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Why gaming features aren’t available on the Windows desktop?

How do I enable the Windows 10 gaming features and game bar?

1. Update Windows 10 to the Latest Build Version

  1. First, some users might need to update Windows 10 to the latest build version as earlier builds don’t include the revamped Game bar in version 1903. To get the latest May 2019 Update, press the Windows key + S keyboard shortcut.
  2. Input the keyword ‘update’ in the text box.
  3. Then click Check for updates, which will open the window shown directly below.Check for updates gaming features aren't available for the windows desktop
  4. Click Download and install now under the “Feature update to Window 10, version 1903” subheading. Some users might need to click the Check for updates button first.

2. Add the Windows Media Pack to Windows 10 KN or N

  1. Windows 10 KN and N users might need to install the Windows Media Pack to ensure they have all the media technologies required for the Game bar. To do that, open the Windows Media Pack page.Media Feature Pack page gaming features aren't available for the windows desktop
  2. Click the Download button.
  3. Select an installation pack for either 32 or 64-bit Windows, and press the Next button.
  4. Then open the downloaded installer to install the media pack.

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3. Enable the Game Bar

  1. Users need to have enabled the Game Bar to open it. To enable the Game Bar, press the Windows key + S hotkey.
  2. Enter ‘Game bar’ as the search keyword.
  3. Select Game bar settings to open the window shown below.Game bar settings gaming features aren't available for the windows desktop
  4. Toggle the Record game clips, screenshots and broadcast using Game bar option on.

4. Enable Game DVR

To record games, users also need to toggle Record in the background while I’m playing a game option on. Users can do that by clicking Captures just below the Game bar in Settings and turning the Record in the background setting on.

Captures settings gaming features aren't available for the windows desktop

5. Turn on Game Mode

There’s also a Game Mode option in Settings that users need to turn on to enable gaming optimization. Click the Game Mode tab in Settings shown directly below. Then click the Game Mode option to turn it on if it’s off.

Game Mode settings gaming features aren't available for the windows desktop

When you’ve enabled all the gaming features as outlined above, press the Windows key + G hotkey. That’s the default hotkey for opening the Game bar. Then users can fully utilize all the gaming features Win 10 has to offer!

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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in July 2019 and was revamped and updated in December 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

This post was written by Matthew Adams and was first posted to WindowsReport

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