Now you see it, now you don't

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Jim Beaver, Mar 15, 2005.

  1. Jim Beaver

    Jim Beaver Guest

    Before asking my main question: what is the little tray at the bottom of
    the Windows XP screen called? The one that the clock shows up in, with lots
    of little icons for various programs (NOT the middle tray with the one-click
    launch buttons, immediately to the right of the Start button).

    Now, to the main question: I've got a nifty pop-up killer program. To
    access it directly (though it works in the background, too), I double-click
    on the icon for it in that tray I just asked the name of. That will bring
    up the program options screen for the pop-up killer. My problem is, about
    every third or fourth time reboot, that program's icon disappears from that
    tray and I am unable to access the program options for it. When it fails to
    show up on a reboot, one or two subsequent reboots will usually restore it
    to its rightful place. Note that the program is always running, but the
    icon is missing, and without the icon, I can't adjust options in the
    program. It continues to kill pop-ups, but I can't add or delete from the
    blacklist. The program maker has gone out of business, but the program
    itself works great, except for this one little bug. Any ideas how to make
    the icon stay permanently in the tray? None of my other icons seem to do
    this disappearing act, but then again, I don't use very many of the others
    frequently, and so may not have noticed whether they're always there or not.

    This always happens on a reboot. If the icon appears when I boot up, then
    it doesn't ever disappear, unless I reboot later. Then, once in a blue
    moon, it disappears and won't show up until I reboot once or twice.

    Jim Beaver
    Jim Beaver, Mar 15, 2005
    1. Advertisements

  2. Jim Beaver

    Wizard Guest

    Wizard, Mar 15, 2005
    1. Advertisements

  3. Jim Beaver

    Stevo Guest

    That would be the 'System Tray'...
    Stevo, Mar 15, 2005
  4. Systray.
    =?ISO-8859-1?Q?Brian_H=B9=A9?=, Mar 15, 2005
  5. Instead of rebooting, try ending the program through Task Manager/Processes
    then bringing it up again via the Start/Programs menu. I have/had a similar
    problem with a program called NetPerSec. I added it (shortcut) to my
    quicklaunch toolbar to make its restart handier. It may have something to
    do with the number of startups being performed, but that's from hunger.

    Central Mass. USA

    To email: Replace with
    Dave McAuliffe, Mar 15, 2005
  6. Jim Beaver

    Vanguard Guest

    (System or taskbar) notification area (aka system tray).
    You coded the pop-up killer program? Or you installed someone else's?
    You felt it unnecessary to actually identify it by name?
    Apparently this pop-up stopper runs continuously even when it isn't
    needed, like when the browser isn't even running.
    If the popup-up stopper is getting loaded, as you claim (presumably by
    checking the Processes tab in Task Manager), but is not adding or
    updating its tray icon then that is the fault of whatever is this
    unnamed popup-stopper and an issue you should address by sending an
    e-mail to the developer or author of this program.

    You sure you have Windows properly configured regarding its hiding of
    tray icons? Maybe you are hiding the icon by setting Windows' taskbar
    to "always hide" or "hide when inactive" for this icon. Is there a
    left-pointing chevron at the leftside of the system tray that you click
    to view all icons, including the hidden ones?

    Are you using a 3rd party tray icon manager? PC Magazine has their
    TrayMan but it doesn't work under Windows XP.
    Well, if it is a bug in the unnamed program and the developer has
    discontinued supporting it then start looking for one that is supported.
    There are plenty of freebie popup-stopppers around, like in the Google
    Toolbar or even in Service Pack 2 for Windows XP (but neither of which
    give you white- or blacklists). I use PopUpCop from Edensoft
    ( and haven't found any that can match it for features
    and comprehensive coverage of popup types and the author is very
    responsive, but it isn't free (30-day trial, $20). Plus it only works
    with Internet Explorer. I haven't experimented with Firefox yet (mostly
    because their uninstall is NOT clean) but I hear its popup blocker is
    good but I don't know if it provides white- or blacklisting.
    Since this is NOT an add-in which loads only when appropriate (i.e.,
    when the browser loads) but instead runs continuously in the background
    even when not needed, isn't there a shortcut to the program or its
    control panel utility that got added somewhere under your taskbar's
    Start menu? Have you looked under the program's install path to see
    what .exe files are there? Maybe one is to load the program and another
    is open its configuration program. Or check the shortcut to the program
    in the Startup group or in the registry Run key to see if it uses any
    command-line switches when it gets loaded since you can probably run the
    same program but without the switches to open its configuration window.
    Vanguard, Mar 15, 2005
  7. Jim Beaver

    Dave Lear Guest

    in message
    Its official name under Windows XP is the System Notification Area but most
    people still call it what it was known as under previous versions of Windows
    which was the System Tray.
    Dave Lear, Mar 15, 2005
  8. Jim Beaver

    Jim Beaver Guest

    Pretty damn funny. Helpful, no. But funny...well, actually, no. And since
    the actual answer given by a number of other people (Systray or System Tray)
    contains fewer letters than zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz, not even particularly
    easier than a helpful answer.

