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open windows are not appearing in the minimize bar

Posted on 2006-10-25
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Last Modified: 2013-12-28
Question:

I have a client using windows 98.  He opens multiple programs but none of them are appearing in the minimize bar at the bottom of the screen.  I can use the Task Switcher (Alt - Tab) to move between the programs but I would rather have the open windows appear in the minimize bar.  Any way to correct his?

Thanks Guys.
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Question by:mcgowray
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BillDL earned 50 total points
ID: 17807230
Does the "Quick Launch Toolbar" show in its own space with its drag handle to the right of the Start button?
Does the System Tray show OK at the right side of the Taskbar?

It would have been made easy to repair the taskbar if TweakUI had such an option as it has for other things, or if it had been Windows XP (http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/taskbarplus!.htm), but I'm not aware of any quick fix utilities for the Windows 98 Taskbar.

I had a similar situation with one computer where, if the Quick Launch Toolbar was enabled, the icons for active windows didn't appear in the Taskbar, and vice versa.

I believe that the method I used to fix this was as follows:

1. Make sure Windows Explorer is not open and kill all unnecessary running programs
2. Start Menu > RUN option > and type in REGEDIT > Click OK
3. In the LEFT pane of the Regedit window locate the key:
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer]
4. Delete the sub-key named "StuckRects"
5. Close Regedit and restart the computer.

The "StuckRects" key contains a BinaryValue named "Settings" which stores details of windows placements and a lot more.  The user may have to reconfigure a few display settings, but this should restore the Taskbar to its default state.
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by:mcgowray
ID: 17807464
I'll give that a try, Thanks,
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by:BillDL
ID: 17807892
Maybe you were a bit hasty in accepting my suggestion as the answer ;-)

Hopefully it will work, but be aware of the repeated use of the expression "Taskbar" by program options when they should more accurately be referring to it as the "System Tray".  If you were to go searching in Regedit for "TaskBar", you would find frequent instances that are actually controlling visibility of icons in the SystemTray and not the TaskBar.  Just so that you are aware of this.

I'm not sure which of the Windows files loads the taskbar, but I will find out.  It is most likely to be one of the Internet Explorer files that is integrated with the Windows 98 "shell", and it could be corrupt.  Doing a dirty reinstall of Windows can obviously have adverse effects on the Internet Explorer file versions if IE has been upgraded to version 6.0 or 6 SP1, as can running the System File Checker (SFC) to restore missing, damaged, or changed system files.

Perhaps reinstalling Windows on top of itself AND THEN reinstalling Internet Explorer may fix the issue if the suggestion in my previous comment does not work.

I will try and ascertain which file contains the resources to display the TaskBar just in case other suggestions fail, and we can then look at some other registry settings and dependent files if the need arises.

Bill
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Author Comment

by:mcgowray
ID: 17808069
Thanks.  i will look into it as well.  I dont deal with WIn98 that often so I'm a little rusty with it.  Thanks for the info.

Ray
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