Windows 10 came with a lot of tweaks under the hood. A small feature was the search bar which was not available in previous versions. You must have opened the Start menu to start the search. Apparently, the Windows search bar is missing for some users on their computers.
It could mean two things. Either the search bar is not active or there is an error. In either case, it’s a chore to search for anything without the search bar being clearly visible to you. This is why we will both explore the situations and determine the suggested solutions that suit you.
1. Windows search keyboard shortcut
The search bar takes up a lot of space in the taskbar and some people don’t like it. This can be a problem if you have too many icons and application shortcuts next to it. Press the Windows + S key to launch the search window with the frequently used applications, the last files used and certain shortcuts in place.
You no longer need the Windows search bar in the taskbar.
2. Disable tablet mode
Is tablet mode activated on your screen? This will remove the Windows search bar to save the screen succession to make room for everything else in tablet mode. Disable it from the Action Center.
You can launch the Action Center with the Windows key + a keyboard shortcut.
3. Taskbar settings
Let’s go through the taskbar settings once to make sure everything is set up correctly.
Right-click on the taskbar and under Search, make sure the Show search box is selected. If it’s hidden, that’s why the search bar is missing on your Windows 10 computer. I selected Show search icon, which displays a small icon instead of the full search bar. It takes up less space and looks clean.
Right-click the taskbar again and select the taskbar settings this time. Disable Use the small taskbar buttons here, as activating them will put more pressure on your eyes and will also remove the search bar.
Are you using multiple screens where the taskbar is missing on the second screen? Scroll down a bit in the taskbar settings and make sure Show taskbar on all screens is turned on.
4. Restart Windows Explorer
Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to launch Task Manager. Locate the process in Windows Explorer under the Processes tab, right click on it and select Restart.
Note that all open windows will be closed, so save all the work before continuing. Restarting Windows Explorer can restart many processes, including the taskbar and the Windows Find button.
5. Troubleshooting Windows Search
Press the Windows + I key on your computer keyboard to launch the Settings application and search for Find and fix problems with Windows search. Click on the same to open a pop-up window.
Click Apply Repairs Automatically under Advanced, then click Next to continue. Windows will now check for known bugs and errors and try to fix them automatically if they are found.
Then follow the on-screen instructions and restart your computer once to check if the Windows search bar is still missing or not.
6. Viewing the driver update
A Microsoft volunteer recommends updating the display drivers to resolve the missing Windows search bar issue. Although he did not explain the reasoning, some research shows that obsolete pilots can be responsible for several problems. Well, no harm in updating them. You can always cancel them if you don’t like them.
Find and open Device Manager.
Double-click Display Cards and Monitors. Update the drivers for the respective devices by right-clicking and selecting Update Drivers.
If you are not satisfied with the update, right-click again to select Properties this time. Under the Driver tab, click the Roll Back Driver button. Restart your computer after the process is complete.
7. Create a local user
Press the Windows key + shortcut I to open the settings and go to Accounts> Family and other users. Click on the “Add someone else to this PC” option.
Select “I don’t have this person’s login information” in the pop-up window that follows.
Now click on “Add a user without a Microsoft account”. This will allow you to create a new local user account without having to create a new Microsoft account. This means that the local user account will share the same settings instead of the different or default settings provided with a new Microsoft account.
Enter your username and password on the next screen and follow the on-screen instructions to create a new account.
To switch to the newly created local user account, press the Windows key and choose the new account name under your profile photo in the left sidebar.
If the problem with the missing Windows search bar is resolved, you can grant administrator rights to this local account. Return to Settings and click once on the name of the newly created local account and select Change Account Type.
Choose Administrator from the drop-down menu in the following popup window and save.
8. Hack Registry Editor
Press Windows key + R to type regedit and press Enter to launch the Registry Editor.
Access the folder structure below.
Does the SearchboxTaskbarMode key appear in the right window? If yes, double-click it to open it.
Otherwise, right-click it to select DWORD Value (32-bit) under New. Name this file as SearchboxTaskbarMode.
The hexadecimal base value should be 2 instead of 1 here. Save and exit. Check whether the missing Windows search bar in the taskbar error is resolved or not.
The Windows search bar is useful, but you can use the keyboard shortcut instead to speed things up. However, if you want the search bar to be missing from the taskbar, you can recover it using one of the shared methods above. Just make sure that all parameters are set as required.
Do you want to search for images by size? Click the link below to find a way to search for images not only by name, but also by length and width.
Last updated March 9, 2020