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Q. Someone tweaked my Windows XP pro system to remove the "Group similar taskbar buttons" from the taskbar (right click on program bar, click properties, then you have "Lock the taskbar", "Auto-hide the taskbar", Keep the taskbar on top of other windows", then "Group similar taskbar buttons", etc... My "Group similar taskbar buttons" has disappeared.  What is the registry setting to get that button back again?

A. The easiest way to restore the taskbar grouping option is to go to "http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_tweaks.htm" and find entry #218 in the right column (it is labeled "Restore Taskbar Grouping").  When you click on this link, you will be given the option to download a .reg file.  Once the file is downloaded, double-click on it and follow the prompts.  If you are curious what it is doing before you run it, you can right-click on the file and select Edit.

Something else that you may want to consider on this page would be #149 in the right column (it is labeled "Add Taskbar Grouping Options to the Start Menu").  This link will download another .reg file that can be handled in the same way as mentioned above.  This will give you a number of different options related to how applications are grouped on the taskbar (i.e. oldest first, application first, etc.).  It is something to play with, if you want the applications grouped differently (once grouping has been enabled again).

If you apply the second .reg file, the grouping options can be found using the following steps:

1.  Right-click on the Start button.
2.  Select the "Properties" option.
3.  On the "Start Menu" tab, click on the "Customize..." button.
4.  On the "Advanced" tab, scroll the "Start menu items:" list to the bottom.

Let me know if you need anything else.

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