10 Fixes For Windows Key Not Working on Windows

Are you facing a Windows key not working issue? Don’t get alarmed. Take a deep breath because this is the guide for you. There are several ways for you to fix the issue. This guide has compiled a list of all the known methods. It includes both internal and external keyboard problems. More importantly, it also digs into your system’s issues.

The Windows Key has come a long way. It gets more shortcuts that you can access. All you need to do is press Windows Key + one other key. You can launch many things like settings, Start Menu, run window, and much more. However, if you’re too used to using it, the windows key not working could be an issue for you. It is the same as losing any other shortcut key you’re used to having around. This can impact your productivity and workflow.

RGB Gaming keyboard

Reasons For Windows Key Not Working

Before you get to fixing the issue, it would be better to weed out the cause. See, there are many reasons for the Windows key not working. If you browse the internet, you will find countless posts and forums. To help you simplify the process, here is a list of some of the common issues for the error. This might help you narrow down the problem and take the necessary steps:

  1. It could be a hardware issue. Maybe your keyboard got physically damaged. Try to replug the keyboard or change to another keyboard. See if this works.
  2. Check for the driver updates in the Device Manager. For example, if you recently updated your Windows 10, there may be a driver update pending. You’d have to update to fix the issue manually.
  3. Disable Gaming Mode because it can interfere with the keyboard’s functions. If you’re using Windows 10 Game Mode, disable it to see if it fixes the issue.
  4. Sometimes, a change in the settings of Windows can lead to a problem. Maybe some third party app, malware, or game mode disabled the windows key. You will have to find the problem and reactivate the Windows key.
  5. There’s another common bug known as Windows 10 Filter Key Bug. It can make it challenging to use the keyboard on the login screen.

Once you narrow down the problem, you can move ahead to fix it.

Activate On-Screen Keyboard Layout

on-screen keyboard layout

Whether you have a desktop or laptop, activating an on-screen keyboard is a good option. It will help you understand where the problem is. You will be able to navigate easier than not having a keyboard. The on-screen keyboard comes with windows key. Thus, you can use it.

  • Go to the Start Menu and go to the ‘Settings.’
  • Find the Ease of Access option. Click on it and find the Keyboard option in the left pane. It should be in the Interaction section.
  • Click on the ‘Use The On-Screen Keyboard’ option.
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This will launch the on-screen or virtual keyboard for you to use and access. Now you can move ahead to solve the issues.

Solution To Fix Windows Key Not Working Issue 

  1. Use The Troubleshooter 
  2. Disable Filter Keys
  3. Windows PowerShell Command
  4. Use Windows Registry Editor
  5. Disable Gaming Mode In Windows
  6. Keyboard Driver Solutions 
  7. Restart The Explorer 
  8. Use System File Checker
  9. DISM Option
  10. A New Account 

Try other things before you get into the details of the Windows key fixes, like disabling game mode features. You can change the keyboard and try a different one. If that works, the problem is with the hardware.

Clean your keyboard from time to time to ensure its optimum health and performance. Check if the keyboard keys are all working fine. Make sure that the win lock key isn’t stuck or disabled somehow. If you have gaming keyboards, there may be some other problem. 

1. Launch Windows Keyboard Troubleshooter 

additional troubleshooter keyboard troubleshooter

Before you go through any of the other options like PowerShell Window, check this option. This can fix the Windows Key’s functionality for most of the time. 

  • Go to the Settings and Updates option in your Windows 10 options.
  • In Update & Security, you will find the Troubleshoot option. Click on it.
  • Go to ‘Additional Troubleshooter’ and find the Keyboard option.
  • Run the troubleshoot option.

See if this fixes the Windows Key unresponsive issue. If not, then you can move ahead to other solutions given below. 

2. Disable Filter Keys

disable filter keys feature working on Windows 10

Filter key features may enable for countless reasons. It can hinder your keyboard experience. It is a wise choice to disable filter keys as they are not necessary. 

  • Use the On-Screen keyboard to press Windows + R key. If it is working, then type ‘Control’ in the Run Window. Press OK. You can also type run in the start menu and launch it without pressing Windows + R key.
  • Go to View and select ‘Category.’ Then find the Ease Of Access option.
  • Click on the ‘Change How Your Keyboard Works’ option. Then find the ‘Turn On Filter Keys’ option.
  • See if the box is checked or not. If not, then no need to do anything. Make sure to uncheck it and click on the Apply button.
  • Then press OK.
  • See if your Keyboard is working fine now. If not, then restart the system.

If there is no luck, move to the next solution.

3. Windows PowerShell Command For Windows Key Functionality

windows powershell windows Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation) \AppXManifest.xml”}

PowerShell is one of the most valuable and powerful tools in Windows 10. It allows you to command the PC and do almost anything. That’s why people are also careful with the PowerShell command. Make sure that you use the Admin permission account or provide it to the PowerShell option.

  • Once again, you will have to launch the ‘Run’ command through any given options.
  • Then type “Powershell’ and press CTRL + Shift + Enter. This will launch Powershell as an Administrator. Thus, you will have complete access to it.
  • Allow PowerShell to make changes to your device.
  • Now, you can either type this command or copy-paste it at your convenience.

Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation) \AppXManifest.xml”}

  • Press Enter. This will solve any issue with the Windows Key. If it still doesn’t work, move on to the next option.

Remember that this option will re-register all the apps and could help with the keyboard working on Windows 10. 

