FIX: Start Menu Disappears in Windows 10

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
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6 quick methods to fix the Start Menu Disappearing in Windows 10

    1. Update graphics card driver
    2. Uninstall Dropbox
    3. Try with restarting all Windows 10 apps
    4. Create a new User Account
    5. Perform a Windows Update
    6. Use a third-party software

Even more than four months since the release of Windows 10 and one major update, users are experiencing strange issues.

This time, one user of Reddit reported that his Start Menu is missing, and if you’re also facing this problem, we’re going to try to find a solution for you

The Start Menu is Missing in Windows 10

Missing Start Menu was the problem that bothered users even when Windows 10 was still in the preview phase, and it appears that it remained until today. As a lot of Windows 10 users are complaining about it on various forums.

“Start menu has missing icons and turns a clear color. It’s happening almost every day now. Any fixes for this?” Said a Reddit user.

Even more, people are complaining about this problem on Microsoft Community Forums:

I am using windows 10 for almost 2 plus months without any hitch. Since last 2 days, the start menu is not appearing when I press on the Windows 10 icon at the left side in the taskbar. However, others users on the same laptop don’t have this issue.

Some users were so frustrated about this issue that they decided to ditch Windows 10, and roll back to the previous version of Windows: “I made the call to go back to Windows 7… it wasn’t worth the pain anymore“.

Since we think Windows 10 is a really good operating system, we don’t want users to abandon it, so we did a little research on how to solve the problem with missing Start Menu in Windows 10, and we came up with the following solutions.

How to Fix Missing Start Menu Problem in Windows 10

Solution 1 – Update graphics card driver

Some users who were involved in forum discussions about this problem suggested that the problem is in your graphics card driver, so updating it may make things a little better.

To update your graphics card driver, do the following:

  1. Go to Search, type device manager, and open Device Manager
  2. Expand Display adapters, right-click on your graphics card, and go to Update Driver Softwarestart menu not working windows 10 1
  3. Wait for the wizard to find any updates

In order to keep your system safe from permanent damage while installgin the wrong driver versions, we strongly recommend you to use a dedicated tool. There are many of them, but we recommend Tweakbit’s Driver Updater. This tool is very precise and allows you to run multiple scan sessions.

Based on the feedback from forums, updating your drivers probably won’t get the job done, as it worked only for one or two users. But, we included it in the article, because it won’t hurt to update your drivers, and you never know, maybe it also solves the Start Menu problem.

Solution 2 – Uninstall Dropbox

A lot of users who got this problem before had something in common, they had Dropbox installed on their computers. For some reason, it appears that Dropbox conflicts with your Start Menu, and it prevents it from normal working. So, if you have Dropbox installed, uninstall it, and see if Start Menu appears again.

This could be a big problem for Dropbox users, as they will be forced to use the web version of the service only, but we hope that Dropbox will come up with an update which solves this issue soon.

Solution 3 – Try with Restarting all Windows 10 apps

Speaking of conflicts between Start Menu and apps, maybe some of your Windows 10 apps prevents Windows 10 from working, so we’re going to reinstall all Windows 10 apps, and see if Start Menu works again.

To reinstall all apps in Windows 10, do the following:

  1. Right click on the Start Menu button and open Command Prompt (Admin)
  2. Enter PowerShell in the command line
  3. Paste the following line in the Administrator: PowerShell Window:
    • Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)AppXManifest.xml”}start menu not working windows 10 3
  4. Wait for the PowerShell to execute the command (ignore a few red error codes)

This command will reinstall all your apps, and if some of them conflicted with Windows 10 due to a bad installation, it will be fixed now.

Solution 4 – Create a new User Account

And finally, one of the users of Microsoft Answers forum said he found out that Start Menu wasn’t working because of the corrupted Start Menu. So the last thing we’re going to try in order to fix your Start Menu problem is creating a new User Account.

To create a new User Account, if your Start Menu doesn’t work, do the following:

  1. Open Command Prompt (Admin)
  2. Add the following line, and press Enter: net user <username> <password> /ADDstart menu not working windows 10 2
  3. This command will add another user account to your computer, so just restart it, log in to the new account, and check if the problem is resolved

Solution 5 – Perform a Windows Update

Check if there is an available update for your Windows 10 computer. This might fix your problem with the Start Menu.

1. First, click the Windows Key + R on your keyboard to open “Run” app.
2. Type in the dialog box “control update
3. Perform a check to see if there is a new update

Windows 10 Update Check

Solution 6 – Use a third-party software

If you want to spend 5$, we recommend you to try and install Start10, which is a great a tool you can use to replace the Windows 10 Start Menu. You should know that before they will charge you, there is a 30 days trial period.

Start10 Features

As you can see, we don’t have an ultimate solution which fixes the problem for all users, because the cause of the problem is different.

If you have another solution that helped you or someone you know to fix the missing Start Menu, please write it down in the comments, I’m sure you’re going to help a lot of people.


Editor’s note A previous article written on WindowsReport covered the technical preview of Windows 10, while this one refers to the final version. This post was originally published on December 2015 and has been since updated for freshness, and accuracy.