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I have my windows 7 task bar in auto-hide. When a program gets a notification (for example Skype gets a new message), the task bar pops up and the Skype button is orange. What I would like to do is to make the task bar return to hide, without opening the notifying program.

Here is how it breaks my workflow:

  • working in a fullscreen editor
  • someone writes to me via skype
  • the task bar pops up and hides the bottom of my editor, and I cannot rehide it without getting to the notifying program. The notification disappears and I feel forced to deal with whatever the skype message was about, now.

After skype tells me that it wants my attention, I want to return to my editor and not have the task bar stay on top of it. But I want the skype button to keep its orange color until I actually set skype on focus.

Is there a way to do that?

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2 Answers

There are two scenarios in Windows 7 when this is happening. The first one is when an application starts flashing in the taskbar and the second one is when a notification balloon pops up in the notification area on the right of the taskbar.

Just with Windows 7 settings you can solve the second scenario by going into the notification settings by clicking on the little hidden icon on the left side of the tray, and then clicking Customize and play here with the options or if you want to completely disable balloon notifications go to the registry and browse down the following key

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced

Right-click on the right-hand pane, and create a new 32-bit DWORD with the following values:

  1. Name: EnableBalloonTips
  2. Value: 0
  3. Logoff to see the changes.

The first scenario can't be solved just with Windows 7 tweaks/settings. You need additional software for this problem. Aviassin Taskbar Eliminator (freeware) is just perfect for this (in my opinion). When you click 'Hide Taskbar' it will disappear but the start orb remains visible, however, if you set the the taskbar to 'Auto Hide' before eliminating the taskbar, it works like a charm. the start orb will not appear if you hit the bottom of the screen, ONLY if you press the windows key. And if you want you could combine this with another software called VistaSwitcher to toggle conveniently between open applications and folders. Also you could try this programs:

(from user SgtOJ) I am not sure if this will help hide again the taskbar but you can disable flashing icon/application on Taskbar

  1. Click the Start icon
  2. Type in regedit
  3. Select regedit from the top of the result
  4. Go to: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop
  5. Editing ForegroundFlashCount
    1. Find ForegroundFlashCount
    2. Double click ForegroundFlashCount
    3. Replace the value for Value Data with 1
  6. Editing ForgroundLockTimeout
    1. Find ForegroundLockTimeout
    2. Double click ForegroundLockTimeout
    3. Replace the value for Value Data with 0
  7. Reboot
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In this case you can simply customize your Notification area Icons from control panel from the given link.

Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Notification Area Icons

from here you can turn off system icons then the notification of Skype will be no longer active.

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It is not the icon in the system tray that is flashing, it is the button in the task bar. –  Gauthier Apr 24 '13 at 7:34
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