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How to Lock or Unlock Taskbar in Windows 10

The taskbar is the classic user interface element in Windows. First introduced in Windows 95, it exists in all Windows versions released after it. The main idea behind the taskbar is to provide a useful tool which shows a list of running apps and open windows as tasks so you can switch quickly between them. The user can lock the taskbar to prevent its accidental moving or modification. Here is how to lock or unlock the taskbar in Windows 10.

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If you have multiple displays connected to your computer, Windows 10 will show the taskbar on each display. The taskbar may contain the Start menu button, the search box or Cortana, the task view button, the system tray and various toolbars created by the user or third-party apps. For example, you can add the good old Quick Launch toolbar to your taskbar.

In order to re-arrange the taskbar items, you need to unlock it. Locking the taskbar will prevent the user from moving or resizing it. The unlocked taskbar can be moved to a different edge of the screen or resized.

There are there ways to lock or unlock the taskbar in Windows 10. Let's review them.

To lock or unlock the taskbar in Windows 10, do the following.

  1. Right-click on the taskbar.
  2. In the context menu, choose Lock the taskbar to lock it. A check mark will appear next to the context menu item.Windows 10 Lock Taskbar
  3. To unlock the taskbar, right-click on it and select the checked Lock the taskbar item. The check mark will disappear.Windows 10 Unlock Taskbar

You are done.

Alternatively, the Settings app can be used to lock or unlock the taskbar in Windows 10.

Lock or Unlock the taskbar with Settings

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Navigate to Personalization - Taskbar.
  3. On the right, enable the Lock the taskbar toggle option to lock the taskbar.Windows 10 Lock Taskbar In Settings
  4. Disabling this option will unlock the taskbar.

Finally, you can apply a Registry tweak if you need to change the option remotely or from a script. Here is how it can be done.

Lock or Unlock the taskbar with a Registry tweak

  1. Open the Registry Editor app.
  2. Go to the following Registry key.
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced

    See how to go to a Registry key with one click.

  3. On the right, create a new 32-Bit DWORD value TaskbarSizeMove.
    Note: Even if you are running 64-bit Windows you must still create a 32-bit DWORD value.
    Set its value to 1 to unlock the taskbar.
  4. A value data of 0 will lock the taskbar.Windows 10 Lock Taskbar In Registry
  5. To make the changes done by the Registry tweak take effect, you need to sign out and sign in to your user account. Alternatively, you can restart the Explorer shell.

That's it.

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

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