Auto Open Last Viewed Window in Windows 7 Taskbar Without Preview and Select

March 20, 2010 | Filed under Windows 7


By default Windows 7 combines and group similar taskbar buttons so that the taskbar won’t be crowded with programs. For instance, if for some reason you are not using the tabs in Internet Explorer and have multiple windows open instead, it will show only one button on the taskbar instead of all of it. This behavior can be configured in the Taskbar and Start Menu Properties by either “Always combine, hide labels”, “Combine when taskbar is full or “never combine”. For classic users they would normally prefer the good old never combine method.

The combine of buttons in taskbar is a handy feature but it takes a bit of time to select the window that you want to open. First you move the cursor to the icons on taskbar and wait for 1-2 seconds then the selection window appears. You will have to screen through which one you want to go and click on the selection. Normally after minimizing a window, 99% of the time you would want to go back to the last window. Even if you click on the button on taskbar multiple times, the windows won’t open until you select the window from the list.

Enable Last View Window

This registry settings that is shown below allows you to go back to the last window by clicking on the button on taskbar without waiting for the selection list to appear and then having to click on it. The best part is you can continue clicking on the icon to open the following windows…

1. Click the Start Menu and type regedit at the Search programs and files bar and hit enter.
2. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced
3. Right click on the right pane and select New, DWORD (32-bit) Value.
4. Name the value as LastActiveClick
5. Double click on LastActiveClick name and set the value data as 1

You can either restart your computer to take effect or simply open Task Manager, end the explorer.exe process and then go to File, select New Task (Run…) and type explorer and hit enter.

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