At, we’re some of the biggest, nerdiest Windows fans you’ll ever meet.

That’s why we’re so excited for Windows 10. Windows 10 is so good that Microsoft skipped an entire generation to make it happen.

But after the bizarre debacle that was Windows 8, we’re not 100% sure that Microsoft understands is users. That’s why we decided to make it easy for Microsoft: here are 5 things that Microsoft absolutely needs to include in Windows 10. Or else I’m going to be really, really sad.

5) An improved Start menu

Windows 8 set the bar so low that simply including a Start menu in Windows 10 is a huge improvement. How sad is that?

Windows 10 will bring back the Start menu – we already know that. But frankly, that’s not good enough. We want a new and improved Start menu that takes all of the usability of Windows 7 and adds more cool features. Plus, we want it to be totally customizable.

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If you look at any “what we want in Windows 10” list, a good Start menu is typically at the top of the list. And that’s why I think Microsoft is going to knock this one out of the park.

4) Intelligent dual monitor support

Once you use dual monitors, you don’t go back. Today, dual monitor setups are more affordable than ever before and that’s why they’re on more desks than ever before.

In spite of that fact, Windows still isn’t all that good at recognizing dual monitors. Give us some cool dual monitor features – like the ability to stretch the taskbar onto both monitors and the ability to arrange high-resolution wallpapers so they’re perfectly spaced over all our displays.

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Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 have all supported dual monitors, but basic support doesn’t go very far beyond being able to see your Windows desktop on multiple displays. Why not embrace the multi-monitor community, Microsoft?

3) Customization options from top to bottom

One of the most annoying parts about Windows 8 was that it removed much of the customizability that made Windows unique. If I wanted to be locked into a specific UI and be prevented from changing my wallpaper, I’d be using Mac OS.

Windows 10 needs to give users a choice. Users who don’t want to see any live tiles should never have to see them. Users who want to use Windows apps should be able to make them a core part of the OS.

How cool would it be if Microsoft implemented Rainmeter-like functionality into Windows 10? We can dare to dream.

2) A unified design, unified UI, and unified apps

Over the past few years, we’ve slowly seen Microsoft find a visual style it likes. That visual style is flat squares with sharp edges. It’s the visual style we’ve come to expect on Windows Phone, Windows 8, and Xbox.

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Microsoft has talked a lot about “One Microsoft” and a unified user experience. With Windows 10, I want Microsoft to deliver on that promise. I don’t want to see clashing designs on the same screen or out-of-place gradients and old-school icons. I want to see a UI that’s modern from top to bottom.

1) An affordable and attractive upgrade offer

The vast majority of Windows users are still using Windows 7 or Windows XP. Windows 8 is still stuck at around 10% market share and it’s likely never going to get higher.

Microsoft knows this and it has thrown a lot of incentives at users trying to get them to upgrade. None of the incentives, however, have been very good. When Windows 8 first came out, it cost $40 to upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8. Unfortunately, the early versions of Windows 8 were not very good, and many users ignored that upgrade offer.

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When Windows 10 comes out, I want an upgrade offer that makes me stop everything I’m doing on release day and run out to Best Buy to get Windows 10.

Let’s aim for a price between $10 and $50 for existing Windows XP and Windows 7 users, shall we? And hey, if you throw in some Office subscriptions, free SkyDrive space, and other incentives, I certainly wouldn’t complain.

Microsoft employees will probably never read this article. But obviously, I’m not the only person requesting the changes listed above. If Microsoft can check off all five of the boxes listed above, then I’m buying Windows 10 on opening day.

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