Working with the taskbar in Windows 8


The taskbar can be found by default at the bottom of your Windows 8 Desktop. From here you can open programs and switch between them by clicking on the taskbar icons. When you minimize a window, it can be reinstated at any time by clicking on the taskbar.

Move the taskbar
You’re not restricted to having the taskbar at the bottom of your screen. You can move it to the top or the left or right of the screen.

Step 1  Click on the taskbar. Holding down the mouse button, drag the taskbar to its new position.

Step 2  Release the mouse button to fix the taskbar in its new location.

Resize the taskbar
Step 1  Hover your mouse cursor over the edge of the taskbar until the pointer becomes a double-headed arrow.

Step 2  Drag the border up and down (or left and right depending on its screen position) to resize the taskbar.


Lock the taskbar
You can lock the taskbar in its current size and position so that other users cannot change it. Right-click an empty section of the taskbar and, from the pop-up menu that appears, click Lock the taskbar. To unlock simply repeat the step and this time choose Unlock the taskbar.


Other taskbar options
You can customise the taskbar further by clicking an empty space on the taskbar and selecting Properties from the pop-up menu. Here you can choose any of the following customisation options:


  • Lock the taskbar – this checkbox toggles the lock on or off.
  • Auto hide the taskbar – Tick this to completely minimize the taskbar and fully show the Desktop. Move your mouse cursor to the bottom of the screen (or other taskbar location) to see the taskbar slide back into view. When you move the mouse cursor away, it will shrink back out of sight.
  • Use small taskbar icons – this shrinks the taskbar icons so you can fit more in a single row.
  • Taskbar location on screen – rather than dragging the taskbar, you can use this drop-down menu to position the taskbar where you want on screen.
  • Taskbar buttons – this tells Windows how and when to combine taskbar icons. The default option Always combine, hide labels sees similar taskbar buttons combined into just one – for example three open Word windows will be shown by just one button. This helps to keep the taskbar tidy. Alternatively, click Combine when Taskbar is full or to always keep things separate click Never combine.
  • Notification area – click Customise to tell Windows what to show in this area.
  • Use Peek to preview the desktop – lets you see a sneak peek of the desktop when cluttered with windows.

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