You can add a little extra space to your desktop if you want to hide the taskbar. But sometimes it can be stubborn to hide when it should. Here are some tips that can get that taskbar hidden again. RELATED: How to Automatically Hide the Windows Taskbar NOTE! We use Windows 10 throughout this article as our example, but the same technologies should work for Windows 8, 7, or even Vista.
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You can add a little extra space to your desktop if you want to hide the taskbar. But sometimes it can be stubborn to hide when it should. Here are some tips to get that taskbar hidden again.
RELATED: How to automatically hide the Windows taskbar
NOTE ! We use Windows 10 throughout this article as our example, but the same technologies should work for Windows 8, 7, or even Vista. We point out where things are markedly different.
What causes the Toolbar not to be hidden automatically?
When you use the Windows taskbar auto-tracking feature, it will hide until an application needs your attention . For regular apps, this usually means that the app’s activity bar button starts flashing on you. For example, the Skype app flashes its taskbar button when you receive a new call. In this case, you can simply click on the taskbar to let the app know that you have seen what it needs to see and the taskbar hides again.
For background apps that have an icon in the system tray, two separate Actions can cause your taskbar to stick. The first is when you have a mark on the icon — or an actual icon change, indicating that the app needs your attention. For example, the Slack app displays a small red dot on its regular icon to notify you when you have received a new message.
The second case usually happens in Windows 8 and earlier versions when a notification balloon appears. This makes the taskbar often visible until you reject the message. This is of course easy to close, or you can customize the messages so that they do not appear. This scenario did not really happen in Windows 10, because messages go away on their own and you can see them later in the Action Center.
RELATED : How to use and configure the new messaging center in Windows 10
For the most part, these issues are designed and easy to solve, either give the app the attention it needs want or configure it to stop asking for your attention.
In some cases, however, an app is not just typed correctly. It will trigger a notification in Windows to keep the taskbar open, but will not display anything that is visible for you to close. This problem is even worse when combined with the ability to hide icons in the system tray.
You can usually resolve this issue by restarting the problem program or click on the icon to trigger what the hidden message was. But you also have some other options.
Verify your a taskbar settings (and restart Explorer)
To make sure we are on the same page, right-click on the taskbar and select “Settings” from the context menu (or “Properties” if you are using Windows 8 or 7) . In Windows 10, this “Taskbar” appears in the Settings app. Make sure “Toolbar is automatically screened in desktop mode” is enabled. If you are using a tablet or tablet mode on a touch screen monitor, you can also decide if you want the corresponding tablet mode to be enabled as well.
If you are using Windows 8 , 7 or Vista, I see instead “Taskbar and Start Menu Properties”. Make sure the “Auto-hide taskbar” option is enabled.
Sometimes, if you encounter problems with your taskbar hiding automatically, the feature turns off and on again the problem will be fixed.
RELATED: How to restart Windows Explorer.exe (along with Taskbar and Start Menu)
< While you're at it, here's another thing to try. Sometimes when your taskbar refuses to hide automatically and you can not find the cause, restarting Windows Explorer can cause the problem to go away, at least temporarily.
If none of these banish the problem completely, it’s time to find the sin.
Open hidden icons and right-click on them
RELATED: How to customize and tweak your Windows system tray icons
In some cases, the taskbar problem is not automatically hidden caused by system tray icons that indicate when you need their attention, but are hidden from view.
For example, here the Slack app wants attention, but its icon is hidden on the page with extra apps that you can only see if you click on the small up arrow on the left side of the system tray. All you need to do in this case is pop open that page and see if any apps need your attention. Click or right-click on them and the taskbar should hide again. You can also help alleviate this problem by dragging the icons for apps that sometimes require attention down to the main area of the system tray where you can see them.
Sometimes you have a system tray icon that contains the taskbar open even if it does not visually call your attention. If you do not see an obvious notification from one of the programs, just try right-clicking on each other and see if that solves your problem. If you find someone who is behaving in this way, you may want to turn off notifications for the app or at least drag it to the main bar where it’s easier to find.
Customize notification settings
Hopefully, by at this point you have been thinking about which app is causing the problem. Now you have a decision to make: you can let it continue to notify you, to bring up the taskbar each time, or you can turn off the app notifications. This applies if the app notifies you by flashing a regular taskbar button or a system tray icon. And that applies if the notification is a mark on the icon or a message about the balloon. If you can live without messages from that app, you may be able to turn them off. The trick is to find out where to do it.
For apps that notify you by flashing an activity bar button, there can be nothing you can do. Some apps flash the button if you are trying to close an unsaved document or if they need to install an extension or update. But for some apps, like the Skype app we mentioned earlier, you can explore the app’s settings and see if there’s an option to turn off notifications.
For apps that notify you by displaying a tag or a symbol in a system tray icon, You need to explore the app settings to see if you can turn off these notifications. Unfortunately, there is no central area for these types of settings. You can usually access the settings for the individual background apps by right-clicking on the system tray icon and selecting “Settings”, “Settings” or similar.
RELATED : Disable all notification balloons in any version of Windows
For apps that create balloon or toast messages, you may want to turn off notifications in the app settings. But Windows also has a built-in way to control some of these types of messages. It’s a little different depending on which version of Windows you are using, so we recommend that you check out our full wizard for customizing and adjusting system tray icons and using and configuring Windows 10 Action Center. Again, messages in Windows 10 do not usually cause taskbar issues, but it can certainly happen with messages in earlier versions. And if you want to get in, we also have a guide to completely turn off balloon tips, which works well in previous versions of Windows.
RELATED: How to hides or shows App Badges on Windows 10 Taskbar
In addition, Windows 10 launched with Windows 10 Anniversary Update a feature to let apps show badges on the taskbar. Usually it is for apps like Mail and Calendar where the brand can display a number of unread items. These marks do not usually cause the taskbar to be visible if you have set it to hide automatically, but if you suspect this is causing a problem, it’s easy to hide these buttons on the taskbar.
Hopefully, at least one of these tips will help you solve your problem, and you’ll be back to a nice big big desk.
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