Start menu Search can't click on search results leading to Settings pages + Settings search results not loading

In the screenshot below, I can click on "Paid WiFi and Mobile" - according to my theory because it is not in the settings app - but I can't click on any of the first 4 results. From "Change Wi-Fi settings" to "Identify and repair network problems", none of them can be clicked. I can open other files, such as Excel workbooks, but, like I said, apparently only results leading to the Settings app can't be clicked. I've tried clean boot, reboot, restarting Cortana, but none of that has worked. I've also done "sfc /scannow" and "chkdsk" and no errors are there. I'm on version 1607, OS build 14393.10.

It seems like a problem in the OS, so what can I do to fix this?

Also, whenever I search anything in the Settings app itself, I get the following page:

I'm not sure the two issues are related, but they have both started with the Anniversary Update I installed recently.

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Hello Abhishek,

We regret the inconvenience and at the same time we appreciate the effort you have put in to resolve the issue. Let me assist you further.

From the description provided, I understand that you are experiencing functionality issues with Windows in the following areas:

  • Search Results in the Settings pane do not work.
  • The Search results through Search Bar in Windows is unresponsive or sporadic when it comes to basic functionality.

As an initial recommendation, I suggest you to try the Search and Indexing troubleshooter to fix the problem. It makes sure that the Windows Search service is running, and checks to see whether you have the correct permissions to search all the directories on your computer.

 Follow the steps given below to run Search and Indexing Troubleshooter.

    1.       Type Troubleshooting in the Search box from the desktop.
    2.       Select the Troubleshooting option.
    3.       Select View All option and select the Search and Indexing.
    4.       Click on Next to perform the Search and Indexing troubleshooter and follow the steps.

Now, follow the below methods and check if it helps.

Method 1

If no corrupted system files were found in the previous state or were irrecoverable, then I suggest you to try the following steps to deploy the DISM command lines: 

  1. Press Windows key + X.

  2. Click command prompt (Run as administrator).

  3. In the Administrator: Command Prompt window, type the following commands. Press Enter key after each command:

    DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Scanhealth

    DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

    Important: When you run this command, DISM uses Windows Update to provide the files that are required to fix corruptions.

  4. To close the Administrator: Command prompt window, type Exit, and then press Enter

    Click here for more information about running the DISM Tool.

Method 2

Lets try to narrow down the issue, if the issue is at a specific user level.

I suggest you to check if the same issue occur when logged in through a different Local Administrator user account. 

 

Follow the steps mentioned below:

  1. Assuming that you are already logged on to your user account in Windows 10, click the Start button.
  2. From the Start menu, click your name from the top of the left pane.
  3. From the displayed options click Sign out.
  4. From the login screen, click to the different user account you want to switch to.

 

However, if you do not have a separate user account, I suggest you to create another Local administrator user account by referring to the Microsoft article here: Set up accounts.

Kindly keep us posted on the results for us to be able to assist you further.

Thank You.

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Thank you for your prompt reply. The following sums up everything I just did:

- Ran the troubleshooter; it didn't detect any problems.

- Used DISM and it said there were no corruptions.

- Made a new local admin account and the problems persist there as well.

Another issue that came up just now right after I did all this is that I can't open my Synaptics Touchpad application. It is enabled in Start-up but it failed to open this time, and now when I try to access it via "Settings-->Devices-->Mouse & Touchpad --> Additional mouse options", this error message pops up: 

What in the world is going on with this Anniversary Update???

EDIT: I figured out the problem. It is again related to the Settings app. When I try to open the Device Manager through the Settings app, this error comes up again. But if I try to open the Device Manager through the Control Panel, all works fine. This is seriously irritating for the Settings app is a crucial component to the system.

EDIT #2: Rebooted and now my touchpad is doing just fine, but Outlook has stopped working...

EDIT #3: Managed to fix Outlook. The Outlook profile had become corrupted, and I have no idea why. The initial issues still are present, though.

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Hello Abhishek,

We appreciate your persistent patience on this issue. Let me assist you further.

At this point, I suggest you to perform a Reset of the operating system and check if it helps to resolve the issue.

Resetting lets you choose whether to keep your files or remove them, and then reinstalls Windows. To get started, go to Settings > Update & security > Reset this PC >Get started and choose an option.

