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How Do I Fix Windows 10 Start Menu Not Working Quickly?

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Q: Windows 10 start menu not working.
I just upgraded to windows 10 and everything has been working fine. But now the start menu icon isn't working and can't get to my apps. Also action center and volume are not working. How do I fix start menu in Windows 10?

-- from answers.microsoft.com

Windows 10 start menu not working or not responding seems to be a constant problem. We show you some feasible solutions in this post.

Important: before you start, make a backup of your computer in case that any unwanted error occurs. We recommend using MiniTool Partition Wizard Free to make a disk clone of the system drive. By doing this, once the system gets messed up during the fixing process, you are able to revert everything to the previous state in just a few minutes.

MiniTool Partition Wizard is a piece of professional disk partition manager that is able to clone hard drive within simple steps. It is worth mentioning that this partition tool adopts sector-by-sector copying method, hence all sectors used or not will be cloned to guarantee that the target disk is exactly the same with the original disk after the operation. However, please note that the target disk should have the same sector with the original disk.

Download the freeware now!

Then, how to back up the system disk using this free disk cloning software? A step-by-step tutorial is shown below:

Step 1. Choose Copy Disk feature.
After installing MiniTool Partition Wizard Free on computer, launch it to get the main interface. Then select the system disk to be copied from the disk map and choose Copy Disk from the left action panel.

copy disk

Step 2. Select target disk.
In the pop-up window, select a target disk to save all data on the original system disk. Be assured that you have backed up all important data on the target disk and the target disk is ready to be overwritten.

select target disk

Step 3. Review the changes.
Here you can review the changes to be made on the target disk, or change some settings. For example, you can change the copy option from "Fit partitions to entire disk" to "Copy partitions without resize". And, you can check/uncheck "Align partitions to 1MB for advanced format disk & SSD". Please note that the last option "Use GUID Partition Table for the target disk" enables you to clone MBR to GPT but is a paid feature only available in the Pro edition and more advanced editions. If you have such a need, you can click the following button to get one. Last but not least, you can drag the slider bar to adjust each partition size.

select copy option

Step 4. Read information.
Next, you will see information telling you how to boot from the target disk after disk cloning. Please keep it in mind if you have no idea.

message

Step 5. Apply changes.
Finally, you still need to click Apply on the toolbar to put all pending operations into effect. A reboot is required since the running operating system is involved. Please do as you are prompted until all is finished successfully.

apply changes

Tip: if you only need to back up Windows 10, you can also employ the Migrate OS to SSD feature. For more information, read How to Migrate Windows 10. If you come across any issue while cloning hard drive using MiniTool Partition Wizard, don’t hesitate to contact [email protected].

After backing up your PC, it is time to fix windows 10 start menu. Here we list 11 methods that are proved to be useful by users.

How to Repair Windows 10 Start Menu

Method 1: Relog into Your Account

The first Windows 10 start menu fix is to have a try reclogging into your account and see if this works. Here is how to do it:

Step 1. Press Ctrl + Alt + Delete keys at the same time. When you see the following interface, click Sign out.

sign out

Step 2. Log in again. You may need to type the correct password if your account is protected.

sign in

Step 3. Now check if your Windows 10 start menu is working right.

Method 2: Create a New User Account

If Windows 10 start button doesn't work still, logging in with a completely new user account may fix this issue. And here are the detailed steps.

Step 1. Press Ctrl + Shift + ESC keys at the same time to call out the Task Manager. Then at File menu, click Run new task.

run new task

Step 2. Type Powershell and make sure that "Create this task with administrative privileges" is checked. Then click OK to continue.

powershell

Step 3. In Windows PowerShell, type the following commands and press Enter key: net user newusername newpassword /add. (Note: set the newusername and newpassword with what you prefer.)

create new user account

Step 4. Restart your computer and log into the new user account.

Method 3: Run Microsoft Start Menu Troubleshooter

It seems that Microsoft has realized the start menu issue and then released the Microsoft Start Menu Troubleshooter to help. You can go to Microsoft to get this tool and then follow the steps to do the fix.

Start menu troubleshooter for Windows 10 download

Step 1. Run this application to get the main interface.
Step 2. Click Next. Immediately this utility starts detecting potential problems with your start menu. If some problems are found, they will be displayed and fixed. If no problem is found, you will receive a message saying "Troubleshooting couldn’t identify the problem".

win10 start menu troubleshooter

FYI, Microsoft Start Menu troubleshooter checks for the following issues:
  • If Start Menu & Cortana applications are installed correctly
  • Registry key permission issues
  • Tile database corruption issues
  • Application manifest corruption issues.