4. Using Windows Registry Editor To Fix The Problem

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Control/Keyboard Layout

Windows Registry often seems like a minuscule part of the system, but it plays a great role. If you make any changes to the Registry, you can fix or mess the system. So, make sure to back up the registry before you make any changes. Then follow with these:

  • Relaunch the Run option and type ‘Regedit.’ Press Enter. You can also reach for ‘Registry Editor’ in Start Menu and run as Administrator.
  • Find and navigate to: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Control/Keyboard Layout
  • Find and right-click on ‘Scancode Map.’ And then press the Delete button. This will remove the value.
  • Once you delete the Scancode Map, restart the PC.
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This could fix the issue. If it doesn’t, you can restore the registry.

5. Disable Gaming Mode In Windows 10

windows 10 game mode

Windows 10 comes with a fascinating option of Gaming Mode. It is a great way to tweak your system’s performance without relying on third-party tools. But, the game mode is still a new addition and requires some fixes. Thus, if you are having a bad gaming experience, or ran into the windows key error, disable game mode.

Game Mode can conflict with Windows Key and other function keys. Thus, you might want to:

  • Go to the Start Menu of the Taskbar. Find settings and launch it.
  • Find the ‘Gaming’ option in the menu and click on it.
  • Go and find the toggle in the options of the Game Mode. Make sure to set it to Off.

This will disable the game mode and you should be good to go. Some gaming keyboards or gaming mode also comes with ‘Win Lock’ option The game mode feature will disable the Windows key access for the gaming mode. So make sure to disable this win key lock and check if the Windows key works.

6. Keyboard Drivers Solutions

windows device manager keyboard drivers

So, you’ve tried all of the above-given options, but can’t seem to get the windows logo key to work. It’s alright, sometimes the problem is very common, associated with keyboard drivers. So, make sure to uninstall and reinstall the keyboard drivers. You can also go ahead and update the drivers to see if it solves the Windows Logo Key option or not. This applies, especially to a gaming keyboard.

  • Go to the Start Menu and search for Device Manager.
  • You can also use the Run option and type ‘devmgmt.msc’ and press Ok.
  • Either way, find and expand the ‘Keyboards’ option. 
  • Before uninstalling, try to check for the updates. IF you still get Windows Logo Key Fails, you can uninstall it.
  • Reinstall the Keyboard Drivers and see if this works. 

7. Restart The File Explorer Or Windows Explorer

explorer.exe windows 10 task manager

Sometimes, the explorer error can render the windows key unusable. You can try this option and see if it fixes your issue:

  • Open Task Manager. For this, press CTRL + ALT + Delete. You can also use CTRL + Shift + ESC to launch Task Manager.
  • Go to the ‘Details’ tab. Find explorer.exe.
  • Right click on it and click ‘End Task.’ This will make your screen go black.
  • But don’t worry. Relaunch the Task Manager.
  • Click on File and select Run.
  • Type ‘explorer.exe’ and press enter.
  • This will relaunch the Explorer.

It will solve the issue. If it doesn’t restart the PC and see if the Windows Logo key is working.

8. Use System File Checker – System Scan

SFC/scan now system scan admin permission

Remember that if you have tried everything and run into a problem, an SFC scan always works. You can use this for almost any error you face on Windows 10.

  • You will have to launch the Command Prompt. You can do it from the Start Menu or use the Run application. Make sure to run as administrator, to avoid any problem.
  • Once you launch the command prompt as admin. Type ‘sfc/scannow’ and press enter.
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This will launch a system scan that will diagnose the system for any problem. You might have to restart the PC once the process is finished. After restarting, try this command again and continue to do so.

9. Use The DISM Option

img 617d931ed3af4

Much like System File Check, there is a DISM command. It also helps fix any system file and image error on Windows 10. You will restore and fix any problem with your PC.

  • Launch the Run utility again. Type cmd or launch Command Prompt once again through any comfortable method.
  • First type:  Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup
  • Press Enter.
  • Then Type: Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
  • Press Enter.
  • This will allow your DISM to fx any issue.

Once done, restart your PC. Check if the windows key works.

10. A New User Account

add someone else to this PC option.

Now, we are on the last frontier of the solutions. This is the last stop if everything else fails. You can also use this step as the primary choice. Either way, creating a new user account can fix most windows issues:

  • Click on Start Menu and go to Settings.
  • Find the Accounts options.
  • Click on ‘Family & Other Users.’ And go to the left pane.
  • Scroll Down and find ‘Add Someone Else To This PC’
  • Configure and create a new account. Make sure to not sign into the Microsoft Account. For this click on ‘I don’t have this person’s sign-in information.’
  • Next, it will ask you to add the user without Microsoft Account
  • Type a new username, password and click next.

Follow through and get done with the process.

Now log into the new account and see if it works.

You can also go ahead and reset your entire PC and format it to reset windows 10. This will fix every issue and not just the keyboard issue. Make sure to backup your personal files in an external storage device before you try this.

The Bottom Line 

keyboard hardware properties select right keyboard

By now, you have tried everything from the keyboard layout folder to the control folder. You’ve reset the entire Windows 10 system and launched a new task. If you still get the Windows Key Not working error then you can scan for malware, virus and other problems. Check other keys and see if they are working. 

FAQs

How Do I Fix My Windows Key Not Working?

There are different solutions available to enable the windows key. You can check for the filter keys feature. Try the scancode map registry entry option. Make sure that it isn’t that the windows key is broken. Use command prompt for SFC and other scanning processes. If none of that works, make sure that there isn’t any hardware problem. 

How Do I Enable The Windows Key?

There are two options for you to enable the windows key. You can try and press Function Key + F6. If that doesn’t work, then press Windows Key + Function key together. If both of these options fail, check for the win lock option. Sometimes that prevents users. 

What Are The Causes Of The Windows Key Not Working Issue?

It could be a hardware issue, registry issue, or any other. The windows key is the one with the windows logo icon. Pressing it generally launches the start menu. Using different keys with Windows launches shortcuts. You can test for malware, virus, and other threats if the windows key stops working on Windows 10.