Disappearing XP Taskbar

By bliim ·
I have a Pentium IV running Windows XP Home which has worked well for many months but recently suffered from worm/spyware attack. I have run numerous scans as per CastleCopsWiki and believe that I have removed the problem - no recurrence of pop ups or slow down for several weeks now.
However when the computer is left idle for a period the taskbar at the bottom of the desktop disappears. I have to do a Ctrl-Alt-Del, log off and log back on to get it back. Does anyone have any idea why this might be happening and how it might be fixed?

Steve Bliim

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Some help

by TechExec2 In reply to Disappearing XP Taskbar

The Taskbar is probably disappearing because the process is crashing. There is some defect, probably a remnant of your worm/spyware attack.


After the Taskbar process crashes, you should be able to get it back via these steps:

2. File -> New Task (Run)
3. Enter explorer.exe
4. Click OK


If I were you, I would cut my losses and install Windows XP anew. You might put a lot of effort into trying to fix the problem and never completely succeed.

Before you do a complete new install, you might try an "in-place upgrade/reinstallation (1). Note the caveats in this KB article.

Also, this KB article (2) is similar to your problem (but differs in significant ways). Still, you might try to create a new account and see if the problem goes away or not.

Reminder: Before you reinstall or repair, be sure to make a complete backup of all of your data.


(1) How to perform an in-place upgrade (reinstallation) of Windows XP;en-us;315341

(2) Taskbar Is Missing When You Log On to Windows

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by bliim In reply to Some help

I suspect that you are right. A reinstall will probably solve a few other niggles as well.


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Have you checked the Taskbar settings?

by deepsand In reply to Disappearing XP Taskbar

Go to Start/Settings/Taskbar and Menu.

Is "Auto-hide the Taskbar" UN-checked?

Is "Lock the Taskbar" checked?

If not, reset one or both, and see if that fixes the problem.

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