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Windows 10 Start Button Intermittent!!!
Old 01-13-2016, 11:33 AM   #1
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Windows 10 Start Button Intermittent!!!

I've been pleased with Windows 10 almost from the start (and said so publicly here several times), but somewhere along the way it's developed a really nasty habit - the START button and Search window stop working (though right click works, left click does NOT). It's happened to me about a half dozen times so far. If it was short lived I might call it annoying, but it lasts for days! Has anyone else run into this?

You can't access any programs/apps (unless you go to Explorer and open a related file, a Word doc or Excel xls for example). Can't "see" or open email (thank goodness I have an iPad and iPhone). My PC is pretty new, so I can;t imagine it;s a hardware issue. I've run malwarebytes and Norton, nothing found.
  • It doesn't correlate with updates,
  • it's not fixed by a RESTART or cold reboot,
  • and it seems to come and go, then it's just magically healed.
I found this (below), and tried ALL of it, but it didn't work. There is no way most users would ever make it through it, and shouldn't have to/be asked to. There are several fixes online, so clearly it's not just me.

Has your Windows 10 Start menu stopped working? Here are four ways to fix it - BT

Microsoft may convert us to an all Apple household yet...

And I read this morning they're dropping Windows 8X support, Windows 7 support also scheduled to stop today.
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:02 PM   #2
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How distressing, Midpack!

To answer your question, I haven't had that problem, or really any others since I bought my new W10 laptop last August or September.

The only problem was that Microsoft deleted my free version of CCleaner during the Threshold2 update last November, because they don't want people messing with the registry. I just re-downloaded it and I don't use it to mess with my registry. No problemo although it was a bit unsettling that they could and would remove software.

F bought a new W10 laptop last week, and everything has been smooth sailing for him, too, at least so far.
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:08 PM   #3
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bad mouse?
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:13 PM   #4
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At least your font colors are working.

Is it a download of Windows 10 or a new computer that had Windows 10 installed on it from the get go? I think the latter have very few issues. I downloaded Windows 10 to a three-year-old laptop and now use it only for billpaying plugged directly into the router as Wifi never would work with it. It was so frustrating trying to get wifi to work with it that I use my new Macbook for everything else . If the Windows laptop were older I would have just replaced it with a new Windows 10 machine.
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:25 PM   #5
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If the Windows laptop were older I would have just replaced it with a new Windows 10 machine.
That was how I ended up with one. I nursed my old laptop along for several months beyond when I otherwise would have replaced it, until I could get one with W10 pre-installed.
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rgarling View Post
bad mouse?
Mouse works fine otherwise...
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:35 PM   #7
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Mouse works fine otherwise...
And you are running anti-virus sw, and anti-malware sw as well?
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Old 01-13-2016, 12:45 PM   #8
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RE: support for OS versions from MS web site:
Windows lifecycle fact sheet - Windows Help

Windows 7 *
End of mainstream support
January 13, 2015
* Support for Windows 7 RTM without service packs ended on April 9, 2013. Be sure to install Windows 7 Service Pack 1 today to continue to receive support and updates.

Windows 8
End of mainstream support
January 9, 2018
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Old 01-13-2016, 05:04 PM   #9
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I wonder why there are so many sites misreporting today?

http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonke...0b6c4c0d6a605c
http://lifehacker.com/psa-windows-8-...sup-1752484260
http://lifehacker.com/psa-windows-8-...sup-1752484260
And many others...
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:14 PM   #10
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I still have not updated to Win10 despite their nagging popup window. Just today, in the local paper, I read a short article by a computer service guy saying about 3/4 of his customers with Win10 getting nasty problems suddenly, and they could not even sign on to their machine.

He said to wait as long as possible to do the update, to give MS time to get all the kinks out. So, that's what I am doing. But still, before I do that I will do a disk image backup.
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:49 PM   #11
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After reading all the stories here on the Windows 10 upgrade I decided that I would stick with windows 7 and then buy a Mac. Two days ago I bought a MacBook Air and the transition has been trivial. My existing peripherals all work with it including wireless keyboard and mouse, external USB hard drive and large monitor. Copied over all the files I have including all my photos and music in an afternoon and now longer need my laptop, or my iPad. (The Macbook Air is actually lighter than my iPad). Linking to my home network has also been easy, to mine and my wife's laptops and to our Brother wireless printer/scanner).

