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Remove the Java Icon From the System Tray

Why does every single application insist on installing a completely useless icon into the system tray? It would be one thing if it performed some function, but it doesn’t do anything that you can’t do from your control panel. The least they could have done is have a dialog during the setup process that says “Would you like a useless icon in your system tray?” 

Anyway, let’s get to removing that Java icon… if the icon is currently visible, you can just right-click it and open the Control Panel from there, but you’ll get a warning dialog when running Vista.

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If the icon isn’t currently visible, you can still get to the Java control panel by going to the Vista (or XP) Control Panel and looking for the Java icon. On Vista, you’ll have to first click on Additional Options:

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And then click on Java:

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Now go to the Advanced tab, click on Miscellaneous and then uncheck “Place java icon in system tray”

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Much better.

Note that the currently displayed icon won’t go away immediately, you’ll have to right-click and choose Hide.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 07/16/07

Comments (12)

  1. Shawn

    I have two system alert shields in my syte

  2. Sorry for the late response

    what if that doesn’t work? the setting stays the same, but the icon reappears sporadically.

  3. mike

    If you delete the tray icon, is Java still running? I want to know how to stop it after it opens for a single app.I see no way to make it actually exit, or turn off. It seems to use a lot of resources.

  4. ivan_novik

    Mike, I’ve got the same problem, and so far, no solution to it.
    We require Java in order to run one application only. After that application is run, there is no way to close Java, i.e. there is no exit or close button anywhere in or on the Java console. It sits there forever afterwards, chewing up resources.
    The only way to exit from the Java application is to re-boot the server. Is there any other way to close the damn thing?

  5. base

    The icon is not going away.
    The checkbox is de-selected but the icon keeps reapearing whenever firefox is in use!

  6. rohtash sinhg

    yes, you can remove the processes from the task manager by their PID using java.

    use like this

    Runtime.getRuntime().exec(“TASKKILL /F /IM notepad.exse”);

  7. anonyomous

    It seems like this article needs to be updated. As of Java Runtime Environment Version 6.0 Update 14 (and even some updates preceding 14) when one unchecks “Place java icon in system tray”, it does not save the change.

  8. anonyomous

    Update: I wrote that this article may need to be updated (see previous post), but I now discovered that if one runs the Java Control Panel (javacpl.exe) as an administrator and then checks “Place Java icon in system tray”, the change will go into effect.

  9. me

    thanks!

  10. me

    It didn’t save on my system for some reason. Could be the Vista UAC security getting in the way.
    I did get it to go away by running the .bat from here:
    http://www.nerdscene.com/2009/03/26/36/

  11. me 2

    Bump to a very old thread.
    For some reason the bad behavior described by “anonyomous” just made an appearance on my machine running Win 7 Pro 64 bit. This was with a fresh reinstall of the OS, and Java 6 update 25.

    Previous version updates on the old OS install did not exhibit this behavior.

    The solution tendered worked flawlessly.

    Thank you

  12. Michael Scalfaro

    unchecking java icon in system tray does not work—can someone help me step by step to get that icon gone?

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