Ghost Drop Down Menus – stuck on screen

Ghost drop down menu’s that stay on your screen until you reset your resolution, logout or reboot. At first you think – no problem, I’ll just ignore that. Then like a dripping tap on a quiet evening you find you’ve suddenly lost all focus to this little sliver on your screen and you cannot move forward until it is eliminated! I’ve experienced this issue on and off over multiple versions of Windows on laptops & desktops with onboard integrated or massive discrete gaming  graphics cards with many different type of monitors, resolutions and setups.

My current setup that drove me to make this post: Lenovo T440p laptop running a  3.7ghz i7 4800MQ 6mb cache processor with 8gb ram, 256gb SSD and Intel 4600 HD Graphics card running on Windows 7 Enterprise pushing dual Lenovo 21.5″ 1920×1080 displays  via DVI-D cables.  That’s after having just come off of a Dell Latitude E6410 With a gigabyte NVidia graphics card driving a single monitor that also experienced the issue. This should get better with new OS’es, displays cards, drivers ram, memory and throughput pipes right? RIGHT!?

So how to fix this little monster of an annoyance?  Two methods presented here. The first removes the current ghost menu item, text or window but does not resolve the issue. The second resolves the issue, unfortunately by disabling rich UI features.

Solution #1 – Temporary fix to remove current Ghost menu, text or window items.

  1. Click Start > type CMD > right click on CMD > choose Run As Administrator
  2. type: net stop uxsms
  3. type: net start uxsms

You can create a batch file to automate the above process

  1. Open Notepad (or download and install Notepad++)
  2. Enter these two lines
    net stop uxsms
    net start uxsms
  3. Save as FixGhosting.bat  (make sure the extension is BAT)
  4. Run any time you have a Ghost object by right clicking the file and choosing “Run As Administrator”

Soution #2 – permanently prevent Ghost menu’s, text or windows items.

  1. Click Start and type: Adjust the appearance
  2. Open “Adjust the Appearance and Performance of Windows”
  3. Alternate direct route:  Go to Control Panel > System > Advanced Settings >System Properties > Performance
  4. Turn off “Fade or slide” for both menus and ToolTips
  5. Turn off the “Fade out menu items after clicking”
    Ghost Menus - Performance options fade
    Ghost Menus – Performance Options – fade settings

Screen Menu Ghosting
Example Screen Menu Ghosting

10 thoughts on “Ghost Drop Down Menus – stuck on screen

  1. A way to get rid of them on Windows 10 which has been working for me: Hit “Ctrl+Alt+Del” to bring up the options screen, and then simply hit cancel/esc. No code, no cmd – seems refresh the screen and has been working well on those ghosts on my Windows 10 machine.

  2. Hello I did the Soution #2 for one of our employees, but it keeps coming back, I think it may be an update that is causing the three fade buttons to get checked again. Any assistance would be appreciated.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *