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Windows Key or button not working [Safe Fix]

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Milan Stanojevic

by Milan Stanojevic

Windows & Software Expert




Milan has been enthusiastic about PCs ever since his childhood days, and this led him to take interest in all PC-related technologies. Before joining WindowsReport, he worked as a front-end web developer. Read more






  • The Windows key is probably the most used key on any IBM-compatible keyboard.

  • Some of the most likely reasons for Windows Key not functioning are driver faults, system upgrades, or a virus causing mayhem on the computer.

  • If you’re a gamer who uses keyboard settings to prevent interfering with your gameplay, this might give you some temporary difficulties.

  • When the Windows key stops responding, rest assure the article below will teach you how to fix it with easy and safe actions.


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Windows key has multiple functionalities, and it’s used by both basic and advanced users alike. Unfortunately, few users reported that the Windows key isn’t working on Windows 10, and today we’re going to show you how to fix this problem.


How do I Windows key not working on Windows 10?



  1. Use PowerShell

  2. Update your keyboards’ drivers

  3. Disable Gaming mode

  4. Check for Win Lock button on your keyboard

  5. Create a new user account

  6. Revert any changes to Windows services and packages

  7. Perform an SFC scan

  8. Check for malware and viruses


1. Use PowerShell


Few users reported that they managed to fix the problem with Windows key simply by using one PowerShell command.


If you’re not familiar with PowerShell, it’s a powerful command-line tool that allows you to remove core Windows 10 components.


You can do all sorts of things with PowerShell, and since this is such a powerful tool, we advise you to use extra caution if you don’t want to cause damage to your Windows 10 installation.


Usually, you would start PowerShell by using the Windows Key + S shortcut, but you can open PowerShell by following these steps:



  1. Hold Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys on your keyboard to open Task Manager.

  2. When Task Manager opens, go to File > Run new task.
    Windows key + Tab not working Windows 10 task manager

  3. Enter powershell and check Create this task with administrative privileges.

    • Click OK or press Enter.
      Windows key not working after update run powershell



  4. When PowerShell opens, enter this line and then press Enter

    • Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register "$($_.InstallLocation) AppXManifest.xml"



  5. After the command is executed Windows key should start working again.


We have to mention that PowerShell commands can sometimes have unpredictable results on your Windows 10 installation.


Therefore it might be better that you create a new System Restore point and use it to restore your Windows 10 if anything goes wrong after using PowerShell.


2. Update your keyboards’ drivers


According to users, the Windows key might stop working if there’s a problem with your drivers, but you should be able to fix this problem simply by updating drivers manually or automatically.


There may be a miscommunication between your keyboard’s driver and Windows. In such a context, make sure that the driver is up to date with the OS.


Most common errors in Windows occur in consequence of an old driver running in the background of an up-to-date operating system. 


Follow the simple steps below for a manual driver update:



  1. Right-click on Start and choose Device Manager from the drop-up menu.Windows Key or button not working

  2. Single out Keyboards by clicking on the arrow on the left side.Windows Key or button not working

  3. Right-click on your device.

  4. Select Update Driver. Windows Key or button not working

  5. Finish with Search automatically for drivers.


Driver issues may be frequent if you have multiple software/peripherals installed on your PC, and if they are not always up to date, the operating system may crash or you will not be able to use your devices at full capacity.


Having an assistant whenever this happens, saves time and eases the process of installing the right driver, avoids any errors, and has backup for your driver files in a database.


In this context, we recommend DriverFix. Scans, reports, and updates are the core of this program. Manufacturer’s drivers are different from generic drivers, but DriverFix can find and update/fix them if there are any missing drivers or damaged ones.


3. Disable Gaming mode


If you have a gaming keyboard you probably have support for Gaming mode on your keyboard. Gaming mode is designed to disable certain keys during gameplay sessions that can interfere with your game.


For example, it can happen that you accidentally press Windows key during a game, and in most cases that will minimize your game and open the Start Menu.


This can be a problem if you’re playing an online game with your friends, and this is why gaming keyboards have support for Gaming mode.


Many users aren’t aware that their keyboard supports Gaming mode and they sometimes turn it on by accident when cleaning their keyboard.


If Windows key isn’t working on your keyboard be sure to check if Gaming mode is turned on.


Many keyboards have a Gaming mode switch on them, so be sure that the switch isn’t set to Gaming mode.


This switch is usually located above F2 and F3 buttons, and it has a joystick image next to it, so be sure to check your keyboard for this switch and use it to turn off Gaming mode.





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Some keyboards, such as Apex M800, have a hidden Gaming mode and in order to disable it, you need to hold the SteelSeries button and press the Windows key to turn off Gaming mode.


