When you start your Windows Vista computer, the Volume Control icon may be missing from the Notification area. Also, in the Taskbar properties – Notification tab, the checkboxes for Clock, Volume and Network may remain grayed out.
Simply logging off and logging on to your user account helps in most cases, if this is not caused by a Policy setting. Alternately, you may try terminating and restarting Explorer.exe to see if that works. If that does not help (and your computer is not part of a domain), use the instructions below to unlock the Notification area icons.
Download trayicons.reg and save to Desktop. Right-click on the file and choose Merge. Click Yes when prompted for confirmation.
Note that the previously mentioned REG file removes the following Registry-based Policy values in your system:
Additionally, it clears the IconStreams & PastIconsStream values as suggested in Microsoft KB945011.
Important: After running the .REG file, you need to terminate and restart Explorer.exe for the change to take effect.
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Ramesh Srinivasan founded Winhelponline.com back in 2005. He is passionate about Microsoft technologies and has a vast experience in the ITeS industry — delivering support for Microsoft's consumer products. He has been a Microsoft MVP [2003 to 2012] who contributes to various Windows support forums.