Never owned a Mac before so this is all fun.
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:05 PM   #12
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@Midpack, the OP, yes, this just happened to me last week-left click and the windows button on my surface pro no longer works and right click does. At the same time, my Outlook app disappeared and can't be found (and of course I can't get to any windows apps). It hasn't come back with numerous reboots, etc. (I haven't tried your suggestions above). What I did was just replace Outlook with Thunderbird, just as I replaced Edge with Firefox. But thanks for your post - I was thinking it might be a hardware problem with my device. Good to know there's a good possibility it is just another windows 10 software bug.

Among all the charming failures of Windows 10 is that - on the Surface Pro -- it developed a major problem with power in hibernation mode after one of the updates. It would drain the battery. So the device had to be kept plugged in, or shut down after use. Naturally Microsoft refused to address or acknowledge this issue, even in support, until after a few months, they came out with a fix for it.

Maybe Windows 10 works fine it it isn't on an upgraded devise - though if the operating systems works on any device it ought to work on a MS device - which is why the surface pro was the only one of my devices I risked the upgrade on. But it has been buggier than Windows 8 - not just annoyances, but real dysfunctions. Windows 7 Pro was the last reasonably functional Windows operating system IMHO.
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:47 PM   #13
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NOte the issue in many cases is the end of support of Internet Explore 10. That was the version that came with Windows 8 and IE 11 will only run on Windows 8.1. So if your still on windows 8 you can either upgrade to 8.1 or run firefox/chrome.
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Old 01-14-2016, 05:19 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
I've been pleased with Windows 10 almost from the start (and said so publicly here several times), but somewhere along the way it's developed a really nasty habit - the START button and Search window stop working (though right click works, left click does NOT). It's happened to me about a half dozen times so far. If it was short lived I might call it annoying, but it lasts for days! Has anyone else run into this?
I have. I didn't realize that right click still worked (so I cannot confirm that aspect) but I have had stretches of time, no longer than an hour or two, when the start button itself was non-operational. I chalked it up to the network connection software imposed on me by my employer. Here's why:

I have two Windows 10 computers: A laptop computer and desktop computer that I only use to connect to the more secure network at work (through a network connection) and to the laptop computer (through an RDP session), from which I connect to the less secure (legacy) network at work. (Aren't acquisitions fun? I cannot access both through the same computer... this forked approach is the only way I can be working on new work and legacy work at the same time.)

When I have noticed the problem, it has always been on the desktop computer. That is the case despite the fact that I'm actively using the laptop much more of the time.

The desktop computer was a fresh install of Windows 10 while the laptop was upgraded, so if the problem was strictly Windows 10 we'd expect it to occur as a result of an upgrade from some random previous configuration rather than a blank slate. However that's not the case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
You can't access any programs/apps (unless you go to Explorer and open a related file, a Word doc or Excel xls for example). Can't "see" or open email (thank goodness I have an iPad and iPhone).
I haven't worried much about the problem because my tendency is to pin the applications I use most to the Task Bar. To the right of the Start button, regardless of whether they're running, I have icons for the calculator, several office applications, a browser, Windows Explorer, the snipping tool, a notepad, etc. The only things I ever go back to the Start menu for (anyway) is the network connection application, and I've never had a problem accessing it (which is another thing that led me to believe that the problem was caused by the network connection software itself).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
My PC is pretty new, so I can;t imagine it;s a hardware issue. I've run malwarebytes and Norton, nothing found.
I doubt that the problem is explicitly related to my network connection software itself, but rather some combination of factors involving some Windows APIs that the network connection (or the virtual desktop) software is utilizing, and some condition related to my connection to the Internet. Besides network connection applications, I could imagine heavier virus protection software utilizing Windows APIs like that, perhaps for securely checking for updates to security definitions. Another possibility is that my secure network connection is actually blocking certain other network activities, and some other software running in the background intermittently encounters that block resulting in an exception which manifests only as a failure of the Start button. Since the problem doesn't interfere with my work very much, I haven't spent a lot of time considering what else could be causing it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
Microsoft may convert us to an all Apple household yet...
Then you may find that you'll have a difference set of frustrations, and in an environment within which you don't have decades of familiarity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
And I read this morning they're dropping Windows 8X support, Windows 7 support also scheduled to stop today.
Windows 8 mainstream support ends in two years. Windows 10 has support for another two and a half years after that.
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Old 01-14-2016, 06:08 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Alan View Post
After reading all the stories here on the Windows 10 upgrade I decided that I would stick with windows 7 and then buy a Mac. Two days ago I bought a MacBook Air and the transition has been trivial. My existing peripherals all work with it including wireless keyboard and mouse, external USB hard drive and large monitor. Copied over all the files I have including all my photos and music in an afternoon and now longer need my laptop, or my iPad. (The Macbook Air is actually lighter than my iPad). Linking to my home network has also been easy, to mine and my wife's laptops and to our Brother wireless printer/scanner).



