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Microsoft moved the Start button in Windows 11 – Here’s how to move it back

If you hate the new central Start menu in Windows 11, here’s how to put it back in its corner

windows 11
Image: Joe Rice-Jones / KnowTechie

Whenever you’ve spent years looking at the same user interface, change is always hard to get used to. Take the humble Windows Start menu icon, which has been at the bottom-left of the desktop since Windows 95. Now with Windows 11, Microsoft has moved the Start menu to a more central position on the taskbar, and your years of muscle memory might be in revolt.

While it’s only in the Insider Preview right now, Microsoft has already included a handy way to move the Start button back to its usual place. So if you’ve taken the plunge and are testing Windows 11 already or decide to do it when Windows 11 is fully rolled out, here’s how to move the Start menu to your accustomed place.

Here’s how to shift the Start menu icon back to the left corner of the taskbar

We know, change is hard. Your muscle memory might be used to hovering to the bottom left of your screen, and if you’re not using a touchscreen, the middle of the taskbar is a weird place for the Start menu icon. We’ll show you how to put it back to the usual place.

  1. Open up the Settings app. You can do that by hitting Windows + I or clicking the Start Menu and then the Gear icon that says Settings underneath.

  2. Click on Personalization, then click on Taskbar on the left. windows 11 settings personalization

  3. Then scroll to Taskbar behaviors and click on the drop-down next to Taskbar alignment. windows 11 settings personalization

  4. Change that to Left from the default Center, and your Windows Start menu will go back to the left-hand side of the taskbar, where you’re used to it.

Now your Start menu and your taskbar icons will be shifted to the left. Unfortunately, Windows 11 doesn’t have many of the taskbar customizations that earlier versions of Windows have, so you can’t shift the taskbar to any other edge than the bottom one (yet). Maybe Microsoft will add that functionality into a later version of Windows 11, in the run-up to release.

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