The recently released Windows 8.1 Update makes using Windows Store apps much easier for mouse and keyboard users. With default settings, Windows Store apps now have close and minimize buttons and one can always access taskbar from Store apps by just moving the mouse cursor to the bottom edge of the screen.
In addition to above mentioned features, running Store apps now appear on the taskbar and one can pin Store apps to the taskbar without having to use third-party tools that exit for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. While this is a handy feature and most users are happy with this feature, some users might want to prevent or stop Windows Store apps appearing on the taskbar.
The problem with the above feature is that if you’re running tens of Windows Store apps such as Mail, Calendar, and Music apps in the background, all these apps appear in the taskbar and make the beautiful taskbar cluttered. As one can always access running Windows Store apps by moving the mouse cursor the top left corner of the screen or by using the Alt + Tab hotkey, it makes sense to disable the feature that shows running Windows Store apps on the taskbar.
Luckily, you don’t need to edit Windows Registry in order to stop Store apps from appearing on the taskbar. An option is present under Taskbar and navigation properties to enable or disable the feature.
NOTE 1: Please note that turning off Show Windows Store apps on the taskbar feature won’t prevent you from pinning Store apps to the taskbar and apps that have pinned to the taskbar will continue appearing on the taskbar. For example, if you have pinned only Mail app the taskbar, all Store apps other than Mail app will not appear on the taskbar.
NOTE 2: This feature is available only in Windows 8.1 Update and isn’t available in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. You can upgrade your Windows 8/8.1 installation to Windows 8.1 Update for free.
Prevent store apps appearing on the taskbar
Step 1: Switch to the desktop environment.
Step 2: Right-click on the empty space of taskbar and then click Properties to open Taskbar and Navigation properties.
Step 3: Under Taskbar tab, uncheck the option titled Show Windows Store apps on the taskbar.
Step 4: Click Apply button and close Taskbar and Navigation properties. That’s it! From here on, running Store apps will not appear on the taskbar unless you have pinned an app to the taskbar.
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