Windows 10 has been hit with a number of bugs in recent months, making what is usually a slick and intuitive user experience considerably more frustrating. 

The latest error causes the search function to stop working altogether, with users reporting a message saying 'This is taking too long to load' alongside a refresh button. Clicking this will take you back to the same situation once more.

Perhaps more concerning is the unusual-looking characters that are said to appear in the bottom right-hand corner. While presumably referring to a version number, they can easily be mistaken for a virus. 

Fortunately, that's not the case, and there is a potential solution. 

How to fix the Windows 10 search bug

As reported by Windows Latest, here's your best bet for rectifying the issue:

  1. Open Windows Run by hitting the Windows key + R
  2. In the window that appears, type 'cmd' but don't press enter
  3. Instead, press Ctrl+Shift+Enter to ensure you run the command as an administrator. You may have to re-enter your password to verify access. 
  4. Type 'DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth' in the prompt and hit enter

The issue is thought to be linked to a recent update, so if that doesn't work we'd recommend trying to uninstall it using the Disk Cleanup tool.

Microsoft will likely be quick to issue a patch, so your other option is to ensure that all your software is fully up to date. 

The company will hope bugs like this are less frequent once the next major Windows 10 update arrives. Here's everything you need to know about the Windows 10 May 2020 Update