Weekly Computer Tip # 322
21 November 2010

How to display all icons in the taskbar notificationa area
(Windows XP)

Back in September I told you how to resize the taskbar so that it will display today's day as well as the date. (See tip_320.php if you missed it.)

Lots of you seemed to like that tip, apart from the fact that the height of the taskbar gets a bit too deep. Mind you, you probably got used to it by now? If not, why not fill it with the icons in the "notification area" to the left of the date? By default, Windows hides icons that you haven't clicked recently, which means that every time you want to, say, safely remove your USB stick you have to do an extra click. OK, Microsoft thinks it helps to keep the area uncluttered, but I like it to display all icons.

Here's how:

  1. Right-click an empty area on the taskbar and then click "Properties"
  2. Untick "Hide inactive icons".
  3. Click OK.

By the way, I will soon make the step to Windows 7, offering training as from next year, so bear with me if you have already upgraded.