Is this possible? I want to close programs in the taskbar with middle-click, like tabs in firefox. The best approach I have so far is waiting for the mini-view that pops up when you point with the mouse in the taskbar and then middle-clicking there, but I would like to close them directly.


7 Answers 7


7 Taskbar Tweaker (source-code) allows closing windows by middle-clicking the taskbar, as well as some other stuff like "ungrouping" taskbar items.

Now I don't miss the pre-Windows 7 feature where I could CTRL-click multiple windows from the taskbar and close them all at once. Middle clicking is actually faster and I very rarely want to start a new instance by middle-clicking or use those jump lists (I got the standard menu back^^).

update: The 7 Taskbar Tweaker site doesn't play nice with some foreign IP addresses (returns 403:Forbidden). Download 7 Taskbar Tweaker v3.3.2 from a mirror.

  • Holy cow thank you so much for this link. I've been looking for a way to get the standard right click menu back without having to hold shift ever since windows 7 came out!
    – Fopedush
    Dec 11, 2009 at 17:07
  • The site is down. Well... If you trust me, you could get it from me: dl.dropbox.com/u/42655/eternity/… Jun 10, 2010 at 19:12
  • That works pretty well I guess, thanks. It has also some very interesting options, such as the taskbar double/middle-click actions; too bad it doesn't allows to launch a particular program or document that way...
    – JoePerkins
    May 6, 2012 at 15:40
  • the "7+ taskbar tweaker" works great even on windows 8 : rammichael.com/7-taskbar-tweaker . thank you for your suggestion. Apr 1, 2013 at 8:12
  • I've just scanned it on virustotal.com and resulted with TWO detections!? What the... virustotal.com/en/file/…
    – Nam G VU
    Feb 20, 2014 at 8:38

Not the same, but a similar native win 7 behavior you might not be aware of: Middle clicking on the preview image that shows when you hover over a taskbar item will close the window. I'm working on getting used to this, rather than adding a third party tweak program.


You could also do that with a AutoHotkey script.

The following one could be the right thing for you: http://www.autohotkey.com/forum/topic8434.html

  • No windows-registry tweak? That would be better, middle-click has an utility after all, but not very useful: opening another instance of the selected utility.
    – JoePerkins
    Aug 18, 2009 at 16:47
  • 1
    Unfortunately that script doesn't work on Vista/Windows 7. Oct 12, 2009 at 2:12
  • @TarnayKálmán update script for 7. superuser.com/a/24404
    – Alex78191
    Nov 2, 2020 at 17:17

Shift+Right clicking on the taskbar button will bring up a menu with Restore, Minimize, Close, etc (or Restore all, Minimize all, Close all if it's a grouped button).


What type of mouse do you have and are you running the bare minimum mouse drivers? I currently have a one of the new "blue" mice from Microsoft, and installed the drivers that came along with it. The extended drivers will let you change the action of all the buttons on the mouse globally or program specific. I'm pretty sure that Logitech drivers allow the same thing too. One of the available options to change for the middle button is Exit Program.

  • That's interesting, I actually have a Logitech mouse and I use Set Point to change button behaviour, but this solution may cause problems if you configure globally the middle click to close programs, because it may have another functionality in some specific programs. For example, middle-clicking links in Firefox should open it in a new tab, and not closing the window.
    – JoePerkins
    Jul 9, 2011 at 1:07

There is no Windows setting or registry hack to do this. Your best bet would be a third-party program, such as AutoHotkey, or continuing doing what you're doing. Alternatively, you could right-click on the icon and click "Close window".


Alternative to virus-containing tool 7 Taskbar Tweaker, I suggest Taskix which contains NO virus.


Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008

NOT for Windows 7 :(

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