How to Enable Windows Media Player Taskbar Toolbar in Windows 7

If you have used past versions of Windows, you are probably familiar with the Windows Media Player taskbar toolbar (or taskband). The taskbar toolbar used to be triggered whenever Media Player was minimized and provided a quick and convenient way to control playback. Unfortunately, this feature was dumped in Windows Media Player 12, which ships with Windows 7. However, Justin from WinMatrix has found a way to enable Windows Media Player toolbar even in Windows 7.


  • You will first need to get a copy of the %programfiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll file from a WMP 11 installation. You can obtain it from your friend’s system or you can use the download links provided at the end of this post. Remember that you must copy from a system with the same OS architecture (i.e. 32 bit or 64 bit).
  • Paste this file in the %programfiles%\Windows Media Player directory.
  • Type services.msc in the Start Menu and hit Enter. Ensure that Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service is stopped.
  • Start command prompt as administrator by typing cmd in the Start Menu and pressing Ctrl+Shift+Enter.
  • Type regsvr32 “%programfiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll” and press Enter.
  • Restart the Windows Media Player Network Sharing service (if you had stopped it earlier on).
  • Windows-Media-Player-12

  • Run Windows Media Player and minimize it. Right click on an empty spot in the taskbar and select Toolbars –> Windows Media Player. Ignore the warning and you should get the Windows Media Player taskbar toolbar.

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Pallab De

Pallab De is a blogger from India who has a soft spot for anything techie. He loves trying out new software and spends most of his day breaking and fixing his PC. Pallab loves participating in the social web; he has been active in technology forums since he was a teenager and is an active user of both twitter (@indyan) and facebook .

  • Wucca

    Since this seemed to work, I thought it was awesome and really appreciated it, but it turns out this doesn't work properly, specifically you can't watch videos in the mini-mode, which was the only reason for me to get it back.

  • While true that the video doesn't play and there's some occasional stickiness when moving from the full view to the task bar, this workaround was simple, clear, and exactly what I was looking for. I can't believe they dropped this feature, so it's great that I found these directions and now can easily manage the basics of my music without having to navigate back and forth through windows. Thanks!

  • Daz

    Getting the toolbar to play in mini mode is a little tricky, but possible.

    After you load windows media player and minimize it then enable the toolbar, move the mouse over it then left click on the description the pops up above the toolbar.

    Now move the mouse over the mediaplayer symbole on the left side of the toolbar and left click once.

    Once the media player shows up close it with the x in the upper right corner or with the alt+F4 command.

    The video should then pause and transfer to the black window that appeared behind the description above the toolbar.

    now just click the play symbol in the middle.

    if you want to get the player back to normal without loosing your place, left click on the media player symbol to the left of the toolbar to make the media player appear.

    Next disable the toolbar the same way you enabled it (right clicking an empty area of the taskbar and going to "Toobars" then clicking on windows "Media Player Player") and the video should return to the way it orignally was.

    Whatever you do, do not right click on the toolbar because I found that the popup menu does not disappear and the taskbar freezes on the next click untill you disable wmplayer.exe process which makes it so you have to restart the video and disable the taskbar then reenable it with the media player minimized to set things back to where they were.

    to disable the wmplayer.exe process press ctrl+alt=delete and click task manager, then go the the process tab, left click on any process once and type wmplayer quickly (or search for the lising manually). once found press delete (or right click the process and select end process), ignore the warning, and click end process.

  • Charlie

    I would love this to work but having issues.
    I have followed your instructions seemingly to the letter, but I think it is trying to load the directory without any backslashes; so to speak. The error message is:

    The module “C:\Program FilesWindows Media Playerwmpband.dll” failed to load

    Make sure the binary is stored at the specified path or debug it to check for problems with the binary or dependant .DLL files

    The specified module could not be found.

    • neferetiabet

      Make sure you put the dll in program files and not in program files x86 and then try. If not use the cmd to regsvr32 “c:\Program Files\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll” This worked for me after a while getting the same message as above. Other thing I have heard is check that the ” are straight and not curly if that makes sense! x

  • jamel

    followed everything word for word even got a succeeded screen after typing regsvr32 “c:\Program Files\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll” in the command prompt but after running wmp and minimizing it it still doest show up in toolbars