Troubleshooting Guide: F5 Refresh Not Working in Windows 11

Certainly! Below is a comprehensive troubleshooting guide for resolving the issue of F5 refresh not working in Windows 11. This guide is tailored for advanced users who have a deep understanding of Windows operating systems and troubleshooting techniques.

What Causes F5 Refresh not working in Windows 11?

Several factors can lead to F5 refresh not working. Here are some of the common causes that can cause F5 to refresh not working in Windows 11:

  • Keyboard Drivers: Outdated or incompatible keyboard drivers may cause issues.
  • Function Lock (F-Lock): Some keyboards have an F-Lock key that toggles the behavior of function keys. Ensure it’s not accidentally enabled.
  • Disabled from BIOS Setup: Function keys can be disabled from BIOS setup, that’s why the F5 key is not working.
  • OneDrive Sync: OneDrive Desktop syncing can impact automatic desktop refresh.

How to fix the F5 refresh key not working in Windows 11?

Update Windows Build

Ensure Windows 11 is up to date. Here are the detailed steps to update your Windows build, following the instructions you provided:

  1. Press Win+I to open the system settings.
  2. In the left panel, locate the Windows Update option.
  3. Click on Windows Update to access the update menu.
  4. Next, click on Check for Updates to fetch the latest updates available.
  5. Once the updates are found, finish the process by clicking the Download and Install Now button.

After initiating the update, allow your PC to restart. Once it’s done, manually run Wallpaper Engine and check if the issue persists. 

Disable FunctionLock key

It might be possible that your function key is enabled, you have to disable it if your F5 key is not working, To do it you can use the keyboard shortcut Fn + Esc. This will disable your function key, if you want to disable it through on-screen keybaord then here are the steps to disable Function Lock using the On-Screen Keyboard:

  1. Open the Windows Search Box: Press the Win key on your keyboard or click the Windows icon in the taskbar, then type “On-Screen Keyboard” and select it from the search results.
  2. Launch the On-Screen Keyboard: The On-Screen Keyboard will appear on your screen. Look for the Fn key at the bottom left corner of the keyboard layout. Ensure that it’s blue (indicating that FnLock is enabled).
  3. Disable FnLock: Click the Fn key to toggle it off (if it’s currently blue). Once done, the Function keys (including F5) should now work in their standard roles.

Enable the function keys in the BIOS setup

Let’s walk through the steps to enable the function keys in your PC’s BIOS. This will help ensure that they work as expected. Follow these instructions:

  1. Open the Settings Program:
    • Click on the Start button or press the Windows key to open the Start menu.
    • Type “Settings” and select the Settings app from the search results.
  2. Access Advanced Startup Options:
    • In the Settings app, navigate to the Recovery section.
    • Look for the option that says “Restart now” next to “Advanced Startups” and click on it.
  3. Boot into Advanced Settings:
    • Your PC will restart, and you’ll see a new prompt.
    • Click the “Restart now” button to boot into your PC’s advanced settings.
  4. Choose Troubleshoot and Advanced Options:
    • On the next screen, select “Troubleshoot” to proceed.
    • Then click on “Advanced options”.
  5. Access UEFI Firmware Settings (BIOS):
    • Look for the “UEFI Firmware Settings” tile and click on it.
    • Click “Restart” to enter your device’s BIOS.
  6. Configure Function Key Behavior:
    • Once you’re in the BIOS, navigate to the Keyboard/Mouse setup section.
    • Look for an option related to function keys (usually labeled “Action Keys Mode”).
    • Choose either:
      • “Function Key”: This will make the function keys (F1-F12) behave as standard function keys.
      • “Media Key”: This option makes the function keys perform the tasks printed on them (e.g., adjusting volume, brightness, etc.).
  7. Apply the Settings and Exit BIOS:
    • Save the changes you’ve made by following the on-screen instructions.
    • Exit the BIOS mode.

Now, restart your PC and check whether the issue with the function keys is resolved. They should now work as expected!

