Share the Windows 8 startpage with the classic desktop

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 10, 2012
Updated • Feb 15, 2013
Software, Windows, Windows 8, Windows software

The two interfaces that Microsoft has implemented into Windows 8 are a major change from previous versions of the operating system. Instead of just having to work with the classic desktop, users now have to cope with the newly added startpage that Microsoft is pushing and the classic desktop. While it is certainly easy to bypass the startpage using various methods and tools, like our current favorite Start8, there are other options to get used to the situation.

If you are working on a PC connected to multiple monitors, you can for instance display the startpage on one monitor and the classic desktop on the other.Another option is to snap an app or the desktop to the left or right side of the screen to make it available there.

Start Screen Modifier introduces another possibility, which may be useful for Windows 8 users who only have one computer monitor at their disposal. The program makes available the startpage interface on the desktop.

windows 8 share startpage desktop

When you run the program you have options to make the startpage available at the top or bottom of the screen. Either option displays the startpage here when you switch to it. So, pressing the Windows key will not open the startpage interface in fullscreen anymore, but at the top or bottom of the classic desktop.

The core benefit of this is that you do not switch between different interfaces all the time, but can work with both interfaces on the desktop. You can use all the features that the start page makes available to you right from here. Search is for instance working directly when you start to type. Apps that you load are however loaded in fullscreen on the system just like before, so that search and access to live tile information are without doubt the two reasons why you'd like to use the program in the first place.

Start Screen Modifier supports hotkeys which you can use to switch between the fullscreen startpage and the startpage / desktop mix.

The program lacks an option to customize the height of the startpage bar that is displayed on the classic desktop. Options to customize it and to place the startpage vertically would be really useful.

Windows 8 users can download the latest program version from this location. It is working fine under the final version of the operating system.

The program demonstrates that it is possible to merge the startpage with the traditional desktop in Windows 8, something that I wish Microsoft would have done to avoid the two interface issue. (via Into Windows)


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  1. Martin said on March 12, 2023 at 3:05 pm

    An even quicker way to open Task Manager is by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc.

  2. archie bald said on March 12, 2023 at 4:32 pm

    Win+Pause used to be the goto shortcut for me since… W95… Ms recently hijacked it and you now get Sysinfo. Device manager is still accessible this way: the second to last link at the bottom.

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