How to Change Shortcut Icon Windows 7

We all want our desktop to look attractive and easy to navigate. It’s not just about finding the right wallpaper- icons are important too. Windows 7 offers a variety of icons to choose from, but have you ever wanted to personalize and change the shortcut icon of a specific program or file? In this blog post, we’ll be discussing the various methods you can use to change shortcut icons on your Windows 7 computer.

Video Tutorial:

Why You Need to Change Shortcut Icon Windows 7

There are many reasons why you might want to change your shortcut icon on your Windows 7 computer. Some of the main reasons are:

  • Personalized aesthetics: You might want to personalize your desktop experience by having unique icons that reflect your personality.
  • Easy navigation: By having unique icons, you can easily find and identify the programs or files you need.
  • Professional purposes: If you use your computer for work, having the ability to change shortcut icons can help you organize your files and shortcuts to better suit your specific tasks.

Method 1: Via Properties Tab

To change shortcut icon on your Windows 7 computer, you can use the Properties tab. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Right-click on the file or program’s shortcut icon you want to change and select "Properties".
  2. On the Properties window, click on the "Shortcut" tab.
  3. Click on "Change Icon".
  4. Select your preferred icon from the list or click "Browse" to choose an icon from a different location.
  5. Click "OK" to save changes.


  • Easy to use
  • No need for third-party software


  • Availability of icons is limited

Method 2: Using Third-Party Software

Another method to change shortcut icons is to use third-party software. One of the most popular software is "CustomizerGod". Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Download and install CustomizerGod from the official website (
  2. Launch CustomizerGod and click on "File" in the menu bar.
  3. Select "Load System Files".
  4. Select "imageres.dll" from the list and click "Open".
  5. Click on the icon you want to replace, then click on "Click to Edit".
  6. Browse through your folders and select an icon or an image you want to use as the new icon.
  7. Click "Save & Exit".
  8. Restart your computer to apply changes.


  • Wide selection of icons and images to choose from


  • Requires third-party software installation
  • May cause system instability if not used properly

Method 3: Manually Editing Registry

For advanced users, it is possible to change shortcut icons by editing the registry. However, we advise caution because improper editing may cause system instability or corruption. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Press Windows key + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type "regedit" and click "OK".
  3. Navigate to "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Icons".
  4. Right-click on "Shell Icons" and select "New" > "String Value".
  5. Name the new string value "29".
  6. Double-click on "29".
  7. Under "Value data", enter the path to the icon image you want to use. For example, "C:\location\of\icon\image.ico".
  8. Click "OK".
  9. Create a new shortcut or modify an existing one to use the new icon.


  • Offers complete control over the look of icons


  • Difficult and risky for average users
  • May cause system instability or corruption if not done properly

What to Do If You Can’t Change Shortcut Icon Windows 7

If you can’t change shortcut icon on Windows 7, there are a few fixes you can try:

  • Restart your computer: A simple restart can clear up any issues causing the problem.
  • Check file permission: Ensure that you have the necessary permissions to modify the file or program’s shortcut icon.
  • Check system files: Scan your system files for any corrupt or missing files. You can do this by running "sfc /scannow" in the Command Prompt.
  • Check for malware: Malware may be preventing you from changing shortcut icons. Run a full system scan using your antivirus software to eliminate any threats.

Bonus Tip

You can change the icon size in Windows 7 to better suit your preferences by following these steps:

  1. Right-click on an empty space on your desktop and select "Personalize".
  2. Click on "Window Color" at the bottom of the window.
  3. Click on "Advanced Appearance Settings".
  4. Underneath "Item", select "Icon".
  5. Choose your preferred icon size from the "Size" dropdown menu.
  6. Click "OK" to save changes.

5 FAQs

Q: Can I change the shortcut icon for all files or programs at once?

A: Unfortunately, there is no way to change shortcut icons for all files or programs simultaneously. You must change each icon individually.

Q: Can I use an image as a shortcut icon?

A: Yes, you can use an image as a shortcut icon as long as it is in .ico format.

Q: How can I restore the default icon if I don’t like the new one?

A: Right-click on the shortcut and select "Properties". Click on "Change Icon", then select the original icon from the list or browse to the location where the original icon is saved.

Q: Can I change the icon of a folder?

A: Yes, you can change the icon of a folder by opening the folder and following the steps for changing an individual shortcut icon.

Q: Will changing shortcut icons affect the actual program or file?

A: No, changing a shortcut icon will not affect the actual program or file. It is purely a visual change.

Final Thoughts

Customizing your Windows 7 desktop can make it feel more personal and easier to navigate. Changing shortcut icons is a simple yet effective way to achieve this. Whether you choose to use the Properties tab, third-party software, or manually edit the registry, be sure to follow the steps carefully and always create a backup beforehand. With these various methods and fixes, you can now confidently change shortcut icons on your Windows 7 computer.

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