Fix: Can’t Type in the Windows Search Bar

Search is one of the core features of Windows. You need to type if you need to find something. You can quickly launch the search bar using Win + S and type. But what if that doesn’t happen? Sometimes users try to type something in the search bar on Windows 11/10 computer only to fail the same. This post will guide you on how to fix when you can’t type in the Windows Search Bar.

Why Does Typing Suddenly Stop in Windows Search?

There can be many reasons behind this problem. It can be a disabled search bar, unresponsive Start menu, recent updates, or writing service not working as expected. At times, it could be corrupt system files.

Basic Fixes You Should Try

In most cases, you can solve the problem of a disabled Windows search bar with a few simple fixes. It would help if you tried the simple solutions for failure in typing in the Windows search bar, such as the following.

  • Restart PC: One of the only solutions recommended for any computer problem would be restarting it. Locate the Start button and click on it for the Power option. Select the Power button, and you can choose the Restart option.
  • Replug Keyboard: You can try plugging your keyboard into your system to see if the problem persists. An exciting way to check your keyboard would be to try it on another device and see whether it works.
  • Repair Bluetooth Keyboard: If you have a Bluetooth keyboard, you must try reconnecting it to your computer. However, you might have to look for options for repairing the Bluetooth keyboard if it does not work correctly.

Fix: Can't Type in the Windows Search Bar

Fix: Can’t Type in the Windows Search Bar

The primary fixes for the problem of a disabled Windows search bar can serve as the first line of defense. However, users might not have their search bar working flawlessly once again with simple fixes. In such cases, you can rely on the proven solutions recommended by experts for getting your search bar up and running.

  1. Restart Windows Explorer & Search using Task Manager
  2. Run Search and Indexing Troubleshooter
  3. Restart Windows Search Service
  4. Run Ctfmon
  5. Fix Using Windows PowerShell
  6. Run DISM & SFC tools (Fix system file corruption)
  7. System Restore

You will need admin permission to resolve the problem.

1] Restart Windows Explorer & Search using Task Manager

The Windows Explorer or the SearchHost process might need a restart to solve the problem of a disabled Windows search bar. A minor glitch in the Windows Explorer or SearchHost process can affect the functioning of the Windows search bar. You can solve the problem by using Task Manager with simple steps.

Restart Windows Explorer

Restart Windows Explorer Task Manager Windows

  • Open the Task Manager by right-clicking on the Start button. You can also press the Ctrl, Shift, and Esc keys to launch the Task Manager.
  • Select the Processes tab and find Windows Explorer. Click on Windows Explorer and select the Restart option.

Restart Search Host Process

Terminate SearchHost Program Windows

  • Switch to the Details tab in the Task Manager and locate the SearchHost.exe process. It will be available as one of the programs under the parent Search program.
  • Please right-click on the program, and open its file location. Go inside the folder that opens and then select the SearchHost.exe.
  • Switch to Task Manager, right-click on SearchHost.exe process or Search and the End task button.
  • To relaunch, switch back to the folder location we previously opened and double-click on SearchHost.exe to launch it.

Note: Search will launch itself after you terminate the program. In case it doesn’t, you know how to open it.

2] Run Search and Indexing Troubleshooter

Windows 11/10 features an in-built troubleshooting tool that helps in automatically resolving different functions within the system. Here are a few simple steps for using the Search and Indexing troubleshooter on Windows 11/10.

  • Open Settings using Win + I.
  • Select Troubleshoot under the Systems category.
  • Choose the Other troubleshooters option on the Troubleshoot page. Locate the Search and Indexing option and select the Run option with it.
  • Select the issues you are experiencing with the search bar and click Next. The troubleshooter would seek the root cause of the problem behind the Windows Search bar before offering a suitable solution.

3] Restart Windows Search Service

The list of solutions for fixing a disabled Windows search bar also includes restarting the Windows Search service. Here are the simple steps for solving the problem of a non-functional Windows search bar.

