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Improve Windows 11 Taskbar functionality using these tools

With the introduction of Windows 11, Microsoft re-wrote the Taskbar code using UWP design language. The Legacy Windows 10 taskbar was based on older design languages. As the taskbar was written again, in the initial release of Windows 11, therefore certain functionalities of the taskbar in Windows 11 are missing. Two of those which are missing are drag and dropping file items to other apps in the taskbar, taskbar labels missing.

List of Changed or removed features/functionalities in Windows 11 – Microsoft Community

Restore Windows 10 taskbar on Windows 11

To restore Windows 10 functionality in Windows 11 taskbar, you would need to use 3rd party tools. Two examples are ExplorerPatcher and StartisBack for Windows 11.

Applies To : Windows 11



Make Windows 11 Taskbar like Windows 10 using these 3rd party tools

Fortunately, there are a couple of tools that have been developed by 3rd parties that restore the missing functionality in Windows 11. As of now, there are two of those available. I like the start menu in Windows 11, so my focus is Taskbar instead, but the 2nd Tool also provides an option to restore 10-styled start menu as well.

ExplorerPatcher

ExplorerPatcher, a 3rd party tool that aims to bring the older Windows 10 styled functionality in the Windows 11 Taskbar by just adding DLL files in 3 specific directories of WIndows. Because the older code is still present in Windows 11, by putting the DLL file, the Windows 10 styled taskbar is enabled. Some of the functionalities the developer claims the following functionality is restored:

How to use ExplorerPatcher

Download the Software from this GitHub Repository:

Release 22449.1000.0.18 · valinet/ExplorerPatcher · GitHub

Symbols being downloaded for ExplorerPatcher

For full details, you can refer to the readme document as well.

ExplorerPatcher can be uninstalled by just remove the files from the folders mentioned above. After that, If you get that the files are in use, rename those and restart the computer.

ExplorerPather with Windows 10 styled Taskbar enabled

StartisBack TBD for Windows 11

StartIsBack, a 3rd party Software is also available for Windows 11, in beta now. Alongside restoring classic taskbar functionality, it also has an option to enable Windows 10 styled Start menu.

http://startisback.com/tbd/

How to use StartisBack

Startisback TBD, offers the following features for Windows 11:

To use this Software, simply download the Software and Install it. Choose if you want to Install it for specific users or All users.

Do not click any of the options on the Home screen, just click on the Taskbar menu and turn on the slider named use the enhanced classic taskbar.

In addition, customize the things according to your wish, like I have centered the app icons. Turn on or off other components as well.

Startisback enabled with Right-click functionality on the taskbar enabled.

The release notes page of StartisBack lists some known issues, which I recommend checking into. However, both of these apps work as long as Microsoft has the Legacy code in the Operating system. In conclusion, If you have issues, simply remove them to restore the native Windows 11 taskbar functionality.

In addition, You can also check our following articles:

Windows 11 FAQ

How to change the default apps in Windows 11?

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