Make Windows XP, Vista easier to use

Windows XP was a welcomed change. So is Windows Vista.

The interface has changed over the years but essentially operates the same way. For many, the change is great and they have no problem adapting to the new menus.

Still, with the move to the new operating system, locating familiar icons and settings becomes a bit of a mini-treasure hunt, with a surprise at every click.

Then there are some who like the way things used to be. The menus and control panel settings were all in a place they could find with ease. Having invested the time to learn those things and now become proficient and comfortable, users don’t want to reinvest the time and relearn and unlearn what they have known.

Windows XP changed the start menu drastically, and so has Windows Vista.

But here’s the beautiful news: a few simple mouse clicks can easily restore your familiar pre-Windows XP (and pre-Windows Vista) start menu to its former glory.

If you get into the habit of using your right mouse button (a.k.a. right-click), you can open a world of secrets, special options and advanced settings. The right mouse button allows you to select sub-menus and options, while the left mouse allows you to activate or invoke those options.

So, here we go: roll your mouse over the Start Button, right-click, scroll down to select Properties with your left button. This will open the Taskbar and Start menu properties. Click the Start menu tab at the top to access the start menu settings. Select the Classic Start menu radio-button, and click Apply. Click OK. After a short delay, you have your familiar start menu back.

You can always undo this change by repeating the process, and selecting Start menu radio-button.

Please remember: all of these tricks work in Windows XP and Windows Vista only; they are intended to make the transition to these operating systems from earlier versions of Windows easier and more bearable, that’s all.