How to use Export and Import feature for Start menu layout in Windows 10


This article is all about how to Export and Import start menu layout in Windows 10. Windows 10 Creators update bring many new and attractive features in it and customization is the main part of this update. Now in Windows 10, we can customize anything, for example, we can customize Taskbar, Lock screen and as well as we can customize our Start menu. The start menu was the highly customizable and adaptive thing of Windows 10 Creators update. Now you can pin apps, group tiles, drag tiles, unpin tiles, resize tiles, and create your own app group on Windows 10 start menu. Some of the Windows users have great skills in personalization for that users this update is very useful because it provides many of the customization options in it. Many of the users customize their start menu just after installing the operating system in their systems. Because they feel more comfortable with their customized start menu rather than default start menu of the operating system. But sometimes it is very difficult to customize start menu when the number of devices is more such as a single user can handle more than 10 systems. In that case doing customization manually on each and every PC is painful. So, Export and Import feature are played a very important role in that types of situation. And you can also use the backup of your Start menu layout in the future so it is quite helpful for all the users. So, let’s start here how to Export and Import start menu layout in Windows 10.

Note: – This method is not used for Windows 10 Home Edition. Because Home Edition does not support Export and Import feature for Start menu layout. This method works best on Windows 10 Pr0, Enterprise, and Education Edition.

How to Export Windows 10 Start menu layout

1.  First of all, customize your Start menu layout According to your need such as pinning apps, create app group, resize tiles, drag tiles and reordering all tiles. When Customization is completed go to the second step to proceed.

2.  After that open Windows PowerShell as admin on your system. To do so, first of all, press Windows Key+X from your keyboard then you saw that some options are displayed at the left bottom corner in which select Windows PowerShell (Admin) option and wait for it. Figure is shown below

how to open PoweShell as admin

3.  If above method does not work for you then simply use Cortana search box for open Windows PowerShell. To do so first of all click on the Cortana search box from your window which is given at the taskbar. After that type PowerShell and press enter now you saw that Windows PowerShell option comes at the top in search results. Now right click on that option and choose Run as admin option to open Windows PowerShell as admin. Figure is shown below

how to open PoweShell as admin using cortana search box

4.  After that use Windows PowerShell to Export Start menu layout. To do so type given below command in the Windows PowerShell and hit enter to proceed.

export-startlayout –path C:\layout.xml

Here in above command, C:\ is the directory in which our exported file will be saved you can change it according to your choice. Now here layout.xml is the name of the file you can also change it if you want to change. Figure is shown below

use powershell for export start menu in windows 10

5.  Above command creates a .xml file at your given location which is given by you while executing the command. Like here I gave local disk C as the path. Figure is shown below

path for layout.xml file

Exporting of your Start menu layout is successfully completed now. If you want to Import this file on another Windows 10 device then copy this file from the source device and paste it on the targeted device. After that follow given below steps to import Start menu layout in Windows 10.

How to Import Windows 10 Start menu layout

Now to Import Windows 10 Start menu layout on a device we use Local Group Policy Editor. We all know that Local Group Policy Editor is not a part of Windows 10 Home Edition so we do not use it on Windows 10 Home Edition.

1.  First of all, create a system restore point of your device for our comfort such as if our device has some issues after importing the layout then system restore point helps us in retrieving our system. If you want to know about how to create system restore point the read my previous articles.

2.  After that open Local Group Editor on our system. To do so first of all press Windows Key+R to open Run search box. Then type gpedit.msc in Run search box and hit Enter to open Local Group Policy Editor on your system. Figure is shown below

open local group policy editor using run

3.  If above method does not work for you then use Cortana search Box to open Group Policy Editor on your system. To do so first of all click on the Cortana search box from your taskbar and type gpedit.msc and press enter or select the first option from search. Figure is shown below

how to use cortana for open local group policy editor

4.  After that when the Local Group Policy Editor is up and running on our system, navigate to “User Configuration” then to “Administrative Templates” and then “Start Menu and Taskbar” folder. Path and figure is shown below

User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Start Menu and Taskbar

search for Start Menu and Taskbar folder in Group Policy Editor

5.  After that in Start Menu and Taskbar folder locate Start Layout file in the right pane and double-click on it to open its settings. Figure is shown below

search for start layout file in Start Menu and Taskbar folder

6.  After that in the Start Layout setting select Enable option to enable importing feature. Now under options section in Start Layout file text box type the path where our layout.xml file located which copied from another system. Like my file is located in C:\layout.xml so I gave this path in that text box.

7.  After that click on the Apply option to save these settings and finally, in the end, click on the OK option and close everything. Now restart your system to saw effects on your Start Menu layout. Figure is shown below

how to Import Start Menu in Windows 10

                                                                        THAT’S IT

This is the whole process which is used to Export and Import Start menu layout in Windows 10. I think this article is helpful for you if you have any queries regarding this simply solved out through the comment section. If you found this article helpful then provide feedback to us because your feedback is helpful for us. Also, follow my blog for further updates.

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