Re: I have 600
I have over 1000 entries, including folders however, if I count everything in my Start Menu and All Users Start Menu.
My menu, however, looks pristine and happily fits on a 1600 x 900 screen. It's called folder organisation, people.
Accessories, Administrative Tools, Games, Hardware, Internet, Multimedia, Office, Startup, Utilities.
Inside each, more sub-folders (e.g. Multimedia contains Graphics, Music, etc.). Every program no more than 3-4 key presses away. Don't need no damn search to find anything, it's all there in categories. Classic Shell start menu to make it look like the menus of old (and search, if I ever need it and get rid of the Metro junk). And 99.99% (literally) of my games are not in Games, because they're all in Steam / GOG Galaxy / etc. and don't need extra specific icons for every damn one of them. Desktop contains 6 icons. But start menu has over 1000 files, easy.
I will test in work but I know that the default image has something like 100 folders on the start menu, under various categories, and each probably has three or so icons on average. Quite possibly I have over 500 shortcuts just in a standard roll-out image of Windows 8.
Whoever coded this literally could not have tested it on any existing system that's been upgraded, or on any system that gets actual day-to-day use. Hell, what's the standard Microsoft set of software to test against before a release? You're telling me that they don't have a list of 100 or more of the most popular apps that they have to install and test individually before any RTM version of Windows?