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  1. #1
    Member Priam's Avatar
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    Default Windows 7 Task Switching

    Greetings all!

    So I've been enjoying my new laptop since my last post here, but something about Windows 7 really (verb)s my (noun). Is there a way to close the programs that run in my taskbar--Skype, AIM, etc--such that they don't appear in my alt-tab listing? Close Program doesn't work for these, and I rather suspect it's something the program has control over rather than anything I might ever get to dictate, but if there's a way I can get these to hide in the Tray and not clutter up my taskbar I'd like to find it out. Do you know of such a function? Or perhaps some sort of tweak that allows it?
    "It's everywhere, in the headlines in the newspapers, in the blurry images on television. It is a secret you have yet to grasp, but the first syllable has been spoken in a dream you cannot quite recall." ---Unknown Armies

  2. #2
    Member abseh1's Avatar
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    1. Click the Windows Start button, then click Run.
    2. Type MSCONFIG, then click OK. The System Configuration Utility window opens.
    3. Click the Startup tab.

    When you see the list of programs that automatically launch when Windows starts, look at the check boxes next to each program: a check in the box means to start the program, and an empty box means you do NOT want the program to start with Windows. You can experiment with unchecking some boxes and restarting your computer until you pinpoint the problem.

    Note: Use caution if you do not know what a start up item is leave it...especially anything that is associated with your anti virus program
    If you have a question just ask
    BTW: What anti virus program do you use?
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  3. #3
    Member abseh1's Avatar
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    If you are unfamiliar with the listed processes, follow these rules:

    - Do not end EXPLORER.EXE, or anything with SYSTEM, SYSTRAY, or SERVICE in its user name.
    - If you are unsure what a process does, do not end it.

    If you end a required process by mistake, restart your computer, and the system should re-enable it.

    After unchecking items you do not want to restart in Windows
    You will see a notice upon booting up " the next restart will bring up this message saying that you have modified it"
    Just check the box ...do not show and it will not appear again @ boot
    ====================================================
    There are software programs too
    CCleaner has an option to control startup programs
    (do not use the reg cleaner in CCleaner)
    Last edited by abseh1; 10-23-2012 at 02:28 PM.
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  4. #4
    Member Priam's Avatar
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    Default

    Well, it's not that I want the programs to not-run. I just want them to chill out in the System Tray until I specifically ask them. I like being online on various messaging services in a relatively permanent sort of sense, but I miss my WinXP system where I could close the window, still be signed on to those services, and still just alt-tab between the two or three things I had actively open. Now, if I "close window" on AIM, it sits, full size, in my taskbar, and registers as alt-tabbable. I'd rather have to click on its Tray icon to get back to it, for the sake of simplicity in switching between stuff I'm more actively using.

    Steam, interestingly, does what I want. AIM and Skype do not. That's the part that makes me think it might be beyond my ordinary control, but I'd like either verification of this suspicion or information on a way to make my desired outcome realized.
    "It's everywhere, in the headlines in the newspapers, in the blurry images on television. It is a secret you have yet to grasp, but the first syllable has been spoken in a dream you cannot quite recall." ---Unknown Armies

  5. #5
    Member abseh1's Avatar
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    Take a look @ this video
    Pin a program to the taskbar

    You can pin programs to the task bar then close them when done....then just single click the Icon to reopen Skype etc

    Maybe more what you need?

    The big advantage ....the programs are easily accessible but not constantly running as the are by the clock on the right side
    (less resources being used ...faster computing)

    A desk top example below
    Click image to enlarge

    Attached Images
    Last edited by abseh1; 10-23-2012 at 05:14 PM.
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  6. #6
    Member Priam's Avatar
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    Default

    I'm guessing you don't normally run Skype or AIM.

    Here's what I have:


    Notice that Skype and AIM are still running in the tray (green circular and orange box icon, respectively), but even having "closed" their programs, they sit, big-box-like, on the left side. Can't get rid of 'em without signing off the services and completely stopping their processes.



    Here's what I want (visualized thanks to basic image manipulation):


    The tray icons still on the right side, so I can click them at my leisure. They don't have to simultaneously ALSO appear on the left side, because they already exist on the right. And because they're not on the left, in the non-tray part of the taskbar, they don't take up entry space in the alt-tab listing. This was possible and easy in Windows XP! I'd say maybe I have to downgrade to an earlier AIM, but even on my old XP box right now, Skype continues to work the way I wish it would on my Win7 machine. And it's maddening that Steam (the black box between the Skype and AIM icons in the tray) DOES work this way, but nothing else seems to want to!

    Does a solution exist?
    "It's everywhere, in the headlines in the newspapers, in the blurry images on television. It is a secret you have yet to grasp, but the first syllable has been spoken in a dream you cannot quite recall." ---Unknown Armies

  7. #7
    Member abseh1's Avatar
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    My best...maybe another member....I do not leave them there like that...I close them and single click the task bar to open as needed
    Leaving them there is simply minimizing them....they are running and using resources....good luck

    You are right ...I maybe missing your point
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  8. #8
    Member Digerati's Avatar
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    Default

    This is (or should be) a setting somewhere for those programs. You need to go into the options for each program and select "Minimize to System Tray" and/or (if present) deselect "Minimize to Taskbar". There may also, or in place of be an option that says, "Close to System Tray" so when you click the red X, it does not exit the application but minimizes to the tray.

    Those Skype and AIM icons on your Taskbar are telling me you have a Skype and an AIM session open, and just minimized. When "closed to the tray" the application is just sitting there, listening. In many cases, the system tray icon is actually run by a different little applet for the main program.
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
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  10. #9
    Member Priam's Avatar
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    I don't know why I didn't think to look for an option like that in Skype. The most recent version of AIM seems to have the design philosophy "give the user as few options as possible," and has no such option, but Skype is now operating as preferred. Probably gonna have to hit up oldversion.com for a more ancient AIM, though. Maybe hit some Trillian or something.

    Thanks for the advice!
    "It's everywhere, in the headlines in the newspapers, in the blurry images on television. It is a secret you have yet to grasp, but the first syllable has been spoken in a dream you cannot quite recall." ---Unknown Armies

  11. #10
    Member Digerati's Avatar
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    Default

    Yeah, it has been awhile but I remember dumping AIM for Trillian - though not for that reason.
    I don't know why I didn't think to look for an option like that in Skype.
    Well, it is almost human nature to overlook the obvious.
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
    Freedom is NOT Free!
    Heat is the bane of all electronics!
    MS MVP, 2007 - 2018
    ─────────────────────