Tech Tips Home
The Best Tech Tips And Daily Deals
Newsletter On The Internet!

Shop online 24hrs a day or call us Mon-Fri
8:30AM-4:30PM EST - 1-800-915-2088
WorldStart Tech Tip And Store Search
Email: Password: Login Remember Me
looking for freeware

Like what you see here? Subscribe to the Tech Tips newsletter!   Email: Subscribe

Restoring Desktop Icon Positions

Friday, November 19th, 2010 by | Filed Under: Desktop Enhancement, Free Downloads, Uncategorized
 
Loading...


There’s little more frustrating to a computer user, than finding your icons scrambled all over the desktop. In addition, if your desktop is full of icons, you can imagine how annoying it would be to arrange them manually.

This problem usually occurs when you change your computer’s resolution. Changing the resolution, either manually or when installing drivers for your video card, can sometimes change the order and position of your desktop icons.

Because the screen is getting bigger or smaller, Windows tries to redistribute the icons to make them fit the new size. Unfortunately, it often fails, as it does not remember the original placement of the icons.

If you’re looking for a setting or option to make Windows remember desktop icon positions, you won’t find one. Despite the improvements and features added in Windows 7, Microsoft never came up with a solution for restoring the order and position of desktop icons.

Fortunately, there are plenty of third-party applications that can accomplish this and more.

Note: Using any of these applications will not recover any deleted desktop icons. They save only the icon position on the desktop, not the file itself. To recover lost system icons refer to this Worldstart article.

Below, you will find three easy to use, free applications that will allow you to save your icons position on the desktop.

Note: To install any of these applications in Windows Vista and 7, you need to be logged in with an administrator account or have administrator rights.

The first application is appropriately called Icon Restore. It’s by far the simplest and easiest to use. It’s a simple script integrated into the Windows context menu that allows you to save your desktop icons layout and restore it when a problem appears.

You can download the application from here.

I suggest that you also download the uninstaller (on the same page), since the application cannot be uninstalled through the add/remove panel.

Note: Even though the system requirements do not mention Windows Vista or 7, it works fine on these operating systems. However, you need to use the Recycle Bin instead of the (My) Computer icon.

After saving the icon_restore.exe file on your computer, double-click on it to execute, and follow the instructions to install the application.

With the application installed, go to the desktop and right-click on the Recycle Bin icon.

image

In the context menu, you should see two new options. Click on the Save Desktop Icon Layout option to save your current icon placement.

When the icons get scrambled, right-click on the Recycle Bin again and select the Restore Desktop Icon Layout option. This will restore your icons to their previous order and position on the desktop.

The second application is called DeskSave. It offers more features than the previous application. Features such as auto saving the layout profile and the ability to import and export icon layout profiles. Allowing the user to backup and even transfer the layout between computers.

You can download DeskSave from here.

After saving the dsksve8.zip archive to your computer, right-click on it and select Extract All…. Choose a location on your hard drive to unpack the archive and click Extract. Then open that folder and double-click on DeskSave.exe to start the application.

When DeskSave first starts, it will ask if you want to save your current icon layout, click Yes to do so.

Now, if you look at the taskbar (next to the clock) you should see a new blue icon. Right-click on this icon and choose Options. Here you can set different options regarding auto save and auto restore.

image

The Install shell extension button will integrate DeskSave with your desktop’s context menu. Meaning that you will be able to access DeskSave by right-clicking on your desktop even when the application isn’t running.

image

To restore your desktop with the saved layout, click the Restore Primary layout option in the menu.

The Save to file…/ Restore from file… options will allow you to backup or export the layout to another computer.

The third application is called Shock Desktop. What set it apart from the other applications are a few unique features not found in any other program.

You’ll find this application here.

After saving the Setup_ShockDesktop.exe file to your computer, double-click on it and follow the instructions to install the application.

image

With the application installed, double-click the Shock Desktop shortcut. Then look at the taskbar (next to the clock) and you should see a new green icon. Right-click on this icon and choose the Create Profile option. This will save your current icon positions.

A new section named Profiles will appear inside the menu. To restore your icon positions, click on the profile name you created. You can create as many profiles as you want.

image

Shock Desktop’s most interesting feature is found by pressing the Ctrl + Q keys (can be changed to any key in the Option window) while the application is running. This allows you to click and interact with the desktop icons even when working in a full screen program or window.

image

Another interesting (although not quite as useful) feature of the application is its ability to rearrange your desktop icons into predefined shapes. In the right-click menu of the application, under the Visibility section, click on Desktop Icon Layout and choose one of the many predefined shapes.

Note: You might want to use the Create Profile option first and save your current icon layout, before trying this out. As there is no undo option for this feature, you can then click on the created profile to restore your icons.

I hope these three applications will help you solve this small but annoying Windows interface problem.

~Cosmin Ursachi

Leave a Reply


Like these tips? Get them for FREE in your email!

WorldStart's Tech Tips Newsletter

  • Tech Tips Daily - Become a tech pro! Get the very best tech and computer help sent directly to your email every weekday!

  • Tech Tips Weekly - If you don't want our Tech Tips newsletter every day, then sign up for this weekly newsletter to get the best information of the week. Sent on Fridays.

Other Newsletters

  • WorldStart's Daily Deals - Every week, we send out great deals in our Daily Deals newsletter. Many of these deals are exclusively for our Daily Deals newsletter subscribers and can't be found with our regular specials.

  • Just For Grins - Each issue includes a couple clean jokes, some funny quotes, and a hilarious reader's story. Newsletter is sent five days a week.


Enter Email Address:

Subscribe

Your e-mail address is safe with us!
We only use it to send you the newsletters you request. It is NEVER disclosed to a third party for any reason, ever! Plus, if you decided you don't like our newsletters (don't worry, you'll love them), unsubscribing is fast and easy.

Free Newsletter Signup



Tech Tips Daily

Become a tech pro! Get the very best tech and computer help sent directly to your email every weekday!

Tech Tips Weekly

The week's best in tech and computer help. Get your issue sent to your email every Friday!

WorldStart's Daily Deals

The very best deals on the Internet! Get a new set of incredible sales every day of the week!

Just For Grins

Clean jokes, funny quotes, and hilarious comics. Sent 5 times a week straight to your email.


Subscribe


Love Worldstart? Refer A Friend!

looking for freeware
WorldStart's Premium Membership

Tip Archive


Categories:
Archives: