Disabling Windows Shake

by Eric Wyatt
(last updated April 5, 2021)

In Windows 7, Microsoft introduced a feature that some users still have not noticed or used. If they stumble upon it, it can be a bit disorienting, even frustrating, without realizing what is going on. This feature is, of course, the "shake to hide windows" feature, formally known as Aero Shake. We talked about Aero Shake before and how it was an addition to the Windows Aero graphical enhancements first introduced back with Windows Vista. The feature remains unknown until a user clicks to move a window and, with no real intention, gives the window a little shake motion. This movement triggers Windows into minimizing all the other windows open on the screen.

For some, they like the feature; for others, it is an annoyance. One big issue people have is there is no simple way to turn off this one specific feature. The closest is to turn off settings in Settings > Multitasking, however, this turns off Snap, and subsequently Shake. Which, for some, is not what they want because they might like the snap feature but only want the shake-to-minimize feature turned off.

So, does this mean if you want one, you have to keep the other? No, fortunately, there is a way to keep snap enabled and to turn shake off. To do this, use the Registry Editor.

  1. Press Win+R. Windows opens the Run window.
  2. Type "regedit" (without quotes) and press Enter. Windows opens the Registry Editor.
  3. In the left-side panel, navigate to the following key:
  4. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer
    
  5. In the right-hand window, select and double-click on the DWORD value "NoWindowMinimizingShortcuts." This opens the Edit DWORD dialog box.
  6. In the Value Data field, enter (without quotes) "1" to disable Aero Shake or "0" to enable it.
  7. Close the Registry Editor and restart your machine for the change to take effect.

If you don't have a key for "Explorer" in the left-hand window at the location listed in step 3, you obviously cannot do the steps listed above. Instead, after having completed steps 1 and 2 (to start the Registry Editor), follow these steps:

  1. In the left-side panel, right-click on the following key:
  2. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows
    
  3. In the resulting Context menu, choose New > Key. The Registry Editor creates a new, unnamed key, awaiting a name for the key.
  4. Begin typing the new name ("Explorer", without quotes) and then press Enter.
  5. With the newly created key selected, left-click in a blank area and choose New > DWORD (32-bit) Value. The Registry Editor creates a new, unnamed value, awaiting a name.
  6. Begin typing the new name ("NoWindowMinimizingShortcuts", without quotes) and then press Enter.
  7. In the right-hand window, double-click on the newly created DWORD value "NoWindowMinimizingShortcuts." This opens the Edit DWORD dialog box.
  8. In the Value Data field, enter (without quotes) "1" to disable Aero Shake or "0" to enable it.
  9. Close the Registry Editor and restart your machine for the change to take effect.

This simple tweak is all that is needed to remove the Aero Shake feature. It is expected in the near future that Windows will disable this setting by default, as is currently the case with Developer versions of the OS.

 This tip (13844) applies to Windows 10.

Author Bio

Eric Wyatt

Eric Wyatt is a swell guy (or so his friends tell him). He is a formally trained designer and branding expert, bringing a wide range of skills to his Tips.Net articles. ...

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