Renaming and Deleting Icons

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 28, 2015)

1

Desktop icons can be renamed just like any other object in Windows: Right-click the icon and choose Rename from the Context menu. If you prefer, you can select the icon and press F2. Either way, the name of the icon is "activated," and you can make any changes you desire.

To delete an icon, just select it and hit the Delete key. If you prefer to use the mouse, you can right-click on the icon and choose Delete from the Context menu.

You should be careful of one thing, however: That you only delete shortcuts from the desktop. You can tell if an icon is a shortcut by looking closely at it. If a small upward-pointing arrow is in the lower-left corner of the icon, then it's a shortcut. You can delete these left and right without any real consequences?the program, folder, or file pointed to by the shortcut still remains on the computer. (You're only deleting a reference to the program, folder, or file, not the actual item.)

If no small upward-pointing arrow appears in the lower-left corner of the icon, then the icon represents the real thing. Deleting the real thing may be something you want to do, but it may not?you need to think through your action to make sure you really want to delete the item. If you do, then delete away! If you don't, then consider moving the icon to a different folder on your system so it's still accessible, but doesn't clutter your desktop.

 This tip (10959) applies to Windows 7 and 8.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Default Picture Settings

Place enough pictures, and sooner or later you start wondering if there is a way to set up some default settings for those ...

Discover More

Iterating Circular References

Does your data require that you perform calculations using circular references? If so, then you'll want to be aware of the ...

Discover More

Finding the Nth Occurrence of a Character

The FIND and SEARCH functions are great for finding the initial occurrence of a character in a text string, but what if you ...

Discover More
More WindowsTips

Moving and Resizing Windows

The ability to work on multiple things simultaneously is a hallmark of Windows. If you have many windows up at once, though, ...

Discover More

Using Windows in Safe Mode

There may come a time when your system is no longer operating properly. This could be the result of Registry changes, a ...

Discover More

Signs Your Computer has a Virus

Think your system might be infected with a virus? How would you know if it was? Here are some quick indicators that your ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is eight more than 8?

2015-09-28 10:03:02

Phyllis Bryant

I have a icon on my desktop with the arrow and have deleted it many times but it still keeps coming back. I don't want to delete the program,just the icon. What's up with that?


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.