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Windows Button and Search Bar/Cortana don't work


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#1 greenviceroy

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 07:50 PM

Hi,

 

My Windows 10 x64 computer has a problem. My account I use and have programs on is not administrator, but I have access to the administrator account and password. This problem has been occuring for a while, and seems to be more consistent now.

 

My taskbar looks like this (view attachment)

 

Attached File  Task bar.JPG   17.27KB   0 downloads

 

As you can see, the search box is white. I cannot click in it, and no text cursor will appear. As well as that, clicking the windows button does nothing. I have no access to the start menu. Pressing the windows key on my keyboard does nothing as well. I can right click the start menu to access the list of options, and Windows+R works just fine.

 

What's strange is that the administrator account search bar works just find, however, I don't have the programs I use on there. I restarted my computer, and this error is still here. The only way for me to shut down my computer is to to CTRL+ALT+DELETE, and turn it off from there. When it's shutting down, it says waiting for Windows Task Host, and lists a folder in the Plug and Play folder. I press shut down anyway, and it works. This doesn't happen when I shut it down normally when it does work.

 

This means that any program I want to be able to reliably open I have to pin to the taskbar or desktop. The programs pinned to the taskbar work just fine. The buttons on the right, like time, volume, notifications, don't work. However, Dropbox does work and so does the expand arrow.

 

Could anyone provide any insight into what might be causing this and how to fix it?


Edited by greenviceroy, 08 February 2018 - 08:02 PM.


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#2 opera

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 01:55 AM

What is the build of Windows 10 you are running. Is it 1709 (build 16299.214) ?

 

To see this just type winver into the search box (when it's working) or in the admin account search box.

You may have a corrupt profile on the non admin account.



#3 QQQQ

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 09:39 AM

This sounds very close to what mine has been doing for a few months now. What happens if you click on the action center, does it open? (mine does not, nor does the search bar)

Try logging off, then log right back on, does that help?

Running Version 1709 build 16299.192 here.

I want to know if your symptoms match mine before telling you what my work around was, it involves editing the registry.

 

EDIT: Opera, greenviceroy said the search bar doesn't work but Windows key R does. So instead of typing winver in the search bar type it in the run box.


Edited by QQQQ, 09 February 2018 - 09:42 AM.


#4 opera

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 09:58 AM

The latest update for Win 10 is KB4058258 (OS Build 16299.214)

 

Have you opeened updates and asked it to check for updates?



#5 dc3

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 09:59 AM

Press the Windows key OS4o0pO.png and the R key to open the Run box.
 
Type winver in the search box, then click/tap on OK.
 
The reason this has be asked is because the 1709 fall update includes repairs which address a number of issues in Windows 10.  If you don't have this update installed I would make this a priority and see if this resolves the problem.
 
 


Edited by dc3, 09 February 2018 - 10:00 AM.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#6 Kilroy

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 11:50 AM

You can download and run the Microsoft Start Menu Troubleshooter.  I ran it for a user this morning and it said that it couldn't fix the problem, however the issue was gone after a restart.



#7 greenviceroy

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 04:23 PM

Running Version 1709 build 16299.192 here.

I want to know if your symptoms match mine before telling you what my work around was, it involves editing the registry.

 I'm running the same one you are, with .192 at the end. However, I can't open settings to get to the update check.



#8 QQQQ

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Posted 09 February 2018 - 04:32 PM

The latest update for Win 10 is KB4058258 (OS Build 16299.214)

 

Have you opeened updates and asked it to check for updates?

It's downloading now, thanks for the heads up.



#9 QQQQ

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Posted 10 February 2018 - 09:17 AM

Okay fully updated now.

My symptoms started after the last big update and a power outage shortly after, not sure which caused the issue but I will explain. My UPS batteries went bad and I found out during a brief power outage, batteries have been replaced. My profile got corrupted after the outage, had to setup a new profile.

Issue occurs only during a cold boot, after logging in the search bar does nothing, nor does clicking on Edge or the action center, nothing happens when you click them. If I log off at this point, I get an error saying something about a background task from Microsoft Windows Plug and Play. device install reboot required, I click sign out anyway. Log back in and everything works now, zero problems.

Things I have tried to fix but have not worked. Disabled fast startup, ran sfc /scannow (no problems detected) and DISM commands check health and restore health, something like that, no problems found.

A workaround that I found is to edit the registry hkey local machine\system\currentcontrolset\services\wpnuserservice . Look for start, the default dword value is 2 and I change it to 4 and reboot, the problem is gone now.

What I have noticed now though is if I plug a usb flash drive in and eject it I don't get the notification that it is safe to eject. I believe the registry change I made disable notifications completely. I check that the usb drive is no longer being seen by Windows before I unplug it.

