How to

How to fix: Windows 7 sidebar gadgets not working


This post is based upon my personal experience while solving the issue with my brother’s laptop. Yesterday my brother called me up saying that the clock, CPU meter etc that appear on right side of desktop is no longer working. I got to know that he is speaking about the sidebar gadgets. I asked him to start a remote session using our favorite client Team Viewer. While working remotely on his laptop, I had some interesting findings, which I will describe in the next paragraph.

First of all let me tell that Sidebar was introduced in Windows Vista and it holds mini applications called gadgets. These gadgets are very useful as they provide useful information like time, usage of processor/RAM etc. There are many gadgets available which serve different purpose. The technology behind sidebar gadgets in Windows Vista and Windows 7 are slightly different. in Windows Vista this was independent of User Account Control (UAC) but in Windows 7, it is tightly tied to UAC. So if you have disabled the UAC ( to prevent those unwanted pop ups about permission for each and every task you perform) than the sidebar gadgets will no longer work.  And this was the issue in case of my brother’s laptop.

To fix this issue, we can either enable the UAC which is the easiest method or do some hardcore registry editing steps that will enable the sidebar with UAC still disabled. So let’s discuss about the second method. The following steps will help you in fixing the issue:

As the following steps involve modifying the registry, we strongly suggest you to backup the registry. Techie Zone is not responsible for any issues caused to your computer after following the steps. Read our disclaimer for further details.

– Click on Start > Type regedit in the search box and hit Enter. It will open Registry editor.

– In Registry editor Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Sidebar\Settings

In the right pane, double click on DWORD value AllowElevatedProcess and set the value to 1.

– If the DWORD value is not present, right click on the right pane and click on New > DWORD

– Create a new DWORD called AllowElevatedProcess

– Set the value of the new DWORD to 1

– Close the registry editor.

If you are not confident enough to perform the steps, you can download the following ready made registry file:

AllowElevatedProcess registry tweak

Save the above file (AllowElevatedProcess.reg) on desktop, Right click on AllowElevatedProcess.reg and select merge. This will fix the issue and does not require a restart.

If you have such tips to share, please let us know and we will be glad to publish it.

In the right pane, double click on DWORD value AllowElevatedProcess