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Tip of the Day
Language: VB4/32,VB5,VB6
Expertise: Intermediate
Aug 28, 1999

Hide or disable the Windows' application bar

The Windows' application bar (or Startbar) is a window like any other window in the system, so you can hide/show and enable/disable it. The only thing you need to know is that that the class name of the Start bar window is "Shell_TrayWnd" and that its window name is a null string. Here is the code that lets you do the trick:

Private Declare Function FindWindow Lib "user32" Alias "FindWindowA" (ByVal _
    lpClassName As String, ByVal lpWindowName As String) As Long
Private Declare Function ShowWindow Lib "user32" (ByVal hwnd As Long, _
    ByVal nCmdShow As Long) As Long
Private Declare Function EnableWindow Lib "user32" (ByVal hwnd As Long, _
    ByVal fEnable As Long) As Long
Private Const SW_HIDE = 0
Private Const SW_SHOW = 5

Sub ShowStartBar(ByVal bVisible As Boolean)
    Dim hWnd_StartBar As Long
    hWnd_StartBar = FindWindow("Shell_TrayWnd", "")
    If bVisible Then
        ShowWindow hWnd_StartBar, SW_SHOW
    Else
        ShowWindow hWnd_StartBar, SW_HIDE
    End If
End Sub

Sub EnableStartBar(ByVal bEnable As Boolean)
    Dim hWnd_StartBar As Long
    hWnd_StartBar = FindWindow("Shell_TrayWnd", "")
    If bEnable Then
        EnableWindow hWnd_StartBar, True
    Else
        EnableWindow hWnd_StartBar, False
    End If
End Sub
If you like concise code you can rewrite the above procedures as follows:

Sub ShowStartBar(ByVal bVisible As Boolean)
    ShowWindow FindWindow("Shell_TrayWnd", ""), IIf(bVisible, SW_SHOW, SW_HIDE)
End Sub

Sub EnableStartBar(ByVal bEnable As Boolean)
    EnableWindow FindWindow("Shell_TrayWnd", ""), bEnable
End Sub
Marco Bellinaso
 
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