Having ditched the Start button in Windows 8, Microsoft looks set to give the menu-launcher a second chance in the first major software update, Windows 8.1.

Variously known as Windows Blue, the OS update is expected to be unveiled at Build in June, at which point The Verge's sources claim the Start button will be back.

Things will be different this time, though. The sources say that the button won't show off the Start Menu of yore - instead, it will give you access to the Start Screen instead.

So if you decide to boot to desktop, as is also rumoured for Windows 8.1, the Start Button won't be much use to you.

Start/stop

Not many people were particularly thrilled to discover that the familiar Start button was to be done away with in Windows 8, with various button-replacing plug-ins proving popular among Windows 8 users.

But it's been a while now, and even Microsoft is a little tired of hearing about the 'controversy', confessing to TechRadar that although it wants to shout about the start screen til the cows come home, its customers are actually a bit more interested in what Windows 8 can actually do.

If you simply cannot hang on until Windows 8.1 arrives, we've rounded up the best of the Windows 8 Start Menu replacements for you. Fill your boots.