Windows 10: Settings won't open
Settings won't open
This is a well-known problem and I've tried various solutions found Googling, without success, obviously.
1. The machine came with Win 8, which I upgraded to Win 10, without problems.
2. A few weeks ago I decided it needed Resetting (can't remember why).
3. Now Settings flashes open and immediately disappears. This means many of the solutions offered are not accessible. It won't open from Start, from a shortcut or from Notifications.
4. Display Settings is similar. Opening it produces a message 'ms-settings:display - This file does not have a program associated with it' etc.
5. About Windows shows blanks under user name and org name, although it is properly licensed.
6. Chrome would only work if made compatible with Win 8, although before the Reset it had been fine.
7. The time shows as 12 hours wrong. Of course I can't reset it from Settings.
8. I seem to remember that when I Reset the first time (I've tried again since) Windows refused to accept the correct password and I had to use the old one. Now when it opens it presents a Login button on which I click and it opens. I had had it set up to open without a password login.
I'm guessing that this is some sort of identity crisis. If Windows thinks I'm a different user, maybe it won't open Settings? But how do I log in as the correct user, particularly without access to Settings>User Accounts?
I've just found in System that Windows isn't activated. It was, and I can't do it from System - same flash-disappearing window.
Big question is when did you upgrade? If you missed the free upgrade cutoff you'll have to purchase a key for 10. The cutoff for the free upgrade was 7/30/2016.
Hi, as you've already reset Windows once, that implies you already have a full backup of everything.
If your Win 10 was previously activated, I would suggest you try a clean install.
Windows 10 - Clean Install - Windows 10 Forums
Make sure you delete all partitions on your system disk other than data partitions (if any).
No, that's no problem - I upgraded well before the cutoff!
Good deal.. I just want to see if that might be the issue.
THANKS Dalchina, that seems to have worked. I now have a nice clean desktop with Settings, etc. working.
I don't need to reset the boot drive or anything do I?
And also - while getting Windows running it asked me for my email address and password, and refused to accept my usual Windows ones. I ignored it (eventually) and all was well. I think this is where I went wrong earlier with using my old password. But will I have to deal with this at a later date? Say, when I reboot?
Seriously, thanks. We're all in debt to people like you who give advice free.
I can't comment usefully on login problems as I've never had to do a clean install on my laptops that have had Win 10 on them. Yet.
Now, you might like to know how to protect your PC and your data... and recover quickly from many problems without technical help.
(Of course there's System restore- which you can configure- it will be off- , but that is only a partial solution, and sometimes doesn't work).
Creating disk images lets you restore Windows and all your disks and partitions to a previous working state, quickly and probably without technical help.
You can recover from:
- a failed disk drive (restore to a new one)
- ransomware (which encrypts your disk)
- user error
- unrecoverable problems from failed updates to problem programs
- unbootable PC (hardware faults aside)
Images also act as a full backup- you can extract files too.
You can even use images to help you move more easily and quickly to a new PC.
Imaging can even help you sleep at night knowing you have a second chance.
Many here recommend Macrium Reflect (free) as a good robust solution and more reliable than some others. It’s
- more feature rich
- more flexible
- more reliable
than Windows Backup and Restore system images.
It's well supported with videos, help and a responsive forum.
There are other such programs, free/commercial, some with simpler interfaces, but Macrium R is one of the most robust and reliable.
How long does it take?
SSD+ USB3 - maybe 15 mins for the first system image, less thereafter
HDD + USB2 - maybe 40-50 mins
That’s with little personal data, few programs installed.
- of course, depends how much you have on C:
(You can and should image all your partitions and disks)
Once you've created your first image, keep it updated with e.g. differential imaging- which images just changes from the first image, more quickly, and creates a smaller image file.
I have. I decided to test a clean install of 1607 by putting an empty HDD in one of my laptops. Being older hardware I wanted to check all drivers would work (they did) before upgrading its original disk.
I didn't have any login problems, but I did have the 'Settings would flash then close again' problem. Actually, it wasn't just Settings - all Modern Windows Apps behaved the same way (Calculator, Groove Music, Films & TV et. al.). Initial investigation suggested it was a permissions problem. TrustedInstaller was missing from the permissions for Program Files\WindowsApps.
Apparently TrustedInstaller requires related permissions in the registry but I never got to the bottom of those. Having at least found there were no driver problems I put the original HDD back and upgraded that without problems.
Edit: Actually, I think it was ALL APPLICATION PACKAGES that was missing permissions. Here's a Win8 guide to the 'flash and close' problem, though it does end by saying "...You may be better off just reinstalling...".
As before, thanks.
I've rebooted now - no probs. I'll look into your suggestion re imaging tomorrow.
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