How lock/pin desktop icons once they are arranged?
Hiya, does anybody know of a way (in Windows 7) to lock/pin the desktop icons in place once you have arranged them? My desktop isn't exactly cluttered, I think, there are at any given moment some 45-50. For the sake of easy navigation I try to keep the number to a minimum. When I have moved the icons around so that they are grouped into categories (roughly) and have their fixed places, it's easy to find what I'm looking for, and one gets used to it, like the layout of ones apartment for example. The desktop 'feels like home' to put it simply, plus it looks good. But every once in a while upon boot they are moved to the left side of the screen, not sorted alphabetically (which, at least, would have been some help) but in completely random order so it takes unnecessarily long to find what youre looking for. I would understand it, and accept it, if it ocurred only after I, say, change the resolution, but it happens randomly, 'unprovoked'. Not a big problem, true, but kind of a drag, so if anybody knows how to pin/lock the icons in place I'd be very grateful to know how. Thank you!Hard work pays off in the future, laziness pays off now.
December 30th, 2009 6:24pm

Hi, This behavior is by design, we do not have method to lock the icons. We will report your concern as a customer voice to our proper department. Thank you.Arthur Xie - MSFT
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January 6th, 2010 12:22am

If the icons move after a reboot or shutdown then try using F5 after arranging or adding icons, or right-click the desktop and click 'Refresh'. That should lock the current icons in place wherever they are on your desktop -- this only locks the locations, not necessarily the order if you stack them in little heaps. Caveat: If you change a document with MS office it'll delete the old icon and generate a new one (which'll put it on the left side of your desktop). I use OpenOffice which seems to leave the icons intact.
June 29th, 2011 5:11am

Hi Noel, I have exactly same behaviour which you predicted :) I am using external monitor and probably windows assume a screen size change on primary monitor while connecting or disconnecting external monitor. Now when this happens all my desktop icons are shuffled in a strange way. Do we have resolution of this problem or it's still unattended ?
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July 5th, 2011 11:24am

I think if you search the web you will come to the conclusion that this is a poor design. Not only that, but has been irritating windows users since XP and before. Lots of people, myself included find it extremely annoying for Windows7 to auto arrange desktop icons. For those that dont - well, they dont have to have to check the "lock icons" checkbox.
October 1st, 2011 10:36am

Yeah, I hook up to several different external monitors. So what? I still dont want Windows messing with the arrangement.
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October 1st, 2011 10:38am

It is still unattended. Any updates Arthur?
October 1st, 2011 10:39am

You should report this little/big problem. We all like our desktops in a nice personal order, all the technology we have and we can't keep icons in an order we like????!!!! Somebody help!
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June 13th, 2012 5:15pm

You should report this little/big problem. We all like our desktops in a nice personal order, all the technology we have and we can't keep icons in an order we like????!!!! ^ YEAH......what he said!!!
July 3rd, 2012 8:54pm

Here is a great fix. http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/save-and-restore-desktop-icon-layout-in-windows-vista/ Cheers!!
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July 20th, 2012 9:05am

i.e. using external monitor etc. OF COURSE WE ARE! And what difference should it make? Either add option to lock them or at the very least stop arbitrarily rearranging them. More indefensible MS behavior.
August 15th, 2012 1:44pm

Oh, how I wish Microsoft, in their infinite wisdom would fix this constant irritation! I tried Buell_Ghost's suggestion (having found it elsewhere), but it disappears every time I restart my machine! I'm getting really, really, REALLY tired of having to move the same half-dozen icons every single time I restart my computer. Screen resolution should make no difference in where the icons are positioned; one organizes their icons to work best for them, on their own machine, and expect those icons to show up in their assigned positions unless or until one moves them! To those at Microsoft who answer only, "This is by design," this is a kiss-off answer; what you're saying is, "This is the way it is, live with it!" I have no desire to have to add third-party programs to fix a problem which shouldn't exist in the first place. Get a clue, Microsoft, and FIX. THE. PROBLEM!
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August 27th, 2012 4:08pm

Those of you losing your icon positions across reboots, can you be more specific about what you're doing, please? I have never, to the best of my memory, had my desktop icons become rearranged on their own, across any reboot, in 3 years of using Windows 7. That used to happen occasionally with Vista, but not with Windows 7. I have the same two monitors on and connected all the time and on average I only reboot this system every week or two (pretty much only when Windows Update needs it), but it's enough to know that this problem isn't a basic design flaw of Windows - at least not with the video cards I've used and drivers I've used. So it's at least possible that it should work the way you want it to. What are you doing differently than I am? Posts like "I wish Microsoft would fix this problem" without a clear description of what's being done really aren't helpful, though in fairness the posters (e.g., MADinIowa) may not know it actually can work right. Please provide more detail about what you're doing and what might be exceptional about your system, the way you use it, or whatever. Maybe we might be able to figure out what's going wrong and get it working for you. Don't look now, but Microsoft isn't listening, or at best doesn't feel responsible. After arranging your desktop the way you like it, are you logging off or shutting your system down gracefully?Do you change monitor cabling or power it/them down separately from starting/stopping your OS?Do you use one and only one resolution on the monitor?Are video games or other apps causing your system to go full-screen?Did it once work then stop remembering the icon positions?Have you checked all of what's running on your system with e.g., AutoRuns and ShellExView? -Noel Detailed how-to in my eBooks: Configure The Windows 7 "To Work" Options Configure The Windows 8 "To Work" Options
August 27th, 2012 5:22pm

Hi, I had the same problem. Anytime I give a presentation using a beamer, the laptopscreen (wide) changes.only the centeroart of the screen displayse the entire desktop leaving 2 black spaces on either side. Thus not using the entire widescreen. This happens depending on the projector or beamer. When I disengage the beamer, the laptop screen returns to its original size, but the icons are scrambles and are all clustered on the left side. I googled for answers and found different ones. I tried using this one first: written by:securityguy14 When you say "LOCK the icon items on my desktop" I'm assuming that you mean to keep them from re-arranging themselves with a reboot? If that is what you mean, then just copy then paste whats below to notepad, then click on "File>save as..." at the top, save it to the desktop. when you go to save it change the "Save as type" from "Text Documents (*.txt)" to "All Files" and name it anything with a .reg extension. then close everything and click on the file and choose "merge". also you want to make sure to add the part " Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00". that registry setting saves the position of items on the desktop when you shut down Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00 [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer] "NoSaveSettings"=hex(3):00,00,00,00 This is what I got. when I tried merging it. I did not use windows reguistry editor 5.00 then I downloade "fences" from stardock. This works just fine. I bought the pro version. Works realu good and gives your desktop a look almost like the new windows 8, but works just like windows 7.
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August 30th, 2012 5:55am

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