The Windows logo Key is a standard key on your PC keyboards which invokes your systems Start menu. Most of the systems have this key on their keyboard. However, if you don’t have the Windows key, you can press Ctrl + Esc keys together to perform the same function.

Lately, many users are reporting that Windows Key is not working in Windows 10 and the Start menu is not popping out.

Windows Key is a handy key as it performs almost all the shortcut processes in your Windows system. You should first hit the Start button and see if it comes up.

If it does, the problem is with your Windows key. If the Start menu doesn’t open either, the issue is with your Start menu.

In this set of a guide, we have listed a few methods to fix your Windows Key or Start menu issue.

Why Your Windows Key is Not Working?

As discussed above, the problem might be with your keyboard or some PC settings like newly installed software. Some of the common reasons why Windows key stopped working are-

  • You might have switched the Standard mode of your keyboard to gaming mode, and the gaming mode disables the Windows key
  • Windows key might be disabled in your Windows OS registry editor, or Start menu might have been disabled
  • Your keyboard might have been freeze due to incompatible, wrong or outdated drivers
  • Your file explorer or Windows explorer did not start correctly
  • A conflict between some devices like game controllers can cause issues with your Start menu
  • Your keyboard or the Windows key is mechanically or electrically damaged

Now that we know the possible reasons causing Windows button not working let’s not waste any time and get to the solutions.

How to Fix “Windows Key not Working” Issue?

Most of the solutions are solved using the Windows key for shortcuts. Hence, you’ll have to use the elongated methods to fix the issue. Let’s go-

1. Enable Windows Key

The registry might have restricted your keyboard keys. You’ll have to enable Windows key using the registry edit. Here’s how-

  • Go to the Windows search bar and type Run. Select Run from the list of results

Enable Windows Key

  • Here, type regedt32 and hit the OK Click Yes to confirm the prompt




  • Now in the Windows menu, tap on HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE on the Local Machine
  • Double-click on the system\CurrentControlSet\Control folder and tap on the Keyboard Layout folder
  • Right-click on the Scannode Map registry entry and select the Delete option
  • Once it’s done, close your Registry Editor and reboot your PC

After rebooting your PC, check if the Windows key works and brings up the Start menu.

2. Disable the Gaming Mode on Your PC

Gaming mode on some PCs can disable the Windows key function to prevent your game from ending when the Windows key is pressed. Follow the steps mentioned below to disable the gaming mode on your keyboard.

  • In most of the keyboards, besides the right side Ctrl button, there is Win Lock key. Press it to enable the Windows button
  • In Corsair keyboards, you can adjust functionality as well as enable/disable mode
  • For Alienware gaming keyboard, press and hold Fn + F6 keys to enable/disable gaming mode
  • In MS Sidewinder keyboard, go to the Keyboard and Mouse Center and click the Windows key in the dashboard and set it to the enabled/disabled mode

Well, there are many types of keyboards, and there are different methods to enable the Windows button. You can Google the method for your specific keyboard. You can even unplug your game controllers.

3. Re-register All Applications

Re-registering all the apps will clear all the software conflicts with your keyboard. Here’s how-

  • Click on the Start menu
  • Type PowerShell and right-click on Windows PowerShell from the results and select to Run as administrator


Re-register All Applications


  • If your Start menu doesn’t work, go to the following location-

C:\Users\YourUserName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Windows PowerShell\

  • Now, right-click on Windows PowerShell and select to Run as administrator
  • Copy and paste the following script-

Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml”} in the PowerShell window

Re-register All Applications

Done! Restart your PC and see if the Start menu or Windows button is now working properly.

4. Reboot the Windows or File Explorer

Rebooting a program is the best fix to solve any issues. Similarly, rebooting your explorer clears all the errors that caused the problem.

  • Press and hold Ctrl + Alt + Del keys and select Task Manager
  • Tap on the Process tab and locate Explorer in the windows. now, right-click on it and choose End task


Reboot the Windows or File Explorer


  • After that, hit the File button (to the top left corner) and click on Run New Task


Reboot the Windows or File Explorer


  • Now in the Create new task dialog box, type ‘exe’ and press the Enter key


Reboot the Windows or File Explorer


As Explorer controls the Windows user interface, performing this solution might fix the issue.

5. Uninstall and Reinstall the Keyboard Drivers

You might be having bad keyboard drivers. Reinstalling the correct drivers for your keyboard will fix the issue. Let’s do it-

  • Press and hold Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys to open the Task manager and tap on the File icon and Select Run a new task

Uninstall and Reinstall the Keyboard Drivers

  • Here, type devmgmt.msc and press Enter on your keyboard to launch the Device manager


Uninstall and Reinstall the Keyboard Drivers


  • Now, expand the ‘Keyboards’ section
  • Right-click on the keyboard drivers and choose Uninstalldevice
  • Hit the Yes button or uninstall icon to confirm


Uninstall and Reinstall the Keyboard Drivers


You can also restart your PC as Windows automatically reinstalls the drivers. Check if your Windows key now functions properly.

If nothing has fixed your issue, there are high chances that there is some hardware, mechanical or technical issue with your keyboard that would require warrant repair or replacement.

Are you facing any other issue with your Keyboards Windows key or the Start menu? Drop down your queries in the comments section below.

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