Once your computer’s task-bar is filled with multiple Software, you start looking for options to minimize few software to system tray. Minimizing application to system tray allows to keep your application running while keeping task bar clean.
There are few software which has got property to minimize them to tray such as Microsoft Outlook, but most of the others do not have. Let’s checkout how can we minimize any Windows software to system tray.
Here its divided in three categories – By using Software settings, by using plugins and by using third party software.
1) Use Software Settings –
These software have settings which can be used to minimize them to system tray. This is the most convenient and reliable way.
A) Outlook –
Once you open Outlook you will see Outlook icon in System Tray. Right click on icon and from the context menu, tick the ‘Hide When Minimized’ option.
B) Foxit Reader –
File Menu > Preferences > In General Tab you will find ‘Minimize To System Tray’ checkbox.
C) Maxthon Cloud Browser –
Options > Advance.. > Minimize To System Tray or Close To System Tray.
2) Use Plugins –
These applications (primarily browsers) allow you to install plugins, which will add this functionality to it. However its not very reliable because sometimes a new version of software become incompatible with existing plugin.
A) Mozilla Firefox –
All old add-ons have stopped working. Only working plugin for Firefox version 28.0 is MinimizeToTray Revived.
B) Mozilla Thunderbird –
Same ‘MinimizeToTray Revived‘ is available for Mozilla Thunderbird also.
C) Google Chrome –
‘Minimize Chrome To Tray‘ extension can do the magic for Chrome browser.
3) Use Third Party Tools –
There are software available which exclusively give functionality to minimize any running software to system tray. Only time such application will fail is when you upgrade your Operating System. So make sure that minimizer utility is compatible with your existing OS.
A) 4t Tray Minimizer –
4t Tray Minimizer provides many features. You can minimize apps to try, you can make a window transparent, you can choose to keep a window always on top and you can also roll-up the window leaving only its Title bar on the screen.
While installation 4t Tray asks you to add additional buttons to title bar or you can choose key shortcuts. User can also choose to right click on minimize button and it will be minimized to tray. If you right click anywhere on title bar you get 4t Tray in context menu also.
Overall 4t Tray is a feature rich utility and it also has got a paid version. 4t Tray Minimizer can be downloaded from here.
B) RB Tray –
It is a tiny tool of size only 45KB and does its work perfectly. It does not even need to be installed, just run the RBTray.exe and right click on any software’s minimize button. It will be minimized to the System Tray.
No further explanation required for this tiny free tool. Get RB Tray software here.
C) TrayIt –
TrayIt is a little utility which runs without installation. However it seems to be outdated and did not work the way its mentioned in its help file. TrayIt help file says that you can press Shift key while minimizing any window and it will be minimized to tray but it did not work that way.
However the only way to get it working was through TrayIt Window. TrayIt lists all the currently open applications and you can right click on any of them and choose ‘Hide Window’.
So TrayIt works but not as efficiently as it should be. Official website of TrayIt is not working anymore, but you can download it from Softpedia.
Let me know if you are using some other trick to clean your system task-bar.