Blank Taskbar Entry

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  1. Posts : 19
    Windows 10 Home 64 bit
       #1

    Blank Taskbar Entry


    Blank Taskbar Entry-blanktaskbarentry.png

    So, as you can see, near the bottom right, there is a blank taskbar entry. The popup menu does little to clarify (pin to taskbar and close all windows, neither of which does anything as far as I can see). The blank is between the Paint.net icon and the Steam Icon and the popup was what you get with a right-click on that taskbar space.

    Now, I think it somehow had something to do with Avast Safe Browser. I got an Avast update at some point and must not have been careful to say 'don't give me extra crud' and ended up with that installed. I think I then created a shortcut or otherwise got it onto the taskbar (pin to taskbar for the program or the shortcut... not sure which).

    Anyway, I used Avast's Safe Browser Removal Tool and it is not on my system anymore. But I have this sort of zombie taskbar space that no longer shows the Safe Browser Icon (used to above the other two options in the image but I don't have a screen shot, but it did show up there) and yet... I cannot unpin from the taskbar that which believes it is not pinned there....

    I'm not afraid of registry work. I just don't know where Windows 10 stores its Taskbar entries and how to wipe out that dead Taskbar entry.

    Windows 10 Home build 18363

    (I'm going to flatten and reinstall Win 10, I just haven't got everything off this box yet and life seems to keep preventing me from getting to do that... it stuck on an update and I tried the update manually no better... I'm gonna go for a clean sweep once I get all the data off. I thought I had it all, but then I realized there's a bunch of stuff buried in AppData and all the Steam Games stick save games in places other than their install location.... anyway, not ready quite yet to drop this box to rebuild the OS from a fresh install.

    Besides, it bugs me that I don't know how to deal with this blank taskbar entry.

    PS - After doing a bit of net research with somewhat similar issues (people having strange taskbar entry problems), I uninstalled Google Backup and Sync. That didn't do anything for me.
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 35,400
    Win 10 Pro (21H2) (2nd PC is 21H2)
       #2

    Hi, if it's pinned there, try
    Reset and Clear Taskbar Pinned Apps in Windows 10

    (I'm going to flatten and reinstall Win 10, I just haven't got everything off this box yet and life seems to keep preventing me from getting to do that... it stuck on an update and I tried the update manually no better... I'm gonna go for a clean sweep once I get all the data off.
    A good way to ensure that you have all the data on C: available for a new install is to have been using disk imaging- which you are strongly recommended to do routinely time and again here.

    If you have a disk image, you can clean install, start imaging and configuring that, and any time you like, mount the disk image of the old installation and copy off or inspect any file you wish.
      My Computers


  3. Posts : 19
    Windows 10 Home 64 bit
    Thread Starter
       #3

    dalchina said:
    Hi, if it's pinned there, try
    Reset and Clear Taskbar Pinned Apps in Windows 10



    A good way to ensure that you have all the data on C: available for a new install is to have been using disk imaging- which you are strongly recommended to do routinely time and again here.

    If you have a disk image, you can clean install, start imaging and configuring that, and any time you like, mount the disk image of the old installation and copy off or inspect any file you wish.
    My past experience (with having copied full system drives) is that if I reinstall an new OS or if I have to try to view them from another machine, I am not permitted to see many of the directories and when I press the button to 'fix' that, in some cases I end up losing access entirely to that data.

    Thus I have found a preference for copying the data by file or directory to be sure I have them in a place that I have permission to access.

    I generally try entirely to put nothing in 'My Pictures', 'My Documents', etc. so they are not within the encrypted/user-tied parts of the drives. My luck with recoveries from those places or viewing those places from other machines or on a machine where I've changed OS (and users were not migrated... because I don't know if that can be done or how) has been lousy.

    If I had my way, I would love to entirely disable all of those encrypted folders and have AppData and anyplace else software places save files or configuration to be outside of the land of encrypted/user-bound disk space.

    So, although I have had this advice before, my record of troubles with these processes is well over 75%. So I have learned to trust plain old directories/folders with everyone access for storage of what I care about.

    Unfortunately, software tends to install stuff all over the place and that makes moving it to a new machine (even if it is something like Steam that you can install all over, the game files are not part of that and games all do their save games differently) vexing. But for most stuff like documents I create or art assets or programs, having them all in non-crypto/non-user-bound folders is simpler, never gives me issues, and works well.
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 18,112
    Win 10 Home 10.0.19044.1766 (x64) [21H2]
       #4

    I'm not going to read all that text.

