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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    I have been running WinXP for a few months. I cannot get the system tray icons to stay put. Going into prpperties and working with hide/unhide Always/never etc show doesn't work. I cant even find the volume icon any more. I have tried the classic style and the XP style to no effect.
    When I first installed XP, as I recall, many !#$$^&* sessions ago, It worked. I assume that either XP has a bug, something in the, gulp, registry is screwed up or I have set something I can't find wrong.
    Notwithstanding this is a Mocrosoft product and s stupid assumption, logic suggests the Properties show always and never hide buttons should work.
    I would love a few suggestions.
    Thanks for them in advance.

  2. #2
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    it appears to be a bug of some sort and only affects some of us. (Maximizing windows is another... if you use smaller windows, they grow to be full screen.)

    We discussed it a few weeks ago and since then, my sound icon has remained in the tray.

  3. #3
    Star Lounger
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    Re: Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    Thanks maryj,
    So I guess that means that the properties and hide always/never function does not work? No word from the land of hate and discontent, (starts with an R) on a fix? it seems like a problem if wide spread would be fixed. (silly me.)
    You mentioned a few weeks ago. I look at one re sound icon and did not see an obvious solution. We just assume there is no fix? I can't get to the icons that are hidden at all.
    regards,

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    It may be fixed in an upcoming service pack (scheduled for fall at last count).

    Keep in mind that smaller UI issues like this aren't as important to fix as are security holes and compatibility problems. I'm certainly not defending Microsoft, but this problem is also not affecting huge numbers of users. It's also not affecting core functionality, and it's going to be treated accordingly. Right now the push from Microsoft is to close up security holes in their software, because it's got a reputation for being insecure.

    And I thought I would also share that Windows NT 4.0 had a bug in the sounds applet of the control panel that would make it disappear, right up until Microsoft quit issuing service packs for that OS. Same reason - it did not affect the functionality of the operating system, annoying or not, and could be worked around. Call it a wart. But when you're dealing with over 30 million lines of code....with more pressing issues.....it's understandable. All software has bugs, but you get to ap point where they are manageable and freeze the code so you can ship a product.

    If you're feeling forggy, you could do a parallel installation of XP on the hard drive and see if the probem still exists. If it doesn't, you can migrate to the newer install and eventually remove the older one.
    -Mark

  5. #5
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    they work some of the time for some people, all of the time for most and never for a few... will it be fixed? won't know till the sp gets into beta testing.

  6. #6
    New Lounger
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    Extraneous Tray icons (XP O2K)

    I have a slightly different twist to the disappearing tray icon problem. I have multiple icons showing up for the same application. In particular, the ActiveSync icon (with the little red x in it - when not connected and not enabled) shows up multiple times (I've seen as many as 6) when switching between users, then multiple icons appear. They are phantoms, however, in that if you put your mouse on one of them it disappears. Moving the mouse over all the phantoms causes them to disappear with only one "real" one remaining.

    This machine was upgraded from Windows ME to XP so maybe that is causing some of the problem. It's done this consistently for several months - since the initial upgrade to XP.

  7. #7
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Extraneous Tray icons (XP O2K)

    Don,

    It's usually a combination of the OS, the application and video drivers.

    Are you running the latest version of ActiveSync? Fast User Switching is a newer Windows feature that debuted in XP, so the program may not be "aware" and creates new icons for each user without checking the tray first.

    Also, make sure you have the most recent video drivers for your graphics adapter.

    Most times, I have seen this occur as the result of an improper program shutdown, and the application doesn't have time to update the system tray. The behavior is the same; the icon disappears as soon as you hover over it.

    Outside of those suggestions, I don't know where else to point you, because IMHO the system tray has always been somewhat flaky in the way it displays icons. If you've ever had the Explorer shell crash and reload, you can relate, because there are usually several icons missing after such an occurance.

    Good luck!!
    -Mark

  8. #8
    New Lounger
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    Re: Extraneous Tray icons (XP O2K)

    I'm curious why you think it might be a video driver problem. It certainly doesn't act like a video problem. It seems to me to be a problem with the interaction of the application and the OS/systray.

    Yes, I'm running the latest version of ActiceSync - 3.5. What's most annoying is you would think this being a Microsoft app they would work better together. <img src=/S/frown.gif border=0 alt=frown width=15 height=15>

    One more oddity. After starting and stopping different programs, IE, Windows Explorer, Quicken, etc. and switching to the other user. The other user will have multiple "My Documents" windows open all over the desktop. They were not there before.

    Sorry, I should probably have started a new thread for that question.

  9. #9
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Extraneous Tray icons (XP O2K)

    I suggested the video driver for two reasons: it is mainly a screen refresh issue, which of course depends on the video card. The second reason, and perhaps more relevant, is that video drivers are notorius for causing little system problems that range from complete system lockups down to the mundane.

    Microsoft's software, like all others, is rife with annoyances. I agree that it could/should work better, and perhaps it will in the future. For years the Office apps have not played nicely with Windows either - installing Office throws icons all over the start menu instead of grouping them like most software installs do. And features that appeared first in Office later make their way into Windows and vice-versa.

    It's possible that the other issue you noted is related in some way to the tray updates for ActiveSync as well, but not necessarily. Since this was an upgrade, I would be inclined to say that it is at least a contributing factor in some of this. I imagine a clean installation of XP would be a last resort, but if you have time, a favorite tactic of mine to troubleshoot weirdness like this is to install the same OS on a different partition, known as a "parallel install," and then trying to duplicate the problem. The obvious drawback there is that it is time consuming and eats up more disk space, but it can also help pinpoint problems since you are working with a controlled test environment.
    -Mark

  10. #10
    New Lounger
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    Re: Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    I had a very similar problem with my Dell Inspiron 8100 laptop in which I had installed Windows XP Pro. I tried reinstalling everything from scratch, but the problem remained. Finally, I rebooted using the Windows CD, repartitioned and reformatted the hard drive and reinstalled Windows XP. Then I went to the Dell site and installed all the XP drivers BEFORE installing anything else. I think the generic video drivers that came with Windows XP caused some conflict with the nvidia video card in my laptop. After doing this and then reinstalling all my software, my system tray icons all work normally. I think the difference was installing all the updated drivers, and the video driver in particular, before making any other changes to the system.

    BTW, I highly recommend creating a System Restore point after each change you make to your system. I've noticed that Windows XP sometimes rolls back to the last Restore point without asking or informing the user. Any changes you've made since the last point was saved will be quietly removed. I noticed this when I made a few changes to passwords and other settings, only to have the changes reversed after I rebooted. I made the same changes again, and immediately created a new Restore Point, then rebooted, and this time the changes were retained.

  11. #11
    Star Lounger
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    Re: Disapearing Tray icons (XP O2K)

    I had the exact problem. Sometimes the icons would appear and sometimes they would not. At all times the programs were running. I noted that several people in MS newsgroups had the same problem. Several people suggested disableing two services using Administrative Tools: SSDP Discovery Service adn Universal Plug and Play Device HOst. so far it has worked!

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