By Delia / Last update March 1, 2022

Taskbar has always been an important element in Windows operating system. It provides users with some convenient functions such as Start menu, fixed applications, etc. It also displays important information such as date and time, battery percentage, etc. Without the taskbar, it will undoubtedly bring a lot of inconvenience to the users who are used to using it. So, if the taskbar in Windows 10/11 has disappeared, how to retrieve it?

windows 11

Why the taskbar disappears

First of all, the taskbar disappears in Windows may be due to the following reasons:

  • The taskbar is configured to automatically hide when it is idle.
  • Explorer.exe process is not running the way it should.
  • The screen resolution is not configured correctly and the taskbar disappears from the screen display.
  • Multiple connected monitors are preventing the taskbar.
  • A malfunctioning service causes the taskbar to disappear.
  • Corrupt system files are blocking the taskbar.

Solution 1: Unhide the taskbar

Windows 11 and Windows 10 provide users with the option to hide the taskbar when it is not in use. If it is activated and only temporarily hides the taskbar, it can be unhidden by following these steps.

1. Use the Windows + I shortcut to open Windows Settings.

2. Navigate to Personalization > Taskbar.

3. Click Taskbar behavior to expand the menu.

4. Uncheck the box next to "Automatically hide the taskbar".

auto hide taskbar4

Solution 2: Restart File Explorer

The explorer.exe process is responsible for displaying most of the important user interfaces in Windows, including the taskbar. If explorer.exe process is not running properly, it may disappear.

So, to fix this issue, try restarting explorer.exe process and check if it solves the problem.

Solution 3: Adjust the screen resolution

The ideal screen resolution depends on the size of the monitor you are using. The current screen resolution may be larger than the display device, causing the taskbar to leave the screen and look lost.

Try changing the display resolution and see if it gets back the taskbar.

set display resolution

Solution 4: Change Windows screen casting settings

If multiple monitors are connected to the computer, this may cause the taskbar to disappear on one or all monitors. Windows allows control over the way different monitors display content by selecting from the following options.

  • PC screen only
  • Duplicate
  • Extend
  • Second screen only

pc screen only

Try changing these settings and selecting the "PC screen only" option. This can be selected using the Windows + P shortcut and will open a projection pop-up window in the bottom right corner of the screen.

Once selected, see if it gets the taskbar back. If the taskbar is still missing, proceed to solve the problem using the following method.

Solution 5: Remove the faulty Windows registry

In a known Windows Update error in KB5006050, users report that their taskbar is completely missing, as is the Start menu.

This happened due to a Windows registry error, and the solution is as simple as deleting it.

1. Run Command Prompt as administrator.

2. Paste the following command and press Enter.

reg delete HKCU\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\IrisService/f&&shutdown-r-t

Now, the computer will be restarted and the wrong registry elements will be deleted at the same time. After the computer restarts, check if the taskbar reappears.

Solution 6: Repair system files

If the taskbar cannot be restored using the above method, the relevant system files may have been corrupted. Thankfully, Windows comes with a built-in tool for repairing the operating system.

Open Command Prompt as administrator, and then execute the following command to run System File Checker (SFC), which can scan and repair your operating system:

sfc /scannow

If you are unable to restore the taskbar of Windows 11 or 10 after trying all the above methods, then it cannot be ruled out that it is caused by a more serious system problem. In this case, you can try to update Windows to the latest version or reinstall the system as a last resort.