How to Enable and Configure the Xbox Game Bar Overlay in Windows 10

The Xbox Game Bar is a built-in overlay in Windows 10 that provides various useful features for gaming. It allows you to record gameplay, take screenshots, monitor system resources, chat with friends, and more without leaving your game.

Enabling the Xbox Game Bar

The Xbox Game Bar is enabled by default in Windows 10. To open it, press Windows key + G on your keyboard or press the Xbox button on an Xbox controller.

If it does not open, you may need to enable it manually:

  1. Open the Start menu and click on Settings
  2. Go to Gaming > Xbox Game Bar
  3. Toggle the “Enable Xbox Game Bar” switch to On

Customizing the Xbox Game Bar

Once enabled, you can customize the Xbox Game Bar to suit your needs. Here are some of the customization options:

Keyboard Shortcuts

To change the keyboard shortcuts for opening or using the Xbox Game Bar:

  1. Open the Xbox Game Bar
  2. Click on the settings icon
  3. Go to Shortcuts
  4. Click in any shortcut field to set a new keyboard shortcut

For example, you can change the shortcut to open the Xbox Game Bar from Windows key + G to Ctrl + Shift + G.


Overlays are different widgets and panels that you can enable inside the Xbox Game Bar. Some useful overlays include:

  • Performance: Monitors system resource usage statistics like CPU, GPU, RAM usage etc.
  • Spotify: Provides playback controls for Spotify
  • Captures: Shows your recently captured screenshots and videos
  • Achievements: Shows your gaming achievements

To enable/disable overlays:

  1. Open the Xbox Game Bar
  2. Click on the overlay menu button
  3. Toggle overlays on or off

You can also pin overlays to keep them visible at all times.


To change between light and dark theme:

  1. Open the Xbox Game Bar
  2. Click on Settings
  3. Go to Personalization > Theme
  4. Select Light or Dark

Game DVR

To configure the Game DVR which handles video recording:

  1. Open Settings > Gaming
  2. Scroll down and click on Game DVR
  3. Enable/disable background recording
  4. Set the recording time from 30 seconds to 1 hour

Using the Xbox Game Bar

Once customized, the Xbox Game Bar provides an easy way to access useful gaming features without minimizing your game.

  • Press Windows key + Alt + R to start/stop video recording
  • Press Windows key + Alt + G to record the last 30 seconds (configurable)
  • Use the Spotify overlay to control music
  • View performance statistics to monitor FPS, CPU/GPU usage
  • Chat with Xbox friends
  • Share captures to social media

So in summary, the Xbox Game Bar provides a convenient customizable overlay for gaming that you should take full advantage of if you are a PC gamer on Windows 10. Enable it, customize it to your liking, and it will enhance your overall gaming experience.