The desktop search bar in Windows 11 appears on the desktop outside of the Widgets panel. It helps you access web search results directly from your desktop without opening a browser. Currently, the feature is only available to a limited number of users, so it may not be available to everyone immediately.
If you are running Windows 11 Build 25120 and unable to use this feature, you must enable it manually. To do this you will need to download ViveTool and activate its experimental hidden desktop finder tool. Keep reading to learn more about using the desktop search bar in Windows 11.
Enable or Disable Desktop Search Bar in Windows 11
This article will show you how to enable and disable the new desktop search bar in Windows 11. Currently, this feature has only been released for testing purposes, so it is only available to a few users on the Dev channel . If you don’t find this feature useful, you can also disable the desktop search bar. Let’s look at each method in detail:
1]How to Enable Desktop Search Bar in Windows 11
If you want to try the new desktop search bar feature on your Windows 11 computer screen, you need to download ViveTool first. Here is the process you can use to do so:
- Download Vivetool from Github.
- Once downloaded, unzip the file.
- Copy the path to the extracted folder.
- Run the command prompt as an administrator.
- Paste the folder path in command prompt, “C:Users
- In the command line above, replace the path with the one you copied earlier.
- Press the Enter key to execute the command.
- Restart your computer to take effect.
If you need further explanation of the above steps, please refer to the section below:
To get started, you first need to download the Vivetool from Github. To do this, open a web browser and navigate to the ViveTool Github page. You then need to download the zip file for ViVeTool to your computer.
When the download is complete, press the Windows key + E to open the File Explorer window and navigate to the downloaded folder. On this page, you need to right click on ViveTool ZIP file, then choose Extract all from the context menu.
When you extract the folder, right click on the extracted folder and select the Copy as path option. It is now necessary to run the command prompt as an administrator.
To do this, press the Windows key + R to open the Run dialog box. Then type ordered in the text box and press Ctrl+Shift+Enter. If you see the UAC window on the screen, click Yes proceed.
Once the command prompt window appears, type cd
Here’s what it looks like in my case, as you can see in the snapshot above. Once done, run the following command:
vivetool addconfig 37969115 2
Once done, you need to close the command prompt window and restart the computer.
When your computer restarts, right-click on the desktop and select Show more options, then select Show search from the context menu. In the screenshot above you can see it.
The experimental desktop search bar appears on the Windows 11 desktop where you can perform any type of search you like, right from the desktop. One thing to keep in mind is that the search bar doesn’t care about your browser settings and will only search with Bing and Microsoft Edge.
2]How to Disable Desktop Search Bar in Windows 11
If you don’t want to use the desktop search box, Windows 11 gives you the option to disable it. To do this, you need to follow these steps:
- Press Windows key + E to open the File Explorer window.
- Navigate to the location where you saved the extracted ViVeTool folder.
- When you have located the folder, right-click on it and choose Copy as Path.
- Now open the command prompt as administrator.
- Type CD
and paste the copied path into the command field. Then press Enter to run the command.
- After that, type the command below and press Enter:
- The screenshot above illustrates how this looks to me. After that, you need to run the command below:
vivetool delconfig 37969115 2
- Now close the command prompt window and restart the computer.
In this way, you can disable desktop search bar in Windows 11 when you enabled it earlier and no longer want to use it.
Lily: How to remove Windows Spotlight Learn more about this desktop icon image in Windows 11
What should I do with Windows Search?
With Windows Search, desktop users can instantly search a wide range of file formats and data types.
Is there a good search engine for Windows 11?
The Windows 11 operating system comes with a handy built-in search function. However, if you are looking for more options and features, you can check out FileSearchy. This freeware offers a variety of options to find specific files on your computer.
Similar article: How to configure indexing options and settings for Windows 11 Search.