Icons and Commands Are Not Available on the Desktop and Start Menu After You Remove Windows XP SP1

This article was previously published under Q327982
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If you hide Microsoft Internet Explorer, Microsoft Outlook Express, Microsoft Windows Media Player, or Microsoft Windows Messenger, and then you remove Service Pack 1 (SP1) for Windows XP, the icons for these programs are not restored to the Start menu or the desktop. As a result, you cannot start these programs from the Start menu or desktop.
This problem occurs if the following sequence of events has occurred:
  • You installed Windows XP SP1.
  • You then used the Set Program Access and Defaults feature to remove access to one or more of the following programs:
    • Internet Explorer
    • Outlook Express
    • Windows Media Player
    • Windows Messenger

  • You then removed Windows XP SP1.
To work around this problem, reinstall SP1 for Windows XP, and then restore access to the programs. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Reinstall Windows XP SP1.
  2. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
  3. Click Add or Remove Programs, and then click Set Program Access and Defaults.
  4. Double-click Custom.
  5. Click to select the Enable access to this program check box for the programs that you want to restore access to, and then click OK.
  6. Quit Control Panel.
This behavior is by design.If you use the Set Program Access and Defaults feature to hide Internet Explorer, Outlook Express, Windows Media Player, or Windows Messenger, and then remove SP1 for Windows XP, access to these programs from the Start menu or the desktop is not restored.

You can still use the executable file (.exe) to start the program. However, icons for these programs on the Start menu and desktop remain hidden, and there is no user interface with which to restore them.
For additional information about how to obtain Windows XP SP1, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322389 List of Hotfixes Released After the Release of Windows XP

Article ID: 327982 - Last Review: 02/27/2014 21:14:48 - Revision: 1.2

  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition SP1
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP1
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