Customising The Windows Vista Start Menu

Since making it’s first appearance in Windows 95, the Start Menu has become the principle resource for organising and accessing Microsoft Windows files.

Whilst many people just use the Start Menu in its native condition, to get the most out of the Start Menu you will need to customise it.

Customising the Start Menu style.

    1. Display the ‘Taskbar and Start Menu Properties’ dialog box by clicking on the Windows Orb, Type startinto the search box, and click Taskbar And Start Menu
    2. On the Start Menu tab, click an option to specify the style you want from the Start Menu.
    3. Selecting ‘Customise’ will display the Customise Start Menu dialog box as shown below (Note – Depending on the style you may have chosen in step 2, the appearance of the box may vary slightly from the one shown)

  • The different parts of the dialog are:
    1. This area specifies which items you want displayed on the Start Menu, and in many cases also gives option as to how they are displayed.
    2. Determines how many of the recently used programs to display.
    3. Cancels any customised settings and returns to the Windows defaults.
    4. Determines whether you want links to your Web Browser and E-mail client on the Start Menu, and specifies what those programs should be.
  • Once you have made your selections click ‘OK’ and close the dialog box, now click on the Windows Orb to see the effect of your customisations.

Adding a Program To or deleting a Program from the Start Menu

  1. Click the Widows Orb, to display the Start Menu.
  2. Navigate to the program file you want to add to the Start Menu.
  3. Right click the program and choose the option ‘Pin To Start Menu.Click the Windows Orb to check that your selected program has now been added to the Start Menu.
  4. If at anytime you want to remove the program from the Start Menu, simply right click it on the Start Menu, and select the option ‘Unpin from Start Menu’

Adding other items to the Start Menu

It is possible to add pretty much any item you choose to the Start Menu, whether it be a Word Document, PDF file or even a link to a webpage.

All you need to do is locate the item you want, and drag it to the Windows Orb, and it will be added to the menu.

Note – In the case of web pages, you will need to create a desktop shortcut first, and then drag this to the Windows Orb.