Metro style start screen and tiles are one of the unique features of Windows 8 and 8.1 versions. There are plenty of tools and apps available on the Windows store to customize the Windows 8 start screen. Recently I’ve reviewed “Sticky Tiles” to add To-Do list tiles on the home screen and “Battery Level” app to show the battery percentage. By default, there are no big customizing options available for Windows 8/8.1 start screen. If you want to customize your start screen, you can download third party apps like “Start Screen Unlimited” to customize and add more features to the start screen.
Today I’ve come with another interesting app called “MetroSidebar”, which will bring a Metro style sidebar to your Windows desktop. Since, Windows 8 and 8.1 versions don’t have gadgets by default, this sidebar will serve that purpose. Lets have a look at the features and functions of the app.
MetroSidebar supports Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 versions. It is a free application and you can download it using the link below. Since it is a small app (around 1MB), it uses very less system resources. So, you don’t need to worry about system speed or performance. Once you complete the installation, it will open a sidebar as shown in the screenshot above. By default, there will be a date, time, weather and alarm tiles available in that sidebar. Instead of having separate widgets, this sidebar will bring all of them as live tiles.
An interesting feature of the application is, it is completely customizable. You can easily add or remove tiles using the inbuilt options. All the live tiles you add to the sidebar will be updated automatically. Some of the commonly used windows functions like control panel, recycle bin, my computer, etc., will be available on the sidebar for quick access. Another important feature of the sidebar is, you can add more pages, if you don’t have enough space on the home screen.
By default, there will be two pages. The second page will have only the battery level and power options. You can add more tiles using the “Add Tiles” option in the Settings Menu (Gear icon) at the bottom right. Here I’ve added bing search and windows media player tiles.
To add a new page, click the “New Page” option (pen shaped icon) at the bottom left. As of now, the tiles are very limited and the development team is going to launch an online store for downloading tiles. The online store may bring more interesting tiles to improve the user’s productivity on Windows. MetroSidebar is a must have application for Windows 7 users who love the Metro UI and people who want to use different gadgets on their Windows 8/8.1 PC. Try this app on your Windows machine and share your experience with us in the comments. Thanks for reading, do share this post with your friends.