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I've installed v1 of some software, then uninstalled it. After that I cleared all references to this software- no files in "program files" folder, no registry entries, nothing.

Then I installed v2 of the same software. Weirdly, the desktop icon is the v1 version, instead of v2 (except when icons view is switched to "classic mode"- it's ok then)

I tried installing v2 on another fresh vista machine, and the icon is correct. So I know Vista is storing the deleted icon somewhere. But where!!??!!

I'm using Vista Business edition.

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3 Answers 3

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Sounds like Vista is storing the previous icon in the Icon Cache. To fix this, you'll want to force Windows to rebuild the icon cache.

To rebuid the icon cache:

Make sure you don't have any unsaved work - following these steps will restart your computer to finish the process.

Open a cmd window by clicking the Start button and typing "cmd" and pressing Enter.

At the prompt, type the following:

  1. taskkill /IM explorer.exe /F and press Enter
  2. cd /d %userprofile%\AppData\Local and press Enter (if on Windows XP, see note below)
  3. del IconCache.db /a and press Enter
  4. shutdown /r /t 0 and press Enter

Note: If you're on Windows XP, for step 2, type cd /d %userprofile%\Local Settings\Application Data

What this does:

  1. You force explorer.exe to exit. This will make your taskbar and any open "My Computer" windows close. The /IM tells the program, taskkill, to find the file by it's image name (which is explorer.exe), and the /F tells taskkill to force it to close.
  2. Switches the command prompt to the directory where the icon cache is stored. In Vista and Windows 7, this is in C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\. In Windows XP, this is at C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Local Settings\Application Data\.
  3. Deletes the icon cache file.
  4. Restarts your computer so the icon cache can be rebuilt. The /r tells the computer to restart after shutting down, and the /t 0 is the amount of time until the restart (it defaults to 30 seconds, saying 0 makes it immediate).
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This seems like the obvious answer. But strangely I deleted the file IconCache.db in C:\Users*Me*\AppData\Local but still I'm stuck with the old icon. It must be stored elsewhere too. –  Urbycoz Apr 12 '11 at 10:18

Have you checked All users' desktop folder? A search in C:\Users / C:\Documents and settings ought to give away where the shortcut is stored.

Why the program acts this way, however, would best be answered by the software manufacturer.

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Yes, I tried looking there too. The problem is....I am the software manufacturer :-) I wrote the program, but I just can't get the icon to update in Vista. Works fine in XP. –  Urbycoz Apr 12 '11 at 9:19

Did you looked at the icon cache as well?

http://smallvoid.com/article/windows-icon-cache.html

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This seems like the obvious answer. But strangely I deleted the file IconCache.db in C:\Users*Me*\AppData\Local but still I'm stuck with the old icon. It must be stored elsewhere too. –  Urbycoz Apr 12 '11 at 9:42

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