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Encyclopedia > Start menu
For the keyboard button that activates the start menu see Windows key.
The default Start Menu for Windows Vista
The default Start Menu for Windows Vista
The default Start Menu for Windows XP
The default Start Menu for Windows XP
The classic Windows 95 Start Menu
The classic Windows 95 Start Menu

The Start Menu and Start Button are user interface elements in the Microsoft Windows product line, which serve as the central launching point for applications. A Windows key on a black laptop keyboard The Windows key or Windows logo key (in short WinKey, or rarely Flag key) is a keyboard key originally introduced for the Windows 95 operating system. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Windows Vista is a line of graphical operating systems used on personal computers, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, Tablet PCs, and media centers. ... Image File history File links StartMenuXP.png Windows XP Home Start Menu. ... Image File history File links StartMenuXP.png Windows XP Home Start Menu. ... Windows XP is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ... Windows 95 Start Button and Taskbar with Microsoft Plus! 95 installed. ... Windows 95 Start Button and Taskbar with Microsoft Plus! 95 installed. ... Windows 95 is a consumer-oriented graphical user interface-based operating system. ... A graphical user interface (GUI) is a type of user interface which allows people to interact with a computer and computer-controlled devices which employ graphical icons, visual indicators or special graphical elements called widgets, along with text labels or text navigation to represent the information and actions available to... Windows redirects here. ...


Traditionally, the Start Menu provided a customizable nested list of programs for the user to launch, as well as a list of most recently opened documents, a way to find files and get help, and access to the system settings. Later enhancements via Internet Explorer updates like access to special folders like "My Documents," "Favorites" (browser bookmarks), etc. Windows XP's Start Menu was expanded to encompass various My Documents folders (including My Music and My Pictures), and transplanted other items like My Computer and My Network Places from the Windows desktop. Windows Internet Explorer (formerly Microsoft Internet Explorer, abbreviated MSIE), commonly abbreviated to IE, is a series of proprietary graphical web browsers developed by Microsoft and included as part of the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems starting in 1995. ... Windows XP is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ...


Technically, the Start Menu is not needed at all, as any programs and files can be opened by navigating to them in the Windows Explorer interface. However, the Start Menu provides a much easier way to open programs, even for experienced users. Microsoft uses the Start Menu more in each version of Windows as a way to shield novice users from the complexities of the operating system. For example, in Windows XP, the root, Program Files and Windows folders are hidden from the user by default, and access to programs is expected to be achieved through the Start Menu. Windows Explorer running on Windows Vista Windows Explorer running on Windows XP Windows Explorer is an application that is part of modern versions of the Microsoft Windows operating system that provides a graphical user interface for accessing the file systems. ... Microsoft Corporation, (NASDAQ: MSFT, HKSE: 4338) is a multinational computer technology corporation with global annual revenue of US$44. ... Windows XP is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ...


Ultimately, the Start Menu is a single point of access to programs, documents and settings, unlike other operating systems which use multiple GUI features to access programs (e.g. a Finder menu, or Program menu), files (e.g. a hard drive or file cabinet icon) and settings (a separate "Configuration" utility or set of utilities).


On Windows operating systems before Windows Vista, the Start Button consists of the word "Start" and the Windows Logo. In Windows Vista, the word "Start" has been replaced by a blue Windows "pearl" logo.[1] Windows Vista is a line of graphical operating systems used on personal computers, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, Tablet PCs, and media centers. ...

Contents

History

In the earliest versions of Windows, a program called MS-DOS Executive provided basic file management and program menu capability. This was eventually replaced by the programs File Manager and Program Manager in Windows 3.0, with the Program Manager taking on the role of the program menu. Windows 1. ... A screenshot of File Manager displaying a folder and the contents of the C drive. ... A screenshot of File Manager displaying a folder and the contents of the C drive. ... Program Manager in Windows 3. ... Windows 3. ...


