The Start Menu
Windows 10 brings back the ever-useful Windows Start Menu. The Windows 10 Start Menu incorporates features from both Windows 7 and Windows 8 by showing installed programs on the left side as in Windows 7 (or apps, as they are called now) and the live tiles from Windows 8 on the right side. Here are some things you’ll see in the new Start Menu: Most Used (the apps you use every day). Suggested/Recently Added (newly installed apps), Places (shortcuts to File Explorer, Settings, etc), and All Apps (formerly All Programs).
Customizing the Start Menu
To change the color of the Start Menu and other elements, open Settings, click on Personalization, then Colors to select a color. You can also let Windows automatically choose a color based on your desktop background image.
You can pin apps to the right side of the start menus by dragging and dropping the icon onto the Start Menu or you can right click on the app, then left click on Pin to Start. You will also be able to do this with files, folders and websites.
To remove a tile, right click on it, then left click on Unpin from Start. To move a tile, simply drag and drop. Currently, there are no options for customizing the left side of the start menu. You can remove items from the Most Used list by right-clicking on the item, then left clicking on Don’t show in this list. If you don’t want your recently used items from being displayed, go to Settings, Personalization, Start and turn off Store and display recently opened items in Start and the taskbar.
The Settings Menu
The new Settings Menu is right in the main Start Menu of Windows 10 and gives you access to most of the basic settings for your computer. Note that the Settings Menu does not contain every adjustment available for a given subject, for those you still need to go to the Control Panel.
The System Tab – Here you can find information about your computer, view your available storage, adjust notifications and icons, etc. Click on About to find your basic hardware specifications such as the CPU, RAM and what version of Windows you’re running.
The Devices Tab – This section will show you what peripherals are connected to your computer such as printers, keyboards, mice, scanners, etc. Click on Connected Devices to install new devices. Click on Mouse and Touchpadto adjust cursor settings.
The Network and Internet Tab – This is where you will find basic connection settings such as Data Usage, VPN andEthernet. Clicking the Advanced Settings link will take you to the related section of the Control Panel for that topic.
The Personalization Tab – In this section you can adjust appearance items such as your desktop background, colors, themes and screen savers.
The Accounts Tab – Use this section to switch between a local user account and a Microsoft Account, change your login password and add additional user accounts.
The Time and Language Tab – This section gives you access to your time and date settings. Set you time zone, time and date formats (12 or 24 hour), and your preferred language.
The Ease of Access Tab – This section allows you to enable or disable the on screen narrator, enable high-contrast themes and enable closed captioning.
The Privacy Tab – New for Windows is a dedicated privacy center. While this feature is available in Windows 8, Windows 10 makes it easier to find. Use the options in this section to limit what data is submitted to Microsoft and other companies as you use your computer.
The Update and Security Tab – One of the few items you will no longer find on the Control Panel is Windows Update. In Windows 10, this has been moved exclusively to the Settings Menu. The Update and Security tab also shows you the built-in backup options from Windows as well as recovery options and settings for Windows Defender.
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