This article was previously published under Q279771
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In Microsoft Windows XP, icons in the Notification area (on the right side of the taskbar) are, by default, hidden when they are inactive. This behavior is determined by a setting, which can be cleared or selected for each item.
To configure this setting for each item in the Notification area, follow these steps:
Right-click the taskbar and select Properties.
In the Notification area, make sure that Hide inactive icons is selected, and then click Customize.
Select the item that you want to configure, and then select the behavior setting that you want in the Behavior list.
The settings in the Behavior list are as follows:
Hide when inactive - Item is automatically hidden when it hasn't recently been clicked or updated by its associated program.
Always hide - Item is always hidden.
Always show - Item is always visible.
Hide when inactive is the default setting for all Notification area icons. This behavior can be disabled altogether by clicking to clear Hide inactive icons in the taskbar properties.