programming4us
programming4us
DESKTOP

Tweak The Windows 8 Start Screen (Part 1)

- How To Install Windows Server 2012 On VirtualBox
- How To Bypass Torrent Connection Blocking By Your ISP
- How To Install Actual Facebook App On Kindle Fire

We reveal the tools that can be used to customize the Start screen in Windows 8

Every version of Windows has seen the introduction of a number of changes and additions, which are not always popular, and this is certainly true with the release of Window 8. Gone is the familiar Start button to access the Start menu, the Start screen is how apps are now accessed. It can take a little while to get used to how the redesigned interface works, but once you have familiarized yourself with it you may well decide that it is time to get to work with a little tweaking and customizing

 
Built in options are limited, but ou can customize the Start screen from Windows 8’s Settings

Built in options are limited, but ou can customize the Start screen from Windows 8’s Settings

Just as with every previous version the operating system, Windows 8 is ripe for tweaking and many people will want to stamp their mark on the Start screen. There are a number of settings that you can alter from within Windows without the need to install any extra software, but if you want to take things further you’ll need to utilize third party tools. Whichever route you’d prefer to go down, we’ll show you how to proceed and how to make the Start screen your own.

Let’s start by taking a look at the built in options, as these are available to everyone and can be changed without the need to download nay software. Bring up the new Charms bar by moving the mouse to the lower right hand corner of the screen and then moving it upwards. Click the Setting icon and then click Change PC Settings at the bottom of the screen

In the Personalize section, move to the “Start screen” tab and there are a couple of settings available to you. Beneath the preview window you can choose from number of ready-made backgrounds, or opt to have us a solid color as your background. Whichever route you decide to go down, you can sue the palette at the bottom to choose a color scheme.

 
Metro Scaler uses a simple slider to change the number of rows that spear on the Start screen

Metro Scaler uses a simple slider to change the number of rows that spear on the Start screen

From the Start screen itself, it is possible to change the way tiles look and work. Tiles can take one of two shapes – square or rectangular – and it’s easy to switch between the two. Right click a rectangular tile and then click ‘Smaller’ at the bottom of the screen to switch in one direction. Right clicking a square tile before clicking “Larger” works the opposite way. Many apps feature ‘live’ tiles that can display information such as the number of unread emails in your inbox, scrolling through a slideshow and much more. You may decide that this is totally unnecessary and distracting, but live tiles can be disabled on an individual basis by right clicking a tile and then the ‘Turn off live tile’ button at the bottom of the screen. If you find that you have too many tiles to deal tight, you can remove any you don’t need by right clicking and then selecting ‘Unpin from Start’.

Much more to be achieved using extra utilities. For examples, there are various ways in which you can change the number of rows that are used to display tiles on the Start screen, but by far the easiest is to make use of the dedicated tool Metro Scaler (goo.gl/zCZrY). This free utility has been designed to make it easier to use the Start screen on smaller screens, but it can also just be used to tailor things to suit your preferences. This has to be one of the simplest tools available. There is no complicated setting, just a single slider. Move the slider to the left to reduce the number of Start screen rows (to make it better suited for smaller screens) or to the right to increase this number (for larger screens).

If this is keeping things a little too simple, take a look at Decor8 (www.stardock.com/products/Decor8), a paid-for app which allows you free trial period in order to explore what it has to offer. The application looks very much like the PC Settings section of Windows and is equally simple to use. To start with you can choose from a new selection of backgrounds, but there is also the option of using effects such as blurring and fading.

