Want your old Start Menu Back?
If you want to be able to at least have your old folder links and recent folders back, pin the default explorer link to your taskbar and drag it to the extreme left.
Then, make yourself the Windows Logo of your choice (Orb/flag/etc...) and change the icon to that.
Presto.. You've got most of the usefulness of the old Start Menu back. You can even give it a hotkey. If you were used to having programs in your Start Menu, pin them to the taskbar which is easier (jump lists really do make them more effective), or take advantage of the added real estate of the new start menu.
I hope this is useful to someone.. I realize it won't be for everyone.