Windows Vista Forums

Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

  1. #1
    Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

    Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change
    How to Change a Shortcut Folder or File Icon in Vista
    Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

    Published by

    Brink's Avatar

    Join Date: Apr 2007
    Location: Texas, USA
    Posts: 31,592

    How to Change a Shortcut Folder or File Icon in Vista

    information   Information
    This will show you how to change a shortcut folder or file icon to a icon of your choice. To change a regular file icon you must make a shortcut of it first, then you can change the icon for the shortcut.

    EXAMPLE: Before and After Icon Change
    Name:  Shortcut_Before.jpg
Views: 46180
Size:  3.0 KBName:  Shortcut_After.jpg
Views: 46108
Size:  3.0 KB

    Here's How:
    1. Right click on the shortcut folder or file, then click on Properties.

    2. Click on the Shortcut tab. (See screenshots below)

    3. Click on the Change Icon button.
    4. To Select an Available Icon in Vista
    A) Select a icon here. (See screenshot below)


    B) Click on Browse and navigate to another icon available in Vista.
    NOTE: Some common icon locations in Vista.
    • C:\Windows\System32\imageres.dll (Recommended one to use)
    • C:\Windows\System32\shell32.dll
    • C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe
    C) Go to step 6C.
    5. To Create a Icon of Your Choice to Use
    NOTE: You will only be able use Views set up to Medium Icons with these to have the shortcut icon display properly.
    A) Open the Start menu and click on All Programs, Accessories, then Paint.
    NOTE: Paint is located at C:\Windows\System32\mspaint.exe if you do not have the shortcut for it.

    B) Take a screenshot of the image you want to use for the icon of the URL shortcut.
    NOTE: You can press the PrtScrn key for a screenshot of the entire desktop, or ALT+PrtScrn keys for just the current open window.

    C) Go to the Paint window and Paste this image into Paint.
    NOTE: You can do this by pressing the CTRL+V keys while in Paint.

    D) Make any adjustments to the image you want in Paint.
    NOTE: It is best to not use a large size image to avoid distortion when Vista sizes it down automatically for the icon later.

    E) Save this image in Paint as a 24-bit Bitmap (*.bmp;*.dib) file in the Save as type drop down menu to a location of your choice.

    F) Now save this same .bmp image in Paint again, but change the file extension from .bmp to .ico manually in the File name field.
    NOTE: You will need to save this to a location where you can keep this for the URL shortcut's usage.

    G) Close Paint.

    H) Continue to step 6 to use the icon.
    6. To Select a Icon of Your Choice
    A) Click on the Browse button. (See screenshot below step 4B)
    NOTE: For the best icon size results, use a 256x256 bit .ico (Icon) file in Vista.

    B) Navigate to where you have the icon saved. (See screenshot below)

    C) Select the icon and click Open.
    D) Click OK to apply. (See screenshot below step 4B)
    That's it,

  2. #1

    Join Date : Aug 2008
    Posts : 1
    Vista Ultimate 64
    Local Time: 15:45

    Re: Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

    It does seem to work with Vista 64

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #2

    Join Date : Jan 2009
    Posts : 3
    Windows Vista Home premium
    Local Time: 15:45


    Re: Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

    Hello Brink,whenever I change an Icon in that same type of window where the computer Icons are stored,but in this case it's in a window where it doesn't show any of the computer Icons,just my own Icons that I have created,why does it only show the one Icon? It should show more in that window because it has room for lots of Icons.Could you please reply back Brink whenever you have a chance,Thank's!

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #3
    Brink's Avatar

    Join Date : Apr 2007
    Texas, USA
    Posts : 31,592
    64-bit Windows 10 build 10158
    Local Time: 14:45
    usa us oklahoma

      Thread Starter

    Re: Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

    Hello dtheincredible,

    The icon location will always display at the one for the current icon. You can click on the Browse button to go the locations in the NOTE under step 4B instead to select another icon.

    Hope this helps,

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

Shortcut Folder or File Icon Change

Similar Threads
Tutorial Category
help with user folder shortcut name change
I accidentally changed my user folder shortcut name in Windows Explorer under Desktop. ...
General Discussion
Folder Icon - Change Vista Default Folder Icon
How to Change the Vista Default Folder Icon This will show you how to change all of the default yellow folder icons in Windows Explorer to any...
Change Shortcut Icon of a directory in Vista
If you want to do what I want to do as the subject said, you DO NOT do this: "click & hold mouse left button while on the target directory &...
General Discussion
Change Default Internet Explorer Shortcut Icon
I have been trying to change the default shortcut icon for IE. I have one I would like to use that is not just a page with an e. I would like to...
General Discussion
Hide a Folder or Shortcut Icon
How to Hide a Folder or Shortcut Icon in Vista and Windows 7 This will show you how to hide a Folder or Shortcut icon so only the text name...
Can't Change Shortcut's Icon
These shortcuts are pif shortcuts (shortcuts to msdos programs). "Right-Click/Properties/Program/Change Icon" is the only "icon-changing"...
Vista General
File Icon Removal (Not a Shortcut Icon)
By a process I do not recall, a couple of weeks ago I created an icon on the desktop to a set of files I had established. This icon does not have...
Vista General