Pin to 8

Microsoft has disabled the programmatic access to Start Screen items pinning in Windows 8.1 and above. This is impossible to fix.

Pin to 8, formerly known as Start Screen Pinner - the universal pinner software for Windows 8. It can pin anything to the Start Screen or Taskbar in Windows 8. Finally it got the possibility to pin anything to Taskbar!

Latest version is, the change log is available below.
With our Pin to 8 you will able:
  • to pin ANY file regardless of its type;
  • to pin ANY folder;
  • to pin drive;
  • to pin Control Panel items, all them including some hidden like God Mode/All Tasks, Network Connections;
  • to pin Libraries;
  • to pin Shell Objects like Run command, "Show Desktop", Window Switcher;
  • to pin any folders or files with drag and drop. Drop them on application window.

Note this pinning tool works properly in Windows 8 regardless of UI language.

Pin to 8 in action

Change log

Added an option to unlock the "Pin to Start Screen" feature to all files and folders in File Explorer. More info.
* improved user folders' location detection in case when folder redirection is enabled via Group Policy
* fixed crash of app when it was started from a network share
* fixed the file/folder pinning issue when the target file is located on a network share.
Many thanks to Alexey Maximov for the extremely useful bug report.
  • Fixed a bug in "already pinned" check
  • New command line options are implemented:
    "Pin to 8.exe" /t c:\DWM\DWMLoader.exe - pins DWMLoader.exe to taskbar.
    "Pin to 8.exe" /s c:\DWM\DWMLoader.exe - pins DWMLoader.exe to Start Screen.
Provided x64 version, which contains most complete list of "Special Items" of Windows 8 x64.

Initial release, based on Start Screen Pinner

Pin to 8 is a portable application and doesn’t require to be installed. Just unzip and run it.

Download: Pin to 8

Donate options for satisfied users:

alex | 04 Oct 12

motivates not see that you can create shortcuts in the menu to tile windows 8 metro OblyTile keep using that is better than this.

Sergey | 04 Oct 12
Comments: 478

I understand nothing from your comment except OblyTile

David | 09 Oct 12

Great Work! A commadline option to pin link would be perfect for IT admins!!!

Gaurav | 16 Nov 12

Yeah a cmd line option would be great for pinning to Start screen. Taskbar Pinner for Windows 7 has it.

sebas101 | 24 Nov 12

Still cannot pin Steam game (shortcut) to homescreen... i don't understand why because they are URL and you can pin URL shortcut :( can you add that feature soon ?! it would be amazing :d no need to go to desktop or steam to launch a game !

thanks | 22 Dec 12

A dream come true. Windows 8 suddenly makes sense. Thank you.

nicklemarr | 05 Jan 13

Does not work on any version of Windows 8 I try. I also tried the old version. Please update.

Sergey | 05 Jan 13
Comments: 478

it works properly here
Can you share more details?
What is your OS language?
What you have tried to Pin? Please tell the full path of file.
Where you tried to Pin: Start screen or taskbar?

slyrcc | 17 Jan 13

Pin to 8 can not run in Win8 OS<Chinese (Simplified)>,but run normal

Sudhir Dudeja | 20 Jan 13

it doesn't work i tried to pin computer on my task bar but it crash

Mvd | 24 Jan 13

Hello, what is the commandline for this tool? Is there an option to run this every logon without having duplicate items?

Thx for the good work!

Sergey | 24 Jan 13
Comments: 478

There is no command line for this tool.
The command line was "dumbed down" while it grows up from "taskbar pinner" to currect implementation

Jeff Alessi | 06 Feb 13

Is it possible to add "windows\fonts" fonts folder to the taskbar in Windows 8?

Thank You

No Excel support | 07 Feb 13

I tried to pin a special excel file I use daily to the Taskbar, using a custom icon. It doesn't work. The Win 7 version of this worked flawlessly, until you added a routine that checks to see if it is being used on 7 or 8. Losers.

Sergey | 16 Feb 13
Comments: 478

Pfff, they have exactly they same source base under the hood.
Look for the troubles at your side.

sss | 23 Feb 13

win8 language polish pin don;t work well

Tom | 02 Mar 13

Windows 8 with german language. I try to pin a program from my nas with unc path. The result is a shortcut to my local temp folder. Then I tried with a local program, but with the same result. All pinned shortcuts go to my temp folder. And yes, I use the last version for win8.
Thx for your help

Sergey | 04 Mar 13
Comments: 478

Hello Tom
I very sorry about this issue.
I will try to resolve it as soon as I reproduce the bug.

r0k | 19 Mar 13

Hi. It would be nice to have an option to change display name of the pinned items. Some applications insist on having generic executable names like "launcher.exe" so being able to change the name of the Start Screen shortcut would be nice.

