Windows 11 Taskbar Blank / Empty: 6 Methods to Fix It

Fix empty Taskbar by adjusting your registry or with other methods

by Claudiu Andone
Claudiu Andone
Claudiu Andone
Windows & Software Expert
Oldtimer in the tech and science press, Claudiu is focused on whatever comes new from Microsoft. His abrupt interest in computers started when he saw the first Home... read more
Reviewed by Vlad Turiceanu
Vlad Turiceanu
Vlad Turiceanu
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Passionate about technology, Windows, and everything that has a power button, he spent most of his time developing new skills and learning more about the tech world. Coming... read more
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  • Many users start their PC to find the Windows 11 taskbar empty and unusable due to the Windows Explorer process or corrupted files.
  • Start by restarting the explorer.exe process inside Task Manager, then proceed to Windows scans that will fix your files.
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Windows 11 is here, but that doesn’t mean the bugs disappeared overnight. After an update or even a simple restart, many users looked at their taskbar only to find it empty and unusable.

Microsoft has issued a workaround for this problem, but it’s still a matter of fixing this before doing more harm. We added some solutions that worked for our readers, so read below and try them out right now.

Why is my taskbar empty in Windows 11?

Judging by the workaround supplied by Microsoft, which you will find in our first solution below, this problem was caused by a minor component. However, there are other causes as well:

  • IrisService – It’s a file that is part of the Windows Spotlight service that is used to bring you some tips, suggestions, and promotions on the Lockscreen window. You may disable it altogether as well as other non-essential services.
  • Windows Explorer process – It is a process that manages and offers the graphical user interface (GUI) that you use to interact with the majority of Windows’ features. So you can expect this to be the culprit to the Windows 11 taskbar being an empty issue.
  • Corrupt Files – Computer files that suddenly become inaccessible or useless are said to have been corrupted. Several scenarios might result in a file becoming corrupted; however, they are easy to fix due to third-party software tools.
  • Windows Updates – Although updates bring new exciting features and bug fixes, they can cause other bugs. This can be the case with the empty taskbar situation, and all you have to do is uninstall the latest update.

This being said, let’s jump into the list of solutions below.

In this article

How do I fix the blank taskbar in Windows 11?

1. Make a change in the Registry

If you encounter issues such as Windows 11 taskbar empty error, an effective method you can try is to change your Registry using the following steps.

1. Press the Ctrl + Alt + Del keys to open Task Manager, then select File followed by Run new task.

run-new-task windows 11 taskbar empty

2. Type cmd and press Enter or click OK.

windows-11-taskbar-empty

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3. Paste the following command and press Enter to run it: reg delete HKCU\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\IrisService /f && shutdown -r -t 0

red-delete windows 11 taskbar empty

4. The PC should reboot after this command, and after restarting, the Windows 11 taskbar greyed-out issue will be solved.

2. Restart Windows Explorer

  1. Press Ctrl + Alt + Del to access Task Manager.
  2. Click Windows Explorer, and choose Restart.explorer-restart file explorer crashes when i right click
  3. Once it’s done, check whether the Windows 11 taskbar not working issue persists.

3. Run SFC and DISM

  1. Press Windows, enter cmd in the search bar, then click Run as administrator.cmd-admin hp printer won't scan
  2. Type the following command, then press Enter and wait for the scan to finish: sfc /scannowscannow 0x80070002 windows update
  3. Once the SFC scan is over, type the following command and press Enter. Reboot your computer once the DISM scan has ended: DISM /Online /Cleanup-image /RestorehealthDISM-RESTORE faulting application path

After the scan is finished, check if the problem is still there.

Alternatively, you can use Restoro, a tool that specializes in system file integrity, to find damaged or corrupted files that the tool will repair.

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4. Uninstall recent updates

  1. Press the Windows key + I to start the Settings app, click Windows Update from the left pane, and select Update history from the right.
  2. Scroll down and click Uninstall updates.
  3. Next, select the update that caused this problem, which will probably be the last one, then click Uninstall. Finally, click OK to confirm your choice.

5. Change Time and Date settings

  1. Press the Windows key, then type control and click the top result.all-control windows 11 taskbar empty
  2. Choose Clock and Region.
  3. Click the Set the time and date button.
  4. Click the Change date and time settings button.
  5. Select a date in the future, then click OK.
  6. Switch to the Internet Time tab and click on the Change settings button.
  7. Turn off the Synchronize with an Internet time server option, then click OK.

6. Use PowerShell

  1. Press Windows key + X and select Windows Terminal (Admin).
  2. Now run the following command: Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml”}
  3. Once the command is executed, restart your PC.

We hope our guide helped you fix the empty Taskbar issue in Windows 11, and now you’re using your OS in normal conditions. For more information, follow our guide on how to fix Windows 11 Taskbar blank icons.

If you have other suggestions or need more information, don’t hesitate to access the dedicated comments section below to leave us a line about that.

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