The Start menu in Windows 11 is entirely different from the one in Windows 10. The Windows 11 Start menu ditches the live tiles for app icons and displays recently viewed files and newly installed programs right on the Start menu. A search bar has also been added Windows 11 Start menu.
Now the Start menu works without any issues. It opens fast, and the Start menu search also works pretty well. However, at times, particularly when connected to an external display, the Start menu might not open.
If the Start menu fails to open or has any other issues, you can manually restart the Start menu to fix the problem quickly.
In the early versions of Windows 10, we could restart the Start menu by restarting the Windows Explorer process. However, in the recent builds of Windows 10 and the latest Windows 11, the Start menu has its own process, and restarting the Windows Explorer will not restart the Start menu.
Following are the three easy methods to restart the Start menu in Windows 11.
NOTE: You can always reboot your PC to restart the Start menu.
Method 1 of 3
Restart the Start menu via Task Manager
Step 1: Open the Task Manager. There are multiple ways out there to open the Task Manager in Windows 11. The easiest way is to use the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys. You can also use the Start/taskbar search to open the Task Manager.
Step 2: If you see the smaller version of the Task Manager, click on the More details button to see the full version.
Step 3: Under the Processes tab, look for an entry called Start. Perform a right-click on the Start entry and then click the End option.
Clicking the End option will stop and start the Start process, which restarts the Start menu.
You may close the Task Manager now.
Method 2 of 3
Another way to restart the Windows 11 Start menu via Task Manager
Step 1: Launch the Task Manager either using the search or Ctrl + Shift + Esc hotkey.
Step 2: Switch to the Details tab. Here, look for the StartMenuExperienceHost.exe process.
NOTE: If you have multiple users signed in to your PC, two or more instances of StartMenuExperienceHost.exe process will appear. The Users column next to the entry shows which user the process belongs to. Kindly end the process that belongs to the currently signed user.
Step 3: Right-click on it and click the End task option.
Step 4: When you get the following confirmation dialog, click on the End process button. This will restart the Start menu.
Method 3 of 3
Restart the Windows 11 Start menu via Command Prompt or PowerShell
If the Task Manager is not opening for some reason, you can use the Command Prompt or PowerShell to restart the Start menu. We are just restarting the StartMenuExperienceHost.exe process via the Command Prompt or PowerShell.
Step 1: Open the Command Prompt as administrator. You can do that by typing CMD in search, right-clicking on Command Prompt entry, and clicking the Run as administrator option.
Click on the Yes button when you get the User Account Control prompt.
Step 2: At the Command Prompt or PowerShell window, copy and paste the following command and then hit the Enter key to relaunch the StartMenuExperienceHost.exe process.
taskkill /f /im StartMenuExperienceHost.exe
You may close the Command Prompt or PowerShell window now.