It’s been almost confirmed that the Start button will be making its return on the Windows 8 operating system. The changes will be reflected in the update called Windows 8.1, codenamed “Windows Blue”.
The news was spread via screenshots uploaded by Paul Thurrott on his Windows SuperSite.
The Start button was replaced in Windows 8 by a Start screen known as Metro which featured apps downloaded from the Windows Store. According to the leaked screenshots, the restored grey Start button will be in its customary bottom-left position. It will change to blue when hovered over with the mouse pointer. Clicking on the button will trigger the detailed list of all apps installed on the system.
Another main attraction of Windows 8.1 is the boot-to-desktop feature. Currently when a user boots a Windows 8 system, the login screen opens up first, then the user logs into the system and is redirected to the Start screen/Metro and then to the desktop. But now the user will be able to go directly to the desktop just like in older Windows operating systems. However, this option will be turned off by default.
Other primary features in Windows 8.1 include:
Setting a desktop background for the Start screen/Metro
Inclusion of Internet Explorer 11
Locking the app tiles to a specific position on the Start screen
Windows PowerShell v4.0
The public preview of Windows 8.1 is scheduled to be released at the 2013 Build Conference, to be held from June 26 to 28, 2013 in San Francisco.