I read a lot of books on my netbook using Kindle for Windows 8. However, I am often very frustrated that is uses the 'metro' interface which consumes the full screen. I would like to use my Kindle app on Windows 8 like other normal apps so I can share the screen with other apps at the same time.

I had a similar complains about Chrome (Google's browser) and learned that Chrome had a simple setting to change to get the normal interface.

I don't see such a feature in Kindle. Is there an option (or different version) so users can accomplish this goal?

  • Note: I was thinking to ask this at SuperUser but thought this is more on-topic here. Let me know if I should move it.
    – John
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 13:37
  • I think this should be ok for this site John.
    – Jason Down
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 14:11
  • To me, this seems more about Windows 8 than about ebooks; SuperUser might be a more appropriate place.
    – Tom
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 18:09
  • @Tom - I think it is on topic for both sites, I suspect SU will have better answers as it is about how Windows 8 works but it is about using an ereader so useful to have an answer here.
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 22:27
  • @Tom I do understand your point but the reason I chose here was that it is NOT a Windows setting, this issue is always determined by the app. That said, I can see arguments for each site. Still, I'd like to build the questions for this site.
    – John
    Commented Feb 20, 2014 at 0:37

3 Answers 3


I have found 2 solutions to this. The first is to download the Windows 7 version of the Reader from here. When I installed that particular version on W8.1, the popup said it was going to "expire soon" (which likely speaks to the fact that the company will be dropping XP support from the next version, not that they'll be discontinuing the non-Metro version completely).

The second is to use the Kindle Cloud Reader. While it is designed to be used "in the cloud" you can download your books to have local copies. Using this method, you can open the app in a dedicated browser window and resize it as needed.

  • I just installed the Windows 7 version and it is just what I wanted-a normal app. I did get the message about expiring soon. Hopefully that won't be a problem later,
    – John
    Commented Feb 20, 2014 at 12:17
  • Your answer solves my problem. However Kindle for Windows 7 does not use downloads from Kindle for Windows 8. So, I must re-download all my content from Amazon. Not ideal but a helpful solution. Thanks.
    – John
    Commented Feb 26, 2014 at 7:58
  • 1
    Thanks so much for providing that link - works perfectly, and no warning message either. I spent quite a lot of time trying to achieve this before I found your link. I much prefer to use the 'old' desktop, and shortcuts were always crucial to configuring the machine to suit myself (a PERSONAL computer) - Windows 8 has made this much more difficult and frustrating. I hope that Windows 10 will see a return to allowing users to configure their PC and desktop the way that suits them! Mike
    – user4158
    Commented Jan 14, 2015 at 14:11

I don't believe there is an option to switch to a normal (desktop) UI for that particular app. Keep in mind, that Metro-style (or modern or whatever they are calling it now) apps are supposed to be fullscreen. They are optimized for touchscreens and swiping (or right-clicking in the case of a non-touchscreen, windows 8 device).

There is a workaround for what you need as outlined in this tip (go to thumbnail preview in top left and drag it down to snap it to the left edge of the screen). I believe this will only work for a total of two applications (the main one and the one that is pinned to the left edge) and it may not be ideal for the particular applications you are using.

  • Thanks but I am looking for more flexibility than locking it to 1/2 the screen. I want it like other normal desktop apps.
    – John
    Commented Feb 20, 2014 at 12:14
  • Windows 9 is rumored to support a "desktop mode" for Metro apps. Commented Feb 22, 2014 at 5:00

Win8 drove me crazy until I discovered www.classicshell.net. All my "Metro" interfaces (including Kindle for PC) now run like I was accustomed to in Win7.

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