XP and Vista: Put or Remove the Bluetooth Icon in the System Tray

   Posted by David Kirk in Windows

Having quick access to your bluetooth connection is very handy. Other people probably do not like it there. Here is how to control the behavior of your bluetooth icon in your system tray.

Now that you know how to transfer files to and from your bluetooth phone, you may wish to have quick access to your bluetooth devices. Here’s how to place the bluetooth icon in the system tray.

    1. Click Start
    2. Click Control Panel
    3. Click Bluetooth Devices
    4. Click the Options tab
    5. Click Show the Bluetooth Icon in the notification area
    6. Click OK

If you ever want to remove it, just repeat the process and uncheck the box.

Alternatively, in Vista you can just type Bluetooth in the Start Search textbox in the Start Menu and select Bluetooth Devices from there.


About David Kirk

David Kirk is one of the original founders of tech-recipes and is currently serving as editor-in-chief. Not only has he been crafting tutorials for over ten years, but in his other life he also enjoys taking care of critically ill patients as an ICU physician.
View more articles by David Kirk

The Conversation

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  • Phil

    If this still makes the bluetooth icon reappear try the following:

    I actually disabled BTTray.exe from ever starting doing this. I would do everything possible but that icon would keep reappearing.

    Click on start and open up all programs. Navigate to the startup folder and delete the shortcut for BTTray.exe. Hit ctrl-shift-esc and pull up the task manager. Navigate to the processes and end BTTray and the problem is solved.

  • Kevin

    What if you don’t have Bluetooth connection in your communication folder? Can you download it somewhere? Running XP and its not there…

    Thanks, Teddy

  • Quincy

    ^^ same problem here, only with vista =D

  • Eric Aunan

    When I first received my laptops AND when I recently rebuilt (Laptop2 – Restore Factory Settings) one of them, the Bluetooth desktop icon and its system tray icon would NOT go away.

    To remove the desktop icon, I used the following information:

    Link: http://translocator.ws/2005/10/23/removing-the-bluetooth-desktop-icon/3 which states:

    1. Login as an administrator.
    2. Open the Registry Editor (Windows Key + R; Run “regedit.exe”).
    3. Navigate to
    4. Expand NameSpace and look for a key named {6af09ec9-b429-11d4-a1fb-0090960218cb}. Verify the key’s default value is My Bluetooth Places, and then delete it. Note: You may want to backup this key before deleting it.
    5. Refresh the desktop (Click on the desktop, Press F5).

    To remove the system tray icon (bttray.exe), I had to use Toni Art’s EasyCleaner Startup Inspector…no other method could identify the bttray.exe as a start-up file. I removed the entry and the icon went away.

    This link discusses bttray.exe http://www.auditmypc.com/process/bttray.asp – but removing it from start-up is not a problem.

    Please note: Many people experience this problem; however in researching it, most have an “Options” tab from Control Panel  Bluetooth Devices that allows on-off indication of an icon in the system tray. The T61 from the factory and subsequent re-install via Restore Factory Settings does NOT provide this…instead in Control Panel there is a Bluetooth Configuration (not Bluetooth Devices) which does NOT have an “Options” tab at all. And therefore, NO toggling of the system tray icon.

    Additionally, a right-click on the system tray icon produces no option pertaining to the system tray icon. More options are available via right-click when the Bluetooth Radio is turned-on (via Fn+F5), but none that allow mastery of the system tray icon.

    One idea researched was to right click on the Task Bar Properties, click Hide Inactive Icons  Customize and then uncheck the Bluetooth entry. But I did NOT want this method – I did not want the process executed and then hidden – I wanted the tray icon to NOT run. So, as I said above, I removed it via EasyCleaner from Startup.

    (…Toni Art’s EasyCleaner http://personal.inet.fi/business/toniarts/ecleane.htm – I found this by accident several months ago, it is a great tool…I’m not associated with Toni Art’s, I think he’s in the Netherlands, but what a great tool – and it actually works…)

  • still searching

    Doesn’t work for me: I don’t have “Bluetooth Devices” listed in the control panel, only Bluetooth Configuration (which has neither an Options tab nor anything to click about the notfication area. :o(

  • Rev

    How can I find bluetooth connection wizard on my pc? i cant able to find even bluetooth is switched on

    • Ravi

      Just found out.. search for BTTray.exe and double click it.. it will appear in your system trey.

      • Thanks, I’ve followed every set of instructions found on the net & finally someone had an answer that worked.

      • Skip

        Thank you… this info is very elusive. Worked perfectly.

      • D Syverson

        Perfect thanx. Didn’t work at first, but went ot TASK MANAGER, closed both BTT items, then re-clicked BTTray.exe. Perfect. Thanks again.

      • Maurakasu

        Thanks Ravi, yours and the follow up from D Syverson worked!

      • kamrul

        Thanks ravi.>

  • The instructions 4 showing the Bluetooth icon in sys tray don’t work. My Bluetooth Devices (Configuration) doesn’t have an Options tab & I see no “Show the Bluetooth Icon” selection anywhere.

  • sandeey

    it dosent works. no icon is placed as options are not shown when i click on bluetooth devices in control pannel. pls help me

  • Sdxt

    I was not able to find the Bluetooth icon on the system tray. Thanks to this post, all I did was run BTTray on run command and it worked.


    I found a few registry keys that can enable and disable the bluetooth icon on systray, hope this will be useful.

    Launch Registry Editor, goto:

    Edit “LaunchBtTrayAtWindowStartup”:
    0x00000001 would enable bluetooth tray
    0x00000000 would disable bluetooth tray

    Other useful keys to edit:

  • dmr

    I use windows xp and there is no bluetooth devices in control panel???

  • riya

    i didnt find BTTray evn on searching.. wat do i do

  • Urna

    thank you, all those who suggested the BTTray option, thanks a lot!

  • Urna

    @riya, search for Bluetooth and then click on ‘bluetooth software’ from among the search results. It should have BTTray in it. You have to double-click on that.

  • Charlotte P

    “Ravi said on February 5, 2010

    Just found out.. search for BTTray.exe and double click it.. it will appear in your system trey.”

    Thankyou so much Ravi! I’ve been trying to find a solution to this problem for months and this has actually worked. Amazing! Thankyou 😀

  • Deep

    Just go to C:\Program Files\WIDCOMM\Bluetooth Software and open BTTray file.

    The problem will be solved….

    Take care

  • adhie70

    thanks 🙂

  • sma

    My bluetooth icon is no longer appear in my computer I don’t knw what happen