Run the System File Checker Scan

The F5 key (often used for refreshing web pages or other content) not working can be frustrating. It might be due to missing or corrupted system files. To resolve this, we’ll use the System File Checker (SFC) utility, which scans and repairs system files. Follow the steps below:

  1. Open an Elevated Command Prompt:
    • Press Windows + X and choose “Windows Terminal (Admin)” or “Command Prompt (Admin)” from the menu.
    • Alternatively, you can search for “Command Prompt” in the Start menu, right-click on it, and select “Run as administrator.”
  2. Run the SFC Scan:

In the elevated Command Prompt, type the following command and press Enter:
sfc /scannow

  • The SFC utility will start scanning your system files. It may take a few minutes to complete.
  • If any issues are found, SFC will attempt to repair them automatically.
  1. Check the Results:
    • After the scan is complete, you’ll see a message indicating whether any problems were detected and whether they were fixed.
    • If the scan reports that it found and repaired issues, restart your PC and check if the F5 key now works as expected.

Hopefully, running the SFC scan will help resolve the issue with your F5 key. If you encounter any further problems, feel free to ask for additional assistance!

Rum DISM scan

The DISM tool is a powerful command-line utility that administrators and experts use to manage, modify, and repair Windows images. It can check and fix protected system files and components within the Windows image. We’ll use it to address the F5 key issue.

  1. Open an Elevated Command Prompt:
    • Press the Windows key to open the Start menu.
    • Search for “Command Prompt”, right-click on it, and select “Run as administrator”.
  2. Run the DISM CheckHealth Command:
    • In the elevated Command Prompt, type the following command and press Enter: DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
    • This command checks for any corruption inside the local Windows image. It won’t perform repairs but will identify issues.
  3. Run the DISM ScanHealth Command:
    • Next, let’s perform an advanced scan using the ScanHealth option:
      DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
    • The scan may take some time to check whether Windows 11 needs any repairs.
  4. Run the DISM RestoreHealth Command:
    • Finally, use the RestoreHealth option to automatically scan and repair common issues:
      DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /restorehealth
  5. Confirm the Results:
    • After each step, observe the output for any errors or issues reported.
    • Once the DISM scan is complete, restart your PC and check if the F5 key issue is resolved.

Remember that this process is non-destructive, but it’s always a good idea to create a system backup before making any changes. Hopefully, this will help fix the problem!

Reset Keyboard Settings

  1. Reset Keyboard Settings:
    • Press Win + X and select Device Manager.
    • Expand the Keyboards section.
    • Right-click on your keyboard device and choose Uninstall Device.
    • Restart your PC and check if F5 works.
  2. Test Another Keyboard:
    • Connect a different keyboard to your system and check if F5 works with it.

Disable OneDrive Desktop Sync

  1. Disable OneDrive Sync:
    • Open OneDrive Settings.
    • Uncheck “Start OneDrive automatically when I sign in to Windows”.
    • Restart your PC and check if F5 works.

Restart the “HidServ” Service in Task Manager: 

The “HidServ” service (Human Interface Devices Service) enables pre-programmed hot buttons on keyboards and remote controls. Here are the steps

  1. Open Task Manager (type “Task Manager” in Windows Search).
  2. go to the “Services” tab.
  3. Find “HidServ,” and right-click to select “Restart.”

Restarting this service can resolve critical issues with input devices like keyboards.

Turn Off Filter Keys:

Filter Keys can affect key responsiveness. Disable it by going to Settings > Accessibility > Keyboard > Filter Keys and turning it off.

4. Precautions

  • Backup Data: Before making any changes, back up important data.
  • Create Restore Points: Create system restore points before driver updates or major changes.
  • Refer to Reliable Sources: For detailed instructions, refer to Microsoft’s official documentation.

Remember to adapt these steps based on your specific system configuration. If the issue persists, consider seeking professional assistance or visiting relevant forums for further insights. Good luck troubleshooting!

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