This article describes how to arrange, move, and change icons on the desktop.
How to Arrange or Move IconsTo arrange icons by name, type, date, or size, right-click a blank area on the desktop, and then click Arrange Icons. Click the command that indicates how you want to arrange the icons (by Name, by Type, and so on). If you want the icons to be automatically arranged, click Auto Arrange. If you want to arrange the icons on your own, click Auto Arrange to remove the check mark.
How to Remove IconsSome icons are shortcuts to programs on your computer. Shortcut icons usually have an arrow in the bottom-left corner. If you do not want a shortcut on your desktop, click the icon, and then drag it to the Recycle Bin. This action only removes the shortcut, not the program that it is pointing to. You can also right-click the icon, and then click Delete to remove a shortcut from your desktop.
Some icons such as My Network Places, Recycle Bin, and My Computer cannot be deleted.
How to Change Icon PicturesSome icons have the option to change the picture that represents the icon. Not all icons have this option. To change the icon picture:
- Right-click the icon and click Properties.
- Click the Shortcut tab (if one is available), and then click Change Icon.
- Click the icon that you want to use from the list, click OK, and then click OK.
NOTE: Third-party tools are available that enable you to change icons.
For additional information about changing icon pictures, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
253689 Cannot Change the Default Folder Icons in Windows Explorer
TweakUINOTE: TweakUI is an unsupported tool. The following information is provided for informational purposes only. Microsoft Product Support Services is unable to answer questions about TweakUI.
If you are a Windows power-user, you can use TweakUI 1.33 to manipulate icons. However, this is an unsupported tool. Read the document that accompanies TweakUI carefully before you download and use the tool.
For additional information about finding more help with icons, click the article numbers below to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
141859 How to Use a Bitmap Image as a 16-Color Icon in Windows
262885 Desktop Icons Displayed Incorrectly When You Change Settings
267499 Show Small Icons in Start Menu Setting Changes in Safe Mode
265132 Cannot Arrange Icons in Search Results Window
132668 Icons Randomly Change to Different Icons
Article ID: 289587 - Last Review: Mar 29, 2007 - Revision: 1