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Windows 7: Icon Size Registry Tweak

15 Feb 2010   #11
mrquickly

Windows 7
 
 

I've opend the registry (regedit) changed from middle to small oder middle to big and pressed f5 for refresh, but as I've already mentioned the value of the key hasn't been changed. Normally you would directly see a change (I know this from other keys).


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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15 Feb 2010   #12
reghakr

Windows 7 Pro & Vista Home Premium
 
 

How an they not change when you change their value, by right-clicking on the entry and choose Modify..

Am I missing something here?

Maybe a screen shot would help
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #13
mrquickly

Windows 7
 
 

Okay, here comes a screenshot:



Quote:
right-clicking on the entry and choose Modify..
I know how to change it, but it hasn't an effect. I'm using Windows 7 Professional in our company (domain network).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


15 Feb 2010   #14
reghakr

Windows 7 Pro & Vista Home Premium
 
 

The "grid" changes when you alter the icon size,

Take all your icons on the desktop and move them so they are not next to each other on the "grid."

Now change the value, refresh and restart your computer
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2010   #15
mrquickly

Windows 7
 
 

Maybe we are talking about different things. I'm confused?!

Quote:
The "grid" changes when you alter the icon size
I don't want to set the spacing between the icons. I want to set the size of the icons to small instead of medium (default after installation).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2010   #16
reghakr

Windows 7 Pro & Vista Home Premium
 
 

You have no choice, when you change the size of the icons the grid changes automatically.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2010   #17
EricT

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Up to and including Windows XP the desktop icon size was controlled by an advanced control panel which is still supplied. You can access that icon size item in Windows 7 as follows:
  1. Select Control Panel->Appearance and Personalization->Personalization or right click on the desktop and select Personalize
  2. Select "Window Color" (not obvious when you want a size tweak.)
  3. Select "Advanced Appearance Settings..."
  4. Select "Icon" in the Items drop-down box.
Changing the value in there makes subtle changes to the layout of the icons (if you have "Align to grid" enabled), but it does not change the size of the icon images. The value entered in this box is stored in the ShellIconSize registry entry mentioned in the original post. (So that tweak will change the layout slightly, but not the size of the images.)

The icon image size is now controlled a different way and the advanced control panel has not been fixed to use it. The value is stored in a new registry key...

HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\1\Desktop\IconSize

However, tweaking that will not work. It is not updated when you change the icon size. If you do change it, nothing will read it until you next log on. When you log off your changes will be overwritten with your current active value. Maybe this piece of code was written by Joseph Heller (though I can see justification for it in terms of system resilience.)




So, the only ways to change the icon image size are:
  • Right click on the desktop, select View and choose Small, Medium or Large (32, 48 and 96 pixels)
  • Click on the desktop. Then press Ctrl and use the mouse wheel.
  • Write a program to call the shell API
Eric
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2010   #18
reghakr

Windows 7 Pro & Vista Home Premium
 
 

Hello Eric,

Nice writeup, however I have performed the hack my self and got it to work.

I have instructions on another computer which I'll post tomorrow.

But like I said, the grid will change and the OP does not want this.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2010   #19
reghakr

Windows 7 Pro & Vista Home Premium
 
 

Try right-clicking on the desktop and choose Personalize, select Windows Color, then Advanced Appearance Settings, select icon from the drop=down list and change it to any size you prefer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2010   #20
EricT

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

No, this only changes the grid layout for me. I've tried it on 32 bit Vista and 64 bit Windows 7. I hve even tried the 32-bit version of the control panel on Windows 7.

The image below shows the effect on my machine. I have a 3x3 matrix of icons top left of my screen at various settings.




There are three rows on the image - the top is with Small icons selected in the desktop popup menu View. Medium for the centre row, and large for the bottom row.

The left column is with the Icon Size set to 16 in the control panel (which sets the registry setting you mentioned.) That is the lowset value the control panel allows. The second column is set to 32, the default value I found on installation. The third is set to 48, and the final fourth column id set to the maximumof 72.

There are a couple of icons in the shots that do not ever get larger than 48 pixels. That is because they are old applications that do not have the 256 pixel png version of the icon that Vista/Win7 needs.

I've tried all sorts of things (rebooting, different DPI settings both with and without XP scaling mode) and there is no way I can get that ShellIconSize entry to change an icon image size.

Incidentally, a quick way to that buried control panel is to run "control.exe desk.cpl,,6". If you change the value in it and hit apply, do your icons immediately change size?

What I see is obviously similar to the results mrquickly reports, but is different to your result. Very strange. I'm sure we are all doing the same thing!

Eric
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Icon Size Registry Tweak




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