The Start button and accompanying menu are iconic parts of Windows first introduced in Windows 95 over a decade and a half ago, and it looks as though the run will end with Windows 7. Leaked photos of Microsoft's Windows 8 "Consumer Preview" build show a Super Bar without a Start button, whereas in previous versions it showed up with a flat Metro-style makeover.
Chinese website PCBeta posted images of the Consumer Preview, which were picked up by The Verge and confirmed with its sources that the Start button is out of sight, but not out of mind.
"Fear not though, the Start button functionality isn't as dead as it seems. We have confirmed with sources close to Microsoft's Windows 8 development that a hot corner has replaced the Start button orb," The Verge reports. "A thumbnail-like user interface will appear in Metro or desktop mode, providing a consistent way to access the Windows desktop and Start Screen in Windows 8 regardless of touch or mouse input."
Users will be able to activate the new interface by hovering over the lower-left corner of Windows 8, which will also be available in touch mode, likely through a swiping action.