Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

We are running Windows 7 on a notebook. After logging in with one account (it has Admin rights), empty desktop appears, with no icons and no taskbar.

I can change desktop properties (e.g. Themes), I can also run applications through the Task Manager, but when I try to click on "Taskbar and Start Menu" in Control Panel, nothing happens. The desktop does not respond to a right-click of the mouse either (nothing happens).

I tried logging in as a different user (no Admin priviledges) and all seems to work fine - both icons and taskbar appear. It's a corporate laptop, so I cannot run in safe mode (but can run msconfig, and I already tried disabilng all non-Microsoft services and all StartUp items in msconfig, and still the same thing happens.

Also tried restarting :) and restoring the hard drive, still seeing the same effect.

I really appreciate your help. Thank you very much.

share|improve this question

migrated from Jan 3 '13 at 19:19

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

What have you done when "restoring the hard drive"? Used an older windows system backup? Jumped back to a normal restore point? Or something else? – nixda Jan 3 '13 at 19:23
@nixda Jumped back to an earlier restore point. – gt6989b Jan 3 '13 at 19:24
I guess it was your oldest available restore point, right? – nixda Jan 3 '13 at 19:26
@nixda yes. It was also before the point when this problem started occurring. – gt6989b Jan 3 '13 at 19:27
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Sounds like a corrupted profile. Making a new one and copying all the data over is your best course of action. Make certain to show hidden files and folders when copying.

share|improve this answer
How do I do that? – gt6989b Jan 3 '13 at 19:25

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.