After applying the anniversary update, Windows 10 decided it was okay to change various settings for me. I've reversed some of the changes but one persists and I can't seem to find where to fix it.

Let's say I have a number of applications running, with icons in the taskbar. I click on the icon for a minimized window. It restores itself to its previous size/position and takes focus, as expected and as wanted.

I now click the icon for the same window, still in focus. Nothing happens. What I want is for the window to minimize, as it did before the update.

Some things I have looked at:

  • Right clicked taskbar -> check "Personalization" -> "Taskbar". Found no option that would remedy the situation.

  • "System settings" -> "Multitasking" -> Looked through options for window behaviour; found nothing relevant.

  • Googled various combinations of "taskbar" "window" "minimize" "focus" and some other keywords. Mainly found articles and questions about hiding icons in focus and one question about wanting to STOP the behavior I'm looking to get back, but the solution suggested third-party software. The behaviour I want should obviously already exist natively, so I'm looking to change a setting, not install new software, although that could be a last resort should no other fix be found.

So, to clarify the question:
How do I change my settings so that a window in focus minimizes when I click its icon in the taskbar?

3 Answers 3


It is unlikely settings were changed, by you or by an update. This behavior, AFAIK, is not something you can alter or customize, even with registry edits.

This is likely a temporary bug. Try to gracefully restart Explorer.exe to solve the problem without a reboot.

Open up a command window with administrative privileges

Paste each line below, one at a time, followed by enter

taskkill /f /IM explorer.exe

If this doesn't solve the problem, try rebooting.

If rebooting doesn't handle it, use system restore to bring the system back to a date prior to the problem start date.

  • 8
    Sorry for the late reply, haven't been logged on here for a while - simply restarting explorer.exe worked wonders. Commented May 30, 2017 at 13:35
  • 3
    I up-voted because I ran into the same issue, and this was a simple fix. However, on the second line shown, it isn't necessary to use "start"; explorer will run if you just type "explorer.exe". The Start command is generally used when you want to open a program in a new window; in this case, it's just not relevant.
    – Debra
    Commented Apr 22, 2018 at 19:26
  • 1
    @Debra, updated. good catch
    – Gaia
    Commented Jun 7, 2018 at 22:27
  • 3
    Restarting explorer.exe using task manager worked.
    – phpguru
    Commented Sep 12, 2018 at 19:45
  • 4
    I was having this problem this week, googled "clicking taskbar does not minimize", and this was the first hit. I wish I could upvote this Q&A twice, but I discovered that I had already upvoted it six months ago when I found it the first time I had this problem!
    – shoover
    Commented Sep 20, 2018 at 15:10

Open the Task Manager (by hitting Ctrl+Shift+Esc or any of the other methods).  On the "Processes" tab, scroll down to "Windows Explorer" and highlight it.  Click the "Restart" button in the bottom right corner of the Task Manager.  Applications like Windows Media Player will be working as full screen after this change too.

  • 2
    This was easier than the accepted answer and totally worked for me. Commented Jan 7, 2020 at 16:26

The highlighted answer with the restart explorer.exe didn't work for me, although I solved it as follows (I don't know if it's temporary or not): Shift+RClick on taskbar on the window with an issue. From the context menu select "Minimize". After this manipulation, the window should be minimized by simply clicking on it on the taskbar, as expected.

It worked on my Windows 10 v1809 build 17763.737

  • 1
    This is not the resolution, but thanks to you as this provides an alternative/workaround, as it allows you to minimize the application (by right clicking the application's icon on taskbar and select "Minimize".) Commented Oct 12, 2022 at 14:51

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