Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

If I have downloaded a new program in Windows 8 that comes without an installer, how do I add it to the menu system so that it:

  1. Appears as an icon in the "Apps by name"
  2. Is searchable by the friendly name I give it?

Specifically I've downloaded Process Explorer, and I want to be able to bring it up by typing [windows key], Process Explorer instead of having to doctor the system path to include where it actually is and remembering that it is procexp.exe.

In the old days (Windows 7) I'd create a short cut then add it to either my user's Start Menu tree or the All Users Start Menu tree. But I can't find the equivalent in Windows 8.

(I'm 100% sure this question has been answered somewhere, I just don't know the vocabulary to ask it properly.)

share|improve this question
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Find the executable file & right-click, You should see the option to "Pin to Start". That should do the trick.

Though actually, if you happy to always type in the first few characters of the name, simply make sure that the executable is in a folder that is in the Windows Search Index. That works fine.

UPDATE: To add something to the Apps part of the start screen (what you get when you click the down arrow when on the main start screen, you need to go to the old "Start Menu" location and add a shortcut there. This is what most installers to.

The location for the logged in user is:

%appdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

There is also a master location that adds entries for all users rather than just the current user.

C:\Users\Public\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs
share|improve this answer
That's great! So, extrapolating, in order to create an icon in the Apps screen that's called Process Explorer, I just create a shortcut to procexp.exe and pin that to the start bar. Thanks! – David Mackintosh May 5 '14 at 17:44
I think that the apps part is actually the old start menu! I'll update the answer with the correct location. – Julian Knight May 5 '14 at 18:37

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.