Search bar in Start menu won't run programs

I've been running into a few computers lately, both Windows Vista, and Windows 7, Where the Search box In the start menu won't execute common commands, Such as "cmd". When the boxes were origionally setup, you could execute any command that could be recognized in a run box from the search bar. Common ones that I typically execute in this bar are: cmd, mstsc, services.msc, regedit, msconfig, notepad, and probably a dozen others. It's becomming an annoyance to actually navagate to the locations and I'd love to get this working again.
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Follow the path

Control Panel--> Programs--> Turn off windows features--> check the windows search folder and click ok and restart

It may resolve your problem
mnswhitAuthor Commented:
Think you misunderstood. I don't wish to get rid of the search bar, I want it to function as it did when I got it. I used to be able to hit start, type cmd and have a command prompt. now if I hit start and type in cmd, nothing happens. when I turned off the feature, It completely removed the search bar from the start menu.
DId you added it back again and restarted?

It may have started functioning prperly.

And did u disabled this feature of search manually or it went off auto?
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mnswhitAuthor Commented:
I disabled it following your directions, it asked me to reboot, so I did. then enabled it when I realized what exactly it did, rebooting again. I realize sometime things can start working again by disabling/enabling things, however didn't work in this case. I can't place a specific change I made to where this problem started. It was just one of those things that I noticed one day as I tried to do something I normally do, but not regularly do.
Does this happen in safe mode also?  If not, it might be a startup program that causes it, since startup programs don't operate in safe mode.  You could then use MSCONFIG.EXE (Microsoft Configuration Tool) to disable startup programs in normal mode and go through this process:

just click on the button for Disable All. Reboot and see if the problem goes away.  If it does then re-enable the startup programs one (or a few) at a time, reboot, and when the problem occurs again, there is your culprit.  If you have a great number of apps to narrow down on in trying to track down the culprit, do it instead by dividing up the loading programs into successively smaller halves:  disable half of them; if the problem doesn't go away, then the offending app is within the other half, so divide that group into half; or if the problem does go away, then the disabled group contains the offender, so again narrow down by dividing in half.  
mnswhitAuthor Commented:
Ok, I'm not sure what it was exactly that you said, but after reading your post, I hit up google again, and landed on this link.

Specifically, the portion of that page that fixed the issue.

It seems that the root of the problem is the GroupBy value in the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\FolderTypes\{EF87B4CB-F2CE-4785-8658-4CA6C63E38C6}\TopViews\{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000} key in the registry. It is set to System.Null, when it should be System.StartMenu.Group.
When it is set to System.Null, all that you end up seeing in the list is the set of categories that items were found in, not the actual items found in the search. I don't know what changed that value for me (or how I did it inadvertently), but setting the value back to System.StartMenu.Group does seem to correct the issue.


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Windows 7

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