For anyone willing to so this as long as a direct rename option has not been included : once you added your shortcut you can right click it and you'll have an option to "open the file location", from there you can simply rename the file the old way. It works great for normal files, didn't test for special folders or libraries.

Jojo | 03 Apr 13

I have the same problem with my German Windows 8 version.
All Icons link to my C:\Temp folder where i find files like "Run....exe" or "All Tasks.exe". The filesize is always 0.

I should mention though, that i set my temp path variable to "c:\temp".

Tom | 05 Apr 13

Hi Jojo, I'm sure that the temp variable isn't the fault. I did the same like you. But I switched it back to the default folder with no success. Always the same issues. I've a win7 + 8 pc with the same problems. The only solution is to copy the real path to the .exe file and edit the wrong link in the taskbar (shift+right mouse button). You can copy the path during the search dialog from pinto8. Quick and dirty but it works.

Ragnar | 06 Apr 13

Thank you Sergey! It's working great for me. Microsoft should hire you since apparently they aren't smart enough to figure this out for themselves.

Tom | 16 Apr 13

OK, my last post was a mistake. Now I had a little bit time to check the conditions more exactly. The Pinto8 and also Taskbarpinner works only correct if the user temp variable set to "C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Temp". All other variations are going wrong. The system temp variable is no matter.

Raven | 27 Apr 13

I have to say thank you very much for this simple portable program
that I was hoping for to just Pin a folder to the Taskbar. Thank you
again and thanks for creating it

joe | 07 Jun 13

this will not differentiate shortcuts with command line parameters. For example... you can run puttytray.exe alone, or with the parameters '-file myserver' .... the corresponding shortcuts run fine, but pinto8 parses the command only and not the parameters, so wherease the shortcuts would automatically connect to a given server (different behaviors) pinto8 says 'already pinned!' if I try and pin different shortcuts (which each have different behaviors) because pinto8 doesn't seem to care about the parameters to a command

steelew | 08 Jun 13

I pinned then unpinned a folder to the taskbar and now it says it is already pinned when I try to re-pin it back how do I undo the pinning.

Joco1114 | 11 Jul 13

Is it possible to pin a program and set admin rights for it?
(I mean make a shortcut which is run the program with admin rights.)

Sergey | 11 Jul 13
Comments: 478

Use it is possible.
Create that shortcut with the "Elevated shortcut" app or use any other way you like to create that shortcut.
After that, in Pin to 8, click the "File" button, select the SHORTCUT you just created. That's all.

Joco1114 | 12 Jul 13

Ah, easy as a pie!
It would be nice with 1 step from CMD line, but it works!

barbera | 31 Jul 13

how to pin recycle bin to taskbar? :(

Joco1114 | 08 Aug 13

Pin Special Item, choose Recycle Bin.

mike a | 14 Aug 13

Why don't you guys make this an APP? It would be nice to start your program from a APP tile

Anonymous | 19 Aug 13

I cannot pin Hardware and Sound/Change Audio Device/Soundcard or what the name is. :´-(

DEMON | 25 Aug 13

Why create file from user\AppData\Local\temp\filename.exe ???

MRP | 26 Aug 13

Fail in Windows 8.1 Preview

tester | 29 Aug 13

When I pin an app to start screen using this app, it shows the ugly 8.3 filename as the name of the tile.
It even does it if I place a shortcut to the executable called with a human-readable name, i.e.
target file: totalcmd.exe
if I use pinto8, tile name will read: TOTALCMD
if I create a shortcut to TOTALCMD.EXE and call it "Total COmmander", and for some reason add it to the start screen using Pinto8 instead of the usual way ("Pin to Start" in context menu), the tile name still reads "TOTALCMD".
No way to rename the tile, so I guess naming should be implemented in Pinto8 during tile creation stage.

Joco1114 | 01 Sep 13

Not working on RTM for me.

Anonymous | 01 Sep 13

Doesn't work with Windows 8.1 RTM. It will add items to the taskbar but fail to add to the start screen.

Anonymous | 11 Sep 13

Please add the ability to add the Control Panel - Sound applet to the taskbar. The one thing I wanted it for is unfortunately missing.

ron | 14 Sep 13

works great, thank you

sarah | 06 Nov 13

Cant pin anything to start screen with 8.1. This make me sad. Can you fix this?