As you can see, different keyboards use different methods to disable Gaming mode, so be sure to check your keyboard’s instruction manual to see how to properly disable Gaming mode.


4. Check for Win Lock button on your keyboard


While some keyboards have a Gaming mode switch on them, others have a Win Lock button.


The win Lock button is designed to disable the Windows key on your keyboard, so be sure to check if your keyboard has this key available.


According to users, this key should be located next to the right Ctrl button on your keyboard, so be sure to look for it. After you locate the Win Lock button, press it and your Windows key should start working again.


5. Create a new user account


According to users, they managed to fix this problem simply by creating a new user account on Windows 10. To do that, follow these steps:



  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Navigate to Accounts section.

  3. Go to Family & other people section.

  4. In the Other people section click Add someone else to this PC button.
    Windows key not working in Remote Desktop family & other people settings

  5. Choose I don’t have this person’s sign-in information.
    Windows key shortcuts not working choose account

  6. Now select Add a user without a Microsoft account.
    Windows key disabled create local account

  7. Enter the name for the new user account and click Next to complete the process.


After creating a new user account, sign out of your account and switch to a new one.


Check if Windows key works without any problems. If there are no problems with Windows key on a new account, it means that the software is causing this issue.


Now you just need to move your personal files to a new account and use it as your main account.


6. Revert any changes to Windows services and packages


Windows 10 comes with DISM tool that lets you to create Windows 10 images that allow you to easily restore Windows 10 to an earlier state.


Many people tend to use these images to quickly reinstall their Windows 10, but we have to mention that DISM is a powerful tool that allows you to change which components of Windows 10 will be installed.


Few users reported that changing DISM packages caused the problem with Windows key on their PC, so if you made any changes to DISM packages on your PC be sure to remove them in order to fix this problem.


7. Perform an SFC scan


Your Windows 10 installation can sometimes become corrupted, and that can cause certain features of Windows to stop working. If the Windows key isn’t working on your PC, you might want to perform an sfc scan.


To do that follow these steps:



  1. Start Task Manager and choose File > Run new task.

  2. When Create new task window opens, enter cmd and check to Create this task with administrative privileges.
    Windows key + Tab not working Windows 10 cmd

  3. When Command Prompt opens, enter sfc /scannow and press Enter.
    Windows key not working after update sfc/scannow

  4. Wait while the scan checks your Windows 10 installation.

  5. After the scan is completed, restart your PC.


When your PC restarts check if the problem is resolved. If the issue still persists, start Command Prompt again and run Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth command.


After the process is finished check if the problem is resolved.


8. Check for malware and viruses


Sometimes certain malware and viruses and cause problems with the Windows key and disable it completely. If you suspect that your system is infected by malicious software, be sure to perform a full system scan.


Windows key has multiple functionalities and it’s often used by advanced users. If Windows key isn’t working on Windows 10, be sure to check if Gaming mode is turned on.


If Gaming mode isn’t the problem, feel free to try any other solution from this article.


If you use keyboard shortcuts often, not being able to use the Windows key can be a big hindrance. Speaking of keyboard shortcut issues, users reported the following problems as well:



  • Windows key + Tab not working Windows 10 – Several users reported that Windows key + Tab shortcut isn’t working on their PC. This isn’t a big problem, and you can fix it by using one of our solutions.

  • Windows key not working after update – Few users reported that their Windows key stopped working after an update. If that’s the case, you need to find and remove the problematic update from your PC.

  • Windows key not working Razer Blackwidow – Several users reported this problem while using Razer Blackwidow keyboard. This problem can appear if you have Game Mode feature enabled on your keyboard.

  • Windows key + R, windows key + S, windows key + Q not working – Many users reported that various keyboard shortcuts aren’t working on their PC. This can be a big problem, especially if you tend to use keyboard shortcuts.

  • Windows key not working in Remote Desktop – Remote desktop is a useful feature of Windows that allows you to access other computers. Even though this feature is great, many users reported that Windows key isn’t working while using Remote Desktop.

  • Windows key shortcuts not working – Several users reported that all Windows key shortcuts on their PC aren’t working. This can be a big problem, but you should be able to fix it using our solutions.

  • Windows not working– Many users reported that their Windows key is disabled. In most cases, your Windows key will become disabled if you enable Game Mode on your keyboard.


For more articles like this one, check out our dedicated Keyboard Issues page, and learn everything you need to know regarding all types of issues.


If you are looking for more general guides on common Windows 10 issues, check out our Windows 10 Fix page, for News, How-To, and Updates guidelines.





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