How to Remove Unused Desktop Icons

By Techwalla Contributor

If you feel like you have too many icons on your desktop, you could right-click each shortcut icon one at a time and delete them, but that is a long and tedious process. Windows actually includes a wizard to help you remove unused desktop icons. You can access this wizard through your computer's Control Panel.

Things You'll Need

  • Computer using Microsoft XP

Step 1

Click "Start" and then click "Control Panel."

Step 2

Type "personalization" in the search box and then click "Personalization" in the results.

Step 3

Click "Change desktop icons" on the left side of the screen. The Desktop Icon Settings window opens.

Step 4

Click to un-check the box next to any icons you want to remove. Click "OK" when you're finished.

Tips & Warnings

  • The shortcuts you choose to remove will be moved to the "Unused Desktop Shortcuts" folder.
  • Desktop icons that you haven't used for more than 60 days will be listed in the "Desktop Cleanup Wizard."
  • The wizard will run every two months automatically unless you uncheck the "Run the Run Desktop Cleanup Wizard Every 60 Days" check box.