How to Remove Default Desktop Icons

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Article ID: 162170 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q162170
Notice
This article applies to Windows 2000. Support for Windows 2000 ends on July 13, 2010. The Windows 2000 End-of-Support Solution Center is a starting point for planning your migration strategy from Windows 2000. For more information see the Microsoft Support Lifecycle Policy.
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SUMMARY

This article explains how to remove and restore the default Desktop icons such as Inbox, Windows Internet Explorer, and Recycle Bin.

MORE INFORMATION

Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756 How to back up and restore the registry in Windows

To Remove Icons from the Desktop

In Windows NT 4.0 or Windows 95

  1. Start Registry Editor (Regedit.exe or Regedt32.exe).
  2. Select the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE key.
  3. Navigate to the following location under the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE key:
    Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Desktop\NameSpa


    You see several hexadecimal strings called CLSIDs. Select each one in turn, and the right pane will show you which icon is being selected.
  4. When you have the appropriate icon entry selected for the icon you want to remove from the desktop, export the key by using the Export Registry File command on the Registry menu. You need to choose a path and file name under which to save the file.
  5. After the key has been exported, you can delete the icon entry to remove it from the desktop. Click Yes in the confirmation box to complete the icon deletion process.
  6. Quit Registry Editor, log off, and then log back on to the computer.
When you log on again, the icon will have been removed from the desktop.

In Windows 2000

  1. In Internet Explorer, click Internet Options on the Tools menu.
  2. On the Advanced tab, click to clear the Show Internet Explorer on the Desktop check box under Browsing, and then click OK.
NOTE: The registry change described in this article does not work in Windows 2000.

To Restore Icons to the Desktop in Windows NT 4.0 or Windows 95

  1. Start Registry Editor (Regedit.exe or Regedt32.exe).
  2. Select the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE key.
  3. Navigate to following location under the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE key:
    Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Desktop\NameSpac
  4. Select NameSpace.
  5. On the Registry menu, click Import Registry File, and type the path to the location of the registry file that was exported in the preceding procedure.
  6. Select the file name to which the registry key was saved, click Open, and then click OK.
  7. Quit Registry Editor, log off, and then log back on to the computer.
When you log on again, the icon will have been replaced back onto the desktop.

Properties

Article ID: 162170 - Last Review: February 27, 2007 - Revision: 2.5
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Datacenter Server
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 95
Keywords: 
kbhowto kbnetwork KB162170

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