Notification panel

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The notification panel - since Windows XP also the notification area or in English Taskbar Notification Area (and also briefly TNA called) - is an area on the graphical user interface of many desktop environments (such as Mac OS , Windows , KDE , Gnome ). This area is usually located in the system tray , such as a. in Windows, or in the menu bar, e.g. B. in Mac OS , next to the clock. The Taskbar Notification Area is used to display information about the status of the system ( e.g. print jobs , network connections ) or to enable access to programs that are not currently displaying a separate window .

The use of the names System Tray , Systray or Tray, borrowed from English, for the notification field under Windows has become commonplace, presumably because there is a program called "Systray" running in the background under Windows 9x . This is responsible for displaying various icons (volume, PCMCIA status, battery status) in the notification area . Officially, the name is and never was correct, even if even Microsoft employees sometimes mistakenly used it.

The so-called “notification panel” under GNOME shows all programs that support it, such as Mac OS, in the menu bar next to the clock


When the user right-clicks on the icon, a menu with application functions is often made available. The associated program usually appears with a double click. How to minimize this back to the information area is solved inconsistently: In some programs this works with the "Close" button, while other programs are closed completely and disappear into the information area with the "Minimize" button.

Typical programs and setting options that use the TNA are those that work almost exclusively in the background or are event-driven - that is, they usually do not require any interaction from the user:

There are also “normal” application programs that generate an icon in the Task Notification Area in order to take up less space in the normal taskbar and / or to provide frequently used functions for quick access. These often include:


Since Windows XP , the system icons for clock, volume , network and energy can be switched on or off in the notification area (second mouse button in the taskbar  → Properties → Notification area). In the Professional versions of Windows, this is also gpedit.mscpossible using the command to be found under: User configuration → Administrative templates → Start menu and taskbar.

On smartphones and tablets

Example of a notification bar in a custom ROM for the Android operating system

In smartphone and tablet operating systems such as Android or iOS , the notification field is usually at the top of the screen and can be expanded by swiping down to make quick settings. This includes, for example, (de) activating WLAN , GPS , mobile data , airplane mode , the built-in flashlight or Bluetooth , opening the advanced settings, rotating or fixing the screen or adjusting the brightness of the display. The field also serves as an information field for received notifications. As on PC systems, the unfolded notification bar provides basic information such as the time, the Internet connection or the battery life.

Notification fields on websites and in software

Example of a notification field from the online encyclopedia Wikipedia

Some websites and software programs use notification fields in addition to those already integrated in the operating system. They are mainly used to inform the user about new reports and messages. On websites, they are usually integrated into a navigation bar or can be installed as a toolbar and also offer users the option of logging out and changing settings.

In computer games (especially in strategy games ), notification fields are used as game elements to inform the player about certain values, events and tasks that have been achieved. Some manufacturers also offer this option via an external overlay.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. This background and misuse is explained by Raymond Chen, Microsoft programmer who was involved in the development of Windows 95 , on his blog: Raymond Chen's blog entry on 'Systray'. Retrieved on July 1, 2013 (English): "One of the most common errors is to refer to the Taskbar Notification Area as the" tray "or the" system tray ". This has never been correct. If you find any documentation that refers to it as the "tray" then you found a bug. "
  2. Anthony Domanico 2013-11-21T00: 03: 01Z, roid: A Guide to the Android Notification Drawer. Retrieved September 19, 2019 .