Windows Search is disabled by default in Windows Server 2016

Applies to: Windows Server 2016


When you try to search from the Start menu or from Cortana on a Windows Server 2016-based computer, you may receive no results or inconsistent results.


By default, the Windows Search service is set to Disabled in Windows Server 2016. This is because indexing of the volumes can cause problems in certain scenarios, such as with Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) and in running Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH) with multiple simultaneous sessions.


If you plan to use Windows Server 2016 as your client desktop computer or if you want Windows Search functionality from the Start menu regardless, you can re-enable the Windows Search service. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Press the Windows key‌ Windows logo key   + R to open the Run box.
  2. Type services.msc, and then press Enter.
  3. Right-click Windows Search, and then click Properties.
  4. Change the Startup type to Automatic (Delayed Start).
  5. Click Apply, and then click Start.
  6. Click OK, and then close the Services console.