Top 9 Ways to Fix Apps Not Opening on Windows 11

Apps are an integral part of any operating system. Windows provides many apps and programs to improve your experience. However, your experience might get hindered when such apps and programs don’t open even after several tries.

Top Ways to Fix Apps Not Opening on Windows 11

If you’re having a hard time opening your favorite apps on Windows 11, we have a few troubleshooting tip. So, let’s check them out.

1. Run App Troubleshooter

Microsoft offers troubleshooters for just about every utility on Windows, including apps. Whenever you experience such app issues, this is how you start.

Step 1: Press Windows key + S to open Windows Search, type troubleshoot settings. Press Enter.

Troubleshoot Settings

Step 2: Click on Other troubleshooters.

Other Troubleshooter

Step 3: Scroll down to click on the Run button next to Windows Store Apps.

Run Store Apps Troubleshooter

After running the troubleshooter, see if the apps are launching fine now.

2. Update All Apps

If you don’t update apps regularly, they’ll get outdated eventually and run into compatibility issues such as this one. Hence, you can try updating all the apps on your PC and see if that resolves the issue.

3. Repair or Reset Problematic Apps

If the apps not opening issue is limited to a select few apps like Microsoft Store, Outlook, Photos, etc., you can try repairing such apps by following the steps below.

Step 1: Press Windows key + I to launch the Settings app. Navigate to the Apps tab and go to Apps and features.

Apps Features

Step 2: Locate the problematic app from the list. Click the three-dot menu next to it and select Advanced options.

Advanced Options in Microsoft Photos

Step 3: Scroll down to the Reset section and click on the Repair button.

Repair Microsoft Photos

If repairing the app doesn’t work, then Microsoft recommends that you reset the app itself. Note that it will remove all the app data and reinstate all the in-app settings to their default value.

4. Make Sure Windows Update Service Is Running

Another reason why apps and programs might not open is if the Windows Update service isn’t running in the background. Several users have resolved the apps not working issue with this method. You can also give it a try.

Step 1: Press Windows key + R to open the Run command, type services.msc, and press Enter.

Open Windows Services

Step 2: Scroll down to locate Windows Update and check if the service is running. If it isn’t, right-click on it and select Start from the menu.

Windows Update Service Status

5. Clear the Microsoft Store Cache

Although rare, sometimes, issues with the Microsoft store can lead to bad installations or failure to update apps. Hence, you can try resetting the Microsoft store cache and see if that resolves the issue.

Step 1: Open the Start menu, type in cmd to open Command Prompt. Select ‘Run as administrator’ to open it with admin rights.

Open Command Prompt

Step 2: In the console, type WSReset.exe, and press Enter.

Reset Microsoft Store Cache

6. Re-register Windows Apps

If your PC has multiple user accounts, and if the app crashing problem occurs due to one of those conflicting Windows user accounts, you can try re-registering Microsoft Store apps to see if that works.

Step 1: Click on the Search icon Taskbar, type windows powershell, and click on Run as administrator.

Open Windows Power Shell

Step 2: In the console, type the command given below and press Enter.

Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)AppXManifest.xml"}
Re Register Windows Apps

After running the command, reboot your PC and see if the apps launch just fine.

7. Create New User Account

If the issue persists, even after re-registering apps, it could be due to corrupted user account data. If that’s the case, you can try creating a new user account to run the apps.

Step 1: Press Windows key + I to launch the Settings app.

Step 2: Switch to the Accounts tab and click on the Family & other users.

Family Other Users

Step 3: Under Other users, click on the Add account button.

Create a New User Account

Step 4: Next, click on ‘I don’t have this person’s sign-in information’.

Create New Account for Windows 11

Follow the on-screen instructions to create a new user account on Windows. Once created, log in with the newly created user account and see if apps can open now.

8. Run an SFC Scan

Corrupted system files can also prevent apps from launching on Windows 11. In such cases, running an SFC (System File Checker) scan can detect and fix such system files.

Step 1: Right-click on the Start menu icon Windows Terminal (admin) option from the resulting menu.

Open Windows Terminal Admin

Step 2: Type in the command given below and press Enter.

sfc /scannow
Run SFC Scan

After completing the scan, restart your PC to see if the issue is gone now.

9. Update Windows

Lastly, you can verify if you’re on the latest version of Windows 11. These updates usually bring security fixes, new features, and, most importantly, bug fixes. So, if the app not launching issue is limited to the current version of Windows you’re on, then updating it will resolve the issue.

Troubleshoot Apps on Windows

Apps crashes on Windows aren’t unheard of. In most cases, running a troubleshoot will resolve your issues. If not, you can try some of the advanced solutions mentioned above.

Last updated on 07 February, 2022

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