Brian Cryer

 

Cry How To...


Change a drive icon


To change the icon displayed within explorer for a drive requires changes to the windows registry.

  1. Create (if it does not already exist) the registry key:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\ Windows\ CurrentVersion\ Explorer\ DriveIcons\ X\ DefaultIcon

    where 'X' is the drive letter of the drive for which you wish to change the drive icon.

  2. Change the key's default value to hold the fully qualified name of the icon file (e.g. 'c:\myicons\cdrive.ico').

    If the file contains more than one icon then follow it with a comma and the zero-based index of the icon (e.g. 'c:\myicons\mylib.dll,2').

  3. To see the affect restart windows - although, depending on the version of windows simply refreshing the window might be sufficient.

From Windows 2000 onwards it is also possible to change the default label shown for each drive.

  1. Navigate to (or create):

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\ Windows\ CurrentVersion \ Explorer\ DriveIcons\ X\ DefaultLabel

    where 'X' is the drive letter of the drive for which you wish to change the label.

  2. Change the key's default value to hold the required label.

The icon displayed for a cd (or zip) drive is normally taken from the media that it holds. To specify the icon that should be used:

  1. Copy the icon file (IconName.ico) to the root directory (i.e. the top directory) of the cd. (Any name will do, but it must be an icon file and have a ‘.ico’ file extension.)
  2. Create the file ‘AUTORUN.INF’ in the root of the drive, it should contain:

    [autorun]
    icon = IconName.ico

  3. The change will be visible the next time cd is placed into a drive.

These notes are believed to apply to all versions of Windows.



About the author: is a dedicated software developer and webmaster. For his day job he develops websites and desktop applications as well as providing IT services. He moonlights as a technical author and consultant.