Method 4: Check and Repair Windows Files

Step 1. Press Ctrl + Shift + ESC keys at the same time to call out the Task Manager. Then at File menu, click Run new task to bring up the Windows PowerShell again.

Step 2. Type sfc /scannow in the window and press the Enter key. Please wait until the process is completed.

Step 3. Continue type DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth and press Enter key.

check hard drive

When the text finishes, check if Windows 10 start menu issue is fixed.

Method 5: Reinstall Windows Apps

It is said that reinstalling all Windows 10 apps sometimes works if Windows 10 start menu and Cortana not working. This isn’t dramatic and does worth trying. Windows apps are the ones built into Windows system and are also available from the Windows Store. Better still, the reinstallation is automatic and should only take a few minutes. The process might delete any data you have saved in these Windows apps, so back up anything important before you begin.

Step 1. Press Ctrl + Shift + ESC keys at the same time to load the Task Manager. Then at File menu, click Run new task to bring up the Windows PowerShell.

Step 2. Type Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register "$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml"} and hit Enter key.

reinstall windows aaps

Please ignore the red lines coming up and wait for the commands to finish. By doing these, your Cortana is reinstalled, and your Start menu should also be back now.

Method 6: Make Start Menu Full Screen

Windows 10 allows you to have a full-screen start menu. Making start menu full screen and back sometimes can repair Windows 10 start menu.

Please go to Settings -> Personalisation -> Start, and then turn on Use Start Full Screen. Immediately you will find that the start menu goes to a full screen. At this time, select any feature and see if it is available to use.

use start full screen

Method 7. Enable Tablet Mode and Start Screen

It is also worth trying enabling the Tablet Mode and Start Screen. At the end of the taskbar, click the Notification button and then Tablet Mode. You will find the opening applications go to full screen, and are no longer displayed on the taskbar. By pressing the Win key on your keyboard or clicking the Start button, a full-sized start screen appears. Check if all features in the start panel return to normal.

enable tablet mode

Method 8. Disable 3rd-party Antivirus Programs

If you have installed some third-party antivirus or anti-malware programs, you can temporarily disable them and check if Windows 10 start menu goes to normal. If the start menu turns all right, you may contact the software supplier for a solution.

Note that Microsoft has its own anti-malware called Windows Defender. It can be enabled to safeguard your PC even if the third-party antivirus programs are disabled. So you don’t need to have additional worries.

Method 9. Uninstall Drop Box

Some users somehow find that Dropbox is conflicted with Windows 10 start menu, preventing users from getting access to all features in the Start panel. So if you have Dropbox installed, you may just have a try uninstalling it from your system to get Windows 10 start menu not working fixed.

Step 1. Press Win + R keys to call out the Run box, and then you need to type Control and press Enter key.

Step 2. View by Category and click Uninstall a program.

uninstall program

Step 3. Find Dropbox then and get it removed from your PC.

Method 10. Update Windows

Windows may push an update at any time, and the new update may fix this Windows 10 start menu not working issue. Now you can go to settings and check for the latest update.

Step 1. Please go to Settings and select Update & security.

windows update

Step 2. Click Check for updates to get the latest update.

check for update

Method 11. Refresh Your PC

Last but not least, you have the option to refresh Windows 10. Close all running programs on your PC first, and then press the Win + L keys to log out of your Windows account. Then at the lower right corner, click the power option and you will see several options.

restart windows

Now hold down the Shift key and press the Restart button. When you come to the blue interface, click Troubleshoot -> Rest this PC -> Keep my files and wait patiently for the success.

Tip: above are all the solutions to resolve Windows 10 start menu not working issue we can suggest. Hope they are helpful and you will never take the last one. But if all of them not work, you may consider a complete reinstall of Windows. And, if any of the solutions get your PC messed up, you can use the backup copy made by MiniTool Partition Wizard to go back to the previous Windows.

Bottom Line

Now it is your turn to have Windows 10 start menu fixed. If you have a better suggestion, welcome to leave your idea in the following comment section so as to share it with more users. If you have any questions towards using MiniTool software, you can directly contact our support team by sending emails to [email protected].