10 tricks for the start menu (and much more) of Windows 10

Windows 10 keyboard tricks

Windows 10 has been with us for a year and a half now. "If they give it to you for free, it must be awful, " many of us said on the first day, but in Redmond they learned the hard lesson of Windows 8 . They brought back the long-awaited start menu , took the best of previous versions, and added a handful of features . So many that after all this time there are options that still go unnoticed . So we hope this series of tips and tricks will help you get even more out of your Windows 10 .

Many of these tricks are actually applications that have been overlooked . But in Windows 10 almost everything is configurable , so there is no excuse not to leave it to our liking. Also, there are some features so useful that when you discover them, you won't understand how you have been able to do without them until now. Let's go there!

1. Full screen start menu

Windows 8 disturbed the sleep of many people, but some things were well received. One of them was that powerful application menu that took up the entire screen . If you want the start menu to appear before you in all its glory, the process is a breeze.

  • Click on the start button, and press the Settings gear .
  • Go to Personalization .
  • Turn on Use Full Home Screen , and you're done.

In this way, the start menu becomes the start screen . Three icons appear at the top left. The first one (the three parallel lines ) expands the options for All apps , Settings (where you can put Start back as it was), File Explorer , and so on.

start menu full screen Windows 10

2. Go back to the Windows 7 menu

If, after all, the Windows 10 start menu seems too excessive and colorful to you, you can always go back to the good old days and get Windows 7 started again . There are two ways: resorting to third-party applications , or doing it yourself .

  • If you decide to make a classic start menu yourself, you just have to unpin all the application windows , or Live Tiles . Right click on them and select Unpin from Start .

unpin Windows 10 apps

  • If you want the real Windows 7 Start , the popular free Classic Shell app can help. One of its advantages is that it does not disable the native menu, but rather shows the classic start when we press the start button or the Windows key. In addition, we find the option Start Menu , which opens the native Windows 10 start again. You just have to anchor that button to the taskbar and we will have the two menus within the reach of a click, so that we use the one we want at any time . If this seems little to us, we just have to dive into the Classic Shell options. We can customize the Start button, configure keyboard shortcuts ... A little wonder  that deserves that we stretch a little and make a donation for the Paypal button on your website.

windows 7 start menu

3. Recover the classic Control Panel

In Redmond they have done a remarkable design work with Windows 10 , but leaving everything so cute means that some things are a bit hidden. The new Control Panel is beautiful, although the simplification of its icons may mean that we will not find a specific function or three. Either you are nostalgic and prefer the rich Control Panel of yesteryear. No problem, the "old" version of the Control Panel can be accessed with great ease.

  • Right click on the start button .
  • Select Control Panel .
  • Voilí! Here is the Control Panel that you remember from your young days. What's more, some options still retain the Windows 7 style , such as making backup copies.

control panel windows 7

4. Record what happens on your screen with Windows 10

Windows 10 allows you to capture what you are doing in the active window using a small utility in the Xbox games application: the Game Bar . If you are youtuber and your channel is dedicated to gameplays , or you need to record what happens on the screen for a tutorial, you will no longer have to look for programs out there. I'm sorry Camtasia , I will always remember our friendship.

All you have to do is press the Windows key + G to bring up the Game Bar. To save the active window, press the red button (no one would have guessed), or the Windows + Alt + R combination to do it directly at any time. If you press the keys but nothing happens , the Game Bar option is deactivated. Go to the Xbox app , open Options and search for Game DVR . There you can activate this useful tool.

game bar windows 10

5. Captures for all tastes

If what you need is to take screenshots with ease, there are a couple of keyboard shortcuts that make life much easier. The first way you know it well: press Print Screen , and you will have a screenshot saved on the clipboard. But there is more.

  • Press Windows + Print Screen , and the screenshot will go right to the Images / Screenshots folder .
  • Press Alt + Print Screen , and you will capture only the active window. I have to confess that this option has saved my life.

6. Add web apps from Chrome

Chrome lets you transform any web page into a windowed app , with no distracting address bars, tabs, or buttons. This is especially convenient for pages like Facebook or YouTube . To do this, click on the Chrome options , click on More tools , and finally on Add to desktop .

chrome web app

The web app is saved by default as a shortcut on the desktop. It can be added to the Start menu by right-clicking and selecting Pin to Start .

7. Unique keyboard shortcuts

If you don't know more keyboard shortcuts than Ctrl + C and Ctrl + V , you don't know what you're missing. Keyboard shortcuts save a lot of time, and are one of the best ways to handle Windows and its applications. All the shortcuts that exist since our old and beloved XP are in Windows 10 , but add some related to the new functions of the system .

  • The combination Windows + Left / Right + Up / Down fixes the active window to one side of the screen.
  • Windows + Tab : open the task view and we can see all the open windows.
  • Windows + I : open the System Settings .
  • Do you want Cortana to appear ? Pressing Windows + C .
  • Windows + Ctrl + D : a virtual desktop is created .

8. Wait, did you say "Create virtual desktop"?

You are right. Linux had a powerful advantage over Windows , creating virtual desktops on which to distribute our tasks. In Redmond they have realized the great utility of this function, and have added it to Windows 10 . We can have a desktop with work applications and another with play applications, so as not to go crazy with so many windows.

Windows 10 virtual desktop

  • Access the task view by pressing Windows + Tab.
  • Click on the New desktop option at the bottom right.
  • A brand new virtual desktop will open before your eyes . With Windows + Tab you can see the desktops you have open. In addition, from this task view you can move applications from one desktop to another .
  • Each desktop has its own X to close it, but you can press Windows + Ctrl + F4 to close the active virtual desktop.
  • With Windows + Ctrl + Left / Right , you will switch between the different virtual desktops.

9. Display and control all applications

The God Mode is one of the best known and curious tricks of the environment Windows . It consists of creating a folder that gives us access to all the configuration possibilities of the operating system. But there is another way to exercise full control . If we open the File Explorer and type in the address bar Shell: AppsFolder , we will open a list with all the applications installed on the computer . And we warn you, there are more than you think. It also works from the Run option in the start menu. From this list we can execute, anchor at the beginning or uninstall whatever we want.

10. ¡Escribe con emojis!

Primero llegaron los smileys, luego la cosa se diversificó con los emoticonos y hoy hablamos de emojis. En definitiva, las caritas sonrientes, sí­mbolos de victoria, corazones y animalitos que nos gusta poner por todas partes. En el móvil los tenemos siempre a mano, pero desde el ordenador dependemos de los menús desplegables del sitio web en cuestión. Pues bien, Windows 10 incluye un teclado que nos facilita la tarea. Haz click derecho sobre la barra de tareas y selecciona Mostrar el botón del teclado táctil. Aparecerá un pequeño teclado en el área de notificaciones. Sólo tenemos que abrirlo, buscar la sección de emojis and fill our messages with expressiveness.

keyboard emojis Windows 10If this compilation of tips and tricks has got you down to business, here are some more , and here we explain how to set the start menu to your liking. Do you know of a feature that we didn't mention? Share it with us in the comments!

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