System Tray icons missing or invisible – SOLVED!

Are your System Tray icons missing or invisible? The problem is usually noticed when the system icons are missing such as the volume control icon or wireless icon, and is most often down to corruption of the system icon’s cache.

This is quite easily resolved too by running a couple of quick commands to clear the System’s Icon Cache.

This is a per users issue, so you’re safe to run this on your account without affecting other user’s accounts on the PC – read on below to see how I solved System Tray icons missing or invisible.

The Fix
  1. Run command prompt as administrator.
  2. Run the following commands:
    taskkill /IM explorer.exe /F
    CD /d %userprofile%\AppData\Local
    DEL IconCache.db /a

That’s It! You may find your task bar takes a few seconds to re-appear, this is normal. Once it’s back your system tray will show correctly.

In some cases a restart might be required, however this usually isn’t necessary.


The Cause

Unfortunately it’s difficult to say what causes this for definite. It could be an array of things:

  • Corruption on your hard disk (perform chkdsk to check / help remedy this).
  • A Virus or unwanted software (run a scan using your anti-virus software to ensure this isn’t the cause and get help here if it is).
  • A bad windows update (this happens more often that you’d realise. If this is the cause, a fix usually isn’t far behind).
  • Or quite simply it’s just corruption of the cache for no other reason that  “it’s Windows”.


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