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Windows 7: "Windows Explorer" listing in Notification Area

22 Oct 2010   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit
"Windows Explorer" listing in Notification Area

I just restarted my computer and the restart was very slow, yet the weird part was when the desktop came up I saw a yellow padlock in the notification area. It has never been there before. I scrolled over it to get a description and nothing comes up. If I click on it it disappears. When I go to the Notification Area Icons to see if I find it there I did see it. It is next to a "Windows Explorer" listing. I don't recall ever seeing that before, and I can't seem to find any information anywhere. If I change it to "Show icon and notifications" it still doesn't show up anymore in taskbar.

I have heard nothing of this, but my computer seems to have had a major issue with many areas right now, but I believe it is centered around this. Maybe malware of some sort.

I was just wondering if anyone had any idea about this "icon" or not?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Oct 2010   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


Hello Spaumi and welcome to the Forum. I'd suggest opening 7 in Safe Mode and running a full scan for viruses and spyware.

Safe Mode

A lot of folks on the Forum recommend the free MSE or Avast. If you decide to use either of these it's recommended you uninstall any other software so there won't be any conflicts. (MSE and Avast can run together without conflict.) A secondary on-demand scanner is Malwarebytes free.

Once you've run all the scans try using System Restore to roll back your machine to just prior to when the problems started. If System Restore works I'd run all the scans one more time just to be sure.

System Restore

As to the lock icon you're seeing, I'm really not sure what that might be.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Oct 2010   #3
Orbital Shark


There can be several instances of Windows Explorer in the notification area. 3 such notifications are for 'Sticky Keys', 'Safely remove hardware' and 'Unrecognised USB devices'

"Windows Explorer" listing in Notification Area-sticky-keys.png
"Windows Explorer" listing in Notification Area-safely-eject.png
"Windows Explorer" listing in Notification Area-unrecognised.png

It could be that the icon cache needs rebuilding... Icon Cache - Rebuild

Hope it helps :)


My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Oct 2010   #4

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86

You can also try cleaning out and resetting the notification area.

Notification Area Icons - Reset
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Oct 2010   #5
Orbital Shark


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Bill2 View Post
You can also try cleaning out and resetting the notification area.

Notification Area Icons - Reset
that's the 1 I was looking for

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 "Windows Explorer" listing in Notification Area

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