No taskbar, start button, or taskbar/start menu Properties


New Member
I'm having problems trying to fix my son's computer. It runs
Windows 7.
Yesterday, the task bar and Start button mysteriously disappeared.
I've also found that the "Taskbar and Start Menu Properties" window
doesn't come up. There are two places to click on in Control Panel
that should bring up this window, but it doesn't. The Control Panel
border changes color as if something is starting to happen, but then
nothing happens, possibly indicating that some program starts to run
but then finds something wrong and exits. I didn't see anything
interesting in the error logs. The desktop icons appear normally.
The problem exists only when logging onto my son's account. When I
log on as administrator, the task bar and Start button appear
The usual tricks don't work: Ctrl+ESC, or bringing up Task Manager and
trying to rerun explorer.exe. I tried sfc to check for corrupted
files, but none turned up. I ran an AVG scan and it did find one file
it considered a threat, which it removed, but that didn't solve the
I found a web site that referred to the registry key
which has a NoSetTaskbar value that can be used to disable the
"Taskbar and Start Menu Properties" window. On the administrator
login, the Explorer subkey is there all right, but doesn't have
NoSetTaskbar. (It does have NoDriveTypeAutoRun.) But when I log onto
my son's account, the Policies key had no subkeys at all. I tried
adding an Explorer subkey without adding any values, but this didn't
solve the problem. I haven't yet tried adding a NoDriveTypeAutoRun
value, but since this seems to pertain to AutoPlay it didn't seem
relevant to this problem.
Any thoughts as to what might be going on or what might fix it?
(P.S. I prefer instructions on how to update the registry manually
over importing a file, unless the file is a text file that I can
read. If the solution is to fix the registry, I want to see what's
going into it.)
Thanks in advance.


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

Any chance you have a restore point before the problem started?
Or a back up registry created by CCleaner?

Otherwise you could do a repair install of Windows without losing your settings etc.
I should only take about a half hour, sometimes it's faster then trying to track down the problem.

Repair Install - Windows 7 Forums

I have had this happen but a simple reboot always fixed it.

Have you tried booting into Safe Mode?
If it works OK in Safe Mode it may be something that you are loading causing the problem.

You could also try running Malwarebytes it is better then AVG at finding malware.
I'd also stop using AVG and switch to Microsoft Security Essentials.

You might be able to fix it by creating a new User Account for your son.
Once it's established you could remove the faulty one.

Well that's all I can think of right now.



New Member
I had the same problem and I managed to fix it.

Open task manager and run explorer.exe
open your local disc and type control panel in search bar
in control panel click on display
in display window on the left side click on change display settings
in multiple displays choose show desktop only on 1.this choice worked for me.
Hope it helps.