Show the Desktop in Windows 7

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This is a total "Why the heck didn’t I know this???" thing.  Since I upgraded to Windows 7, I’ve been manually minimizing all my windows to get to the desktop and each time cursing those Windows devils for removing the Show Desktop icon from the Windows Quick Launch.  The one that I’ve been used to using since, what, Windows 2000?

Turns out there was something right under my nose all along. I clicked on it by accident today and couldn’t figure out why my desktop suddenly was there.

Take a look at the far right of the Windows 7 taskbar, and you’ll see a little rectangle:


Yeah, that’s obvious, right? Click on it, and you’ll get your desktop.  Click again, and you’ll return all your windows to their prior state.

This one is just a huge "Duh" for me, but I figure I may not be the only one who missed the memo, thus the post.



  1. Another tip: If you hover over with your cursor the Show Desktop, it will hide all your windows. Move your mouse and the windows are back. It’s the small things that make Win7 an awesome OS

    • Now I understand why that was happening “randomly” to me. Seriously, was there a memo that I didn’t get? Probably just a RTFM moment.


  2. How funny – I logged a bug about this during the Win 7 beta period stating that this functionality wasn’t obvious. Other beta testers and (obviously) Microsoft didn’t agree! Now I feel vindicated. :-)

    Thanks Marc!


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