How to show your Network connection icon in the taskbar notification area

If you want to see the Network connections icon on your windows taskbar notification area, it is very easy to do. It can be quite handy having the Network connections icon there for you to see as it will let you know if there is a problem with your connection. If you have a wireless network connection you will see the same icon pictured left, but there will be wireless signals coming from it.

one more screenshot

In windows Seven it is still in the notification area as you can see in the screenshot below. You can also click on this icon to see what networks are available and which one you are connected to. You can also click on the link to go to the network and sharing center.


Why do you need a network connections icon in your taskbar notification area?

There are some great benefits to having a network connections icon in your notification area in your taskbar. The Network connections icon will let you know if you have low connectivity, an Ip address conflict, or even if you have no internet connection at all. For example a yellow triangle appears over your network connection icon in the task bar when there is an Ip Address conflict or a bad internet connection. If you have a low wireless signal a balloon message will stem form the network connection icon notifying you of the problem.


How to show your Network connection icon in the taskbar?

  1. Go to the start menu and choose control panel. Then double click on the Network Connections icon.
  2. Now choose your internet connection adapter. I am using LAN ( Local Area Connection) which is with a Ethernet cable. Yours may be a wireless adapter. Right Click on your connection and choose properties from the menu.
  3. On the general tab of the Local Area connection properties there is a box that says Show icon in notification area when connected. Tick this box to show the network connections icon in the taskbar.


Watch this video tutorial on how to add a network connections icon to your taskbar

This video shows how to put a network connection icon in your notification area in Windows XP. It also shows you all the benefits to having a network connections icon available in the taskbar.

See more Networking tips.

How to put a network connections icon in the Notification area in Windows Vista?

If you go to your connection properties in Windows Vista there will not be a box to tick to enable the network connection icon. If you want to place a network connection icon in the taskbar in Windows Vista then follow these steps:

Go to the start icon in The left corner of the Windows Vista desktop.

  1. Right click on it for a menu to appear.
  2. Choose Properties from the menu
  3. The taskbar and start menu properties will appear.
  4. Go to the notification tab.
  5. Tick the box next to network to show the network connections icon.
  6. Press apply and Ok.



  1. Ed K says

    Hi,I have windows xp 2005, I am not getting any display of local area connnections at all when I go into local area screen,it shows nothing but a white page,also no icons in the lower right bottom of my tray? I have tried many things from peoples suggestions online as well had office max on line tech support which they took control on my desktop could not figure out either?I had even taken my pc into staples they couldn’t figure out what is going on?what do you think it could possible be?hope you may have the answere to this very frustraighting issue that I had spent hours on researching & trying to correct,thank you….Ed

  2. Van says

    Hey thanks…I’ve worked AT Microsoft for 7 years, and in the IT world for 15 and could not find this freaking setting in an old Windows OS… :o)

  3. Daniel says

    Thank you very much, I use moderm I followed the same procedure it work and network icon now is visible, show 3.6Mb/min speed but is not as fast as its number because only to open this page it took about 10minutes. if any body can help send help to my email address.

  4. sreejith says

    my system not showing any network connection or windows firewall settings.. i cannot access to that.. wt to do

  5. Cathleen says

    The Network box for me was grey and I couldn’t check the box but restarting explorer.exe really did help.
    Thanks a lot for the tutorial!

  6. Ellen says

    Perry— I have having the same problem. I am not able to check off the option to show the network connection at all times. It is gray and will not let me check it. I am running an HP laptop and I am the administrator on this computer. Please Help!

  7. Perry says

    I tried to put the wireless icon in the notification area, but the little box in the notification area of the Taskbar and Start menu Properties is gray and will not accept a check mark. Any ideas? I am loged on as a Guest user, using Vista.

  8. Joan says

    thank you so much i was about to pull my hair out. It was so simple the way you displayed it.

  9. Ron says

    The above tip is fine for those running WinXP but the whole point to this is suppose to make it easier for you to “Hover” your mouse cursor over the tray icon and see a baloon tip pop up showing the connection speed.

    Win-7 will not do this, it will only tell you that you are conected but NOT what the speed is.

  10. Judy Brown says

    My icon was working very well until few days ago. Last week played solitaire with internet on. I am on dial up site. Have a Dell Windows Vista laptop. When I followed your web info it said my radio is disabled. What does that mean and how do I fix it??? Thank you, Judy Brown

  11. Ron says

    The above post showing how to show system status for the network in the tray does not show how to make it hapen in Win-7.

    Can you update this?