    But two things to be aware of... if the icon is black or dark...you might not be able to "see" it.
    So you might want to temporarily turn your task bar to a lighter color.
    And the other is Win 10 Calculator, sometimes... just disappears like that. If so, you can get it at MS Store again.
    Last edited by Ghot; 16 Mar 2021 at 16:39.
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 35,400
    Win 10 Pro (21H2) (2nd PC is 21H2)
       #5

    Mounting an image and copying files isn't the same as simply having a disk from a different machine.
    I generally try entirely to put nothing in 'My Pictures', 'My Documents',
    Fully agree with not using those or even relocating them- I create my own- off C: so as much personal data as possible is not affected by O/S maintenance e..g restoring an image.

    Unfortunately, software tends to install stuff all over the place and that makes moving it to a new machine vexing
    True, however for complex installations, moving accounts and installed programs can be done reasonably effectively with e.g. Laplink PCMover and similar- with source a disk image of the old installation being my preferred option.

    I also posted an idea to help you explore your problem taskbar item.
      My Computers


  6. Posts : 11,582
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 21H2 Build 19044.1776
       #6

    When that blank is displayed, what does Task manager show in the Processes tab, Apps section?

    Denis
      My Computer


  7. Posts : 19
    Windows 10 Home 64 bit
    Thread Starter
       #7

    Ghot said:
    I'm not going to read all that text.

    But two things to be aware of... if the icon is black or dark...you might not be able to "see" it.
    So you might want to temporarily turn your task bar to a lighter color.
    And the other is Win 10 Calculator, sometimes... just disappears like that. If so, you can get it at MS Store again.
    Did that... it literally has no image. It just looks like the taskbar. It's like there is no icon and given the two options when you right click (pin to taskbar and close all windows), there's nothing there to suggest.

    It's not a missing program icon, I think it's whatever was there (likely Avast Safe Browser) is now gone from the machine and the Taskbar somehow still has some sort of space reserved for it.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Try3 said:
    When that blank is displayed, what does Task manager show in the Processes tab, Apps section?

    Denis
    Processes Tab

    Apps(3)

    Firefox (has its own icon and has the line under and shows info when you right click, has the popup image of instances on hover)
    Microsoft Edge (same - shows info when you left click and or hover)
    Task Manager

    After that, off into background processes and later Windows Processes.

    So, as the snapshot I provided initially shows, if I click on the space just past the Paint.Net, I get a popup with only two things:
    Pin To Taskbar
    Close all Windows

    If I move over a bit further right on the seemingly empty taskbar, I see this:

    Blank Taskbar Entry-blanktaskbarnormalpopup.png

    That's what one would normally see in the blank area of the taskbar.

    So the system clearly thinks *something* has a reserved space on the taskbar even though there's no icon image and there may not be any program either. And I can't unpin when my only option is 'pin to taskbar' (which seems to do nothing) or 'close all windows' (which does nothing).

    Somewhere the OS must keep a registry setting for what's in the taskbar. I likely need to find out where that is, find the offending entry, and manually remove it. I just have no idea where that is.
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 18,112
    Win 10 Home 10.0.19044.1766 (x64) [21H2]
       #8

    @kaladorn


    Just had a thought. If it gives you the option to "Pin to Taskbar"... do it. Might get the icon back?
    Even if you don't...the possible new icon will hep you figure out what it is.
      My Computer


  9. Posts : 11,582
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 21H2 Build 19044.1776
       #9

    Ghot said:
    Just had a thought. If it gives you the option to "Pin to Taskbar"... do it. Might get the icon back?
    Even if you don't...the possible new icon will hep you figure out what it is.
    I think that is a very good idea. I wish I had thought of it.

    The OP can then use File explorer to look in
    Code:
    "%UserProfile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\User Pinned\TaskBar"
    in order to examine the new shortcut's properties and post the shortcut's Target field here so people can comment on it.

    Denis
      My Computer


  10. Posts : 18,112
    Win 10 Home 10.0.19044.1766 (x64) [21H2]
       #10

    Or maybe just hover the mouse over the new icon??
      My Computer


 

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