How to Force the Use of Classic Start Menu

If you are running Windows XP and prefer the Classic menu version to the XP version, this registry tweak is perfect for you. This tweak will allow you to load the Classic menu version and make changing back to the Windows XP version impossible.

You should always create a back-up prior to editing your registry.  Having a back-up allows you to restore your registry to its prior state.  The backup will also come in handy should any issues arise.

The procedure is quick and simple.

1. Click Start and go to Run.  Enter regedit.

2. Locate HKEY_CURRENT_USER on the left side of the box that will pop up.

3. Expand it by clicking on the cross on the left side.

4. Look for the Software folder and expand.

5. You should be able to find the Microsoft folder.  Once you have found the folder, expand it.

6. Go to the Windows folder and find CurrentVersion.

7. Next, look for the Policies folder.  Once you find the folder, expand it.

8. You will see the Explorer folder under Policies.

9. Look for NoSimpleStartMenu.  If this value is not present, you will have to create it.  To do this, you will need to:

  • Right click on the right side pane of the box.
  • Select New and then DWORD.

  • New Value #1 will come up.  Rename this to NoSimpleStartMenu.

10. Double click on NoSimpleStartMenu.  A new box will pop up.

11. Change the value data from 0, which is the default, to 1.  This will force the use of the Classic Start Menu.

12. Exit registry and reboot.


Now you don’t have to worry about ever having to switch between the Classic and XP menu versions anymore.