How To Fix Windows 11 Start Menu Not Working

An age old problem rears its ugly head

windows 11 start menu not working

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Windows 11 is on the verge of an official release but for those that are experiencing the new OS via Insider Builds, there are a bunch of bugs and issues that are sadly dampening excitement. One such issue that is plaguing users is the start menu not working properly, either it won’t open, hangs when clicking on a program, or simply not appearing at all.

Don’t fret if you’re having start menu not working issues in Windows 11 though because we should have a couple of fixes for you. Let’s get that start menu can get running nice and smoothly!

Force Restart Iris Service

One quick fix that Windows 11 Insider Builds can do is force restart Iris Service which does a quick reinstall thus solving the Windows 11 start menu not working issue. Here’s how to do it.

Open Task Manager

To open Task Manager press Ctrl + Shift + Esc.

Find Windows Explorer

In the Processes tab locate the Windows Explorer process.

Restart Windows Explorer

Right-click on the Windows Explorer process and choose the Restart option.

So there we have it, three different ways of fixing the Windows 11 start menu not working so that you can get back to your usual day-to-day computing! If none of these methods worked we’d suggest a full reinstall of your Windows 11 build as something may have become corrupted.

Search for Command Prompt

Press Windows + S and type CMD to search for Command Prompt.

Run as administrator

Once prompted, click the ‘Run as Administrator’ option.

Force Restart Iris Service

Once Command Prompt opens, enter the following to force restart Iris Service:

reg delete HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionIrisService /f && shutdown -r -t 0

Restart your PC

One tried and tested method for solving start menu not working issues is to simply restart your PC. Here’s how to quickly get it done.

Close all apps and programs

Close all of your open apps and programs to avoid any data loss.

Open ‘Shut Down Windows’

To open ‘Shut Down Windows’ press Alt + F4.

Restart PC

In the dropdown menu change the option to ‘Restart PC’ and press OK to confirm.

Restart Windows Explorer

Sometimes, Windows Explorer is the culprit for causing Start Menu issues so restarting this process can solve all your problems. Here’s the simplest way of getting that done.