Microsoft Security Essentials Icon Doesn't Appear in the System Tray

You can display any program's icon in the system tray through its Properties menu.
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The Microsoft Security Essentials installation process doesn't necessarily configure your computer to display its icon in the system tray. If you want to see the icon in your task bar, you'll have to open its properties and set it to display the Microsoft Security Essentials icon instead of showing only system notifications.

Click the Start Menu and type "Microsoft Security Essentials" in the Start Menu's search bar.

Click Microsoft Security Essentials from the search results to make sure Microsoft Security Essentials is running.

Right click on the system tray and select "Properties."

Click "Customize notification icons" in the window that pops up and then locate Microsoft Security Essentials from the list of applications.

Click on the drop-down menu next to Microsoft Security Essential and select "Show icon and notifications." Click the "OK" button to save your changes.

  • The information in this article applies to Windows 7 and some earlier versions of Windows. Windows 8 uses Windows Defender rather than Microsoft Security Essentials.

Micah McDunnigan has been writing on politics and technology since 2007. He has written technology pieces and political op-eds for a variety of student organizations and blogs. McDunnigan earned a Bachelor of Arts in international relations from the University of California, Davis.