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Solved Unable to change folder icons in (extra) large icons view


I have two icons that I want to assign to two folders. Unfortunately, something has gone wrong. Let me explain what happened step by step:

1. I have two folders: "A" and "B".
2. I have two icons (.ico files): "A" and "B".
3. I place icon "A" in folder "A" and icon "B" in folder "B".
4. I assign icon "A" to folder "A" and icon "B" to folder "B".
5. I notice that I've switched the icons around.
6. I move icon "A" to folder "B" and icon "B" to folder "A".
7. I rename icon "A" to "B" and icon "B" to "A".
8. I assign icon "A" to folder "A" and icon "B" to folder "B".
9. I notice that I still get to see the switched-around icons that I assigned in step 4 in the large and extra large icon views. In the smaller views the folder icons are now correct.

Here's what I did to try solve this problem:

- Follow two tutorials: Icon Cache - Rebuild and Default File Associations - Restore in Windows 8 (for .ico files).
- Remove the icon cache using the Disk Cleanup utility.
- Run "sfc /scannow" and "chkdsk /f /r".
- Run CCleaner to cleanup the registry and manually remove some registry keys that I pinpointed by looking for the registry keys that change when I assign an icon to a folder.
- Restart the computer and the "explorer.exe" process.
- Completely remove the two folders, recreate the folders and icons and reassign the icons.
- Change the icon's path (rename the icon or any of the parent folders).

Only the last solution on that list actually 'solved' the problem, which gives you an interesting insight into the problem: it seems as if the switched-around icons are actually 'hard-coded' into the paths on which they existed when they were assigned in step 4. So it doesn't matter what you do: if the icon exists on any of the two paths on which the switched-around icons existed when they were assigned in step 4, and you assign it to a folder, you get to see the switched-around folder icon every time. This path and corresponding icon must be stored somewhere, else this wouldn't even be possible!

I've run out of possible solutions so I know of no other option than to go to these forums.
Hoping for some suggesions... Thanks in advance!


It's a bit of an anticlimax but I've solved it. Apparently, removing the icon cache using the Disk Cleanup doesn't really remove the icon cache. So instead I went to:


...and removed the cache manually. That did the job. I'll leave this thread here for people that experience a similar problem in the future.
Last edited:

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8

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