Change the Start

We use the Windows Start menu quite often, don’t we? It has a critical affect on our daily computing activities. In fact, it would be basically impossible to operate our computer without the Start menu. Without it, it would much more difficult to access our favorite programs that we have installed on our computers. It would even be harder to run the essential Windows applications.

Imagine your computer without the Start menu. You wouldn’t be able to create all those shortcuts you have on your desktop. You couldn’t even customize the taskbar that makes our everyday computer jobs all the much easier. It’s crazy to think about how important the Start menu is. It organizes our programs, it allows us easy access to them and it does it so quickly and painless! I think you now know how important the Start menu is to all of us. So, let’s continue.

The Windows XP Start menu is actually the most evolved and enhanced version among the Windows family of operating systems. It allows for some neat tricks that make even better use of the handy and friendly menu!

Apart from the easy working experience that that Start menu offers, the method of displaying our programs list is of great importance as well. You may have different viewpoints about your work environment than say, one of your friends. For example, you may want the best colors on your desktop and you may want a different way for your programs to be displayed on the Start menu.

In order to display the list of programs on your computer, you probably click Start and then point your mouse cursor over All Programs. In a matter of seconds, the list of all your programs and applications installed appear. In fact, you probably do this several times a day, because you need a new program open at a different time. So, every time you go to the Start menu, All Programs, you’re seeing the long list of programs and it can sometimes be frustrating to wade through.

Well, there is an easy way to change this. You can easily change the way Windows displays the program list on your Start menu. You can change the linger of the mouse cursor that brings up the long list to a mere single click that brings up nothing! This method may be more preferable to you, because it eliminates the unnecessary gigantic list of programs popping up all the time.

Start by right clicking on the Start menu and selecting Properties.

By pressing Properties, as you can see, your Taskbar and Start Menu Properties window appears.

Now, click the Start Menu tab. Make sure you are using the Start Menu and not the Classic Start menu.

Okay, now select Customize, which will open the Customize Start Menu window. Select the Advanced tab.

This is the area where you can change the way your Start menu is displayed. Again, you can either have your program list come up automatically with a mouse rollover or you can single click on All Programs to bring up the list.

If you opted for the single click, uncheck the box that says “Open submenus when I pause on them with my mouse” and click OK twice. So, now you can click on Start, point your mouse over All Programs and do a quick single click. As you can see, your programs will not appear until you do that single click. Pretty convenient, if you ask me.

Doing things this way gives you better control over the way your list of programs appears on your screen. Once you’re ready to find a program, just single click and be done. No more messing with the long list popup! Good news, too! This tip works with Windows Vista!

~ Hamid Reza