Option

Keep my files

What it does
  • Reinstalls Windows 10 and keeps your personal files.

  • Removes apps and drivers you installed.

  • Removes changes you made to settings.

  • Removes any apps your PC manufacturer installed. (If your PC came with Windows 10, apps from your PC manufacturer will be reinstalled.)

Option

Remove everything

What it does
  • Reinstalls Windows 10 and removes all your personal files.

  • Removes apps and drivers you installed.

  • Removes changes you made to settings.

  • Removes any apps your PC manufacturer installed. (If your PC came with Windows 10, apps from your PC manufacturer will be reinstalled.)

If you're planning to donate, recycle, or sell your PC, use this option and choose to fully clean the drive. This might take an hour or two, but it makes it harder for other people to recover files you've removed.

Option

Restore factory settings

What it does
  • Reinstalls the version of Windows that your PC came with (either Windows 8 or Windows 8.1) and removes your personal files.

  • Removes apps and drivers you installed.

  • Removes changes you made to settings.

  • Reinstalls any apps your PC manufacturer installed on your PC.

This option isn't available on all PCs.

Ref: Recovery options in Windows 10

Note All of your personal files will be deleted and your settings will be reset. All apps that you installed will be removed. Only apps that came with your PC will be reinstalled.

Hope it helps to fix the issue.

Thank You.

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Hi.

I'm having in part the same issue.

I click on the menu and type what I need. On search results, "best matches" I click or press enter does nothing. 

DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Scanhealth

did not find anything

DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

aborted at around 95% with error

The source file could not be downloaded

On a new account this problem does not appear.

How can we reset this behavior?

Thanks

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After I installed the Creator's Update (Version 1703, OS Build 15063.296), I found some results in start menu search being not clickable (i.e., no repsonse when clicking on them) while other results being fine.

I tried everything I could find by google:

  1.  Restart Cortana through task manager
  2.  Restart WSearch service through services.msc
  3.  Rebuild windows search index
  4.  Reinstall/Re-register windows apps through Dism.exe
  5.  Modify windows registry

Nothing workable.

However, when logged in with another account, I found the start menu search working fine.

Then I read this article (http://www.urtech.ca/2016/08/solved-video-how-to-hard-reset-or-remove-cortana-in-windows-10/) and follow his steps 1-3:

  1. Create a new administrator on your Window 10 and sign in as that user
  2. Delete (or rename) C:\Users\<PROBLEM USER>\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.Cortana_cw5n1h2txyewy
  3. Sign back in as the PROBLEM USER
  4. Open PowerShell as an admin and type (or paste)
    Add-AppxPackage -Path “C:\Windows\SystemApps\Microsoft.Windows.Cortana_cw5n1h2txyewy\Appxmanifest.xml” -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register

I didn't walk through all 4 steps, cause when I logged in with the "PROBLEM USER" I found everthing was okay.

I guess the start menu search (or cortana search) works as following procedures:

  1. Build a private database, including start menu programs, control panel items, etc.
  2. When users try to search something, it starts from the private database
  3. Then it shows the results queried from WSearch databases

Hence, if something wrong with the items in its private database, the result is not clickable. Clear its private database will fix the problems.

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I had the exact same problem (for Setting and Control Panel) from the moment I changed the windows 10 display language from English US to English UK. After trying some of the options in this thread to no avail, I switched back to US, and that solved it. 

Annoying... But I hope it helps.

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Thank you :)

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Good, this is the solution i am looking for.

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Thank you so much! This was what worked for me as well after a lot of research.

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Thank you, this fixed the issue for me.

I did a few steps differently mainly because I didn't want to create another admin account:

  1. I shared drive C on the local network and LOGOUT of the "PROBLEM USER". I used the "PROBLEM USER" account to securely share drive C.
  2. From a different PC on the network, I logged onto the shared drive C and rename \\<PC-NAME>\Users\<PROBLEM USER>\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.Cortana_cw5n1h2txyewy
  3. I then logged in to the computer in question with the "PROBLEM USER" and the issue was fixed. I did not need to do step 4. The folder was was automatically recreated and the issue fixed.

NOTE: I have Cortana disabled on this computer. Not sure if this makes any difference.

Don't forget to unshare drive C after.

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Last updated June 25, 2020 Views 36,187 Applies to: