Desktop applications pinned to the new Windows 8 start menu have the icon centered inside the tile and a default background color (like in the left image). Is there any way to make a "metro" looking tile (like in the right image) for a desktop application?

Desktop Internet Explorer Metro Internet Explorer

  • Those tiles are limited to Modern UI applications. – Ramhound Oct 26 '12 at 21:53

OblyTile will let you create Metro tiles to launch your desktop apps:

enter image description here

See Color 1, 2, 3,4 in the above screenshot.

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You will need to develop a Metro application that on execution executes the desktop application, this is entirely possible as Metro applications can launch executables. To avoid having to make a Metro application for each desktop application that you want to add to your Start Screen you can use the "secondary tiles" feature. This allows you to make one master Metro application from which you can easily add extra tiles to your Start Screen. Metro applications can be written in either C#, C++ or a combination of HTML5 and JS, you will need Visual Studio to be able to compile / package them for use on the Start Screen.

Just saying, it's possible from a developer viewpoint, just needs someone to write it...

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  • You can also write Metro apps in C++. – Mark Allen Oct 26 '12 at 21:59
  • I think the question was meant to be from a casual end user perspective, not a developer . . . – ernie Oct 26 '12 at 22:00
  • @ernie: It would be stupid to hold back information that shows this it is at least possible, there is no end user perspective on this yet as far as I can see. Programming this takes some considerable time to fit the pieces together, as you come across the pitfalls that typically occur. Also, it's even harder to get this application to be in the Marketplace as "closing on start-up" isn't really going to pass their rules and it's also an application that they might not even want... – Tamara Wijsman Oct 26 '12 at 22:04
  • @TomWijsman I'm not saying it's a bad answer; I'm just saying that I think the question is more along the lines of "I have this program I was running on Win7, and I want it to have a Metro-style tile - is that possible?" – ernie Oct 26 '12 at 22:08
  • @ernie: And then the answer is "Yes, it is possible (from a developer viewpoint) but someone has to write it first." instead of letting someone give a typical boring "No, it is not." answer. – Tamara Wijsman Oct 26 '12 at 22:11

@TomWijsman has given a great answer regarding make a true Metro tile

From another perspective, if you just want to update the icon to something Metro-ish for an app, you can just change the icon:

  1. Right click on the tile and select "Open File Location"
  2. Right click on the shortcut and select Properties
  3. Click on the "Change Icon" button
  4. Select a new icon to use

You can google for metro style icons if you want to replace one in an existing app.

I'm sure there'll be some web app that shows up some enough that'll let you take an existing icon and make it graphically Metro-ish, but I couldn't find one yet.

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  • Changing the small pictogram will keep it small, which is what he doesn't want as he wants the bigger Metro version. The link you have posted is irrelevant here because it changes the logo of an existing Metro application and can't be used for Desktop applications, but he instead wants to change the small pictogram into a bigger Metro style tile. – Tamara Wijsman Oct 26 '12 at 22:24
  • @TomWijsman Thanks for clarifying - didn't realize that blog post was Metro apps, and not desktop. Updated with changing icon directions. – ernie Oct 26 '12 at 22:32

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