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Windows 7: System Icons - Enable or Disable



System Icons - Enable or Disable

How to Enable or Disable System Icons on Taskbar in Windows 7 and Windows 8
Published by Brink
01 Aug 2009
Default System Icons - Enable or Disable

How to Enable or Disable System Icons on Taskbar in Windows 7 and Windows 8

information   Information
The notification area is a part of the taskbar that provides a temporary source for notifications and status. It can also be used to display icons for system and program features that are not on the desktop. The notification area was known historically as the system tray or status area.

By default, the only icons that will be visible in this area are some system icons. However, you can select which icons appear on the taskbar, and which icons hide in the overflow section.

This will show you how to enable or disable the Notification Area System Icons for all user accounts on the computer. These are the Clock, Volume, Network, Action Center, and Power (battery) icons in the bottom right corner of the taskbar.

You must be logged in as an administrator to be able to do the steps in this tutorial.

Note   Note
When disabled, these icons are grayed out in System Icons and will no longer appear at the Notification Area.

When enabled, these icons can be turned on and off at will in System Icons and will appear in the Notification Area if turned on.


Tip   Tip
  • Check to make sure that the system icon is turned on.
  • Check to make sure that the system icon is not hidden.
  • Make sure that the drivers and devices that are for the system icons are installed and working properly. They will not work if the device or driver does not.
  • Sometimes to simply log off and log on, or restart the computer, will enable the missing notification icons again. You should try this first.
  • Sometimes resetting the Notification Icons will clear the problem.
  • Sometimes on a laptop, you can shutdown the laptop and remove the battery pack, reconnect it, and power the laptop back up to get the Power (battery) icon back or ungrayed.

EXAMPLE: System Icons
NOTE: When disabled, the system icons will be grayed out and cannot be turned on and off by all users on the computer.
System Icons - Enable or Disable-example1.jpg

System Icons - Enable or Disable-example2.jpg






OPTION ONE
Through Local Group Policy Editor
1. Open the all users, specific users or groups, or all users except administrators Local Group Policy Editor for how you want this policy applied.

2. In the left pane, click/tap on an expand User Configuration, Administrative Templates, and Start Menu and Taskbar. (See screenshot below)
System Icons - Enable or Disable-group_policy.jpg
3. For the Clock Icon - In the right pane, double click/tap on Remove Clock from the system notification area to edit it. (See screenshot above)
A) To Disable the Clock Icon - Select (dot) Enabled and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)

B) To Enable the Clock Icon - Select (dot) Disabled or Not Configured and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)
4. For the Volume Icon - In the right pane, double click/tap on Remove the volume control icon to edit it. (See screenshot below step 2)
A) To Disable the Volume Icon - Select (dot) Enabled and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)

B) To Enable the Volume Icon - Select (dot) Disabled or Not Configured and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)
5. For the Network Icon - In the right pane, double click/tap on Remove the networking icon to edit it. (See screenshot below step 2)
NOTE: To make sure that this icon works properly you should also have the Network Connections, Network List Service, Network Location Awareness, and Network Store Interface Service Services set to Started and Automatic.
A) To Disable the Network Icon - Select (dot) Enabled and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)

B) To Enable the Netwok Icon - Select (dot) Disabled or Not Configured and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)
6. For the Power (battery) Icon - In the right pane, double click/tap on Remove the battery meter to edit it. (See screenshot below step 2)
NOTE: This will remain grayed out, even when enabled, unless your computer is a laptop or has a UPS battery backup connected to it.
A) To Disable the Power Icon - Select (dot) Enabled and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)

B) To Enable the Power Icon - Select (dot) Disabled or Not Configured and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)
7. For the Action Center Icon - In the right pane, double click/tap on Remove the Action Center icon to edit it. (See screenshot below step 2)
A) To Disable the Action Center Icon - Select (dot) Enabled and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)

B) To Enable the Action Center Icon - Select (dot) Disabled or Not Configured and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 8)
8. When done, close the Local Group Policy Editor.
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9. Log off and log on, or restart the computer to fully apply.



