Software Windows

How can I move the Windows 11 Start button to the left?

Screen grab of Windows 11 Start menu
Windows 11: Start menu centre

One of the biggest cosmetic changes in Windows 11 is the shifting of the Start button towards the centre of the screen.  We’ll show you how to put the Windows 11 Start button back on the left.

Move the Windows 11 Start button

The Start button is part of the Windows Taskbar. Technically, this article concerns aligning the Taskbar but we’ll continue to refer to it as moving the Start button.

Screen grab of Taskbar settings menu option.

As with all things Windows, there are a few ways to resolve this. The easiest is to move the mouse to the bottom of the screen, then right-click the Taskbar to pop-up the Taskbar settings option. Clicking this brings up the Taskbar personalisation settings.

Scroll to the bottom of the page and select Taskbar behaviours.

Screengrab of Taskbar behaviors.

It won’t take you too long to work out what to do here.  Next to Taskbar alignment, click the drop-down list to change the position from Center to Left.

Screengrab of Windows 11 Start menu on the left

As soon as you make the switch, the Start button (and everything else) will scuttle back towards its natural habitat, exactly as Saint William of Redmond intended. It really is that simple to move the Start menu back to the left. If, for some reason, you believe that the centrally aligned Start menu is preferred, then have a strong word with yourself and take a cold shower before deciding if you really wish to flip the option back to Centre.

Whilst you’re here…

Whilst you’re poking around, the option above, Taskbar corner overflow controls the right-hand side of the Taskbar if too many icons are appearing.

Screengrab of Taskbar corner overflow

Not every Windows app has a Taskbar icon. This menu controls which are a permanent fixture, and which are held in the overflow (accessible via the ^ icon).

Screengrab of Windows 11 taskbar

In this example, I’ve set the Taskbar corner overflow options for Windows Explorer and OneDrive to On (so they’re permanent) and everything else to Off (available in the overflow).  If you’re using Windows on a small screen, this is a handy feature to de-clutter the UI.

woman in white long sleeve shirt using laptop

How do I remove recommended items from the Windows 11 start menu?

About the author

Lee Grant

I can normally be found attacking things with screwdrivers in my small computer repair business or writing a column for PC Pro magazine.

I am also trying to solve a mystery involving David Bowie.

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