Microsoft has been working on returning the “Never combine” feature for the Taskbar to ungroup apps and show labels again on Windows 11.
First introduced on Windows 7, “Never combine” was a Taskbar option that allowed users to restore the legacy behavior of non-grouping the same app under one icon. But users today criticize the Taskbar experience as they don’t have the option to ungroup taskbar icons.
Microsoft bringing back some classic Taskbar features to Windows 11
According to a short video posted by @thebookisclosed on Twitter, Microsoft is developing a way to bring back the show labels for apps in the Taskbar and the “Never combine,” a new toggle that would let you ungroup icons/apps on the Taskbar. These features will work exactly like they used to on Windows 10 and prior versions of the OS.
Taskbar item labels (as well as ungrouped items) are indeed on their way to Windows 11 ✨
Here's a demo of the current state of the feature, definitely further along than last time we looked at it
Fiddled with a few settings in the video so you can see how it reacts pic.twitter.com/7A7H0MWpJV
— Albacore (@thebookisclosed) April 19, 2023
While Microsoft did add the ability to show running apps with labels and without grouping them as part of the Taskbar experience in a previous version of the operating system. However, on Windows 11, we were introduced to a revamped version of the Taskbar that didn’t include many of the legacy features, including the ability never to combine buttons or show labels.
So the ability to never combine and show app labels from prior versions of the OS (Windows 10) has been one of the highly requested features for many classic Taskbar users who prefer using the old-school way of manually managing the position of running apps on the Taskbar, as well as being able to show labels of running apps.
While this may be a complex process, and bringing the same functionality will surely take some time, however, this does not mean that every legacy feature will come back to the Taskbar.
Microsoft is expected to bring back some of the legacy features but other features might not be part of the Taskbar again, such as the ability to move the Taskbar to the top or side of the screen.
Furthermore, the “Never combine” and show app labels features are in the works and they will likely be showing up in an official Windows 11 update later in the year.