How to fix Gaming features aren't available for Windows desktop or File Explorer error?

Question

Issue: How to fix Gaming features aren't available for Windows desktop or File Explorer error?

Hello. I tried to record my screen using the Xbox Game Bar. However, when I open it the record option is unavailable. What could be the problem?

Solved Answer

The Xbox Game Bar is a gaming overlay built into Windows 10 and Windows 11. With a simple keyboard shortcut – Windows key + G, users get access to many widgets that let them capture game clips, take screenshots, monitor and manage performance, communicate with friends, and so on, without having to exit the game they are playing.

However, some users have difficulties with one particular function of Game Bar – screen capturing. People say that when they open Game Bar and want to press the record button, it is grey, which means it is unavailable for use. It is unknown why exactly this issue appears, there are multiple possibilities.

The Gaming features may be unavailable because of missing Windows updates, disabled Game Mode, and Game DVR. In this guide, you will find 6 steps that could help you fix the Gaming features aren't available for Windows desktop or File Explorer error.

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How to fix Gaming features arent available for Windows desktop or File Explorer error

Solution 1. Install Available Updates

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  • Right-click on Start and pick Settings
  • Go to the Update & Security section
  • Click Check for updates

Install Available Updates

  • You might see the View optional updates option – click it
  • Select everything you want and then pick Download and install

Solution 2. Add the Windows Media Pack

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Add the Windows Media Pack

  • Select an installation pack for either 32 or 64-bit Windows, and press the Next button
  • Then open the downloaded installer to install the media pack

Solution 3. Enable Game DVR

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  • Go to the Game Bar Settings
  • Click on the Capturing tab
  • Toggle on Record in the background while I’m playing a game

Enable Game DVR

Solution 4. Turn on Game Mode

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  • Go to Windows Settings and click on Gaming
  • Go to the Game Mode tab and toggle Game Mode on

Turn on Game Mode

Solution 5. Open Game Bar from the Windows Store

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  • Open Game Bar from Windows Store. Make sure that the recording button is activated.

Open Game Bar from the Windows Store

  • Click on the screen to hide the Game bar tools
  • Navigate to the window you want to capture
  • Hit the Windows key + G to reopen Game Bar. Make sure that the recording button is still activated.
  • Make a video

Solution 6. Reinstall Xbox Game Bar

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  • Press Windows key + X
  • Click and Run Windows PowerShell as an Administrator
  • Copy and paste the command below then press Enter:

get-appxpackage *Microsoft.XboxGamingOverlay* | remove-appxpackage

Reinstall Xbox Game Bar

  • Go to the Microsoft Store and download Xbox Game Bar

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About the author
Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The problem solver

Ugnius Kiguolis is the founder and editor-in-chief of UGetFix. He is a professional security specialist and malware analyst who has been working in IT industry for over 20 years.

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