The Program Manager was a full windowed application, which required the whole screen to be used effectively. It consisted of a simple multiple document interface which allowed users to open "program groups" and then execute the shortcuts to programs contained within. MDI implementation in the Windows version of Adobe Photoshop. ...


Windows 95 was the version in which the Program Manager was superseded by the Start Menu, which condensed the Program Manager into a popup menu that could be accessed at any time. It also boasted several advantages over the Program Manager, such as the ability to nest groups within other groups, and the ability to add to the Start Menu by dropping objects (program files, document files) onto the Start Button. Windows 95 is a consumer-oriented graphical user interface-based operating system. ...


Later developments in Internet Explorer and subsequent Windows releases allowed users to customize the Start Menu and access and expand (IE) Favorites, My Documents and Administrative Tools (Windows 2000) from the Start Menu. Windows Internet Explorer (formerly Microsoft Internet Explorer, abbreviated MSIE), commonly abbreviated to IE, is a series of proprietary graphical web browsers developed by Microsoft and included as part of the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems starting in 1995. ... On Microsoft Windows operating systems, My Documents is the name of a special folder on the computers hard drive that is commonly used to store a users documents, music, pictures, downloads, and other files. ... Windows 2000 (also referred to as Win2K) is a preemptive, interruptible, graphical and business-oriented operating system that was designed to work with either uniprocessor or symmetric multi-processor 32-bit Intel x86 computers. ...


The most significant revision to the Start menu since its inception came in Windows XP. To help the user access a wider range of common destinations more easily, and to promote a greater sense of "personality", the Start menu was expanded to two columns; the left-hand column focuses on the user's installed applications, while the right-hand column provides access to the user's documents, and system functionality. Links to My Documents, My Pictures and other Special Folders are brought to the fore. The My Computer and My Network Places (Network Neighborhood in Windows 95 and 98) icons were also moved off the Desktop and into the Start menu, making it easier to access these icons while a number of applications are open (they could be restored optionally in the Display Properties control panel "Desktop" settings). Commonly used programs are automatically displayed in the left-hand menu, and the user may opt to "pin" programs to the start menu so that they are always accessible without having to navigate through the Programs folders. On Microsoft Windows operating systems, Special Folders are folders which are presented to the user through an interface as an abstract concept, instead of an absolute folder path. ... Windows Explorer on Windows 2000 Windows Explorer is the application used in modern versions of Microsoft Windows for displaying file and directory listings and information. ... My Network Places is the built-in network browser in Microsoft Windows operating systems from Windows 2000 onwards. ...


Technical details

Users may add entries by creating various folders and shortcuts in the Start Menu folder, located in the hard drive. These appear in a separated section at the top of the Start Menu, or, if placed in the Programs sub-folder, in the Programs menu. In the Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows Me, it is located in %windir%Start Menu, or, if there are multiple users, %windir%ProfilesusernameStart Menu. In Windows NT 4.0, 2000, XP, and 2003, the folder is located in %USERPROFILE%Start Menu for individual users, or %ALLUSERSPROFILE%Start Menu for all users collectively. In Windows Vista, the folder is located in C:UsersusernameAppDataRoamingMicrosoftWindowsStart Menu for individual users, or C:ProgramDataMicrosoftWindowsStart Menu for all users collectively. In all examples above, username represents the name of the user. These places can be easily accessed by right-clicking on the Start button, and clicking Open. Windows 95 is a consumer-oriented graphical user interface-based operating system. ... Windows 98 (codenamed Memphis and formerly known as Windows 97[2]) is a graphical operating system released on June 25, 1998 by Microsoft and the successor to Windows 95. ... Windows Millennium Edition, or Windows Me (IPA pronunciation: [miː], [ɛm iː]), is a hybrid 16-bit/32-bit graphical operating system released on September 14, 2000 by Microsoft. ... Windows NT 4. ... Windows 2000 (also referred to as Win2K) is a preemptive, interruptible, graphical and business-oriented operating system that was designed to work with either uniprocessor or symmetric multi-processor 32-bit Intel x86 computers. ... Windows XP is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ... Windows Server 2003 is a server operating system produced by Microsoft. ... Windows Vista is a line of graphical operating systems used on personal computers, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, Tablet PCs, and media centers. ...


