I have a co-worker that is no longer able to see his start menu. He used to have it pinned to the left edge of his screen. I tried to troubleshoot it a bit and discovered if we do Windows + R then "cmd" [enter] the command prompt opens (but we don't see the start menu or run box), meaning the start menu is somewhere, just off screen. Restarting doesn't help. Is there some way to force Windows to think it only has a single monitor? It seems to "think" it has two but there's only one and we can get the Start menu back. Or, is there a way to restore the start menu to the bottom?

Additional info

We are able to right-click the desktop for display settings, etc. We can also get into Windows Explorer (via Ctrl + E) so if we need any of that to restore settings we can do it.

6 Answers 6


Try a right-click on the desktop and select properties from the pop-up menu that appears. This should bring up the "display properties" window.

  • He's tagged this as Win7 so it'll be "Screen Resolution" from the pop-up menu. Same deal though, can change the same settings from there (more or less).
    – Windos
    Jan 12, 2011 at 22:24

It sounds like resolution got messed up or maybe windows got confused about a dual monitor setup.

Go to Display properties --> Settings and try and up the resolution to see if you can see the start menu.

I don't have windows 7 in front of me, but on XP dual monitor setting are in the same place as resolution settings.


Expanding on the idea of the resolution being out; try changing the settings on your physical monitor.

Quick test, if you maximize a window (explorer maybe) can you see all of the border or does it disappear off the screen?

If it is an LCD you should either have an "auto" button or an automatic configuration option in the monitors menu, selecting/pressing this should match up the resolution with the physical bounds of the screen.

If it is a CRT (or older LCD without auto config) play with the v and h spans and make sure they aren't way off.


Press Win+P and select Computer Only


The issue ended up being a Mac setting. The physical machine is a Mac and it was using Bootcamp for Windows. There was a setting on the Mac-side that affected the Widnows display. shakes head


I had this issue where alls I could see on computer was my background. I hit enter image description here+P, then down (button) 3 times then hit Enter and luckily it changed the settings. Hopefully this will help someone stuck in same situation.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.