IE, Classic Shell Update. It defaults to installing all four, but you may select whichever ones you want.

Step3.jpg

4. Complete the setup wizard



You will now have a Start button and Start Menu.

Step4.jpg

5. Right-click on the new Start button and select Settings



There are many tabs in Settings. Click each of them and select whichever settings you want. Examples are the Start Menu Style tab, where you may select the Windows 7 or Windows XP or Windows 2000 interface, and the Windows 8 Settings tab, where you may Skip Metro screen upon startup, thereby bringing you straight into the desktop.

Step5.jpg

6. Left-click the new Start button



You will now have whatever interface you selected, i.e., W7, XP, or 2K.

Step6.jpg
That's it - you're done! If you find this video to be helpful, please click the thumbs-up icon below. And if you're interested in using Classic Shell for your Windows 10 computers, take a look at this video Micro Tutorial:

Make Windows 10 Look Like Earlier Versions of Windows with Classic Shell

Thank you for watching, Joe

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Expert Comment

by:gwiensx
When I recently purchased my inexpensive Dell desktop machine, it came with Windows 8.something. As I quickly discovered, it was designed around touch-screen technology, and I became frustrated very quickly.

Fortunately, I ran across Classic Shell which does a pretty good job hiding the deplorable Win 8 UI. I don't know what M$ was thinking, but they lost me way back as with each release, more eye candy and less functionality.

Thanks for the shell!
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Author Comment

by:Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVE
Hi gwiensx,
You're welcome! And thanks to you for the feedback. I'm glad that Classic Shell makes your new W8 machine more usable — I wouldn't be without it on my W8 computers. Btw, if you found this video to be helpful, please take a moment to click the Good Video Micro Tutorial? button underneath the video window above — I'll really appreciate it! Thanks, Joe
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