Group icons on the Windows Taskbar with Taskbar groups

Martin Brinkmann
Dec 21, 2020
Software, Windows

Taskbar groups is a new open source program for Microsoft Windows devices to create groups of icons on the taskbar. The main idea of the program is to bundle multiple shortcuts on the taskbar to save space on it. While that may not be required on large resolution systems, it may still make sense on these for productivity purposes.

First thing you need to do is download the latest version of Taskbar groups from the project's GitHub website. You find the source code files on the project site as well in case you want to check it out or compile the program from scratch.

Extract the Taskbar groups archive once it has been downloaded and run the executable file that it contains from the folder the contents got extracted to.

The interface is basic and simple to use. Select the "add taskbar group" option to create a new group for the taskbar.

You may name the group and set a group icon for it. All that is left to do then is to add program shortcuts to the group. The process is a bit complicated as you need to select exe file types as these are the only ones supported by the program. Use the file browser to pick the executable files from the system, e.g. portable programs, to add them to the group.

An option to select programs from the Start Menu or existing taskbar icons would be helpful; maybe that is coming in a future release.

Hit the save button once you have added the shortcuts to save the configuration. You may create additional groups and associate different shortcuts with these. All data is saved to the program folder; it may be a good idea to move the application to a secure place on the device to avoid deleting it and its configuration accidentally as all shortcut groups are deleted in this case.

The icons are not added to the taskbar automatically at this point. You need to left-click on the title in the program interface to open the new shortcut folder in Explorer. In Explorer, right-click on the folder and select the "pin to taskbar" option to add it to the taskbar.

A left-click on the new taskbar icon displays all available shortcuts, and you may launch programs individually with a click on the application icon.

Taskbar groups supports all taskbar layouts, e.g. on the side or top, and also multi-monitor setups.

What is the purpose of the program?

Taskbar groups has several purposes. Besides using it to bundle applications of the same kind, e.g. web browsers, image or video editing tools, or games, it may be helpful to bundle portable programs to the taskbar.

While you can ad individual portable programs to the taskbar, using a program that makes available a group may be usefult o some users.

Windows users who run low-resolution devices, e.g. a Surface Go device like I do, may also benefit from this as the taskbar has limited space on these devices.

Closing Words

Taskbar groups is a straightforward application that works well. It could use a number of usability improvements such as making it easier to add programs from the taskbar or Start to list, or adding an option to run all of the grouped programs with a click.

Now You: how many icons have you pinned to the taskbar? (via Deskmodder, Bleeping Computer)

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  1. Anonymous said on March 9, 2023 at 1:52 pm

    Does it come back after every “moment” update?

  2. Baloney said on March 9, 2023 at 2:23 pm

    Yeah right.. Like this is going to stop defender from running =) This is comedy gold right here.

  3. Anonymous said on March 9, 2023 at 3:25 pm

    no ‘about the author’ paragraph?

  4. Gregory said on March 9, 2023 at 4:19 pm

    For permanent disable defender is if removed complete from system no just change permission folder.

    Just this is joke.

  5. moi said on March 9, 2023 at 5:57 pm

    simpler, load Autoruns (SysInternals)
    – filter “Defender”
    – untag all entries
    – reboot
    nothing has changed since my 1st modification years ago

  6. John G. said on March 9, 2023 at 6:32 pm

    I wouldn’t disable Defender imho, it has too many hidden roots inside Windows itself. One time I tried to uninstall it using brute force scripts and then the Onedrive feature stopped working definitely. A reinstallation was needed and since those times I prefer to maintain Defender untouched. It’s a better method to install another antivirus and it will disable Defender in a safer and easier mode (e.g., Avast is the best in this way, and also Panda Cloud Free is good too).

    1. Tweakmaster said on September 29, 2023 at 9:57 am

      U are just * [Editor: removed] thats the problem ;p first of all u shall always debloat windows u shall have max 65 services with your drivers for pc and windows own servs. You didnt know what that script did

  7. boris said on March 10, 2023 at 12:19 am

    You can not stop defender from running in background or remove it without some penalty. All you can do is to limit telemetry.

    1. TelV said on March 10, 2023 at 4:52 pm


      It’s probably Smartscreen which is preventing WD from being disabled. Get rid of that and the problem should be solved:

  8. hoho said on March 10, 2023 at 1:47 pm

    Remove Windows and go for Linux.

    1. basingstoke said on March 10, 2023 at 2:51 pm

      Linux sucks dude. Besides it’s not comparable to Windows, these OSes are in different classes entirely.

      1. Derp said on March 10, 2023 at 4:36 pm

        I use Linux as my daily driver. It’s far more stable than Windows. When’s the last time you used Linux, 2010?

      2. Bromosexual said on March 11, 2023 at 2:04 am


        You’re right, dude. Bro, linux is just a bunch of code that starts before the OS, dude. Brobrodude, that shit ain’t even got emojis, dudebrodudeman! Dudebro, it’s no way near as cool as Windows with its hardcoded abilities to make money off the user, bro. Yo brodude man, you’re the coolest dude ever man, bro. Dude.

      3. basingstoke said on August 16, 2023 at 7:20 pm

        Lol what? Windows 7 doesn’t come with any Emojis

  9. TelV said on March 10, 2023 at 4:46 pm

    Download Autoruns and remove the checkmark from Windows Defender. It doesn’t remove it, but it will never run.

  10. Simon said on March 10, 2023 at 8:37 pm

    Just use “Defender Control”:

    Per this video,
    it also works on Windows 11 too…

  11. Someone said on March 10, 2023 at 9:26 pm

    Win Defender, is completly the most succesful free-built in antivirus of Microsoft. Really nice product. Saved my ass a lot of times. Has updated malware database, completly strong defence
    from whatever smart screen disables. Or if you want better and more upgrated (paid) program,
    you can go further. But defender is always on your side.

  12. CalixtoWVR1 said on March 10, 2023 at 10:03 pm

    Why would one disable Windows (or Microsoft) Defender in the first place?. I consider this to be playing with fire big time. Everybody knows that if one is using another A-V, Defender will be disabled on its own and won’t be in one’s way.

  13. Ed D said on March 10, 2023 at 11:09 pm

    Why would I want to disable Windows Defender in the first place? It’s a great anti virus in my opinion. Been using it since Windows 8 and and never had a problem or a virus. Why mess with a good thing, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

  14. owl said on August 17, 2023 at 1:57 am

    How a ridiculous article!
    I am thoroughly stunned.

    Why Should You Disable First-Party Windows Defender?
    I can only think that it is “malice or perversely intention (want you to buy a third-party AV where you can expect a back margin)” to guide invalidation without showing the premise.
    No sane company will use third-party closed source programs (such as AV).

    As I thought, “Ghacks Technology News” seems to be coming to downfall.

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