Workaround for Vista Taskbar Thumbnail Previews Not Showing Correctly

The new taskbar previews in Windows Vista are pretty slick, but they seem to stop working for me after a while. This isn’t a permanent fix, but it does solve the problem on a temporary basis.

The taskbar previews are actually part of the explorer.exe process, even if they access the DWM service to get the thumbnails.

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My first test was to restart DWM, which didn’t seem to do anything. Next, I opened up Task Manager and hit End Process on the explorer.exe process.

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Now hit File \ Open on the Task Manager window, and then type in explorer into the Open box.

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Your taskbar previews should be back to normal, although you are probably slightly irritated that this was required. If you really wanted to get slick, you can create a script that automates killing and restarting explorer.exe. After a few more times of encountering this, I’m going to do it myself.

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.