What's new

Surface Pro 2017 - disappearing start screen icons

leshay

Member
Hi

Windows 10 -fully updated

This issue is most annoying. When I start or restart, all the icons are present. After a short time, they disappear (not ALL of them, but about 90% of them. The hover text still works OK and is the only way (other than my memory) that I can use this menu to start applications. I will need to relocate these shortcuts to a folder on the DeskTop if I can't find a solution.

I can not identify anything that causes the icons to disappear after start up, I can use my Firefox browser and/or Thunderbird email applications after start up and one time the icons will still be there another time doing exactly the same and they will have disappeared.

I have tried one or two supposed solutions found via a Google search but none have had even the slightest effect.

I can't find any information in this forum using a variety of search terms.

I know I am not the only one to have this issue going by those Google searches I mentioned, and so I am surprised that there doesn't seem to be mentions of this problem here.

Has anyone here had this issue, know of a fix, know if MS is aware of it etc .........
 

sharpuser

Super Moderator
Staff member
Hi, @leshay,

Sorry to hear about the problem with your icons. Are they the 'tiles' from the Start menu, or desktop icons? It sounds like you are referring to the Start 'tiles' / icons.

This happened to me a few weeks back after doing an Insider update. Was very annoying, as you state. I have two Surface Book computers, both updated the same day, and both looked exactly the same before the update. One had the problem, the other did not.

So I did a 'Reset', while keeping my files, and the problem went away. I could find no rhyme or reason for the trouble, except that perhaps some hiccup occurred in the last step of the update.

In your case, a 'Reset' may also work, although you are apparently not on an Insider update.

Here is what I suspect: On one of the Surface Book computers, I may have moved an icon (tile) to another group while the update showed 'Initializing'. It could be that during that stage, Windows was copying my configuration, and I changed it during that copy, making it corrupt.

A problem with the 'Reset' approach, though, may be that it will remember your CURRENT configuration, which is hosed, of course. You may need to rebuild the menus.

I do not think this problem will fix itself with reboots or restarts.
Let us know if you get this sorted. If not, we will keep pursuing.
 
OP
L

leshay

Member
Hi, @leshay,

Sorry to hear about the problem with your icons. Are they the 'tiles' from the Start menu, or desktop icons? It sounds like you are referring to the Start 'tiles' / icons.

This happened to me a few weeks back after doing an Insider update. Was very annoying, as you state. I have two Surface Book computers, both updated the same day, and both looked exactly the same before the update. One had the problem, the other did not.

So I did a 'Reset', while keeping my files, and the problem went away. I could find no rhyme or reason for the trouble, except that perhaps some hiccup occurred in the last step of the update.

In your case, a 'Reset' may also work, although you are apparently not on an Insider update.

Here is what I suspect: On one of the Surface Book computers, I may have moved an icon (tile) to another group while the update showed 'Initializing'. It could be that during that stage, Windows was copying my configuration, and I changed it during that copy, making it corrupt.

A problem with the 'Reset' approach, though, may be that it will remember your CURRENT configuration, which is hosed, of course. You may need to rebuild the menus.

I do not think this problem will fix itself with reboots or restarts.
Let us know if you get this sorted. If not, we will keep pursuing.
Hi

Thanks for your reply. I too have 2 Surface Pro's - Surface Pro 3 and this Surface Pro (why on earth didn't they just call it 5?) - anyway, on the '3' all is OK it is only on the '2017' that this is an issue.

Yes, just to confirm, it is the tile icons on the start screen that are 'disappearing'.

I have, in the past, used the restore option (on the '3'), not keeping files. I may have to consider your suggested Reset keeping files. I will need to read up on it to see what actually will be lost during the process first though.

There has to be some known cause somewhere - I wonder if MS have been made aware of it - there seems to be plenty of others who have experienced this issue.
 

jnjroach

Administrator
Staff member
It's a Video Driver issue - if you turn off transparency under Personalization - Color it should resolve it, or at least for me it did
 
OP
L

leshay

Member
It's a Video Driver issue - if you turn off transparency under Personalization - Color it should resolve it, or at least for me it did
Hi

Thanks for the suggestion, unfortunately it didn't help.

I turned off Transparency, restarted computer and as usual got all Tiles with icons but they soon disappeared again .

All I had done after restart was to open my Firefox browser and then they were gone.
 

sharpuser

Super Moderator
Staff member
Okay. Next step is to (gasp) Reset without keeping your files, or remove and re-download your apps.

If you OneDrive your files, they will remain in the cloud. Of course, you could also use an external hard drive.
 

jnjroach

Administrator
Staff member
Hi

Thanks for the suggestion, unfortunately it didn't help.

I turned off Transparency, restarted computer and as usual got all Tiles with icons but they soon disappeared again .

All I had done after restart was to open my Firefox browser and then they were gone.
What build are you using? You can also attempt to use the video driver using the latest Intel one, download the zipped file and manually install the update.
 
OP
L

leshay

Member
What build are you using? You can also attempt to use the video driver using the latest Intel one, download the zipped file and manually install the update.
Hi

Can't find details of the Windows build, but I do have the latest as supplied by the Windows Update which checks about every day I think.

I will find a suitable point where I can do the Reset - I do have a NAS with all my important data backups, I suppose I will just have to download/reinstall my various applications though.
 

wpcoe

Member
I will find a suitable point where I can do the Reset - I do have a NAS with all my important data backups, I suppose I will just have to download/reinstall my various applications though.
Before you go nuclear with a Windows reset, maybe try rolling back to some earlier System Restore points?
 
OP
L

leshay

Member
Before you go nuclear with a Windows reset, maybe try rolling back to some earlier System Restore points?
Hi
Not really feasible as the issue has been with me almost from day one with this machine so rollbacks would likely just import the problems too.
 
OP
L

leshay

Member
Okay. Next step is to (gasp) Reset without keeping your files, or remove and re-download your apps.

If you OneDrive your files, they will remain in the cloud. Of course, you could also use an external hard drive.
Hi

Well, I reset (don't keep files) and unfortunately, the same issue is recurring.

After the Reset, I used Windows Update and got whatever it decided I needed - now at Fully Updated status.

I have installed Thunderbird, FireFox, Visual Studio and Libre Office.

At that point, all the start screen tile icons were there - I had removed from Start, all but 4 of the defaults and added those mentioned that I installed.

After a computer Restart, they were still there, but, after opening both Thunderbird and Firefox, they had once again all 'disappeared'.
 

sharpuser

Super Moderator
Staff member
If you right-click on entries for these applications from the left side of your Start Menu (when showing the list), you can choose to "Unpin from Start". Try that, and then "Pin to Start" again.
 
Search tags for this page

surface 4 pro show desktop icons

tiles are disappearing from my surface 2

Top