Taskbar Personalization

How to add or remove icons from taskbar notification area on Windows 10

Do you want to show less icons in the notification area or some system icons are missing? Use these steps to customize which icons appear should appear in the taskbar.

Customize which icons appear on the Windows 10 taskbar

On Windows 10, the notification area (system tray) is that space in the bottom-left corner of the taskbar, and it includes a number of icons to access different features and options.

In the system tray, you’ll find mostly Windows 10 system icons, including for Action center, date and time, sound, network, and OneDrive, but some apps can also add icons to access their different features.

However, if the notification area is getting too crowded, Windows 10 includes a few settings to specify which icons should appear in the taskbar.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to customize which icons appear in the taskbar notification area.

How to show or hide which icons appear in the taskbar

To hide the icons (OneDrive, Network, Volume, Windows Defender, Power, etc.) appear in the taskbar notification area, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 10.

  2. Click on Personalization.

  3. Click on Taskbar.

  4. Under the “Notification area” section, click the Select which icons appear on the taskbar link.

    Windows 10 notification area settings
    Windows 10 notification area settings
  5. Turn off the toggle switch for the icons that you don’t want to see in the notification area.

    Show or hide icons in notification area
    Show or hide icons in notification area

Once you complete the steps, you will have a cleaner and more optimized notification area showing only the icons you want to see. The only caveat is that you’re not removing the icons from the taskbar, they’ll continue to be available to you when clicking the up-arrow button. If you want to make all icons always visible, then turn on the Always shows all icons in the notification area toggle switch.

How to add or remove system icons on the taskbar

To add or remove system icons from the taskbar notification area, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on Personalization.

  3. Click on Taskbar.

  4. Under the “Notification area” section, click the Turn system icons on or off link.

    Windows 10 notification area settings
    Windows 10 notification area settings
  5. Use the toggle switches to turn on or off for the system icons you want to see in the notification area. For example, Clock, Volume, Network, Power, Input Indicator, Location, Action Center, Touch, Windows Ink Workspace, and Microphone.

    Add or remove icons from notification area on Windows 10
    Add or remove icons from notification area on Windows 10

After you complete the steps, you will no longer see the system icons you turned off in the Settings app.

If you want to remove an app icon from the system tray, this is something that you can’t do within the Windows 10 settings. However, you can look into the app settings to turn off the icon from the taskbar. Usually, you right-click the icon on the notification area and select the corresponding option.

While there are many reasons to customize the taskbar notification area, you’ll find this particularly useful if you’re, for example, looking to disable the Action center notifications. As you can simply right-click the Action center icon, select Turn on quiet hours, and then use the above steps to turn off the Action center icon from the taskbar.

Update October 18, 2019: This guide was originally published in June 2017, and it’s been revised for the latest version of Windows 10.