How to Create a Default Desktop.INI File

Updated March 23, 2017

The desktop.ini file is usually a hidden file that defines each folder and subfolder in Microsoft Windows XP. By configuring Windows Explorer to show hidden and system files, the desktop.ini files in each folder or subfolder are revealed. You can, however, create a new default desktop.ini file in a folder. Make sure you are logged in to the system with administrator rights and delete any existing desktop.ini files for the location where you are placing the new default desktop.ini file.

Right-click on the Windows "Start" button and click "Explore" to open Windows Explorer.

Click the "Tools" option on the top navigation bar of Windows Explorer, and then click "Folder Options."

Uncheck the "Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)" option check box.

Check the check box next to "Show Hidden Files and Folders" and then click "OK." The desktop.ini files are now visible in each folder.

Navigate to the folder where the new desktop.ini file will be created and right-click inside the folder.

Click "New" and then click "Text Document."

Compose the new desktop.ini file. Below is an example of the content of a default desktop.ini file. The desktop.ini file defines the icon folder and the default icon as number 160.




Click the "File" option and then click "Save."

Type "desktop.ini" with quotes into the "File Name" input box and click the "Save" button. The new default desktop.ini file is created.

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About the Author

Tammy Clevenger works in the I.T. industry while maintaining creative outlets through film making, writing and audio production. She is a published academic author and is an accomplished and certified Project Management Professional.