If you regularly scroll through dozens of items on your Start menu every time you open a program, maybe you should think about putting the menu on a diet.
Two prime candidates for deletion from the Start menu are your Favorites and Documents menus. Chances are you only access your Favorites menu from your browser or folder windows. And you probably rarely use your Documents menu.
Unfortunately, Windows 9x doesn't offer an easy way to remove its built-in menu items, but you can delete some of them by editing the Windows Registry. Messing with Registry settings is risky, however, so be sure to back up your system.dat and user.dat Registry files before beginning.
After creating your backup, choose Start-Run, type regedit, and press
To remove the Log Off command, add a DWORD Value icon called NoLogOff, and to delete the Favorites menu, create a DWORD Value icon named NoFavoritesMenu. Double-click each icon you create, type 1, and click OK. After removing the menu items, close the Registry Editor and, if necessary, restart to see the changes. To restore a deleted menu item, open the Registry Editor and delete the icon you created, or double-click it and change its value to 0.
To remove the Favorites and Logoff commands in Windows 2000 and Me, right-click the taskbar, choose Properties, click the Advanced tab, and in the list of settings at the bottom of the dialogue box, uncheck either the Display Favorites box or Display Logoff box, or both. If you never use the Start-Run command or prefer to access it only from your keyboard (
Note: to remove the Documents submenu from Windows Me's Start menu, follow the Registry edit steps described above for Windows 9x.
Removing other built-in Start menu items from Windows 2000 requires the Group Policy administrative utility. To launch the utility, click Start-Run, type gputil.msc, and press
If you disable too many menu items, you may regret it. For example, removing the Shut Down command from the Start menu also disables the Shut Down button when you press
. And when you remove the Search submenu, you also disable the keyboard shortcuts and context-menu options that let you search from within Explorer and folder windows. So, don't disable these items unless you're happy using other software that can replace these functions.