Replace A Lost Desktop Icon


Q. The Desktop icon that usually sits in the Taskbar next to the Start button has disappeared. How can I get it back?

A. I understand your concern: That little icon is one of the most useful tools in the Windows Taskbar. When you click on it, you’re taken right to the Desktop. To replace it, you must create what’s called an .scf file.

However, you cannot create the file in Word. You must use a pure text application such as Notepad or WordPad. To open either, click on Start, Programs, Accessories, and then open either word processor and create a new document, typing in the following lines:


Now save the file as Show Desktop.scf in the C:WindowsSystem folder if you’re using Windows 98 or Windows Me, or in the WinntSystem32 folder if you’re using Windows NT 4 or Windows 2000 (this assumes you’ve installed Windows to those default folders).

By the way, make sure Notepad or WordPad doesn’t add an extra .txt extension to the filename, as is its wont. If it does, remove it so the file is called Show Desktop.scf.

Now create a shortcut to the file by locating the file in Explorer and right-clicking on it. Choose Create Shortcut from the pop-up menu and copy the shortcut to the folder C:WindowsApplication DataMicrosoftInternet ExplorerQuick Launch if you’re using Windows 98/Me, or to WinntSystem32 if you’re using Windows NT 4/2000.

The Show Desktop icon should then automatically appear in your Taskbar. If it doesn’t, rename the shortcut you just created to Desktop.

If you don’t want to go through all those steps, there is a keyboard command to get to the Desktop: Click on the key with the Windows logo and D.


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