Restart Windows Search Service

  • Press the Windows key and R together and open the Run window. Type services.msc in the Run window, click OK, or press the Enter key.
  • Identify the Windows Search in the Services window and right-click on it.
  • Select the Restart option from the pop-up menu for restarting the Windows Search service.

4] Run Ctfmon

Open Ctfmon program Windows

The ctfmon.exe process is essential for offering an alternative method for writing. If the process encounters an error, you may face issues typing with the search bar. The simple solution to check for problems with ctfmon.exe includes the following steps.

  • Hold the Windows key and R simultaneously to open the Run window.
  • Enter the following path and make sure that you specify the correct drive.
 C:\Windows\System32\ctfmon.exe
  • If the ctfmon.exe process works properly, you must run the command after restarting your computer to fix the search bar problem.

5] Enable the Search bar using Windows PowerShell

The Windows PowerShell command also helps resolve a disabled Windows search bar problem. Here are a few simple steps for helping you with the solution.

  • Right-click on Start and choose the Windows PowerShell (Admin) option.
  • Type the following command and hit the Enter key.
Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers |Where-Object {$.InstallLocation -like "*SystemApps*"} | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register "$($_.InstallLocation)AppXManifest.xml"}
  • Close the PowerShell window after executing the command and select the Windows key for opening the search bar.

If you continue facing the issue, you can try the following steps.

  • Right-click on the Start button and choose the Task Manager option. Now, select File and then the Run New Task option.
  • Enter Powershell in the Run command box and ensure you click on the Create this task with administrative privileges.
  • Type the command in the PowerShell window and press Enter.
$manifest = (Get-AppxPackage Microsoft.WindowsStore).InstallLocation + 'AppxManifest.xml' ; Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $manifest
  • Close the PowerShell window upon execution of the command.

6] Run DISM & SFC tools (Fix system file corruption)

DISM & SFC tools can also serve some promising solutions for the disabled Windows search bar problem. The tools can help in resolving the problems of corrupted Windows 11/10 files. Here are the simple ways to use the tools.

  • Open the command prompt or Windows terminal with administrator privileges.
  • Type the following command and hit the Enter key.
Dism.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /Restorehealth
  • Wait for some time before DISM repairs the component store. Once the DISM operation finishes, you can type the following command and press Enter.
SFC/SCANNOW
  • After completing the SFC scan, you can restart your computer.

7] System Restore

If nothing else works, you can try to restore your PC to an earlier date where everything was working. However, you must backup up your files before implementing a system restore. During this process, some of the documents and programs will get affected.

Open System Restore from System Settings

  • Go to Windows Settings > System > About
  • Click on the Advanced system settings link
  • Switch to System Protection and click on System Restore
  • The wizard will suggest the best date, but you can also make your own choice.
  • Follow the on-screen instruction and let the process complete.

Check if the issue persists. If this also doesn’t work, then the only option is to reset your PC.

Conclusion

The different solutions to the problem of a disabled search bar can offer comprehensive support for improving your experience of using Windows. The Windows search bar is essential for finding different applications and services on your Windows 11/10 PC. However, it may sometimes not work, primarily due to issues with updates from Windows. On the other hand, you can use the standard troubleshooting methods to resolve the problem.

What Causes the Keyboard Not to Type?

The problems behind your keyboard failing to work correctly can range from an outdated or corrupt driver to faulty hardware. Other common causes include battery problems (wifi keyboard), sensitivity settings, and dirt on the keyboard.

Why Is My Keyboard Locked?

Some keyboards come with a lock that disables typing on a PC. You may want to check on that. Apart from this, plug out and back in to check if it starts working. Lastly, try with another keyboard to check if it’s a Windows issue or keyboard issue.

How To Fix Unresponsive Keyboard Keys?

Trying a different cable, replacing batteries, cleaning the keyboard, blowing dust out of the keyboard, and replacing the switch can help you fix the problem.

He has been covering Technology and Windows, specifically tutorials, how-to, and guides on software. He also loves to play PC games, and answer technical questions.

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