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How to start Slack minimized in the background on Windows 10

Slack has become one of the most popular apps for workplace communication. It runs on Mac, Windows, Linux, and in most modern web browsers. The only slight disadvantage you have with using Slack in a web browser is that you have to open it yourself. You cannot set it to run at startup. With the dedicated desktop apps though, Slack can easily be set to run when you boot your system. On Windows 10, the boot at start feature works great but the app starts in the foreground and not in the background.

Slack has specific instructions on how you can run it minimized in the background at startup but those instructions are not only out-dated, it seems the feature they refer to has been removed or never worked right to begin with. To that end, if you’re using the app on a Windows 10 system, you can start Slack minimized in the background with a little script.

Start Slack minimized in background

The script we’re going to be using for this is an AutoHotKey script so make sure you have AutoHotKey installed on your system.

Next, you need to also know what app type you’re running i.e., the desktop app or the Windows Store app. This will matter when you create the script.

For the desktop app, the following path will be relevant.

C:\Program Files (x86)\Slack\Slack.exe

For the Windows Store app, you have to use the following path in the script.


Creating AHK script

Open Notepad and paste the following in it. Make sure you change the path in the first line, after ‘Run’ to the correct one for the type of app you’re running.

Run, %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\WindowsApps\slack.exe, , Hide

WinWait, ahk_exe slack.exe

Loop, 50
WinClose, ahk_exe slack.exe
Sleep, 200

Save the script with the AHK file extension and move it to the Startup folder. To move it to the Startup folder, tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box. In the run box, type the following and tap Enter.


Move the script you just created into the folder that opens.

Next, open Slack and click the arrow next to the name of your workplace. From the menu, select Preferences. Go to Advanced and make sure the ‘Leave app running in notification area when the window is closed’ option is enabled.

The next time you boot to your desktop, Slack will open quietly and minimize to the system tray. You will probably see the full window appear for a split second on your desktop but it will close automatically.

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