    Thanks to everyone else, though.

    Jim Beaver
    Jim Beaver, Mar 16, 2005
  9. Jim Beaver

    Jim Beaver Guest

    It's a freebie I downloaded some time ago. It's called Pop-Up Killer, but
    since there seem to be about thirty programs with that name the last time I
    checked, I thought it would be more confusing than not to name it.
    Not by checking Task Manager, but rather by seeing that it blocks pop-ups
    even when the icon is not visible in systray.

    but is not adding or
    I've checked the hidden icons repeatedly. The icon is either unhidden and
    visible or it's completely gone.
    No, I'm using XP's tray icon manager.

    Of course I'll do that if necessary, but I really like this one better than
    any of the several others I've tried.
    There's only one .exe file in the program folder. Is this what you mean?
    The last sentence I'm afraid I don't understand -- not quite savvy enough
    about the processes you describe.


    Jim Beaver
    Jim Beaver, Mar 16, 2005
  10. Jim Beaver

    Vanguard Guest

    Quite true. A search on "PopUp Killer" returns 472,000 matches at
    Google, so knowing the author of the program would help to narrow down
    which one you have. If you don't already know the author, you might be
    able to identify the author of the program by right-clicking on its .exe
    file, Properties, Version tab, and checking the company name.
    Some programs will detect that they are already loaded so instead will
    display their configuration window or user interface when you run it
    again. So I was suggesting that you try to run the program a second
    time to see if it brings up its window. The shortcut to the program in
    the Startup group or in the registry Run key will tell you how the
    program gets loaded. Since there is only one .exe file, that's probably

    Alternatively, you could kill the process for the popup stopper using
    the Processes tab of Task Manager and reload that program to see if it
    then adds its icon to the system tray.

    If the program is loaded by an entry under the registry Run key, you
    might try removing it and put it as a shortcut under your Startup group
    (or the All Users Startup group if you want all accounts to use it).
    That way, it will load later and possibly eliminate a conflict with some
    other software that is loading at the same time.

    Although you like the program, it is a dead program and you are already
    having usability issues with it. Even the popup stopper in Service Pack
    2 of Windows XP lets you define a whitelist of sites so you can allow
    popups only from those sites and block the others (but it's popup
    blocking is no better than the popup stoppper in the Google Toolbar).
    Vanguard, Mar 16, 2005
  11. Jim Beaver

    Vanguard Guest

    "Vanguard" <use_ReplyTo_header> wrote in message

    One other possibility that I forgot to mention. If it is a really old
    popup blocker, maybe it wasn't coded to specifically support Windows XP
    and is an old 16-bit application. If so, and if it is loaded by a
    shortcut in your Startup group, right-click on the shortcut, Properties,
    and see if there is a Compatibility tab so you could try to load it
    under a emulated VM for whatever Windows platform that utility does
    Vanguard, Mar 16, 2005
  12. Jim Beaver

    Vanguard Guest

    Wizard is a puerile flaming troll that can barely manage to type out a
    phrase while his other hand is busy polishing his bishop. Don't bother
    with replying to him because that just gets him off quicker. This
    newsgroup is rife with children (regardless of their age).
    Vanguard, Mar 16, 2005
  13. Jim Beaver

    Jim Beaver Guest

    I've tried this many times in futile hope that it would do just what you
    say, but it doesn't.
    And here's the good this suggestion worked! Thank you!

    Jim Beaver
    Jim Beaver, Mar 16, 2005
  14. Jim Beaver

    Vanguard Guest

    You could then define a .bat file that used the taskkill command in
    Windows XP to kill the process, by the program name. If, for example,
    the program was popkill.exe, you could run:

    taskkill /f /im popkill.exe

    Run "taskkill /?" to see its options. You could then follow that
    command in the .bat file with a line to load your popup killer program
    again. Then add a shortcut to your QuickLaunch toolbar in the taskbar.
    Vanguard, Mar 16, 2005
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.