Operating System Tutorials

Windows Vista: How to get the original Downloads folder icon back

Windows Vista has a Downloads folder for every user, Internet Explorer is configured to download everything to it, and I configured Firefox and Free Download Manager to do the same. Two weeks ago I downloaded a song to the folder and I listened to it on WMP and as it usualy does WMP got the album cover from the net and displayed it for me and that’s where the problem started! Vista changed the Icon of the Downloads Folder to a Music Folder Icon and I wasn’t able to get the original one back so my folder looked like this:


Vista downloads folder Icon

As you can see having a normal folder in the middle of all the other ones is not very nice so I tried to get the old icon back by first going to the folder properties (right click > folder properties) selecting Customize and “Restore Default” but nothing changed. After that I tried changing the location of the song but the icon with the album cover remained, so I finally discovered how to fix it!You need a USB flash drive and another account on your PC (or another PC with Vista) to fix the icon and here’s what to do:

1- Go to the Downloads Folder in the other account (or machine).

2- Go to “Organize” > “Folder and Search Options” and select the 2 options in the pictures bellow.

Vista folder options

3- Some hidden files and folder should show up search for a file called “desktop” when you find it there are two things you can do, copy it to the USB flash drive or open it with notepad and copy the text and save it to a test file in your USB flash drive.

4- Undo the changes you did in “Folder and Search Options” and go to the Downloads folder in the account you want to fix and repeat step 2 on it.

5- Replace the “desktop” file with the one from the other account you stored on the USB flash drive or edit it with the text from the other account and save it.(An Image called “Folder” might also show up when you change the “Folder and Search Options” settings, you can delete this image)

6- Undo the changes you did to “Folder and Search Options” and logout from the account. When you log in to the account again the icon of your download folder should look normal again.

Vista downloads folder Icon

Note that you can follow the same steps mentioned above to restore any folder icon in Vista. Just repeat the steps in the folder you want to fix instead of the Downloads folder and it will work.

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