Locked (frozen) toolbar issue

By Sh!n ยท 4 replies
Nov 16, 2006
  1. I have a very simple, but yet very frustrating problem that has occured whenever I boot up my PC.

    Whenever my desktop appears, it seems that I can't access my taskbar below (this includes start menu/quicklinks/everything) and whenever I click on it, I get the typical windows error sound ("dun"). Note that everything else works fine on the desktop (desktop icons, rightclick, etc), but the bottom taskbar is completly locked. I can't seem to figure out what the problem is. However, yesterday, for some reason it was enabled and I was able to successfully navigate. This has been a problem for about 5 days now and I'm totally stumped.

    This is really frustrating because now I need to depend on the Windows Task Manager to run/minimize/shut down/etc.

    I know this sounds incredibly newbie and I apologize in advance for any no-brainer answer this may receive.

  2. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    Try a quick experiment. Press CTRL-ALT-DEL to go in Task Manager. Find "Explorer" in the Processes tab, right-click it and select "End Process Tree". This will cause Explorer and all running processes under Explorer, to close. This will shut down your Task Bar, as well as the Desktop and all your icons etc...
    Once it is all closed, while in Task Manager, click File->New Task and type explorer and hit enter. This will REopen Explorer, Task Bar, Desktop etc.. But NOT all the processes under Explorer that were there before.

    Once it is back up, see if it's still screwey. If it is, there is a problem somewhere else of course. But if it is better now, there could be a problem with one of those running processes that were attached to Explorer.

    The other thing you can do is see if the system files are OK by running System File Checker.
    Have your XP CD handy and then try to run sfc /scannow. To do this without being able to click the start menu, try pressing the Windows key on the keyboard +R. So click win+R to get the run box. SFC will make sure all your system files are good.

    See where that gets you, and we'll go from there.
  3. Rik

    Rik Banned Posts: 3,814

  4. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    sounds like explorer is missing/corrupt or infected.

    This file can be and should be found in c:windows\system32\explorer
  5. Sh!n

    Sh!n TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for all the advice folks!

    I'll test them out and get back to you all.
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