Task Bar Basically Dead

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
Toshiba Satellite L55-A5226, W10 Pro

Problem just popped up today. I can't launch any program from the task bar. Clicking on the search box does nothing, neither does clicking on the Windows logo. I can launch programs from the desktop OK, and if I place a desktop item on the task bar, that item will launch. Because of this problem, I can't launch my Edge browser. What can I do to get the task bar working again? I need an answer soon since this is my only computer now (other was stolen 2 days ago)
Fortunately, I had Google Chrome already installed
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
If the taskbar and start button are completely non-responsive you need to re-register the task experience host process.
How to reset the Windows Start Menu

The TEH process will automatically restart, so if the directory in your profile fails to rename you can try adjusting the Start-Sleep line or create a second account, login with the second account and rename the directory for the first account.
 

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
I probably can't do that because I can't even access "settings". I noticed that I can access the run box by hitting Windows + R. Is there anything I can type there that may help? I've also noticed that now all the icons on the task bar have disappeared. I might try a reset of the computer, but am afraid if I do so, I'll lose the only browser I can open, Chrome, then I'd really be stuck.
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
In the run box just type powershell and hit enter.
Then you can just run the commands (copy and paste)
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
I'm going to revise this tutorial. The reason I added the delay was due to the ShellExperienceHost process auto restarting. I've determined how it was restarting so the revised commands would be the following.

taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
Start-Sleep -Milliseconds 500

Rename-Item "$($env:Userprofile)\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.ShellExperienceHost_cw5n1h2txyewy" "$($env:Userprofile)\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.ShellExperienceHost_cw5n1h2txyewy.old"
Add-AppxPackage -Path "C:\Windows\SystemApps\ShellExperienceHost_cw5n1h2txyewy\AppxManifest.xml" -Register -DisableDevelopmentMode
Start-Process explorer.exe
 

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
If this means anything: The clock (time) is way off and can't be adjusted since clicking on it does nothing.
 

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
unfortunately, Neemobeer, I can't access the run box as I did before by using winkey + R. Not working now. Perhaps time for an OS overhaul, if that can be accomplished under present conditions.
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Can you press [Windows key + e] to access explorer or [ctrl + shft + esc] > File > Run?
 

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
Sorry, neemo, pressing those keys does nothing. If there was only some way I could reinstall the OS (recovery, or reset), that would probably work. Before running out to buy a new computer, I'm also wondering if I could just get a W10 installation CD and use that? Sound feasible?
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Yes you can use a Windows 10 installation DVD or usb, or just boot to the recovery console (F8 during boot). Once in the console you can try running repair commands from the command prompt such as sfc /scannow and you can also, from the recovery console, try rolling back to a system restore point prior to the issue occurring.
 

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
One more update: following a suggestion from another forum, I performed a hard shutdown/restart and now have the icons back on the task bar. However, I still can't launch anything from there. I can't reach the run box anymore, but can now reach task mgr. Is there any way I can use task mgr to reset this machine?
 

Hermitkrab

Well-Known Member
GOT IT FIXED! Finally, after much messing around, I was able to open"file explorer" I went to my C drive and scanned for errors. Was informed errors were found. I then elected to have the errors repaired and voila, the computer is back in shape. I don't know what caused the problem in the first place, but hope it doesn't return. I was all set to run out and buy a new laptop!
 

patcooke

Microsoft MVP
Staff member
Microsoft MVP
If you haven't already done so I'd get any important data backed up and run a full disk healeth check.
 

MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Hi
This sounds like a problem that I had when setting up my new computer recently.
The computer booted and the desktop looked normal.

But I couldn't get any programs to open. This was driving me crazy because I couldn't find any solution nothing seemed to be wrong. I posted here I looked everywhere.

Afrer searching for hours I found a suggestion...

It said "Press the Windows key plus "D" pick the correct window".

I thought that can't be the answer, but I did push the keys, and I saw something
I had never seen before.

In the upper right quarter of the screen a menu appeared showing 4 different desktop options.

I'm on my tablet so I can't look at it right now, but I selected a different window and every thing started working.

The problem was that the desktop I was seeing wasn't the one I was interacting with.

I had never seen this option before.

I don't know if this is your problem but it sounds exactly like what I was seeing,

I am not sure that the combination was Windows key, plus D but that's what I remember.
As I said I'm on my tablet and can't check it.

I did post here at the time, maybe some one can confirm the key combination.

I'll see if I can find my old post.

Mike
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
[Windows key + D] is basically "Show Desktop" which should show the active desktop. I could see this happening if you had multiple desktops (pressing [Windows key + tab] will show all open windows as well as virtual desktops at the top if you have any created) and somehow another one was visible but not the active desktop.
 

MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Hi

It was Windows key plus P I found my old post.

windowsforum.com/threads/finally-success-i-was-about-to-give-up.240457/

I still have no idea how it got that way, as it was a clean fresh install and I did it several times.

Anyway the issue never returned.

Mike
 
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MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Hi

I'm back to my PC, and that's what it was, Windows Key plus P.
Somehow it was installed with it set to one of the other settings, I'm guessing "Show the second screen only", but I don't really remember now.

I spent a whole day to find out I only needed to press that key combination. I had never seen that screen before in all the years that I've used Windows.

But why it was loading Windows with those settings is a mystery, if it had only happened once I would think that I just pushed something by accident but it did the same thing when I migrated the install from my new computer to my old one.

Mike
 

ussnorway

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Premium Supporter
yes if you had a second device then unpluged it Windows will not auto reset your screens... it assumes you will plug that second device back in when you want to see what is deplayed on it
 

MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
That could make sense, I was plugging and unplugging a flash drive because I was transferring stuff from my old computer to the new one.
Maybe that screwed it up somehow, maybe it expected to see the USB and it wasn't there or something like that?
 
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