Here’s how to make Windows 10 work more like Windows 7

Jan 25, 2020, 4:55 AM
Microsoft windows image...
(Pixabay Illustration)
(Pixabay Illustration)

Q: I was forced to upgrade to Windows 10 and I hate it! Is there any way to make it work more like Windows 7?

A: The dramatic changes to the Windows 10 interface along with privacy concerns are a couple of reasons that many were hesitant to make the switch until their hand was forced.

If you’re concerned about the privacy issues that surround Windows 10, Wired posted an excellent article reviewing how to check all of the privacy settings.

Removing tiles

One of the first things that throws a new-to-Windows 10 user are the tiles that appear to the right side of the Start menu.

Any of the tiles can be removed by right-clicking them and selecting ‘Unpin from Start’ or if you want them to take less space, select ‘Resize’ to make the tile smaller.

If you remove all of the tiles, you’ll be left with something that looks a little more like Windows 7’s list of programs.

Windows 7 start menu

If you really want the Windows 10 Start menu to look like Windows 7, you can download a utility called ‘Open Shell’ that used to be called Classic Shell and Classic Start.

This utility is what is known as an open-source project, which means that the source code is available to any programmer that wants to contribute new features. This also means that it resides on a website that might be confusing for some to navigate.

If it’s too confusing to download and install yourself, ask a techie friend to help you.

Once it completes the installation, you’ll have the choice of three different classic menus to switch to and an option to replace the Start button.

This utility offers a large number of modifications throughout all of its menus, but I would avoid getting too carried away unless you are fairly technical.

Taskbar revisions

If you don’t like the large search box just to the right of the Start button, you can turn it into a search icon or make it go away completely by right-clicking any blank part of the Taskbar to open a menu. Look for the Search option at the top, which has a sub-menu that shows you three options: Hidden, Show search icon or Show search box.

If the voice recognition tool known as “Cortana” isn’t of any interest, you can remove the associated icon – a circle – from the taskbar by removing the checkmark in front of the “Show Cortana button” while you’re in the menu.

To get rid of any of the unwanted icons on your Taskbar, just right-click on them and select ‘Unpin from taskbar’.

Controlling Windows updates

Windows 10 is designed to automatically update when critical updates are released, which is a good thing from a security standpoint but can be an annoyance when it automatically restarts your computer in the process.

You can avoid a random restart by setting the active hours in the Settings menu of Windows 10. Under Update & Security is an option to “Change active hours” that can be up to 18 hours.

Windows 10 is supposed to be the last version of Windows from Microsoft, so I’d suggest you eventually get used to it’s look and feel at some point.

Data Doctors

(Photo by Rafael Henrique/Getty Images)...
Ken Colburn, Data Doctors

Tips to fixing navigation lag in Google Maps mobile app

Before you travel in another city, here are some tips to read over that'll help fix the navigation lag in the Google Maps mobile app.
3 days ago
(AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File)...
Data Doctors

Here’s how the activity app ‘Relive’ can help you remember your adventures

This is how the activity app "Relive" can help you remember your adventures.
10 days ago
(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)...
Ken Colburn, Data Doctors

Grammarly, the tool that takes editing beyond spell check and autocorrect

Grammarly is a tool widely available for use on various devices and goes beyond spell check and auto correct.
17 days ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Data Doctors

How to use Google Photos for group sharing among iPhone and Android smartphones

Here's how to use the Google Photos App for picture sharing between iPhone and Android users.
24 days ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Data Doctors

Here are some screen capture tips for Windows computers

Capturing something on your screen has a variety of uses and Microsoft introduced a much more useful way to do it back in the early 2000s.
1 month ago
Ken Colburn, Data Doctors

Addressing the safety and benefits of Google’s Password Manager

Are you wondering if Google's Password Manager is safe to use? So were we -- here's what we found.
1 month ago

Sponsored Articles

Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Update your child’s vaccines before kindergarten

So, your little one starts kindergarten soon. How exciting! You still have a few months before the school year starts, so now’s the time to make sure students-to-be have the vaccines needed to stay safe as they head into a new chapter of life.
Here’s how to make Windows 10 work more like Windows 7