OPTION TWO
Using a REG File Download
1. To Enable the Action Center Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Enable_Action_Center_Notification_Icon.reg
download
2. To Disable the Action Center Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Disable_Action_Center_Notification_Icon.reg
download
3. To Enable the Clock Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Enable_Clock_Notification_Icon.reg
download
4. To Disable the Clock Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Disable_Clock_Notification_Icon.reg
download
5. To Enable the Network Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Enable_Network_Notification_Icon.reg
download
6. To Disable the Network Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Enable_Network_Notification_Icon.reg
download
7. To Enable the Power (battery) Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Enable_Power_Notification_Icon.reg
download
8. To Disable the Power (battery) Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Disable_Clock_Notification_Icon.reg
download
9. To Enable the Volume Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Enable_Volume_Notification_Icon.reg
download
10. To Disable the Volume Icon
A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below.
Disable_Volume_Notification_Icon.reg
download
11. Save the .reg file to your Desktop.

12. Double click/tap on the downloaded .reg file to merge it.

13. Click/tap on Run, Yes (UAC), Yes, and OK when prompted.

14. Log off and log on, or restart the computer to fully apply.

15. When done, you can delete the downloaded .reg file if you like.
That's it,
Shawn



Related Tutorials

Published by
21 Dec 2011   #1
holandrand

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

I have Windows 7 Home - all my system icon on/off buttons have been grayed out except for the clock. Weird thing is - ever since the icons disappeared from my taskbar I can only connect to my home wireless network. I cannot connect to public networks that I previously could.
I have tried system restores, virus checks (nothing found) Microsoft fix it download, and manually fixing it per their directions. I saw you said this tutorial will not work for Windows 7 Home - could you direct me to a tutorial for my OS?
Thanks! Hollie


My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2011   #2
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hello Hollie, and welcome to Seven Forums.

Only OPTION ONE will not work in Home Premium since Home Premium doesn't include the "Local Group Policy Editor" feature.

However, you will be able to use OPTION TWO to hopefully enable the grayed out system icons instead.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2011   #3
holandrand

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Thanks for the quick reply; unfortunatley I forgot to mention that Option 2 was another thing I'd already tried. I did try it again, saving the downloads to the desktop, opening/running them, and restarting my computer. All to no avail. I slightly suspect a virus, except for the fact that my 2 virus scanners have found nothing.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


21 Dec 2011   #4
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hollie,

Could you post a screenshot of this window to see if anything may standout as a cause.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2011   #5
holandrand

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Here you go. When I click "restore default icon behaviors" nothing happens.


Attached Thumbnails
System Icons - Enable or Disable-screenshot.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2011   #6
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hmm, do you have all the drivers for these devices installed?

Do you have a older restore point dated before this started to use?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2011   #7
holandrand

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Yes, I've tried restoring it back to a little over a week before I noticed the problem. I must've had the drivers at one time, but I wouldn't know how to find out if I still have them.

I just found the drivers, and they're all working properly. I updated my wireless card driver and restarted my computer, but nothing has changed :0(
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Dec 2011   #8
Attendant

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 
An extra step I had to take

Hey there. After running the "enable" registry files above for each of the icons I had to run "gpupdate /force" from an elevated command prompt:

1. Click the Start button.

2. Type CMD in the "Search Programs and Files" box at the bottom of the Start menu and press ctl+shift+enter at the same time. Answer "Yes" when it asks.

3. In the black window that opens type "gpupdate /force" and press enter. This will give you:
"User Policy Refresh Complete"
and
"Computer Policy Refresh Complete"

you may or may not have to restart for it to take affect.

Since you've done a System Restore, I recommend re-running the reg files to enable the icons and then perform the actions I have suggested.


Hope this helps,

Mike
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2011   #9
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hello Mike, and welcome to Seven Forums.

That command will only update/refresh group policy for the REG files, restarting the computer or logging off and on at step 14 in the tutorial will update group policy from what the REG files set though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 System Icons - Enable or Disable




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