Never owned a Mac before so this is all fun.

Another conversion! I've had s MacBook Pro for years and finally converted DW. She's wishing she had changed years ago.


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Old 01-14-2016, 07:28 AM   #16
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I like Windows 10 but my start button disappeared which was totally frustrating. It took quite a while to discover that a right click would access some of the features but still not truly functional. I founds lots of sites with various approaches and eventually one of them worked. Unfortunately, I can't remember which was successful. I did see an answer that might be worthwhile if nothing else works:

If you have had enough, you can just give up and REFRESH you machine.
  1. Right click on the START button
  2. Hold the shift key while selecting RESTART
  3. Select TROUBLESHOOT from the recovery menu
  4. Select REFRESH YOUR PC
This will reinstall Windows 10 but it will keep all of your files (Documents, Pictures…) but it will kill all of the programs that have been installed. Everything that is dead will be in C:\WINDOWS.OLD so you can fish out anything that is missing, but you will have to reinstall your programs, like Microsoft Office.

That may actually have been what I used but my apps (not MS but others) were retained.
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Old 01-14-2016, 07:53 AM   #17
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When I have noticed the problem, it has always been on the desktop computer. That is the case despite the fact that I'm actively using the laptop much more of the time.
Interesting. DW has not seen the disabled start button, but she is only uses her laptop once or twice a week, I assumed she'd see the issue eventually.

Quote:
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I haven't worried much about the problem because my tendency is to pin the applications I use most to the Task Bar.
That dawned on me and I increased my task bar from 4 to 11 icon/shortcuts yesterday, hopefully it will work next Start button episode. [Though it would not let me pin iCloud?] I will still lose access to less often used apps, but I don't want the task bar cluttered with everything. I assume MS will fix this eventually.
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Old 01-14-2016, 10:05 AM   #18
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Are you on a laptop?

I've noticed some odd/intermittent problems (different OS), when I ended up laying something (pen/pencil/envelope/cable, etc) on the track-pad of the laptop (I use an external USB keyboard/mouse). It would interfere with the mouse, intermittently.

Just a thought. - ERD50
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Old 01-14-2016, 03:44 PM   #19
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[Though it would not let me pin iCloud?]
One of the most annoying exceptions I encountered was KMTTG, a Java runnable used by TiVo owners to capitalize on a lot of the backdoors that TiVo has built in for various convenience web services. I have no idea what the rules are for what can and cannot be pinned, but it does seem to be related to the way things are run.

Quote:
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I will still lose access to less often used apps, but I don't want the task bar cluttered with everything. I assume MS will fix this eventually.
Maybe. If it really is related to the confluence of three specific conditions, one or more of which are strictly related to a non-Microsoft and less popular application, then it may never happen.
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:51 PM   #20
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I have been having this problem for a few days and am having it right now. It annoys me.

I'm a computer guy and have used windows since 1990. I decided to poke around on this problem and try a few things.

I have succeeded in restoring my start menu. Here is what I did;
1. Bring up the task manager (CTRL-ALT-DEL and select task manager)
2. Goto the services tab and sort by name.
3. Find a service named tiledatamodelsvc
4. Right-click this service and restart.

I selected this service because the modern UI/start menu deals with tiles... and because I am annoyed.

Anyway. this has restored the start menu for me. I fully expect the start button to stop working tomorrow, but I might have a quick fix.

For completeness, before I restarted this service, I restarted the windows search (Wsearch ) service. That didn't appear to work.
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