Windows taskbar freezes immediately on startup

I have a slightly odd problem and I have run out of ideas to try and fix it

I recently completed a clean install of windows 7 to an existing machine which previously had no problems running Windows 7. I have made no hardware changes

The install is currently a basic one with only the following extra drivers installed - Nvidia GFX drivers (the most recent ones) Kaspersy AV, .Net v1.1 and drivers for the inbuilt soundcard - the rest is pure OS

Following a recent windows update, everytime I start my PC the task bar at bottom freezes. I can't use any of the buttons or get any response if I mouse over them - however - the rest of the desktop is working fine, and I can double clic any of the  desktop icons on my desktop without any problems. This freeze lasts indefinately - the only way to clear the freeze is to hit ctrl+alt+del. I dont even need to bring up task manager - once I hit cancel and go back into desktop the taskbar is working fine as normal

I have tried everything on the support pages to try and identify the problem, including cold boot, selective services boot, safe mode boot, diagnostic scans via CMD, divice removal, installing new drivers, re-installing W7 3 times, minimum services boot and stopping as many windows updates as I can. I have also checked for any hardware problems (none identified) and updated my board bios (Asus M4A77). I have a 900w PSU which is more than sufficient for what I am running (peak load for my hardware in 650w max)

I'm fairly certain his isnt a virus or spyware issue - I performed a DoD wipe on all the hard drives and made a clean install each time. All drives have also been scanned each time and come up clean

I'm putting this down to some windows process which seems to be unique to this machine. I have two other units (lap top and Desktop PC) both of which don't display this behaviour when running W7 (well appart from all the random "not responding" freezes that seem to be plaguing W7 at present).

Any help will be greatly appreciated - otherwise i'm dumping W7 and going back to XP


Hi Mudpukket,


Since you confirmed that the problem is happening after recent Windows update, performing System restore to the date prior to Windows Update would be a good idea. Once you do that, you can configure Windows Update to install one update at a time by turning off Automatic Updates. This will help in figuring out which update caused this problem.


Step 1: Perform system restore


For help with System restore:


System Restore: frequently asked questions


What is System Restore?


Step 2: Turn off Automatic Updates


1.     Go to start type Windows Update and press Enter.

2.     In the left pane, click Change settings.

3.     Select “Check for updates but let me choose whether to download and install them”.

4.     Click OK.



Step 3: Check for Updates.


1.    Go to Control Panel\System and Security\Windows Update

2.     Click on Check for Updates.

3.     From the list of updates, install one update at a time. Note down the KB article number so that you know which update you’re performing.

4.     Continue installing the recommended updates till the problem recurs.

5.     Post back with the KB article number so that further action can be taken.


Recommended links for windows update:


Turn automatic updating on or off


Install Windows updates


Shinmila H - Microsoft Support

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Question Info

Last updated December 23, 2020 Views 35,371 Applies to: