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Clean Up Custom Notifications


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Clean Up Custom Notifications

Window XP's Custom Notifications feature lets you manage the icons in your System Tray. You can specify that Win XP will always hide or always show a specific icon, or show it only when it changes. Of course you can view the "hidden" icons at any time by clicking on the arrow at the left of the system tray.

Win XP remembers your settings for various programs; when a program with a tray icon launches, Win XP manages it as you've specified. The problem comes when you uninstall such a program. Win XP does not discard the Custom Notification entry for it, and if you frequently install and remove programs you can wind up with a lot of junk in the list, so managing the programs you do still use is hard.

There's no straightforward way to remove an item from the list, but you can clear the custom settings completely and start fresh. Launch Regedit from the Start menu's Run dialog. Navigate to HKEY_ CURRENT_USER\Software\ Microsoft\Windows\Current Version\Explorer\TrayNotify. In the right-hand pane, locate the Binary values named IconStreams and PastIconStreams and delete them. That's not sufficient, though, because Windows Explorer still has the current list in memory.

Press Ctrl-Alt-Del to bring up the Task Manager. Click on the Processes tab, highlight the entry for Explorer, and click on the End Process button. Still in the Task Manager, select New Task from the File menu, type Explorer, and click on OK.

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