Microsoft just announced The First new full version of Windows in yearsIntroducing a new Start menu, translucent windows, and Android apps, among many other changes. It won’t be out until this holiday season (when it’s rolling out as a free update to Windows 10 owners), but if you can’t wait, there are ways to get some of the best new features right now.
All of the things we discuss here are optional third-party software or features that you can download, and almost all of them are free. This means that they could still work even after Windows 11 rolled out. Some of them may be updated because the new operating system duplicates their features, or they may be completely replaced, so keep that in mind as you try out these features. But if you’re the adventurous type who likes to experiment on your PC, keep reading.
Replace your Start Menu with something less useful
The Windows 10 Start Menu is… good. There is nothing wrong. But it still had the last of the Windows 8 cruft leftovers stuck to it. Live Tiles have never been useful (which is why Microsoft discontinued them), and without them, app icons don’t need to be giant squares. Combine this super-efficient design option with a giant alphabetical list of apps and it’s clear that the Start menu might need some improvement.
Fortunately, there have been better start lists in the past. This is a place like apps start 10 And the StartIsBack Come. Start10, from developer Stardock, replaces the current Start menu with one much like older versions of the Start menu that prioritizes recent or popular apps you use, rather than an alphabetical list or giant installed apps.
If you’re specifically looking for the central taskbar, StartIsBack is similar to Start10, but also has the option to center taskbar icons. It’s a good all-in-one option if you want to change the start menu and taskbar in one go. But fortunately, you can do one or the other.
Get used to the central taskbar now
In the category of very minor changes likely to cause a lot of controversy, Windows 11 will move taskbar icons to the center, expanding outward while adding new ones. If you want to try this design now, Center You will do just that.
The app is very simple, showing centered taskbar icons, a Start menu icon, or both. It can also hide the taskbar, although it is already possible in Windows to automatically hide the taskbar on the desktop. Other than these basic features, CenterTaskbar doesn’t do much, which is a good thing. No need to add a lot of bloat to your computer just to get a couple of new features. (Microsoft will do this for you.)
Run Android apps in an emulator
With the new Microsoft Store, Windows 11 will finally get built-in access to some (versions) of Android apps (via the Amazon Appstore, It’s a perfect thing). However, if you are really interested in using Android apps on Windows, you can probably do it all the time! Isn’t that kinda neat?
One of the most popular ways to get rid of this is by using an emulator called BlueStacks. While the software mainly targets games these days, it is capable of emulating Android apps and comes with it Huge directory of apps and games You can download to your computer. Since the apps are run through an emulator, there’s always a chance that they won’t work exactly the way you expect them to, but if you’re looking for a way to get your favorite Android app on your phone on your PC, this is a great option to use.
Build your own tools (and more) with Rainmeter
Ever since Windows first introduced widgets (now referred to as “user interface widgets” by most sane people), there have been people who have been customizing and creating their own widgets that are better than the ones that come built into Windows. One of the most common ways to do this is, Rainmeter, has been around forever, meaning there’s an entire community to be inspired by (and downloads) from.
Rainmeter is a very powerful desktop customization tool that allows users to create and modify their own widgets. These can be tools that monitor your system’s performance, apps that display the weather, or even control the music you listen to. Some of the core features are so popular that you can Download skins for Rainmeter without having to create it yourself.