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Search bar crashing or not working in Windows 11

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Does the search bar keep on crashing on your Windows 11 PC? According to various user reports, the Windows search bar crashes whenever they try to open and perform a search. The search bar closes immediately after opening it. Also, some users have reported the search function is not working as intended. It doesn’t show up anything in the search results.

This issue could be caused because of several reasons. It might be some temporary glitch or there might be a deeper cause of this issue. It might be caused due to corrupted system files, issues with the Windows Search service, damaged search indexes, your search settings, etc. If you are also facing this issue, we got you covered. Use the mentioned fixes and get your search bar to work properly.

Search bar crashing or not working

Search bar crashing or not working in Windows 11

If the search bar in the Start menu keeps crashing or is not working properly on your Windows 11 PC, you can use the following fixes:

  1. Use some generic troubleshooting solutions.
  2. Run Search and Indexing Troubleshooter.
  3. Update Windows 11.
  4. Perform SFC and DISM scans.
  5. Restart SearchHost.exe using Task Manager.
  6. Restart the Windows Search service.
  7. Delete Search History.
  8. Rebuild the search index.
  9. Enable Enhanced Indexing.
  10. Delete corrupted Registry entry for Search.
  11. Reset your PC.

1] Use some generic troubleshooting solutions

To start with, we will recommend some easy tips and tricks to resolve the issue at hand. First, you should try rebooting your computer and then see if the problem is resolved. It is a simple trick but works wonders in a lot of cases.

Another trick you can try is to open the Run dialog box using Win+R and then close it. After that, open the search bar and see if it works fine or not. This workaround has worked for a lot of users, so you can try it and check if it helps.

If the taskbar search button is disabled, enable it and see if the problem is fixed. Right-click on your taskbar and choose the Taskbar settings option. Now, switch on the Search toggle to add the search button to your taskbar. Now, try opening the search bar from your taskbar and see if it works properly or not.

You can right-click on the Start menu button and then choose the Search option. Check if Windows search is working fine now or not.

If none of these tricks help you, there might be a deeper issue. So, you can use some other fix to resolve the issue.

2] Run Search and Indexing Troubleshooter

Search and Indexing Troubleshooter

Windows comes with various inbuilt troubleshooters to scan and fix various issues. You just have to run a specific troubleshooter and it will resolve the related issues for you. Since you are having a problem with Windows search, you can simply launch the Search and Indexing troubleshooter to fix the “Search bar crashing or not working” issue. Here are the steps to run it:

  • First, open Settings using Win+I and go to System > Troubleshoot.
  • Now, click on the Other troubleshooters option.
  • Next, scroll down to Search and Indexing and press the Run button present next to it.
  • After that, select the problems you are facing with Windows Search and then click on the Next button.
  • Then, follow the prompted instructions and let Windows fix the Windows search issues.
  • Once done, reboot your computer and see if the problem is gone.

If Windows troubleshooter doesn’t help, move on to the next fix.

TIP: Enable or disable Windows Search in Windows.

3] Update Windows 11

If you haven’t updated your Windows OS to its latest build, you might face issues like this. Microsoft keeps launching new updates with new functions and bug fixes. If this is a bug, the problem will be resolved by installing all pending Windows updates. Or, if the issue is caused because you are using an outdated version of Windows, it will fix the problem. Hence, update Windows 11 right away by using Settings > Windows Update.

4] Perform SFC and DISM scans

The issue at hand could be caused due to damaged or infected system files. Hence, perform an SFC scan to fix the issue. If that doesn’t work, run a DISM scan and then check if the problem is resolved or not.

5] Restart SearchHost.exe using Task Manager

SearchHost.exe is a process used to search and index files on a Windows computer. Now, if Windows Search is not working properly or keeps crashing, you can try restarting this process and see if it helps. Here’s how you can do that:

  1. Firstly, hit the Ctrl+Shift+Esc hotkey on your keyboard to open Task Manager.
  2. Now, go to the Details tab and look for SearchHost.exe.
  3. Next, right-click on the SearchHost.exe process and click on the End task option.
  4. After that, press the End process button in the confirmation prompt.
  5. Once done, try opening Windows search and see if it has stopped crashing or not.

6] Restart the Windows Search service

There might be some issue with the Windows Search service or it might be stuck in a limbo state. As a result, the search bar keeps crashing or Windows search stops working properly. Hence, if the scenario applies, you can restart the Windows Search service to fix the problem at hand. Here’s how:

  • Firstly, press Win+R to evoke Run and enter services.msc in the Open field to launch the Services window.
  • Now, scroll down and locate the Windows Search service, and select it.
  • After that, click on the Restart option to restart the Windows Search service.
  • Once done, open the search and see if it works fine or not.