 
Windows 8 Start Screen Customizer is a free tool that offers advanced options for customization

Windows 8 Start Screen Customizer is a free tool that offers advanced options for customization

The drop down menu can be used to choose from a number of different scrolling styles, which will determine whether the background scrolls at the same rate as tiles or whether a staggered parallax effect should be used. If you tend to get bored of seeing the same image time and time again, you can even opt to have the background image change on a schedule – just select the images you’d like to use and then select a frequency of change from the drop down menu. Elsewhere, you’ll find the option to increase or decrease the number of rows of tiles and the incredibly useful addition of a clock to the Start screen

Moving into the arena of free software, Windows 8 Start Screen Customizer (goo/gl/m34UD) includes many of the same options that are to be found in Decor8, but there are a few extras too. The obvious benefit here is that the application is completely free of charge, while its ability to adjust the transparency of the Start screen and tiles is a nice touch. To create a uniform look, you can choose to use the same background on the Start screen as on the desktop. Whichever options you select, though, be sure to tick the ‘Run at startup’ box so that the Start screen is replaced automatically for you.

 
Make Start screen animations work the way you want them to with Start Screen Animations Tweaker

Make Start screen animations work the way you want them to with Start Screen Animations Tweaker

If you’re concerned only with adjusting the animation effects of the Start screen, look no further than Start Screen Animations Tweaker (goo.gl/2uk6A). There are numerous aspects of the Start screen animation that can be tweaked. You may have noticed that a different animation effect is used when Windows first loads, and you can keep this particular effect in place every time you call up the Start screen by ticking the box labeled ‘Play Start Screen animations every time you see it’. Other options enable you to adjust the level of parallax scrolling that is used, and you can also chose how far different screen elements such as your users image and Start tiles move whilst animated

Of course, it may well be that you find that you simply cannot live with the Start screen. There are plenty of people who find they crave the Start menu of old, and while there are no secret settings that can be used to unlock this feature of older versions of Windows, there are numerous tools that can be used to replace it. One of these is IOBit StartMenu8 and you can find out more about this by looking in the ‘Get The Start Menu Back’ box.

While there are a few things you can do to customize the look and feel of the Start screen without the need to turn to third party tools, there is far more to be gained by doing so. Windows 8 came in for a lot of criticism for replacing the previous compact Start menu with a full screen Start screen. If you are unhappy with the current arrangement but don’t want to go quite as far as reinstating the Start menu of old, you should take a look at ImmersiveTaille- more details can be found in the ‘Reposition The Start Screen’ box. This handy utility makes it possible to get the best of both worlds by reducing the overall size of the Start screen to something slightly more manageable and enabling you to retain access to the desktop as you browse through application shortcuts.

Whether you decide to stick with a stock Start screen, supplement it with additional tools or replace it completely, there are plenty of optional available to you. Out of the box, the Start screen does not appear to be anywhere as customizable as the old Start menu, but there is a lot that can be done to stamp your mark and make this area of Windows 8 look and feel the way you want it to.

Other  
 
Top 10
- Microsoft Visio 2013 : Adding Structure to Your Diagrams - Finding containers and lists in Visio (part 2) - Wireframes,Legends
- Microsoft Visio 2013 : Adding Structure to Your Diagrams - Finding containers and lists in Visio (part 1) - Swimlanes
- Microsoft Visio 2013 : Adding Structure to Your Diagrams - Formatting and sizing lists
- Microsoft Visio 2013 : Adding Structure to Your Diagrams - Adding shapes to lists
- Microsoft Visio 2013 : Adding Structure to Your Diagrams - Sizing containers
- Microsoft Access 2010 : Control Properties and Why to Use Them (part 3) - The Other Properties of a Control
- Microsoft Access 2010 : Control Properties and Why to Use Them (part 2) - The Data Properties of a Control
- Microsoft Access 2010 : Control Properties and Why to Use Them (part 1) - The Format Properties of a Control
- Microsoft Access 2010 : Form Properties and Why Should You Use Them - Working with the Properties Window
- Microsoft Visio 2013 : Using the Organization Chart Wizard with new data
REVIEW
- First look: Apple Watch

- 3 Tips for Maintaining Your Cell Phone Battery (part 1)

- 3 Tips for Maintaining Your Cell Phone Battery (part 2)
programming4us programming4us
Celebrity Style, Fashion Trends, Beauty and Makeup Tips.
programming4us
 
 
programming4us