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How to fix the Windows 11 Start menu unresponsive problem

The Start menu on Windows 11 is different from the Start menu on Windows 10 in many ways but one thing the two have in common is that some times they don’t always work. The Start menu on Windows 11 sometimes becomes unresponsive or it ‘flashes’ i.e., it opens and closes quickly when users press the Start button.

Windows 11 Start menu

Fix Windows 11 Start menu unresponsive

The unresponsive Start menu may be a fluke. If you leave your system on all the time, certain processes can idle and enter a state of error. Restart your system first and foremost. If the problem persists, go through the fixes below.

1. Restart the Start process

The Start menu is its own process since Windows 10. Restart it and it can fix the problem.

  1. Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
  2. In the run box, enter taskmgr.exe in the run box and press Enter to open the task manager.
  3. Go to the Processes tab.
  4. Select the Start process and click the End Task button at the bottom right.
  5. The process will start again in a few seconds.

2. Edit the registry

Microsoft has a fix for this problem but it dates back to when Windows 11 was in beta. It may work if you still see the problem on the stable version of Windows 11.

  1. Open Command Prompt with admin rights.
  2. Run this command: reg delete HKCU\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\IrisService /f && shutdown -r -t 0
  3. Your system will restart and the problem should be resolved.

3. Upgrade graphics driver

Users on the stable version of Windows 11 that have an unresponsive Start menu have fixed the problem by upgrading the graphics driver.

  1. Open Device Manager. 
  2. Expand Display Adapters.
  3. Right-click the on-board graphics card and select Upgrade driver.
  4. Search online for driver updates. 
  5. Install the driver updates that are available and restart the system.

4. Install Windows Updates

Windows 11 users have fixed the unresponsive Start menu by installing the KB5006746 update. It’s available via Windows Updates so all you need to do is check for updates and install KB5006746 if it’s available.

  1. Open the Settings app with the Win+I keyboard shortcut.
  2. Go to Windows Update.
  3. Check for updates.
  4. Download and install the KB5006746 update. 
  5. Restart the system.

Conclusion

The Start menu is far more stable on Windows 11 as compared to the way it was when Windows 10 was initially released. For most people, updating the graphics driver or installing the mentioned update fixes the problem. If all else fails, you can create a new user account and it will have a functioning Start menu.

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