How to hide the taskbar in Windows

Keeping the taskbar at arm's length is easy -- and you can still bring it back

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Just because the Windows taskbar has a lot of handy information on it, doesn’t mean that you want to see it all the time. While it might disappear during gaming sessions, if you’d like to learn how to hide the taskbar in Windows when you’re just using the desktop or tablet mode, you’ve come to the right place.

Although the process differs slightly depending on which version of Windows you’re running, making sure that you don’t have to stare at the taskbar all day is relatively simple. It’s quickly reversible too, so if you find yourself pining after it in the future, finding it is easy and bringing it back for good is no problem either.

Once you’ve learned how to master the taskbar, why not take a look at our guide on how to take a screenshot in Windows?

Auto-hide the Windows taskbar

Windows 10

If you’re one of the majority of Windows users out there, you’re running Windows 10 and most likely its latest release, the Fall Creators Update. To hide the taskbar away until you need it, you need only follow these few short steps.

Step 1: Right-click on the taskbar and select “Taskbar settings” from the resulting menu.

how to hide the taskbar in Windows - Settings

Step 2: On the “Settings” page that appears, choose when you want the taskbar to be automatically hidden. Whether desktop or tablet (or both) click the corresponding button. Triggering them on and off will give you a preview of what it’s like with the taskbar hidden — it should slide out of site at the bottom of the screen.

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Step 3: When happy with the results, simply close the Settings window. The taskbar is now hidden!

If you find yourself needing the taskbar in the future, simply move your mouse to the bottom of the screen and the taskbar will magically reappear. When you’re done, move your mouse away and the taskbar will once again slide out of view.

If eventually, you find yourself missing your old pal taskbar though, bringing it back to the base of your screen all the time is just as easy as auto-hiding it in the first place. Just repeat the steps outlined above, and deactivate the settings button instead of activating it.

Windows 7 or older

If you’re running an older version of Windows, the process for hiding the taskbar is much the same, the menus just aren’t as pretty.

Step 1: Right-click on the taskbar and click “Properties.”

Step 2: On the taskbar menu windows that appears, tick the box that reads “Auto-hide the taskbar.”

The taskbar should now be hidden and you can access it much the same way you would in Windows 10. If you want to reactivate the taskbar, simply repeat the steps above and untick the respective box.

Now that you have your taskbar where you want it, here are some other tips on how to make the most of it. While you’re at it, why not take a few extra steps to speed up your Windows experience?