How to Hide Desktop Icons and Files

(Archived in: Nomad Resources Open Source and Shareware)


This post is related to the ongoing series on Microsoft Replacements, but because it is a Microsoft release you cannot call it an MS replacement. Since I recently have been cleaning up the look and the usability of my desktop, I also have been researching ways to either remove or hide various desktop icons.

At my request, Saman over at was nice enough to write a post showing how to Remove the Recycle Bin Icon from Your Desktop using a registry hack. I am a little more than nervous about making changes to the registry. I also was more intent in hiding icons more so than removing them for good.

I have opted to use a free user interface called TweakUI, partially illustrated in the screen shot below. Notice that I have already hidden the icon for the Recycle Bin, and that it no longer appears in the top left corner of my desktop. What is great about Tweak is you can bring desk icons back as needed by just checking a box. You can download Tweak at, or read a review and downdload here.

Check out all the options in this post and decide for yourself. There also is a guest post on Untwisted Vortex that will show you how to "Make Folders Invisible in Windows XP". Next post will be back on MS Replacements, and posing the question why anyone would want to use a browser other than the infamous Firefox.

Resources for Portable Professionals and Extreme Telecommuting