Stardock have just released Start8 for Windows 8.
Source - Neowin.netA few days after Microsoft launched the Consumer Preview build of Windows 8, developer Stardock launched the first beta of Start8, which aimed to give a version of the familiar Start menu to Windows 8 Metro owners. Today, Stardock has released a new and free beta of Start8 that adds quite a few new features.
While previous versions of the Start8 beta only put in a start button that opened up the "Modern" user interface for Windows 8, this new version has a number of new features, including:
Windows 7 style Start menu with Windows 8 enhancements
Users can search for Windows 8-style (Metro) apps with it
Users can pin Metro apps to it
Full support for Jump Lists
Automatically matches color to the color of the taskbar
Start button is now skinnable
Users can boot directly to the Windows 8 desktop
Optionally disable the desktop “hot spots”.
Fast access to shut down, devices, music, documents, videos
Supports WindowFX 5.1 startmenu animations (currently in beta)
The Windows 8 Start screen becomes accessible from the Start menu
Start menu size fully configurable
Adds option for WinKey to show fullscreen Metro desktop.
I've just installed it on to my home PC running Windows 8 and it runs very nicely. It's still in beta, so I'm hoping the finished product includes further customisation like the ability to not highlight newly installed programs and customise the number of items in the Start Menu, but so far, it's looking very promising indeed!
Try using the start screen for a while. It's actually pretty decent when you get used to the change.
I'm running it at home as well.
The developers have said that the final version will be FOC from the website, which is an added bonus!
Important: Read this before using your copy of Stardock Corporation's Start8.
End User License Agreement
This user license agreement (the AGREEMENT) is an agreement between you (individual or single entity) and Stardock Corporation for the Start8 program (the SOFTWARE) that is accompanying this AGREEMENT.
The SOFTWARE is the property of Stardock Corporation and is protected by copyright laws and international copyright treaties. The SOFTWARE is not sold, it is licensed.
LICENSED VERSION The LICENSED VERSION means a Registered Version (using your personal serial/registration number) or an original fully working version of the SOFTWARE. If you accept the terms and conditions of this AGREEMENT, you have certain rights and obligations as follow:
1. Install and use one copy of the SOFTWARE on a single computer.
2. Install a second copy of the SOFTWARE on a second computer only if you are the main user of this computer (home computer or laptop for example).
3. Install the SOFTWARE on another computer only if you change your main workstation. In such a case you must uninstall the software from the old computer.
4. Use the SOFTWARE via a network, only if you have purchased an adequate number of licenses. The number of users must not exceed the number of licenses you have purchased.
5. Make a copy of the SOFTWARE for archival purposes only.
YOU MAY NOT:
1. Copy and distribute the SOFTWARE or any portion of it except as expressly provided in this Agreement.
2. Sublicense, rent, lease or transfer your personal registering number.
3. Sublicense, rent or lease the SOFTWARE or any portion of it.
4. Decompile, disassemble, reverse engineer or modify the SOFTWARE or any portion of it, or make any attempt to bypass, unlock, or disable any protective or initialization system on the SOFTWARE.
5. Copy the documentation accompanying the SOFTWARE.
6. Upload or transmit the SOFTWARE, or any portion thereof, to any electronic bulletin board, network, or other type of multi-use computer system regardless of purpose.
7. Include the SOFTWARE in any commercial products intended for manufacture, distribution, or sale.
from: Interview: Stardock's CEO gives an update on Start8 - NeowinWill anyone still be able to download and/or purchase the final version of Start8 when it is officially launched?
Oh yea. Start8 is going to be freeware still for non-commercial use.
I can understand them wanting to keep control of the software, via licensing, incase it proves popular with OEMs (as their ObjectDock proved popular with Dell).
As the software is still in Beta, it's a little soon to be quoting the EULA, which may well change with the final product...
I still don't understand why Windows won't give us the option if we still want a start menu. I mean why do they care so much how we operate from our desktop?
Just turned my PC on, to find that my start8 has "expired".
Looking at the website, they've switched to charging for the beta, on 2 levels, with a free, time-limited trial.
Uninstalling and switching to ClassicShell as I type this!
I'm a little disappointed that Brad Wardell backtracked on his statement that it'll be freeware for non commercial usage, however, I guess they need to find the money from somewhere to pay for the sexual harassment lawsuit!
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