Windows 10: How to remove items from the Start Menu

The Windows 10 Start Menu is not as customizable as it used to be in Windows 7. While the part on the right (the tiles) can be easily removed and added by right-clicking them, the traditional part on the left (folders and shortcuts) is not customizable any more. In Windows 7, you could right-click on a shortcut and then delete or rename it. Not any more in Windows 10.

There are tricks to modify the Windows 10 Start Menu shortcuts anyway. Find the instructions to do so below:

Traditional Applications

The traditional applications (like Word) still create their Start Menu items in the file system under:

C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

and

C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

So you can go there in File Explorer and delete or rename stuff.

Modern Apps

Unfortunately, Modern Apps don't store their shortcuts in the file system. They store it in the registry and databases. The best way to get rid of a Start Menu item is to uninstall the program. So if you don't want to have "Calculator" in the Start Menu, uninstall it.

But some Modern Apps cannot be uninstalled as this is blocked by Microsoft. For some of those, you can use Power Shell or you can at least disable them by renaming the folder in the SystemApps directory. Renaming the folder does not remove the Start Menu item, though.

For 3 items in the Start Menu, none of the above methods worked, I could not get them removed from the Start Menu:

Connect (Miracast)
Mixed Reality Portal
Wireless Display Media Viewer

So the solution I found is the following:

  • Change a flag in the Apps database for those packages to make them uninstallable
  • Uninstall those packages with Power Shell

This will remove the items from the Start Menu. Here are the steps in detail.

  1. Download the tool PSEXEC from Microsoft/Sysinternals: https://technet.microsoft.com/de-de/sysinternals/bb897553.aspx
    Unzip it to your hard disk
  2. Download the tool SQLLite Browser from: http://sqlitebrowser.org/
    Choose "Portable App" and install it
  3. Start a cmd box as Administrator
  4. CD to the directory where PSEXEC.exe sits
  5. Type
    psexec.exe -i -s -d cmd.exe
    to start a second cmd box with system rights
  6. In that second command box, CD to the directory where SQLLiteDatabaseBrowserPortable.exe sits
  7. Type
    SQLiteDatabaseBrowserPortable.exe
  8. Once SQLLite is open, click on the “Open Database” button at the top
  9. Choose the following database:
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\AppRepository\
    StateRepository-Machine.srd
  10. Now, click on the “Browse Data” tab, and change the table to “Package”
  11. Look under the PackageFullName column for the following 3 packages
    Windows.MiracastView _6.3.0.0_neutral_neutral_cw5n1h2txyewy
    Microsoft.Windows.HolographicFirstRun _10.0.15063.0_neutral_neutral_cw5n1h2txyewy
    Microsoft.PPIProjection _10.0.15063.0_neutral_neutral_cw5n1h2txyewy
  12. For all 3 packages, set the column IsInbox to 0
  13. Click on "Save changes"
  14. Now start Power Shell as Administrator
  15. Run the uninstallation for the 3 apps
    get-appxpackage -allusers | where {$_.name -like “*mira*”} | remove-appxpackage
    get-appxpackage -allusers | where {$_.name -like “*holographicfirstrun*”} | remove-appxpackage
    get-appxpackage -allusers | where {$_.name -like “*ppiprojection*”} | remove-appxpackage

Now all three entries in the Start Menu should be gone. Of course, you can also uninstall other non-uninstallable apps with this method.

Remember, that this is not an official way supported by Microsoft, but it worked fine for me.

3 thoughts on “Windows 10: How to remove items from the Start Menu”

  1. Thanks alot for this.

    However, I am left with 2 questions:
    1. Besides uninstalling the app completely, is there any possibility to simply remove the entry in the start menu?

    2. Messing around with the StateRepository file, I have found that there is a column labeled "Logo", that is pointing to a .png file within the WindowsApps folder.
    Since 1703 it appears that I cannot replace these files anymore. Would there be any possibility to change the StateRepository, in order to point to a different/custom icon file?
    I have tried changing it to a file outside the app folder (i.e. in WindowsApps) but without success.

    Cheers

    pakz

    1. For 1. I did not find any possibility to just remove it from the Start Menu. It must be buried really deep inside some config file.

      Regarding 2. I have not played with the Logo column, so I cannot really helpy you there either.

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