Symbolism

The "Start Button" and its menu were lauded as a leap forward in user friendliness and interface design when they were first introduced in Windows 95. The symbol of the Start Button was, and still is, used to advertise the product. Furthermore, Microsoft has embraced the word "start" as their "catch word", and it is frequently used in their advertising even today. Usability is a term used to denote the ease with which people can employ a particular tool or other human-made object in order to achieve a particular goal. ... Windows 95 is a consumer-oriented graphical user interface-based operating system. ... Microsoft Corporation, (NASDAQ: MSFT, HKSE: 4338) is a multinational computer technology corporation with global annual revenue of US$44. ...


Trivia

Like most facets of the Windows operating system, there are undocumented features of the Start Menu, and opportunities for customization. For instance, in Classic Start Menu mode, dragging a file or program onto the Start Button creates a top-level Start Menu item. Shortcuts on the Start Menu folder with keyboard shortcut key(s) assigned respond throughout the Windows environment. The Windows Power Toy TweakUI offers many other customizations, including speeding up the response time of the Start Menu, window animation, and other "power user" hacks.[2][3] Many more tips and tricks are documented on the Web.[4][5] Computer shortcuts are small files containing only the location of another file. ... TweakUI is a free user interface customisation application released by Microsoft to aid end users in customising their Windows operating system. ...


In 1995, Microsoft licensed the Rolling Stones' song "Start Me Up" for the Windows 95 marketing campaign. This article is about the rock band. ... Start Me Up is a song by The Rolling Stones which was featured on the 1981 album Tattoo You. ... Wikibooks has more about this subject: Marketing Look up marketing in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


In Windows 95, it was possible to hide the Start button by clicking it, then pressing escape, and then "Alt" together with the "minus" key. A little context menu appeared, which offered the possiblity to move the button or close it completely, causing it to disappear. It reappeared after rebooting the operating system. Windows 95 is a consumer-oriented graphical user interface-based operating system. ...


See also

In computing, the taskbar is a term for the application desktop bar which is used to launch and monitor applications in Microsoft Windows 95 and later operating systems. ...

References

  1. ^ Keith Combs (August 23, 2006). Windows Vista Aero Glass and Usability screencast. Channel 9. Microsoft. Retrieved on 2006-11-04.
  2. ^ Download page for Microsoft Windows Tweak UI Power Toy
  3. ^ O'Reilly Annoyances.org Tweak UI page
  4. ^ Windows 95/98 Tips
  5. ^ Korova Multimedia Windows 95 tips

is the 235th day of the year (236th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays full 2006 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays full 2006 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 308th day of the year (309th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

  • Start Menu Buttons - Visual history of Start Button

  Results from FactBites:
 
MacKiDo/Interface/Start (3243 words)
Of course the start menu is configurable (by moving the taskbar).
To configure the start menu properly, you can't use the drag and drop shortcut -- making it less than useless since it is actually counterproductive since you do it wrong the first time, then have to go in and fix things.
In configuring the Start menu, it is not uncommon to stop, scratch your head, and wonder why the hell what you just did doesn't seem to do what you thought it should.
Neil's World: What's on your Start Menu? (1121 words)
For a start, my Task Bar is at the top of the screen (billg spent millions on useability testing to prove that application menus work best at the top but somehow came to the conclusion that the Task Bar was immune from this).
Next, on the first level of the Start menu I have links to all removable and fixed drives and also to directories that I access frequently (these change as jobs are started and completed).
Lastly on the Start menu I have folders that contain apps that get used often but not as much as the “big 10” in the QL tray.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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