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 Does Fresh Icons lose desktop icon positions?

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Daniel Beardsmore Posted - 16 November 2008 : 16:27:11
In Windows 2000, I always used TweakUI's icon cache erase facility to cause Explorer to refresh all of its icons, but this does not work under XP: it deletes all your desktop icon positions! In fact, at least one installer (iColorFolder) does the same.

Before I install Fresh Icons and once again make my desktop look like a tornado victim, can anyone confirm that Fresh Icons uses the intelligent method, used by installers, to politely update icons?
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JimB Posted - 25 July 2009 : 10:59:14
LOL, no just a LENOVO laptop (2.1 Ghz/3Gb RAM) with Vista Home Premium. I have about 50 icons on the desktop (I had about the same average on my XP machine). Now each time (well OK some 90%) I copy something to my desktop it's invisible unless I hit refresh in my R-click desktop menu.
Daniel Beardsmore Posted - 25 July 2009 : 05:12:20
You're not in Vista on a work PC that uses folder redirection of the desktop to a server, are you?
JimB Posted - 25 July 2009 : 05:06:26
Originally posted by Daniel Beardsmore

Problem ..... solved?

I've finally found out the answer to icons not refreshing. It's a bug in Windows Explorer (2000, XP, no idea about Vista).

Well that's prob the only thing good in Vista. In 99% of the time the icons auto-refresh and auto-sort as set in preferences; but only inside folders. But also in 99% of the time the files if put on the desktop remain invisible unless you hit refresh in the R-click desktop menu. Extremely annoying.
Daniel Beardsmore Posted - 09 May 2009 : 18:30:38
Problem ..... solved?

I've finally found out the answer to icons not refreshing. It's a bug in Windows Explorer (2000, XP, no idea about Vista).

Anyone sensible will enable Launch folder windows in a separate process in Folder Options (avoids other bugs in Explorer).

However, this introduces a bug. User-introduced icon changes only take effect in the primary explorer.exe instance (the one that hosts the taskbar and desktop). User icon changes are instant but only take effect in that one process, for example, windows created with Win+E (which fail to open in the secondary explorer.exe process) and windows restored on login.

Even if you use the secondary process to do Folder Options, the primary process is the only one to redraw icons.

Problem "solved". No idea if there's a fix for this, although installers are unaffected -- whatever installers do, seems to affect both processes. (Even NSIS, I don't just mean MSI.) Maybe other API calls trigger the effect?
Daniel Beardsmore Posted - 17 November 2008 : 02:49:36
Well, I'll keep Fresh Icons around for the future. It's a program I've wanted for some time, due to my tendency to hand-edit file associations a lot. Hopefully in the future it will work for other file types, but I still can't make it work for .conf.

Ahto/Moon Software Posted - 17 November 2008 : 01:32:12
Probably nobody outside Microsoft knowns how exactly that icon caching works and why it someties will refresh icons and other times does not. FreshIcons will send message to Windows as if file association was changed. On most cases it works and Windows will refresh icons, but as you have noticed on some cases it does not work. Why, I have no glue.

P.S. I with tested similar new file type and set it to default to "txtfile" as your example and after running FreshIcons Explorer immediately changed previously unnassigned file's icon to new one.
Daniel Beardsmore Posted - 17 November 2008 : 00:29:27
Windows file type icons are even more obnoxious than classic Mac OS. I've added a file association via Folder Options:


Explorer is too stupid to update the icon without a reboot (even though I used Folder Options to generate the association!) but installers don't seem to require a reboot to add icons. I've run Fresh Icons, twice, first without, and then with the window open containing the DOSBox .conf file, and the icon has not been set.

I don't know precisely what Fresh Icons is supposed to do -- are there only certain Registry changes that Explorer is prepared to look out for you? This is where under 2k I just wipe the whole freaking icon cache to FORCE it to recognise my file associations. In XP, this loses the desktop icon positions, a bonus defect added in XP along with all the other sanity regressions to Explorer.

Looks like Explorer is incorrigibly pathetic when it comes to icons.
Ahto/Moon Software Posted - 16 November 2008 : 17:20:54
FreshIcons does nothing more than notify Windows to update icons. It does not mess with your icon cache directly etc. Actually what it does is the same what installers do after installing new file type.

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