Microsoft teases return of the real Start button

Microsoft is gearing up to bring back the fully-functional Start button in what could be a massive u-turn to appease loyal Windows users.

A screenshot showing off what looks like the traditional Start menu was shown off during Build 2014. The left side appears to hold your most recent apps and favorites, just like Windows 7. The right side has several Metro apps and Live tiles.

It is unclear when the Start button will return but it is expected to be in a future 8.1 update.

The Start menu has been one of the most-missed features from Windows 7. Microsoft left users confused and wary when it removed the menu from Windows 8. The next version, 8.1, brought back the button, but this still brought you back to the Start screennot menu.

IT Pro asked for the Start menu to come back for Windows 9, so it's good to see it here. Multiple readers have expressed their annoyance that the feature was ditched by Microsoft.

"I couldn't tolerate Windows 8 until I installed Windows 7 Shell' start button," one commenter told IT Pro.

"Bring back the real Start button," said another.

The decision may help engender Windows 8 to enterprise customers who have hesitated to upgrade.

Some banks and the UK government refuse to upgrade from Windows XP. Gartner vice-president Michael Silver estimated that 20-25 per cent of enterprise systems use XP. Continued support and extra enterprise functionality may help attract more customers.