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How to enable new Start menu on Windows 10 (Dev Channel)

Windows 10 has a new Start menu design, and if you didn't get it with build 20161, then you can use these steps to enable it.

Enable Windows 10 new Start menu

Starting with build 20161 available in the Dev Channel, Windows 10 enables a new Start menu design with visual changes that no longer focus on Live Tiles and streamlines the colors to something more uniform.

You’re still getting tiles, but the Windows 10 Start menu now reduces the color of blocks using transparency to match the menu color scheme and uses traditional icons designs that should help to make easier to scan and find an app quickly.

Although the new design is available for testers, it’s only available for a subset of users. However, anyone can activate the new Start menu, and some of the other new features, with third-party tool called “ViVeTool” created by Rafael Rivera and Lucas in GitHub.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to turn on the new Start menu available in the latest insider preview of Windows 10 from the Dev channel.

Enable new Start menu design on Windows 10

To enable the new Start menu design on Windows 10 build 20161 or higher, use these steps:

  1. Open this GitHub website.

  2. Download the ViveTool-vx.x.x.zip file to enable the new Start menu.

  3. Double-click the zip folder to open it with File Explorer.

  4. Click the Extract all button from the “Compressed Folder Tools” ribbon.

    Extract ViveTool
    Extract ViveTool
  5. Click the Extract button.

  6. Copy the path to the folder.

  7. Open Start menu.

  8. Search for Command Prompt, right-click the top result, and select the Run as administrator option.

  9. Type the following command to navigate to the ViveTool folder and press Enter:

    cd c:\YOUR\FOLDER\PATH\ViveTool-v0.2.0

    In the command remember to change the path to the folder with your path.

  10. Type the following command to enable new Start menu on Windows 10 and press Enter:

    vivetool addconfig 23615618 2

    Enable Start menu Windows 10 build 20161
    Enable Start menu Windows 10 build 20161
  11. Restart your device.

Once you complete the steps, the new Start menu design will enable on your installation of Windows 10.

If you change your mind, you can revert the changes with the same instructions, but on step No. 10, make sure to use this command: vivetool addconfig 23615618 1.

Alongside the new design for the Start menu, Windows 10 build 20161 also includes some other changes for notifications, which you can enable with these commands:

  • TurnOffFocusAssistNotificationsByDefault: vivetool addconfig 23282664 2
  • DesktopToastViewAlwaysShowDismiss: vivetool addconfig 23447524 2
  • DesktopToastViewWithAtrribution: vivetool addconfig 23454425 2

You can always check all the improvements that Microsoft has been working on for future releases of it desktop operating system in this comprehensive guide.