Windows 10 hasn’t even reached general release yet but an alternative Start Menu alrady has. Stardock, the company which released Start8 in response to the poorly received Start Screen of Windows 8, has announced and released an alternative Start Menu for Microsoft’s upcoming operating system. Start10 was released to beta for Object Desktop subscribers. It requires Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 9926.
Add a classic or enhanced Start menu to Windows 10
Unified search for apps, settings and files
Access desktop and Modern apps from the Start menu
Skinnable start button
You can subscribe, learn more, or see screenshots from Stardock’s website for Start10.
Start10 has a Windows 10 and a Windows 7 version of the Start Menu that you can choose between. In Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 9841, the Windows 10 Start Menu was very similar to the Windows 7 style. I greatly preferred it over the new version that was released with Build 9926. The current official Windows 10 Start Menu looks like half of a Start Screen with live tiles and the other half is the All Apps list from the Start Screen but in a single column.
Certainly, it comes down to personal preference but I feel that Microsoft scrapped all that they learned from Windows 8 by ditching the Start Menu that offered the Windows 7 look-and-feel. This is an important factor as the company seems desperate to give Windows 7 users a reason to upgrade. They could even make it a configurable option to appease multiple audiences but the setting does not currently exist as an option in the current build of Windows 10 Technical Preview, though you can dive into the Registry to get the old look. Unfortunately, this workaround may have those that dislike the new Start Menu hacking the change in place and not leaving feedback to express their preference.
Windows 7 style of Start10
Windows 10 style of Start10
Start10 configuration options