The initial retail release of Windows 11 in October 2021 doesn’t allow you to resize the Start menu or taskbar as you would in Windows 10. We share your frustrations and work around some potential solutions.
An Incomplete and Borrowed Legacy of Windows 10X
Windows 11 traces its origins back to Windows 10X, which Microsoft developed for a different kind of hardware platform with two screens. On the way, the company has redesigned the taskbar and Start menu to simplify them. After abandoning the dual-screen concept, Microsoft adapted the 10X to single-screen devices, and later migrated Windows 10X interface elements (such as the new Start menu and taskbar) to what became Windows 11.
In the release of Windows 11 in October 2021, we’re stuck with a greatly simplified Start menu and taskbar, both of which lack many power user options that Windows 10 users take for granted. For example, you cannot resize the Start menu or taskbar, nor can you place the taskbar on different sides of the screen. (Fortunately, you can move the Start menu to the left side of the taskbar.)
Microsoft will likely bring these features to Windows 11 in future updates — and we hope the company will. If the development of Windows 10 is any indication, Microsoft will likely continue to improve Windows 11 over time. However, it remains to be seen if Microsoft considers a resizable taskbar or Start menu as an improvement.
Solutions to Taskbar and Start
As mentioned earlier, you can move the icons on the taskbar (including the start button) to the left side of the screen in Windows 11, but you can’t change the size of the taskbar itself. There is a partial solution that involves modifying the Windows registry, but it has some limitations: the results are not perfect, and you can only choose from three sizes. However, if you’re interested, we’ve created a step-by-step guide showing you how to do just that.
As far as the Start Menu is concerned, we currently don’t know of any way to resize it in Windows 11, but you can probably replace it. App developer Stardock has created a program called Start11 (still in early development as of October 2021) that allows you to replace the Start menu in Windows 11 with a menu very similar to Windows 10. Some have also reported that a free startup alternative called might work. Open-Shell in Windows 11 with some modifications. Over time, Open-Shell developers will likely add full support for Windows 11.
Except for these solutions, if you think Microsoft should make the taskbar and Start menu more flexible in Windows 11, the best course of action might be to send Microsoft feedback using the Feedback Hub app that comes with Windows 11. To do that, open Start and search for Feedback , then click the Notes Center icon.
When the window opens, click Feature suggestion’, then type in the details of what you want to see.
You can also try sending messages to Microsoft via social media (eg Twitter). But remember to be polite — Microsoft engineers are busy trying to make the best software possible, even if we don’t always agree 100% with their design choices. There is always room for change in the future.