7] Delete Search History

Disable Taskbar search box history in Windows 11

You can also try deleting your search history and check if it resolves the issue for you. There might be some corrupted entries in the search history. So, clear the search history and then check if the Search function is working properly. You can follow the below steps to do that:

  • First, launch Settings and move to the Privacy & security tab.
  • Next, press the Search permissions option.
  • After that, under the History section, press the Clear device search history button.
  • Also, make sure the Search history on this device toggle is switched on.
  • Now, try performing a search and see if the problem is resolved or not.

8] Rebuild the search index

Windows keeps a track of search indexes. However, these indexes might get corrupted over time. This can also cause the Windows search bar to crash or stop working correctly. So, in that case, you can delete and rebuild the search index to resolve the issue. Here are the steps to do that:

  • Firstly, open the Settings app and go to the Privacy & security tab.
  • Now, click on the Searching Windows option.
  • After that, scroll down and press Advanced indexing options.
  • In the appeared window, tap on the Advanced button and then click on the Rebuild option in the newly appeared dialog window.
  • Next, press the OK button in the confirmation prompt and let Windows rebuild your search index.
  • Once done, check if the search bar is working properly or not.

Read: Search Indexer and Indexing Tips & Tricks for Windows.

9] Enable Enhanced Indexing

You can also activate Enhanced Indexing to fix the problem. In the Enhanced search indexing mode, its searches through your entire computer. If you enable it, the search function might start working properly for you. So, do try this and see if it helps.

Here are the steps to enable Enhanced Indexing on Windows 11/10:

  • Firstly, open Settings and click on the Privacy & security tab.
  • Now, press the Searching Windows option.
  • On the next page, select the Enhanced mode under the Find my files section.
  • After that, make sure the folders you want to search are not listed under the “Exclude folders from enhanced search” section.
  • Finally, see if the problem at hand is fixed or not.

10] Delete corrupted Registry entry for Search

If nothing worked for you, you could try deleting the registry entries for Windows Search. The registry keys might be got corrupted which is why the Windows search function is not working correctly. Hence, you can delete the key and then see if the problem is resolved.

Note: We usually don’t recommend tweaking your Registry as it can cause serious issues to your PC. However, if the problem is not getting fixed even after trying everything else, you can try deleting the corrupted entries to fix the issue. But before that, make sure to create a backup of your Registry to be on the safer side.

You can follow the below steps to delete Registry entries for Search:

First, open Registry Editor and then go to the following address:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Search

Now, select the Search key, then go to the File > Export option, and save the key with the Search name on your desktop or some other safe location. In case something goes wrong, you can import the Search key.

Next, right-click on the Search key and choose the Delete option.

Once done, restart your computer and perform a search to see if it works fine or not.

Read: Fix Search Indexer High Disk or CPU usage in Windows.

11] Reset your PC

Reset this PC

You can also try resetting your PC to its original state to fix the problem. Windows search might be crashing or not working fine due to a corrupted Windows component. Hence, resetting your PC might help you fix the system corruption and thus, the issue at hand. Here are the steps to do that:

  • First, open Settings and go to System > Recovery.
  • Now, click on the Reset PC option.
  • Next, select the Keep my files option. If you are okay to lose your personal files, apps, and other data, you can select the Remove everything option.
  • After that, follow the prompted instructions and complete the process.
  • Once done, the computer will be restarted. You can then check if Windows search is working properly or not.

Hope, the problem will be resolved now.

How do I fix Windows 11 File Explorer crash?

If File Explorer keeps on crashing on your Windows 11 PC, you can try running a System File Checker scan as the problem might be caused due to damaged system files. Apart from that, you can disable the Preview Pane, disable Thumbnails, temporarily disable UAC, turn off DEP, update your video drivers, or perform a clean boot to fix the problem.

Why does Windows 11 crash so much?

Windows might crash due to multiple factors. It is likely to crash due to corrupted system files, hardware issues, malware infection, viruses, bugs within Windows, or out-of-date device drivers. There might be many other unknown reasons causing Windows to crash. So, keeps your Windows up-to-date, update device drivers, run virus scans, and keep your apps updated.

Now read: File Explorer Search not working properly in Windows.

Search bar crashing or not working



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