If you decide to edit the registry make sure you know what you are doing, I won't be responsible for problems caused by editing it. Not sure exactly why this workaround works but it does for me. I call it a workaround because it's not really a fix, it will do for now until I find the fix. I just wanted to share my experience as my research shows others with similar issues and this was the only workaround I have found so far.



#10 dc3

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Posted 10 February 2018 - 10:05 AM

@Greenvictory

 

If mistakes are made while editing the registry this could render your computer inoperable.  Unless you have experience editing the registry I would suggest thinking very seriously before editing the registry.  If you do persist you should create a new restore point and back up the registry.

 

To backup the registry please download and install Tweaking.com Registry Backup.

Play the video below for operating instructions.

 

 

Is the Admin. account yours or does it belong to someone else?

 

Can you do the following?  Press the Windows key OS4o0pO.png and the I key to open Settings. and the I key to open Settings.


Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#11 greenviceroy

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Posted 10 February 2018 - 09:48 PM

The admin account is my Dad's but we rebuilt the computer a year ago together, and so I know the password. I'd rather not edit the registry. If it comes down to it, I'd have him do it.unknown.png?width=768&height=434

Here are some more symptoms. As you can see, the volume indicator is stuck on the screen. Clicking it does nothing, and clicking the volume button on the taskbar does nothing. Luckily, my keyboard has buttons to increase decrease, and mute the volume. The search bar has started dissapearing entirely, just leaving empty taskbar. Sometimes, when I click and drag to select on the desktop, the area behind it will turn black. I can use this to turn the entire background black, as seen, and it's really weird. This doesn't happen very often, but it's just really weird.



#12 greenviceroy

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Posted 10 February 2018 - 09:51 PM

I can open up Windows Explorer just fine.

When I try to click to open up Edge, it gives me this error:

unknown.png?width=726&height=410

I'm honestly confused on what everything means here, and my dad doesn't want me editing the registry.



#13 jenae

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Posted 10 February 2018 - 09:56 PM

Hi, actually windows makes it's own backup of the registry it's called regback and is located in c:\windows\system32\config folder. Usually backups are made automatically every 7-10 days.
 
It is relatively easy to restore this backup, still better, make a restore point before modifying anything . Tweaking.com makes the same backup as windows regback, it is easier to restore, I urge caution regarding anything else to do with this program.
 
Now QQQQ has jumped into this thread with a completely different problem, the heads up was the mention of plug  N' play, The Windows push notification service is new to windows and extends the theme, "windows as a service" it effects cloud apps updating, and has nothing to do with the OP's problem. If you do not use the cloud or windows updates using networked computers, it is safe to disable this service , though it will have no effect (except where QQQQ is concerned, who hasn't fixed the problem just hidden it), the event viewer will be populated with errors relating to this service being disabled, best if left at the default setting.
 
Now the GUI in win 10 is controlled by ShellExperienceHost.exe and SearchUI.exe, one or both of these processes are most likely not running. To fix press the win + x keys together, select Powershell(admin) from the options, copy these two cmds seperately and right click anywhere in the powershell window they will append to the prompt:-
 
Get-AppxPackage Microsoft.Windows.ShellExperienceHost | foreach {Add-AppxPackage -register "$($_.InstallLocation)\appxmanifest.xml" -DisableDevelopmentMode}
 
Get-AppxPackage Microsoft.Windows.Cortana | foreach {Add-AppxPackage -register "$($_.InstallLocation)\appxmanifest.xml" -DisableDevelopmentMode} 
 
Press enter after each cmd . Restart computer when finished (must be restart, not shutdown). Let us know how you get on.


#14 QQQQ

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 12:44 PM

Actually jenae, greenviceroy mentioned plug and play first. When logging off the message is "task host is stopping background tasks" (Microsoft\Windows\Plug and Play\device install reboot required)

Greenviceroy said "When it's shutting down, it says waiting for Windows Task Host, and lists a folder in the Plug and Play folder. I press shut down anyway, and it works."

So I assumed (sorry my bad) greenviceroy was having the same error as me but didn't give all of the details as I have.

When I am experiencing this issue, the search bar, action center, volume button, and start menu does nothing when clicked, exactly what greenviceroy is experiencing. If I log off then I get the task host is stopping background tasks message, which I click sign out anyway. Upon logging back on the issue no longer occurs. This issue only appears with a cold boot, restarting or logging off and then back on resolves the issue.

I will wait to comment any further until greenviceroy can confirm that logging off and then back on resolves the issue temporarily.



#15 dc3

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 12:52 PM

@QQQQ You should start your won topic.  It appears that you have a different problem and should be addressed in another topic.


Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 





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