How to Show or Hide Icons in the Windows 10 System Tray

Missing a System Tray icon, or need to hide one? Let’s do it!

What to Know

  • Click and drag any System Tray icon from the expanded area to the default area if you want to see it at all times.
  • Click and drag any icon from the System Tray to the expanded tray if you don’t want to see it.
  • Navigate to Settings > Personalization > Taskbar > Turn system icons on and off to show or hide individual icons.

How to Show Hidden Icons in the Windows 10 System Tray

The Windows 10 System Tray consists of two parts: a section of icons that are always visible and a section of icons that you only see when you click the expanded system tray button. If an icon is hidden in the expanded System Tray, all you have to do to show it is drag it from the expanded tray to the standard tray.

Here’s how to show hidden icons in the Windows 10 System Tray:

  1. Click the ^ icon that’s located to the left of the System Tray icons to open the expanded tray.

    The ^ icon highlighted in the System Tray.
  2. Click and hold an icon from the expanded System Tray.

    Clicking and holding a System Tray icon.
  3. Drag the icon into the standard System Tray.

    Dragging a System Tray icon from the expanded tray.
  4. Release the left mouse button.

    A newly added System Tray icon.

    If you don’t like the positioning of the icon, you can click and drag it left or right to position it where you want it in the tray.

How to Hide Icons in the Windows 10 System Tray

The easiest way to hide an icon that you don’t want to see in the System Tray is to reverse the previous section's process.

  1. Click and hold an icon in the System Tray.

    Clicking and dragging the power icon in the System Tray.
  2. Drag the icon to the ^ icon.

    Dragging the power icon to the System Tray expansion icon.
  3. Position the icon where you want it in the expanded System Tray.

    Dragging a System Tray icon to the expanded tray.
  4. Release the left mouse button.

    The power icon removed from the System Tray to the expanded tray.

How to Show and Hide Windows 10 System Tray Icons

Windows 10 also provides you with a menu to quickly hide or show your System Tray icons. This menu applies to system icons, like the volume and power icons, in addition to icons that represent your apps. If your battery icon is missing, for example, this method allows you to get it back quickly.

This process does not disable System Tray icons. Icons are either set to On and appear in the main System Tray area or set to Off and appear in the expanded System Tray. If you want to remove icons altogether, skip to the next section.

Here’s how to choose which icons appear on your Windows 10 taskbar:

  1. Open the Settings app.

    Opening the Settings app in Windows 10.
  2. Click Personalization.

    Personalization highlighted in the Windows 10 Settings app.
  3. Click Taskbar.

    Taskbar highlighted in the Windows 10 personalization menu.
  4. Click Select which icons appear on the taskbar.

    Select which icons appear on the taskbar highlighted in the Windows 10 taskbar menu.
  5. Click toggles to On for icons you want to show, and Off for icons you want to hide.

    Turning on and off System Tray icons.

    If you turn on the Always show all icons in the notification area toggle, you won’t have a hidden System Tray area anymore. Every icon will be visible in the System Tray at all times.

How to Remove System Tray Icons

If you want to prevent a System Tray icon from appearing at all in either the main tray or expanded tray, you can do that as well. However, this option is limited to system icons like the volume and battery. Icons that represent your apps can’t be turned off in this manner, although some individual apps do provide you with an option to prevent the app from appearing in the System Tray. 

Here’s how to turn Windows 10 System Tray icons on and off:

  1. Open the Settings app.

    Opening the Settings app in Windows 10.
  2. Click Personalization.

    Personalization highlighted in the Windows 10 Settings app.
  3. Click Taskbar.

    Taskbar highlighted in the Windows 10 personalization menu.
  4. Click Turn System Tray icons on or off.

    Turn system icons on and off highlighted in the Windows 10 taskbar settings.
  5. Click toggle switches to On if you want the icon to appear in your System Tray or Off to prevent the icon from appearing.

    Turning Windows 10 system icons on and off.
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