How to rebuild a broken icon cache in Windows 10

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All that prettiness that we enjoy on our Windows 10 desktop is made all the better by the icons used to indicate apps and programs. Those icons are controlled by the icon cache. If something goes wrong with that cache, the desktop may not display properly and you will have to rebuild it. Here’s how to rebuild a broken icon cache in Windows 10.

The icon cache is a mini database that is held in memory and then written to disk when you send the computer to sleep or switch it off. Databases are delicate creatures and can easily be broken or corrupted by growing too large or just by rebooting your computer. Here’s how to fix it.

Rebuild a broken icon cache in Windows 10

Some files may be in use within Windows so we have to delete them in a specific way.

1. Navigate to the Explorer folder on your C: drive.
2. Right click on Explorer and select ‘Open command window here’.
3. Type or paste ‘dir’ to ensure you’re in the right place. You should see your iconcache files.
4. Right click on the Windows taskbar and select Task Manager.
5. Select Windows Explorer within Task Manager and then End task.
6. Type or paste ‘del iconcache*’ into the CMD window.
7. Type or paste ‘dir’ to make sure the iconcache files are gone.
8. Sign out and then back into Windows or reboot your machine. Your desktop should now return to normal.

More Windows 10 quick fixes:
How to fix 100% disk usage in Windows 10
How to fix unexpected store exception error message

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