Sergey | 07 Nov 13
Comments: 478

You the checkox to unlock the NATIVE COMMAND in EXPLORER CONTEXT MENU
See this

mt | 08 Nov 13

with win 8.1 x64 does not give the option to pin to taskbar or start menu. Taskbar only.

Great software, thanks

Sergey | 08 Nov 13
Comments: 478

oh really!
what the surprise!

labyrinth9 | 29 Nov 13

Same as mt. No option in x64 in 8.1

King | 06 Dec 13

Okay, I get it now. Wow... I feel kind of dumb. This may be the problem that is arising with other users. In the video, unless I misunderstood it had a pop up menu to give you the choice to pin it either to the start screen or the task bar. Unless mine had a downloading error, it does not give me that option. It only pins to the task bar. I kept playing around with it and getting irritated with it but it would only pin to the task bar. I tried checking the option for the "Pin to start", nothing. I put it through troubleshooting and tried everything. No pop up. Then I right clicked a file, folder, ect. and realized there was one more option available that before... "Pin to start". Wait a minute, so I unchecked the box for the application to pin to start and tada! No pin to start option. So for everyone having problems, the app works as it should, but the option to not choose like in the video through me off. So you can "pin to start", but only through the file explorer.

hede | 07 Dec 13


It could be really nice with all this super apps from you guys, if they were made, so you had the option to choose the settings to be for all users....
Many of this apps could help a lot with making default settings in a terminal solution for all users, if this could be a choice.

lalto | 13 Dec 13

It looks as if it cannot pin an app to the taskbar. I would like to bring some apps from the metro interface and have them start from the desktop or taskbar. I am using Classic Start and when I drag an app icon into the program I get an error "Cannot resolve the shortcut."

I found my problem | 11 Jan 14

go here C:\Users\<UserName>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\User Pinned\TaskBar and delete the old shortcut and then re-pin it and voila, it works.

Micky | 04 Feb 14


Nice program. I'm trying to pin the Modern Mail App to the taskbar. I have the path as such but I am not sure what item to select as the mail launcher from within the ModernMail folder.

C:\Program Files\WindowsApps\microsoft.windowscommunicationsapps_16.4.4406.1205_x64__8re7yb3d8abwe\ModernMail

Many thanks...


SamirPA - Doubt! | 14 Mar 14

Hi Sergey!

Please, let me know how do you have selected the items so fast in start screen as you did in video?
I need go to end of apps list to select them, but you just grab them in the right screen border in just a touch.
I mean the moment at 2:22 of the video to be exact.
Thanks another time for you attention!


Sergey | 14 Mar 14
Comments: 478

I just captured them with the mouse pointer
They were partially visible.
That's it.

Orla | 20 Mar 14

Hi Sergey,
this seems to be a very useful tool.

Unfortunately I can't use it because of the following reason:
- I moved the AppData-path to another partition (better for backup-handling).
- PinTo8 always tries to access the standard-path "C:\Users\<Name>\AppData\...".
- My path is "D:\Users\<Name>\System\AppData\..."
- The correct path is retrieved be the SHGetFolderPath()-Function or in the registry [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Folders]

Maybe you can fix this with the next version ...


Sergey | 21 Mar 14
Comments: 478

Thanks for this report.
I will look

JerryKC | 16 Apr 14

it worked great for me on Windows 8.1 Ent. Update 1 64bit.

but it would not run on Windows 7 32bit Ent., the error message said "This application requires Windows 8"
Also, the Windows 7 compatibility settings didn't help.

Paul | 24 Apr 14

It doesn't seem to give me the option to Pin to Start. Everything pins to task bar.

Paul | 24 Apr 14

Ignore my previous comment. Worked it out. Thanks. Great product.

i8ts | 23 Jul 14

It never prompt asking where to pin after first use. Only pins to taskbar since i picked that the first time?

Anonymous | 28 Jul 14

I would very much like to be able to unpin items like Windows "Store" and from the taskbar by command line.
BTW - great application!

Prince | 03 Aug 14

Works for windows 8.1?

Smithg325 | 05 Aug 14

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bioheber | 14 Oct 14

I am very pleased with winto8 under Wind 8.1. I installed Wind 10 on extra partition and installed it there.
But Winto8 failed to work at all under WIND 10.
Would be nicee to make it running in the upcoming system.
Under Win 10 by default you can now pin folders to START but still not single documents or special system relateted Objects.

Rooster | 31 Dec 14

I've tried EVERYTHING in the do it yourself Inet search-EVERYTHING! Days of aggravation & registry files &&&... FINALLY! BLESSINGS UPONYA!

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