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Michael Greene


How to bring back your stock Vista sidebar gadgets

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 I long ago deleted the stock RSS gadget in Vista since I wasn't using it.  Just the other day I decided I wanted it back for a special application.  All is not lost.  Those gadgets are stored in Program Files, presumably just to prevent people like me from doing permanent damage.  I found the following step in the online help articles to recover the gadget.

Note: If you uninstall gadgets that came with Windows, you can restore them to the Gadget Gallery by following these steps:

a. Open Windows Sidebar properties by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking Control Panel, clicking Appearance and Personalization, and then clicking Windows Sidebar Properties.

b. Click Restore gadgets installed with Windows.

Windows Vista Help: Customize Windows Sidebar

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  • Thanks a lot!!! This was my first hit when googling the web to find a solution to get back my stock gadget! I have uninstalled it by accident...


    Tom Staal

    The Netherlands

  • "Restore gadgets installed with Windows" is grayed out in my Maintenance tab. Now what?

  • It is only grayed out for me after I click it, or if I return to the UI after the gadgets have already been restored.  If you click the plus sign at the top of the sidebar, do you see the gadgets on the next screen?

  • My "restore...." button is grayed out as well.  How do I make it so I can click it??

  • My restore icons button is also grayed out i cannot click on it and when i go to current icons it's empty? what to i do so that i can click on the restore icons tab?

  • If you can't get your taskbar back:

    1. Look at the bottom right of the taskbar where all the icons of the running programs are located.

    2. Right-click "Windows Sidebar".

    3. Click "Properties".

    4. Check "Sidebar is always on top of other windows".

    (After the sidebar opens)

    5. Uncheck "Sidebar is always on top of other windows".

    That's it! Your sideback should be back to normal!

  • ...thank you! thank you! thank you!

    What a retarded way.  I went all over Microsoft's site looking to download the Stock widg...err gadget and got everything else, except the original one.

    You'd think they'd have on the add gadget window an option to select which icons to resore/add.

  • I found out that you can restore the sirebar by deleting the settings.ini file in your user folder.

    However my problem is, that when I click on "Add gadget..." in the menu or on the little + on top - nothing happens. Absolutely nothing.

    Anyone knows why?

  • I have done something to deleter the gadgets.  For example, I have a round circle where the clock should be with a red hand at 12; the weather is just a white rectangle with an "i" in corner.

  • Thank you! Before I found your solution, I found a whole bunch of useless answers to the problem.  THANKS AGAIN!

  • Thanks this was so helpful! :-)

  • The solution above about always on top did not work for me,  vista sp2

  • Thanks this was very helpful. Your explanations were so clear.

  • I've read all the above, tried everything and still nothing works. What is so difficult about this. Pretty dumb Microsoft programming, or do they delight is making things so stupidly difficult

  • WOW......that worked perfectly. Its back......Thanks Michael Greene

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