Can’t Type in Windows Search Bar: Fix It in 6 Speedy Steps

Expert step-by-step guide to fix things in a jiffy

by Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
Tashreef Shareef is a software developer turned tech writer. He discovered his interest in technology after reading a tech magazine accidentally. Now he writes about everything tech from... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Windows Server & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • Are you in a hurry and need to quickly access a feature? This is when the Windows search box comes in handy.
  • There are reports that users can't type in the Windows search bar, a problem many have faced.
  • In this case, you can run the built-in troubleshooter, restart the critical processes, or the other verified solutions here.
Fix can't type in windows search bar issue in Windows

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The Windows Search bar makes it easy to search for the files and the apps installed on your computer. However, many users reported that they can’t type in Windows Search bar.

Several of our readers have reported they can’t type in the Windows 10 search bar a few days after they have updated their OS. In this article, we are exploring what to do if you can’t type in Windows 10 Start or Search bar.

Here are the most common reasons for issues occurring:

  • Issue with the File Explorer or Cortana – If one of these elements is not working properly, you will most likely be faced with this issue.
  • Corrupted Windows update package or installation process – In this particular scenario, we advise that you revert to an earlier version of the OS.
  • Corrupted user profile – In order to fix a corrupted user profile, you have to create a new one and then move all your files.

Now that we know why typing is not possible in Windows Search, let’s go to the actual solutions.

In this article

Before trying the solutions listed next, here are a few quick things you can do since these have worked for many users:

  • Check if you can type in another app or area, and if you can’t, verify the keyboard’s connection cable. Also, make sure that the keyboard has not been disabled from Device Manager or BIOS.
  • Restart the computer.
  • Install any pending Windows updates.

If the issue remains as it is, head to the next section.

1. Start CTFMon

  1. Press Windows + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Now, paste the following command and click OK:C:\Windows\system32\ctfmon.execommand to fix can't type in windows search bar

CTFMon is involved with language and alternative input services. It is supposed to launch automatically with the system but if it isn’t, it can cause a problem with Search input as well.

The simple solution above starts that service and will potentially solve the problem with typing in Search.

2. Use a PowerShell command

  1. Press Windows + R to open Run, type powershell in the text field, and hit Ctrl + Shift + Enter.powershell
  2. Click Yes in the UAC prompt.
  3. In the PowerShell window, type the following command and press Enter: Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers |Where-Object {$_.InstallLocation -like "*SystemApps*"} | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register "$($_.InstallLocation)AppXManifest.xml"}Windows 10 can't type in search box
  4. Once done, reboot the computer, and verify if the problem is resolved.
  5. In case it’s not, again open PowerShell and run the following command: $manifest = (Get-AppxPackage Microsoft.WindowsStore).InstallLocation + 'AppxManifest.xml' ; Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $manifest

These two commands have fixed things for many when they can’t type in the Windows start menu. So, make sure to give it a try.

1. Press Windows + R to open Run, type regedit in the text field, and click OK.

regedit to fix can't type in windows search bar

2. Click Yes in the UAC prompt that appears.


3. Now, paste the following path in the address bar at the top and hit Enter:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Search

paste path

4. Double-click on the SetupCompletedSuccessfully entry.

edit to fix can't type in windows search bar

5. Enter 0 under Value data and click OK to save the changes.


6. Now, restart the computer for the changes to come into effect.

4. Use a dedicated file finder/search software

One of the most straightforward solutions to avoid such errors, especially when you need to find something very quickly on your PC, is to have third-party file finder software installed on your PC.

Third-party software apps come with up-to-date features like keyword maps that can search through unstructured data, giving you more results than your standard operating system search feature.

On top of that, dedicated file searchers can also look for keywords in your emails or document type of files to ensure you find what you are looking for.

Copernic Desktop Search is an excellent option because it can index and search over 150 file types and emails. On top of that, it has fast results and keeps your data extremely secure.

Find relevant data effortlessly with this amazing search program.
Free Trial Visit Website

5. Restart the Windows File Explorer process

  1. Close all File Explorer tabs if you have any opened.
  2. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open the Task Manager and click on Run new task.create new task to fix can't type in windows search bar
  3. Enter explorer.exe in the text field, tick the Create this task with administrative privileges checkbox, and click OK.explorer.exe

6. Run the Search and Indexing troubleshooter

  1. Press Windows + R to open Run, type control panel in the text field, and click OK.control panel
  2. Select Large icons from the View by dropdown menu.large icons
  3. Click on Troubleshooting.troubleshooting to fix can't type in windows search bar
  4. Click on View all from the left.view all
  5. Now, locate and click on the Search and Indexing and indexing to fix can't type in windows search bar
  6. Click
  7. Choose Can’t start a search or see results, and click Next.choose option
  8. Wait for the troubleshooter to run entirely. If the problem persists after that, choose the other options in the troubleshooter and rerun it.

This method will also help when the Windows 10 Explorer search bar is not typing. However, if this does not solve it, we prepared more solutions to revitalize the File Explorer’s search functionality.

If you couldn’t type in the Windows search bar until now, the problem would be resolved with our expert solutions.

Please tell us which fix worked for you in the comments section below.

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