My icons are lined up nice & purty. To bad I can't click them.
January 19, 2009 3:04 PM   Subscribe

Windows fliter: My taskbar is locked. And not in the always-on-top kinda way. It's more like the taskbar is just decorative and not something that's supposed to be click-able.

I can alt-tab my way through my open programs, but if I want to open something new, I can't (the start key will not unlock the taskbar so I can't get to my program menus and such). My desktop icons work just fine, all of my other keyboard shortcuts work fine too. I'm running XP Pro. I regularly check for adware and spyware, and my system is supposedly clean. This has happened before, and it's generally when I've got too many programs open and my sad little machine can't take it. I click a taskbar icon to open one more, and that's it. The newest program doesn't open, and the taskbar freezes. I can restart the system to fix it, but I was wondering if anyone knew of a fix that won't require restart. Is there a taskbar process that I can stop? I've heard that fire will rain down on me and my computer for all eternity if I stop a process, but is it really that bad?

Thank you for any help/ideas you have. I like to pretend I knhow what I'm doing, but really I'm just a typing monkey.
posted by dogmom to Computers & Internet (7 answers total)
Best answer: Ctl-Alt-Del and kill all instances of explorer.exe, then in that same window go to File -> Run Program (might be slightly off, this if from memory), type explorer.exe and execute.
posted by bizwank at 3:15 PM on January 19, 2009

Best answer: This may work:

1. Ctrl-Shift-Escape to bring up task manager
2. Go to processes tab
3. Find the Explorer process, select it, and hit the "end process" button
4. Go to File >> New Task (Run) and enter, "explorer.exe" and hit "OK
posted by clarahamster at 3:16 PM on January 19, 2009

Argh! Beaten by mere seconds!
posted by clarahamster at 3:16 PM on January 19, 2009

Response by poster: Holy-frakin-God. You guys are awesome and oh-so fast.
(can you hear the Hallelujah Chorus?)
posted by dogmom at 3:29 PM on January 19, 2009

Response by poster: and please forgive my misspelling of "too".
posted by dogmom at 3:32 PM on January 19, 2009

Are you sure the taskbar is frozen? Does anybody else have access to your computer? Maybe someone is pulling the old "take a screenshot of your desktop, set it as the background, then hide your start menu" trick.

Something like this.
posted by wondercow at 3:41 PM on January 19, 2009

wondercow, if that were the case their desktop icons would not be working.
posted by bizwank at 3:59 PM on January 19, 2009

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