How to disable flashing app icon notifications on the Windows 8.1 taskbar

Here's a nifty trick you can use to disable the flashing app icon notification on the Windows taskbar.

Taskbar flashing icon on Windows 8.1

The Windows notifications alerts are always good, they let you know when something requires your attention when you’re about to install new software or trying to run a script that requires administrator rights. However, one thing that has always bugged me is the orange flashing app icon on the taskbar on Windows 10.

For example, when using VMware and one of the virtual machines goes into a suspend state, the VMware icon in the taskbar starts flashing like crazy, and it’s not until I go to the application that the icon will stop flashing.

Now I decided I don’t need to be notified by flashing icons when something requires my attention on the taskbar, but Windows doesn’t have the option to disable the feature. Unless you use a third-party application to tweak the operating system, you’ll have to change the registry.

Disable flashing apps in the Taskbar on Windows 8.1

To disable flashing apps in the Taskbar on Windows 8.1, use these steps:

  1. Open the Start menu, do a search for regedit, and run it as an administrator.

  2. Browse the following path:

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop
  3. Find and double-click the ForegroundFlashCount entry and change the Value data field to 0.

    Regedit ForegroundFlashCount setting in Windows 8.1

  4. Make sure ForegroundLockTimeout has also a value of 0.

The ForegroundFlashCount specifies the times the taskbar icon flashes to notify the user that an activated system background window is in the background.

Important: Modifying the Windows Registry can cause serious problems to your system. It’s assumed that you know what you’re doing and have created a backup before doing anything. You’ve been warned.

That’s all there is to it. Now simply restart Windows, and you should no longer see any flashing icon in the taskbar on Windows 10. However, the instructions also apply to Windows 8.1 or Windows 7.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].