One day, my Windows Taskbar simply disappeared. No icons, no Start button, nothing. I can’t figure out where it has gone. How can I get it back?
First of all, please note that although the task bar normally appears at the bottom of the screen, it’s possible that you have moved your Windows Taskbar to another edge of your screen. It may seem obvious, but look at all four edges of the screen before you give up. It’s really easy to inadvertently drag the Taskbar to an edge other than the bottom—all you have to do is click and drag on the Taskbar, and it happily obliges by moving to the edge you drag it to. (If you want to disable this behavior, right-click on the Taskbar and select “Lock Taskbar” or “Lock All Taskbars” in Windows 8). If you have dragged the Taskbar to the wrong edge, you can simply drag it back down to the bottom.
But, our gut feel is that this isn’t your problem, and that you’re really not seeing a Taskbar at all. The next step is to determine if you have enabled auto-hiding for the Taskbar. If so, it retracts into the edge of the screen whenever you’re not using it. Try pressing Ctrl+Esc (that is, the Control key and the Escape key at the same time)—this should display the Taskbar, even if you have turned on its Auto-hide behavior. (You can also simply press the Windows key on your keyboard, if you have this key available.) If this keystroke displays the Taskbar, right-click on it, select Properties, and then uncheck the “Auto-hide the taskbar” option. You can find many online articles on this topic (clearly, it happens to a lot of people); we found this one useful: http://goo.gl/FXa2Ya.
If all these suggestions don’t help, you may need to seek professional computer help to either reset Windows or reinstall—hopefully, that won’t be required!