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Windows XP Taskbar - Toolbar - Start Menu
Help and Tips

Help customizing the Windows XP taskbar, Start Menu, and toolbars to increase your productivity. Modify the Quick Launch area for quicker access to frequently-used applications, remove the clock, access Windows XP's Control Panel, and more.


#1: Move the Taskbar
Has your Windows XP Taskbar jumped to the top or side of your screen? This tip shows how to bring it back to the bottom.

#2: Move an Off-Screen Window or Application
Use these quick tips to try displaying a hidden or off-screen Windows XP application or window.

#3: Create a Toolbar to Access Drives and CDs
Add a tool bar on the desktop of your Windows XP machine to gain quick access to CDs and removable drives.

#4: View Large Quick Launch Icons
Make the Windows XP Quick Launch icons in the Task Bar easier to see.

#5: Open the Folder Containing Quick Launch Shortcuts
Modify Windows XP's Quick Launch area easily through its folder via Explorer.

#6: Display a Disabled Taskbar Clock
If the Windows XP Taskbar clock has disappeared and is disabled, the following Registry edit may redisplay the clock.

#7: Restore the Show Desktop Icon in the Quick Launch Area
If you have accidentally removed the Show Desktop shortcut in the Windows XP Taskbar, this can bring it back.

#8: Create a Quick Launch One-Click Run Shortcut
Provide one-click access to running software from the Windows XP Quick Launch Toolbar.

#9: Access Control Panel from Start Menu as Submenu
Access the Control Panel as a submenu from the Windows XP Start Menu.

#10: Access the Start Menu During Full-Screen Setups
Access the seemingly inaccessible Start Menu when installing software in Windows XP.

#11: Remove the Taskbar Balloon Help
Prevent the Windows XP Taskbar balloon help from notifying you of events or errors.

#12: Disable Internet Time Server Synchronization
For privacy, prevent Windows XP from synchronizing the system time with an Internet time server.

#13: Display or Hide a Link to My Computer, or Display a Submenu
Configure how a link to My Computer will appear on the Windows XP Start Menu.

#14: Change How My Documents Are Displayed on the Start Menu
Change how My Documents are displayed on the Windows XP Start Menu, or remove the link altogether.

#15: Changing Which Inactive Icons to Hide or Display
Force Windows XP to always show or hide icons in the Taskbar notification area that it deems are inactive.

#16: Change the Size of your Start Menu Icons
Shrink the size of your Windows XP Start Menu to display more programs.

#17: Stop Hiding Inactive Notification Area Icons
Keep notification area icons on the Windows XP taskbar from disappearing for no reason.

#18: Change or Remove the Internet Program Listed on the Start Menu
Remove or change the Windows XP Start Menu shortcut to access the Internet.

#19: Show or Hide My Music on the Start Menu
Toggle showing the 'My Music' icon on the Windows XP Start Menu. If you do show the icon, toggle whether or not 'My Music' appears as a Start Menu submenu.

#20: Remove the "Run" Command from the Start Menu.
Help prevent computer neophytes from running random software by removing the "Run" command from the Windows XP Start menu.

#21: Remove the 'Help and Support' Link from the Start Menu
If you are an advanced Windows XP user, you may want to clean up your Start Menu by deleting a help shortcut.

#22: Display Programs Menu in Alphabetical Order
Sort the Windows XP Programs menu by name.

#23: Removing the OEM Link from the Start Menu
Remove the seemingly-locked Windows XP Start Menu icon to your computer manufacturer.

#24: Stop Highlighting New Programs
Keep Windows XP from featuring newly installed programs on the Start Menu.

#25: Remove Manufacturer Link from the Start Menu
Clear your computer manufacturer's icon from the Windows XP Start Menu.

#26: Remove "Connect To" from Start Menu
Remove "Connect To" from the Windows XP Start Menu if you connect to the Internet via a LSN, cable, DSL, or other means.

#27: Remove Quick Launch Icon
Delete shortcuts on the Windows XP Taskbar to software programs you rarely access.

#28: Display the Start Menu as One Long Menu or Multiple Columns
Do you want all of your Programs listed simultaneously on the Windows XP Start Menu, or do you find such a display overwhelming?

#29: Opening the Control Panel from the Run Command
Need to configure your Windows XP computer but can't access the Control Panel? Try this tip.

#30: Quickly Close an Application from the Taskbar
Close applications hidden by other windows by running a Close command on the Windows XP taskbar.

#31: Toggle Grouping Taskbar Buttons
Toggle Windows XP's group of related software on the Taskbar.

#32: Do Not Show Recently Opened Documents
Increase your privacy by hiding previously accessed documents from the Windows XP Start Menu.

#33: Stop Opening Start Menu Submenus Automatically
Prevent submenus in the Windows XP Start menu from popping open unexpectedly whenever you hover your mouse pointer on them.

#34: Remove the Quick Launch Area
Disable Quick Launch icons from taking up space on your Windows XP taskbar.

#35: Remove 'My Network Places' from the Start Menu
Clean up your Windows XP Start Menu if you rarely, if ever, use 'My Network Places'.

#36: Windows Taskbar Disappears Sometimes When Programs Are Maximized
Two tips to follow if Windows XP's Taskbar disappears whenever software is maximized to full-screen.

#37: Show Your Favorite Websites on the Start Menu
Quickly access Internet Explorer Favorites directly from your Windows XP Start Menu.

#38: Programs Don't Show Up On Taskbar
Do software packages not show up on your Windows XP taskbar when minimized? Here is a link to a possible fix.

#39: Toggle the Taskbar on Top of Other Windows
Is your Windows XP Taskbar getting overshadowed by other windows? Or, conversely, do you want to add more available screen real-estate to your software?

#40: Change or Remove the E-mail Link on the Start Menu
Modify the E-mail link on the Windows XP Start Menu or remove it altogether if desired.

#41: Stop Accidentally Moving Programs in the Start Menu
Stop dragging and dropping programs into incorrect Start Menu folders.

#42: Show or Hide Administrative Tools on the Start Menu
Toggle showing the Administrative Tools on the Windows XP Start Menu. If you do show the tools, toggle whether or not they appear as a Start Menu submenu.

#43: Keep the Taskbar Hidden Until Needed
Auto-hide your Windows XP Taskbar until you need it.

#44: Create a Toolbar to Access the Control Panel
Add a Windows XP dockable toolbar providing instant access to Control Panel options.

#45: Remove Printers and Faxes Option from the Start Menu
If you don't frequently use or change fax machines or printers, clean up your Windows XP Start Menu.

#46: Add or Remove Frequently Used Software Shortcuts on the Start Menu
Customize your Windows XP Start menu - let it show more (or fewer) frequently-used software shortcuts.

#47: Remove the Taskbar Clock
Disable the clock on the Windows XP Taskbar.

#48: Lock or Unlock the Taskbar
Enable or disable Windows XP Taskbar modifications.

See Also:

Windows XP and Explorer

Windows XP tips on file management, folder customizations, Explorer toolbars, and more

Windows XP and the Display - Desktop

Windows XP tips for modifying the display and desktop properties, including changing wallpaper, icons, and font size.

Windows XP and Tweak UI

Modify and customize your Windows XP computing experience with Tweak UI.

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The MalekTips website was created in 1998 by Andrew Malek of Envision Programming. The page's goal is to freely disperse computer-related tips, hints, and informative articles. Tips are organized to be easy to find, and are presented clearly, in easy-to-understand language. MalekTips also provides information and links to public-domain, open source, freeware, shareware, and commercial software available for download.