Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the lights on at MakeUseOf. Read more.
The Windows task bar is in itself a minimalist solution to the problem of a usable GUI OS. However it is not everyone’s favorite way, and it shouldn’t have to be. In Vista they have made it real tricky to remove the Windows taskbar all together.
So here I will cover three ways to get rid of the taskbar, allowing you to move on to what you please.
1. Auto hide the taskbar
If you are looking for maximum screen usability, then this is the way to go. The taskbar is still completely usable by moving your mouse to the bottom of the screen for a moment.
To do this right-click on an empty part of the taskbar and click on “properties”. A new window will appear and there will be a check list. Check off “Auto-hide the taskbar” (unchecked to remove this feature).
2. Object Dock
If you are looking for a replacement, the free version of this program can just simply hide the taskbar while also providing you with a shortcut system. The Pro version actually gives you the option to use it in replacement of the taskbar.
Download and install Object Dock. Right click on an empty spot in your new dock. Select dock settings and check “Hide the Windows Taskbar”. This eliminates it all together unlike the auto hide feature.
Of course if your ultimate goal is something totally different, then how do you just get rid of the darn thing? Well unfortunately I have not come across any registry hack or something of the like (maybe you know of a registry hack?).
So the best option I have found is Taskbar Magic. Much more useful than just hiding your taskbar, it allows you to allocate the space saved for the taskbar for something else if you want.
Download and unzip it to the directory of your choice (most likely out of the way). Follow the directions for option number one I wrote about. Open up “taskbar magic.exe” and boom it will be gone. If you wish to allocate space for your task bar replacement if you have one, press CTRL + ALT + ESC. That gives you the option to chose what side of the screen you want to allocate and you can change the amount by pixels
There you have it, the three best ways I have found to remove Vista taskbar. All of them but the built in one require a program running in the background. Do you know of any better ones? Perhaps a registry hack? Let us know in the comments.