FIX: Cortana not working in Windows 10

Cortana is one of the most notable and most useful additions in Windows 10. But not working Cortana could be very annoying and it could decrease the functionality of the system a lot, but there’s a way to fix that.

What do I do if Cortana won’t work on Windows 10?

Cortana is one of the best features of Windows 10, however, many users reported various issues with it. Speaking of issues, here are some common problems reported by users:

  • Windows 10 Start Menu and Cortana not working – There are many reasons for this problem, and we covered similar issues in our Start Menu not working article, so be sure to check it out.
  • Cortana not working after update – Several users reported that Cortana isn’t working after an update. To fix the problem, simply re-register Universal applications and the issue should be resolved.
  • Cortana keeps closing – This is another common problem that you can encounter. To fix it, simply create a new user account and check if that solves the issue.
  • Cortana not available, talking, showing up, opening, searching, loading – There are many issues that can appear while using Cortana, but you should be able to solve most of them by using one of our solutions.

1. Change your region

  1. Open the Settings app. You can do that quickly by pressing Windows Key + I shortcut.
  2. Now, navigate to the Time & Language section.
  3. From the menu on the left choose Region & language. In the right pane, set your Country or region to the United States.

After making these changes, Cortana should start working on your PC without any issues.

2. Check your firewall

  1. Go to Search, type firewall and open Allow an app through Windows Firewall.
  2. In Allowed apps window go to Change settings.
  3. Now locate all Cortana features in Allowed apps and features: and check all of them.
  4. Click OK and check if Cortana is working now.

If Cortana won’t work, your firewall might be the cause for it, so make sure that Cortana is allowed through your firewall.

3. Perform SFC and DISM scans

1. Press Windows Key + X to open Win + X menu. Choose Command Prompt (Admin) or PowerShell (Admin). You can also use any other method to open Command Prompt as administrator.
2. When Command Prompt starts, enter sfc /scannow and press Enter.
3. The scanning process will now start. Keep in mind that this process can take about 15 minutes or so.
Once the SFC scan is finished, check if the problem is still there. If the issue is still there, or if you couldn’t run an SFC scan, your next step would be to use a DISM scan instead. To do that, just follow these steps:

1. Start Command Prompt as an administrator.
2. Now enter Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth command and run it.

DISM scan will now start. This process can take about 20 minutes or more, so don’t interrupt it. Once the DISM scan is completed, check if the problem is still there.

Corrupted files are a common source of problems, and if Cortana won’t work, SFC and DISM scan might be the best ways to fix it.

4. Re-register Universal apps

1. Press Windows Key + S, enter powershell and right-click Windows PowerShell from the list of results. Choose Run as administrator from the menu.
2. When PowerShell starts, run the following command:

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

Once the command is executed, the issue with Cortana should be resolved.

5. Run chkdsk scan

1. Start Command Prompt as administrator.
2. Now enter chkdsk /f X: command. Be sure to replace X with the letter that represents your system drive. In almost all cases that would be C.
3. You’ll be asked if you want to schedule a scan. Press Y and restart your PC.
Once your PC restarts, the chkdsk scan will automatically start. The scan can take up to 20 minutes, depending on the size of your partition, so you’ll have to be patient.

After the chkdsk scan is finished, check if the issue with Cortana is resolved.


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