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Wednesday 8 February 2012

Change the Width of Taskbar Buttons in 7

With this taskbar, the default may be rather large with a lot of shortcuts you may have added eitherr with programs or edits. You can change this in Win 7 with a quick registry hack. As always, BACKUP your registry before making any changes, actually a good idea to back it up regularly anyhow. You can also do that through the System Restore feature, but that is for another post. You can set up to always combine Taskbar buttons from the same program and never display their labels. If, however, you've changed the setting to either not combine the windows at all or to only combine them when the Taskbar is full, you can change the icons' width to hide the labels there, too. Here's how.

1. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics
2. Scroll to find the "MinWidth" entry. If it's not there, you'll have to create it yourself. Right-
click in the right pane, select New, then Select "String Value," and name the object MinWidth. (Type exactly MinWidth without the quotes.)
3. Double-click MinWidth to open it.
4. Change the number in the "Value Data" field the width you want to allot to the icons. With the default small buttons, 38 is sufficient; with the larger icons, you'll want about 52. The higher the resolution of your monitor, the lower the number you can use.)
5. Click OK. Reboot.

Now the taskbar display is much tighter. I should also mention, that the more icons you display, either on the taskbar, or the desktop, use memory. Seldom used icons should be moved to a single folder, out of sight, and keep your RAM for more important tasks.

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