The date in CMOS is wrong so the cached icons aren't in date and the frozen icons are far enough out of date that they need to be refreshed - if you freeze the machine before the whole system has a chance to start up and refresh the icons then they'll go out of date. This enables Disqus, Inc. to process some of your data. Open Command Prompt as an … You can still launch the applications by clicking on these blank squares but you can not see what application you are launching as the icons are missing. The reason that you're losing icons when the battery on CMOS dies and when you freeze PCs is because the icons have a cached "life". It doesn’t really matter what Windows 10 version you are running because similar problems have been reported on both old and new OS releases – for example, some users come across the same issue on Windows 10 November 2019 Update (version 1909), which is the latest version, but I previously experienced it in the April 2018 Update as well. Several Ways to Fix Blank Taskbar Icons in Windows 10, desktop context menus that sometime appear under the taskbar. Fix invisible Taskbar icons issue. All in all, there’s no guaranteed fix for this problem because it has different causes, but the aforementioned steps could come in handy when trying to deal with it. There are several ways to (try to) fix this, and the most effective method is actually to free up disk space. In fact, rebooting the system isn’t necessary even if you want to kill the explorer process. When the disk gets full again, the bug returns, so freeing up space manually is the first thing you should try. Remove temporary or unnecessary files and reboot the device and then the taskbar icons should be there. In addition to the desktop context menus that sometime appear under the taskbar, there’s another long-time bug in Windows 10 that keeps happening on various devices out there (and which I personally experienced a few months ago): taskbar icons go blank all of a sudden. The Explorer and desktop will disappear. If they are not showing or disappear & reappear randomly, go missing or blank or get blanked out randomly in Windows 10, see this post. In many cases, a simple reboot fixes the bug, but it then keeps coming back just because the reboot itself only removes the temporary files and thus frees up some disk space. With a few commands you can rebuild the icon cache and remove your broken icons. Taskbar icons sometime go blank all of a sudden In addition to the desktop context menus that sometime appear under the taskbar, there’s another long-time bug in … I can’t confirm this, however, as I’ve never experienced problems with Drive File Stream, but if this works, make sure you drop us a line at the end of the article. Some said that the taskbar icons come back after a few minutes, but this of course doesn’t happen to everybody, and waiting is clearly not a solution. In some cases, a system restart isn’t even required, as the icons return following an automatic refresh. Windows 10 comes with icon settings that you can tweak under Settings. The fastest way to fix icons missing in Windows 10 is via the Command Prompt. There are multiple ways to do this, and one of them comes to this (press enter after each command): Removing certain software could also help, as some users claim that Google Drive File Stream is known for causing such issues. This is a workaround that forces the taskbar to reload the icons that it must display, and doing this is obviously much faster and more convenient than rebooting the computer because you’re not losing anything and you can continue working after the problem is fixed. Right-click on “Windows Explorer” in the list and choose “End task” from the shortcut menu. When you are running out of disk space, the icon cache is no longer correctly loaded, so make sure that you have at least 1GB of free storage on your device. These are for default desktop icons like Recycle bin and so on. The typical issue is, on Windows 10 taskbar you will see blank black squares instead of applications icons. If this bug occurs, the taskbar icons themselves are not removed, and you can still interact with them, only that instead of the icon what you see is blank taskbar space. Exit Task Manager and make sure that no other application is running except for the command prompt window. 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