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With Windows 7, the Start button would list a bunch of applications, for example, Word, Excel, Visual Studio. Then if I hovered over the application name a list of recently used files for that program would expand to the right of the name.

It was very useful - to get the application going with the file that you want, all in (almost) one click.

It seems there is no such equivalent in Windows 8 - I know I can get the Recent Places from the Explorer, but I still need to click a few times to get from "nowhere" to the file I want to open.

Have I missed something?

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You can always go back to a Windows 7 style start menu. like Start Menu 8 –  Mr. Hargrove Apr 16 at 15:20
    
Agree with JonBMN, although I use Class Start Shell. YMMV, but I like it. –  jimtut Apr 16 at 16:49

2 Answers 2

To answer the actual question, "No". You have haven't missed anything. See comments above for suggestions on alternatives, which perhaps was the real question?

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

I've found out something useful, by accident. If you pin an application to the task bar, and then right-click on its icon in the task bar, it will show you a list of recently opened files in that application. So you click on the file name and the app opens with that file. That's quite good, actually.

And, it also has the same functionality with apps not necessarily pinned to the task bar but already running.

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