Windows 7 comes with a feature that by default will combine multiple windows from the same application into a single stack. For people who run a variety of programs at once this is really useful, but there are times when I find the feature annoying when I want to quickly bounce between a few windows quickly. Let’s adjust this feature and optimize our taskbar space!
With the default Windows 7 settings, your windows from the same app will be stacked onto a single icon.
Windows will no longer combine unless the Taskbar becomes full.
Right-click any empty space on the Taskbar and Select Properties.
The Taskbar and Start Menu Properties menu should appear. On the Taskbar tab Click the drop-down list labeled Taskbar buttons. There are 3 settings here to choose from:
- Always combine, hide labels (default)
- Combine when taskbar is full
- Never combine
Since we want to optimize our taskbar space, Select Combine when taskbar is full.
Now your Windows 7 taskbar will not combine items unless it runs out of room. With this setting you really get the best of both worlds; your entire taskbar space becomes useful, and you don’t have to worry about losing track of your windows if you open too many.