How to enable new open Search on hover option on Windows 11

Here are the steps to try an early preview of the new open Search on hover option from the Taskbar on Windows 11.

Open Search on hover
Open Search on hover

On Windows 11 build 23435, you can enable an early preview of a new option that allows you to decide whether the Search experience should open on hover from the Taskbar, and in this guide, you will learn how.

Microsoft is experimenting with a new option (via @PhantomOfEarth) that will open the Search experience as you hover over the search elements in the Taskbar. Although this is a subtle change, it’ll save users an extra click to access the interface. The feature is still under development, and it’s hidden from the main installation. However, if the company decides to roll out this change, it’ll probably become the default option, as it should improve discoverability.

If you want to get hands-on with the new open Search on hover, you can use a third-party tool called “ViveTool,” created by Rafael Rivera and Lucas on GitHub, to enable the option on your computer.

This guide will teach you the steps to turn on this new feature on Windows 11.

Enable new open Search on hover option on Windows 11

To enable the open Search on hover option on Windows 11, use these steps:

  1. Open GitHub website.

  2. Download the ViveTool-vx.x.x.zip file to enable the new Snap Layout improvements.

  3. Double-click the zip folder to open it with File Explorer.

  4. Click the Extract all button.

    Extract ViveTool files

  5. Click the Extract button.

  6. Copy the path to the folder.

  7. Open Start.

  8. Search for Command Prompt, right-click the top result, and select the Run as administrator option.

  9. Type the following command to navigate to the ViveTool folder and press Enter:

    cd c:\folder\path\ViveTool-v0.x.x

    In the command, remember to change the path to the folder with your path.

  10. Type the following command to enable the Snap Layouts suggestions and press Enter:

    vivetool /enable /id:43572857,43572692
  11. Restart the computer.

Once you complete the steps, the next time you open the Taskbar settings page, you will notice that the “Search” feature will no longer belong to the “Taskbar items” settings, and it’ll include a new “Open search on hover (when applicable)” toggle switch that allows you to enable or disable the feature.

Taskbar settings open Search on hover
Taskbar settings open Search on hover

If you change your mind, you can revert the changes with the same instructions, but on step 10, make sure to use the  vivetool /disable /id:43572857,43572692 command and then restart the computer.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and About.me. Email him at [email protected].