[Fix] A New Strange Line Appears below Ribbon Toolbar in Windows 8 and 8.1 Explorer

Yesterday I came across a strange problem in Windows 8.1. All of a sudden a new strange line started appearing in Windows Explorer. It was showing below the standard toolbar which contains back/forward buttons, addressbar and searchbox. It was looking very ugly. When I tried to move the mouse cursor over the strange line, the cursor changed to vertical resize shape which means the new line should be resizable but it was not. Nothing happened when I tried to click on the line and move it. It was not resizable or movable.


First I thought that it might be a GUI glitch and I restarted my laptop but even after reboot, it was still there. So it was not a glitch but some kind of bug in Windows.

I started looking in various settings and places to find some solution but nothing worked. I was having a strong feeling that it should be some kind of toolbar because the mouse cursor was allowing me to resize or move it.

After a lot of troubleshooting, finally I was able to get rid of that ugly line. I'm sharing the solution here so that if you also face this problem in future, you'll be able to remove the line within seconds.

I found that it was actually a bug in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 and it occurs when a good old option "Lock the toolbars" is turned off. This option was used in previous Windows versions when Windows Explorer used to contain Menubar and standard toolbars. Microsoft removed them from Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 Explorer and replaced the Menubar with new Ribbon UI. But they forgot to fix something which causes this strange line issue.

Anyway here is the solution to fix ugly line issue in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 Explorer:

We just need to turn on "Lock the toolbars" option and it'll remove the ugly line from Windows Explorer. There are 2 ways to do it:

  • METHOD 1: Using Internet Explorer
  • METHOD 2: Using Windows Explorer

METHOD 1: Using Internet Explorer

This is the easiest method to fix this issue.

1. First of all open Internet Explorer and then right-click on titlebar or toolbar and enable "Lock the toolbars" option.


2. That's it. Open Windows Explorer and the ugly line below ribbon toolbar will no longer present.

METHOD 2: Using Windows Explorer

If for some reason above mentioned method doesn't work for you, you can use this second method:

1. Open Windows Explorer and press "F11" key to launch it in full screen mode.

2. Move your mouse cursor to the top of screen to show standard toolbar containing back/forward buttons, addressbar and searchbox.

3. Now right-click in empty area of toolbar and uncheck "Auto-hide" option.

4. Now press "ALT" key to show Menubar in Windows Explorer.

5. As soon as Menubar appears, right-click on it and enable "Lock the toolbars" option.


6. That's it. Now exit from full screen mode by pressing "F11" key again and the ugly line will not appear in Windows Explorer.

=== === === === === === === === ===

So basically the strange line is nothing but a small part of Menubar which is shown when the toolbars are not locked. Strange thing is that even Microsoft has removed Menubar from Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 Explorer, this "Lock the toolbars" option still affects Windows Explorer.

You guys can re-create this issue. Just disable "Lock the toolbars" option and the ugly line will appear in Windows Explorer.

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Posted in: Troubleshooting, Windows 8 / 8.1

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  • It's also worth mentioning that it is also possible to do the same in Windows 7 (and probably Vista) when it appears - use steps 4 and 5 in Method 2 to do so.

  • Yes. I found that problem too when I was in Windows 8.
    Now, I know how to fix it.
    Thanks VG for the solution!!!

  • > Strange thing is that even Microsoft has removed Menubar from Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 Explorer, this "Lock the toolbars" option still affects Windows Explorer

    But you can still have 3rd party toolbars in Explorer, so it is probably available for them.

  • I see that line to but it real doesn't bother me. The first way using IE removed the line

  • I am getting a line in Photoshop CS6, I doubt it is related. Any suggestions?

  • VG,you must claim $100,000 from Microsoft for finding a bug in windows 8.1 preview :P

  • Yah , indeed

  • Hello VG!
    Can you do me a favor? If yes, then plzzz write a tutorial on "How to use Blogger". I'm new on Blogger and need guidance. Please help.


  • Hey this is not the case with me. possibly this strange line does not appear in my laptop

  • Thank you very much for sharing this! Solved my problem. I was going to recreate my users because I noticed that others users were not affected by this.

  • In my experience, clean install never comes with this bug. Lock the toolbars always enabled by default. However, it's different on pre-installed devices. I got a tablet that is pre-installed with Windows 8.1 and it has this bug. every tablet and laptop in the shop which are pre-installed always come with this bug. I don't understand why M$ do this.

  • This is also a problem on windows 7, at least for the theme that I installed (and I am also using clover explorer). Locking the toolbar in IE solved the stupid problem. Thanks.

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