I am using window 8.1 pro 32bit. For a couple of weeks, I have encountered some problems with the Start button and Charm bar. Generally, when I put mouse on Start button, it turns black and then I can click it to open Start Menu. The same with Charm bar. When I put mouse to the top right of the screen, Charm bar appear. However, now I can't do that anymore. Start button won't turn black and does not respond to click. Charm bar also won't appear by mouse command either. I have to use keyboard command instead. I think after a restart, everything seems to become normal, but days later it is getting back to the same problem again.

Do you have any idea on that?

  • This a villania installation of Windows 8.1? Do you have ALL updates installed including Update 1? The Start Menu was replaced by the Start Screen do you mean that by chance?
    – Ramhound
    Jun 18, 2014 at 10:54
  • No. He means the start button on the desktop at the lower left which turns black when you mouse-over it and takes you to the start screen when you click it. Jun 18, 2014 at 16:38
  • Yes, but sometime it does not turn black and not respond to click. When this happens, I can only go to start screen by using keyboard command.
    – TBBT
    Jun 19, 2014 at 5:25
  • Please consider changing the selected answer to the one that explains in detail how to access the task manager. Oct 13, 2014 at 20:02

2 Answers 2


Starting and stopping the explorer fixed the problem for me.

For inexperienced users:

  • Hold Ctrl+ALT+delete at the same time.
  • Select "task manager." Choose the "Processes" tab at the top.
  • find "windows explorer" in the list (near the end) and click it.
  • Click the "restart" button in the bottom right side of box --- OR right click "Windows Explorer" and click "end task" (don't panic when you can no longer see your desktop or windows)

  • Just hold Ctrl+alt+delete again, click task manager

  • then click "file" at the top, select "run new task," then type explorer.exe

Your desktop will re-appear (possibly re-arranged and you may need to re-organize your icons the way you desire).

But after that, the programs should again be working properly and allowing the charms menu and other program menus to appear as they did before.


I am using multiple monitors to extend my display. My laptop is a touch screen and is assigned as my secondary monitor. My larger primary monitor is not a touch screen. What I wanted was the charms menu to open up on my primary (non-touch screen) monitor but like your problem it was no longer working.

I found another way to fix this: the charms menu did appear on the touch screen (laptop) if I used my finger to open it by swiping from the right edge. As soon as I did that, the charms menu and other "edge" related features (such as the black title bar on modern apps) started working on the primary monitor again.

Not exactly ideal but quicker than restarting my computer.

  • The above answer is restarting the process explorer.exe, not the computer. Dec 4, 2014 at 20:07

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.