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Windows 7: Border around icons on desktop

25 Oct 2009   #1

Windows 7 build 7600 64 bit
Border around icons on desktop

Is there any way to get rid of this dotted border around the desktop icons? (see screenshot, around the Computer icon)
I know it only appears sometimes, but its really annoying

Attached Thumbnails
Border around icons on desktop-temp.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec

25 Oct 2009   #2

Win 8 Release candidate 8400


I can see why. did you make any changes to the theme? Is it stock win 7?

that doesnt look like a standard win 7 icon.

let us know and if it is i will have to look for it

My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Oct 2009   #3

Windows 7 build 7600 64 bit

Its a fresh install of win 7 (4 hours ago), and no, i haven't made any changes to the theme (other than set a desktop wallpaper).
This happens if i click the desktop and press any key, it selects that icon, if i press C it selects Computer, and the border appears!

Otherwise its normal like in the screenshot attached, the Documents folder selected and mouse hovering over the Computer icon

Attached Thumbnails
Border around icons on desktop-temp2.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec

25 Oct 2009   #4

Windows 7 RC 64bit

Weird... mine has never done the dotted border around icons.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Oct 2009   #5

Windows 7 home pre

Ok this happens to me too, I don't know if this helps but for me when I want it to go away I click on the show desktop button far far right and it goes away

If this is what you are looking for send me some rep
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Oct 2009   #6

Windows 7 build 7600 64 bit

Same here, i can fix it by clicking show desktop.
There has to be some way to fix this, even tho it doesn't happen often its still annoying (and i am a perfectionist lol )
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Oct 2009   #7


If the icon itself is a small image and does not scale, you will have the borders.

For example, if the icon image itself is 32x32 and you have all other icons at 128X128, when you scale that 32x32 image to 128x128, the image doesn't change size, but the border does.

If there is only one icon that is 'bordered', then that is simply the icon highlight.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Oct 2009   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate

I like to download custom icons from Rocketdocks pool in .png format, and then convert them to .ico format. If you install Rocketdock from here:

Download RocketDock -

you get handy dock for windows 7, that may or may not grow on you.. personally, I cannot get by without it.. anyways, once installed, if you right click on one of the icons on the dock, and click icon settings, and then select "get more", it will bring you to the Rocketdock website, where there lies a plethora of killer icons and icon packs.. Download the ones you are interested in, then convert them to .ico format using this site: - Convert .PNG format files to .ICO or .ICO format files to .PNG : Windows Vista compatible icons

Once converted, then right click the icon on the desktop you want to update, and hit on change icon, then eventually browse to where the .ico file is listed.. I change all my icons pretty much in this way..

Hope this helps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Oct 2009   #9

Vista Ult 64 bit Seven Ult RTM x64

As smartey says, it is the last selection made on the desktop. If you were to use the arrow keys to move around the desktop, this would be the starting point. If you wanted to open that program you could press the spacebar to highlight and enter to open. The desktop must be in focus of course.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Oct 2009   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate

Yeah, actually that is not the same thing as Smarteye and I were thinking now that I look at it closer.. Windows highlights things that are selected, in this case, the icons on your desktop.. Just select something else, or click on the empty space on your desktop, and the box you are referring to should go away...

I was more referring to the annoying scaling issue, that can occur when you have icons that are smaller than standard. I like to increase the size of my desktop icons slightly, and if the icons are smaller, eventually, they will no longer grow, and a little grey dotted box will be around them.. Itunes for instance, is notorious for this.. My method describes a place to score many free icons, and also a way to replace the icons on the desktop with large, resize-able icons..
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Border around icons on desktop

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