Add the Show Desktop button next to Start in Windows 10

In Windows versions prior to Windows 7, there was a button which minimized all opened Windows and showed the desktop. In Windows 10, there is no such button. Instead, to minimize all open windows and show the Desktop, you need to move the mouse pointer to the right edge of the taskbar (or the bottom edge if your taskbar is vertical) and click a tiny invisible button. In this article, I would like to share how you can add the classic Show Desktop button next to Start in Windows 10.


Here what you should do:

  1. Create a new shortcut by right clicking an empty area of the Desktop -> New -> Shortcut. Use the following command as its target:
    explorer.exe shell:::{3080F90D-D7AD-11D9-BD98-0000947B0257}

    See the following screenshot: Windows 10 show desktop

  2. Name your shortcut as "Show Desktop": Windows 10 show desktop shortcut name
  3. In the shortcut's properties, set its icon from C:\Windows\Explorer.exe: Windows 10 show desktop icon
  4. Finally, right click the shortcut you created and select "Pin to taskbar" from its context menu: Windows 10 show desktop pin to taskbar

Once this is done, you can remove the shortcut you created and drag the pinned item next to the Start button. Now you can use the pinned icon to minimize all open windows.

Windows 10 show desktop button on the taskbar Personally, I found this icon more useful than the default button offered by Windows 10 which is at the end of the taskbar. Touchscreen users may find adding this button very useful too.

That's it.

49 thoughts on “Add the Show Desktop button next to Start in Windows 10

  1. Trojan

    I also use win+D

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      Me too

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  2. Sir

    Sir, its possible to add DESKTOP TO ALT+TAB ? as in previous versions of Windows 7, 8 ?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      It is not possible in Windows 10.
      Since it has multiple desktops now, Microsoft removed the icon.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  3. andivax

    а есть программы чтобы показывали десктоп типа функции show desktop на макаке?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  4. Danny

    Whoever wrote this is an idiot. The functionality has been there since Windows 7 – moving your mouse to the bottom right side of the screen and clicking it shows your desktop, clicking again brings it back.

    And if you add the Quick Launch toolbar (same method as in Win7/8, it’s a folder in AppData under Internet Explorer), it’s there by default… no need to create your own shortcut, just use the one that’s already included!

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 71

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      You probably didn’t even read the article.
      I had reasons to add the button. I found it useful, it is MORE useful for me that the right edge tiny line.
      I mentioned this in the article.
      There is no reason to act bad and insult other people if the article is not suitable for you. Just ignore it.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 56 Thumb down 0

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    2. Shawn

      Yeah this stupid Danny didn’t even read it. Do you have a touch tablet? Try touching the tiny bottom right corner button with your finger and then try touching this button after adding it to the Taskbar and tell me which one is easier to target. Get off your high horse and stop attacking the author.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 27 Thumb down 0

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    3. Tara

      I don’t normally write comments but having read the ‘thoughts’ written by Danny, who summarised himself in the first line of his writing, I was compelled to write. I found this article (creating desktop shortcut) very useful and I have now used in 3 computers including my work laptop which has window 7. This article provides an alternative way of creating the Window xp/vista like show desktop button, the author has not said that this functionality is not there in latest windows. The right side corner button is annoying and not suitable for people who are used to using show desktop button on the left. Very good article from the Author and please don’t get distracted by negative comments.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  5. Victor

    Awesome, very useful for my touchscreen

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

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  6. Arnol

    Exactly what my 7 inch tablet needed. Thanks for this and for your many other articles.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  7. Gregory

    Will that work for Windows 8.1?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      Yep it will work for Win81 as well.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  8. PuppinoCbr

    You can use this method too:

    Right mouse on Taskbar ->
    -> New toolbar
    -> (write this in the path) %userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch (then Enter) and -> OK
    Move the new toolbar on the left and remove”Show title” and “Show text” (right click mouse on this toolbar).
    I also suggest to switch from “Small icons” to “Large icons” (right click mouse).
    Now you have “Show Desktop button” directly on the taskbar. You can also delete AltTab button alongside “show desktop” (it doesn’t work on win10).

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

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  9. Jones

    Excellent tip… Shame on MS for that tiny button on the right. Even with a full desktop and mouse its a pain in the a$$ to click it. Your tip works beautifully.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

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    1. Robert Jeanes

      I have struggled (after Vista) with Windows 10’s lack of simplicity. Something so utterly simple as being able to hit an all-important Desktop logo on the Taskbar …..
      Someone, or a Committee decided to make this a No-No. “Let’s hide it shall we…..?
      So very grateful to this Poster.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  10. Violet

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! :)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      don’t mention it.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  11. Gian

    thank you very much for this tip! very useful. :)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      you are welcome

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  12. Ian B

    Thanks Sergey.
    Been wondering about this since installing W10.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      you are welcome.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  13. Margret

    This is very helpful and my users are happy to have this on their task bar. I have a question related to this: is there a similar string to use to create a shortcut to switch between virtual desktops?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  14. PassingBy

    A big thanks from Korea for this tip..

    ^^

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      you are welcome

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  15. Epic

    God bless you for this useful tip.
    I wonder what idiots at M$ wanted to achieve, when they took out those few pixels from the “show desktop” button in Windows 7 and created this “super duper extra slim” thing for Windows 8/10. How they used that few pixels, where is this exciting powerful feature that deserved those few pixels?
    Same as putting Details pane on the right side of the Explorer window instead of bottom… Eh… I installed Windows 10 3 days ago and I went through so many stupid regressions that I wonder if I shouldn’t roll back to Win7.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

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  16. TJ

    Thank you!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      You are welcome.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  17. Leonardo Rodrigues

    Thank you very much! Nice tutorial!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  18. MaryB

    Finally, a simple way to get back show desktop. Personally, I use Win+D
    but know a lot of people who will be very very happy to get this back!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  19. A

    I did this, and without thinking I made the shortcut key for this an function key (F2).

    How would I reset the key to its original function?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      Right click the shortcut and remove the assigned hotkey.
      You can see how to access the pinned shortcut properties in the THIS ARTICLE.
      Read below “To change a pinned app’s shortcut icon on the taskbar in Windows 10…” there.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  20. Bob Rock And Roll Daily

    Thank you so much for this very useful tip!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      You are welcome.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  21. angelscouple69

    Its works ! Thanks a lot ! awesome guy !

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      you are welcome.
      Btw, nice nickname

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  22. Doug

    YES! This one is fast and so self explanatory! The article makes it look like it’s complicated.. It’s NOT! I LOVE THIS!
    Just do the create shortcut thingy and paste explorer.exe shell:::{3080F90D-D7AD-11D9-BD98-0000947B0257}
    and everything after that is so stupid simple!

    THANK YOU!!!!

    PS: Man this is about as stupid as apple getting rid of the headphone jack!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  23. Frank

    Another BRAVO for Sergey!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  24. Peter Koopman

    Nice work Sergey, especially for touch screen devices.
    If you’re into keyboard shortcuts you can also use WindowsKey + D

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      Yep. And Win + M too :)

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  25. Younis ali

    Excellent information.
    But until, my desktop app does not show on windows 10.
    Kindly tell me how can i change this?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  26. James

    very useful! quick, simple, easy to apply.
    Much appreciated!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  27. James

    Thank you form England!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      UW

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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  28. James

    thankyou from England!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      You are welcome :)

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      Reply
  29. Arslan

    Awesome…. thanks

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Reply
  30. gale

    THANK YOU! I hate having to click at the end of the taskbar and loved my show desktop button. Now I can have it again.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      You are welcome.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      Reply

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