How to Customize Start Menu in Windows

Start Menu was first introduced in Windows 95 along with taskbar and minimize, maximize & close buttons on each window. This feature help to arrange all the important programs at one place and can be open with one click. 

Users can choose which commands appear on the Start menu. You can add options for Run, Help, Control Panel, Devices And Printers , Connect etc. 
Start menu gives you easy access to installed programs, folders, files, computer and various other settings. 

This article will guide you how to customize the start menu to make your own personalized Start Menu i.e. how and which links,icons,menus look and behave according to you.

As Organizing the Start menu can make it easier to find your favorite programs and folders.

  • Right-click Start Button
  • Choose Properties 
  • Under the Start Menu tab, You will see :

  • Power Button Action 
  • Customize... 
  • Store and Display recently opened programs in the Start Menu
  • Store and Display recently opened items in the Start Menu and the taskbar

How to Customize Start menu in Windows

Control the action of Power Button :

Here, you can manage what the power button will do on pressing power button of your laptop. Different options are provided with different functionality. 
Options include Switch User, Log Off, Lock, Restart, Sleep, and Shut Down. 

You can better understand the functions of these options from 

What are Shutdown, Hibernate, Sleep, Log off and When to Use ?

Customize the look and behaviour of Links, Menus in Start Menu :

You can select which links will show in start menu i.e. Computer , Documents , Pictures, Music,Games,Control Panel , Devices and Printers , Help and Support ,Run... by default. You can control how you want to open these options on the Start Menu as a link or Menu. 
You can also limit the Number of recent  programs or items to display.

  • Click on Customize...

Customize the look and behave of links, icons, menus and programs on the Start Menu
Click on Image to Zoom

In the Customize Start Menu dialog box, most of the options control which commands appear on the Start menu and how they are arranged. 

Some items have the sub-options : 

  • Display As A Link
  • Display As A Menu
  • Don’t Display this Item. 

Display As A Link specifies that an item will appear as a separate option that opens a window when selected. 

Display As A Menu specifies that an item will provide access to a submenu that allows you to choose from its related options. 

Don’t Display This Item removes the item from the Start menu. You have no access to that option from the Start Menu.

Enable Context Menus And Dragging And Dropping : This option gives the facility to user to right click on any item on the start menu. You can also drag and drop items from it. You can enable this option by Checking the box.

Open Submenus When I Pause On Them With The Mouse Pointer : This option gives the facility whenever the user move the mouse over the option having menus, a list of options will appear automatically without clicking on it. You can Check the box to take advantage of this facility.

Recent Items  : This will display the list of most recent items opened by the user. 

Sort All Programs Menu By Name : This option enables all the menu items are arranged in alphabetical order. If this option is unselected, it will show all the items in the order of their installation.

Use large Icons: To use larger icons on the start menu. You can check this option.

[READ] How to Show or Hide Run, Control Panel, Connect To, Help in Start Menu

Below the List, There are two other options provided to control the number of recent programs or items.
Number Of Recent Programs To Display : You can also control the number of recently used programs that appear in the most frequently used list on the Start menu. You can increase or decrease the numbers by using the selection menu to assign a value from 0 to 30.

Number of Recent Items To Display In Jump List : You can also control how many recently used items appear in jump lists. Jump lists shows the lists of recent items organized by the program that you use to open them. They can appear on the Start menu and the taskbar. You can increase or decrease the numbers by using the selection menu to assign a value from 0 to 60. 

For Example, You have recently Opened many Notepad files, Then Notepad will be listed in the recently opened programs place and the files you opened, will be shown in recetly opened items in the jump list of Notepad program.

Select Whether Recently Opened Programs or Items Display in the Start Menu :

You can control either recently opened programs or items will store and display or not in start menu. 

If you Uncheck these options, there will be no programs shown in recently opened programs area in the Start Menu.

Store and Display recently opened items in the Start Menu and the taskbar means that On the Start menu, items are listed in the Jump List of recently opened files of a program and On the Taskbar means when you Right Click on any program pinned or opened on the Taskbar, a list of recently opened items in that particular program shown.

That is all How can you customize the look and behave of links, icons, menus and programs on the Start Menu to make a personalized Start Menu. 

Have Fun!

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