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Can you please have an option for mbam to start with windows but have an option to turn mbam icon on/off in the bottom right?

Unfortunately, because of the way protection in MBAM currently works, if the tray isn't running, the protection module isn't running. The scheduler still works, but blocking threats does not.

If you don't want it running, you can simply exit the tray icon by right-clicking on it.

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Is there a way to hide the icon so the service is still running, but frees up taskbar space?

You can hide it using the taskbar options in Windows, but not in Malwarebytes' itself, no. The service is not the only component of the protection module. The interactive part that shows notifications for blocked IP's and infected executables is mbamgui.exe, which is what the tray's process actually is. If mbamgui.exe is not running, the protection module does not block threats that's why when you exit the tray and open MBAM and look at the Protection tab it says Protection disabled.

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