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Windows 7: Part of Desktop "unusable"


16 Apr 2011   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1
 
 
Part of Desktop "unusable"

Hi all,

It's been a while since I posted on the forum. This is a good thing in a way, I guess, because it means all is running well. Up until recently . . .

I'm not sure when this started happening, but occasionally when I start up my PC several of the desktop icons have moved. Specifically from the top left position, every icon is the left column has been shifted down 1 position.

The *really* annoying thing is that I am not able to move them back. Windows will not allow me to put any icon in the very top left position. As I drag an icon it changes to a symbol (circle with a diagonal line diagonally thru it) and when I release the mouse button the icon goes back to where it was.

This is very frustrating! I tried using auto-arrange and this did position an icon top left, but I prefer my icons in a specific order. Intrestingly I can position a desktop gadget in the top left!

Any ideas and suggestions would be welcome.

BTW i've updated graphics drivers and Norton 2011 IS reports no viruses or other nasties.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Apr 2011   #2
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

This is really strange, something seems to be in the way. I assume you did "Arrange to grid".

I do not have this problem because I only keep 2 icons on the desktop (Recycle Bin and Toolbar folder). All others are stuck into the Rocket Dock and about 50 in a toolbar. That is a lot more practical because they are accessible regardless of what is on the screen and I can order them into subfoders by subject (Programs, Websites, Documents, etc.). Toolbars - How to Use in Windows 7 and Vista
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2011   #3

Ubuntu 12.10
 
 

Ditch Norton 2011 Microsoft Security Essentials FTW!!!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Apr 2011   #4
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SlasherIT View Post
Ditch Norton 2011 Microsoft Security Essentials FTW!!!
That is not a good advice. Why switch a Mercedes for a Yugo.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
This is really strange, something seems to be in the way. I assume you did "Arrange to grid".

Yes "arrange to grid" is set. I tried creating a new folder in the top left position (Right click > New > Folder) which worked in a strange way. If I did the right click, for example, 10mm from the screen edge, it worked, but it didn't if i tried it 12mm from the edge, but 14mm was OK! (example figures - i didnt get a ruler out to measure! ) I suppose this could be *when* I click rather than exactly *where*. You're right, it's as if something is in the way, but nothing is visible. Using task manager I can see only one application running, even when I haven't started any apps myself. It's something called "Form1" which I cannot seem to find any useful info on!

In my last post I said i could move a gadget into that space. That was true, but i realised then it was a struggle to move it out again as it didn't seem to respond to a click of the mouse, but then it did!

I have tried disabling the option to allow themes to modify my icons (as I don't use themes, just a wallpaper). I don't know if this will have any effect - only time will tell, as this is not a constant problem. Sometimes when I use the PC all is well, other times the icons have moved.

And as to the other post, no, I am not dumping Norton.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2011   #6

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 / WinXP Pro x86 on (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Slasher999 View Post
Yes "arrange to grid" is set.
Well, I'm puzzled. If you have "arrange to grid" set (actually, it's two options: "auto arrange icons" or "align icons to grid") then that requests Windows to FORCE your icons into a grid arrangement. That is specifically NOT allowing you to position your icons wherever you want them to go.

In order to have total freedom and flexibility to put anything anywhere on your desktop, you specifically should UN-CHECK both of the options describing arrangment of icons:

My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Apr 2011   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dsperber View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Slasher999 View Post
Yes "arrange to grid" is set.
Well, I'm puzzled. If you have "arrange to grid" set (actually, it's two options: "auto arrange icons" or "align icons to grid") then that requests Windows to FORCE your icons into a grid arrangement. That is specifically NOT allowing you to position your icons wherever you want them to go.

In order to have total freedom and flexibility to put anything anywhere on your desktop, you specifically should UN-CHECK both of the options describing arrangment of icons:


Well, after reading this I thought I'd try unchecking the "Align icons to grid", which ever since it was available (Windows 95?) I've always left checked without a problem. Since i un-checked it, everything seems ok now! PUZZLED!!

Thanks for the advice!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Apr 2011   #8

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 / WinXP Pro x86 on (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Slasher999 View Post
Well, after reading this I thought I'd try unchecking the "Align icons to grid", which ever since it was available (Windows 95?) I've always left checked without a problem. Since i un-checked it, everything seems ok now! PUZZLED!!
Glad to have been of help.

But I really don't see how having "align icons to grid" checked could ever have simultaneously allowed you to move your icons anywhere you want them to be on the desktop... even back to Win95. You must perhaps have been "mis-remembering".

For sure, this "align icons to grid" is exactly the option setting that will NOT ALLOW YOU TO MOVE YOUR ICONS ANYWHERE ON YOUR DESKTOP!! It is specifically built to do EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE... forcing your icons into the nearest (or next available) grid cell on the desktop.

The result is "soldier matrix" (of vertical columns and rows, equally spaced) of icons. That's what checking that option does, and that's what results.

Only if you UNCHECK the option can you move your icons wherever you want and have them stay there. It's just always been that way... that's exactly what it was built and intended to provide.


Anyway, I'm glad you have now got this all squared away.

And, I'm with you... I have both of these options UNCHECKED (and have FOREVER), as I too want to have my own complete control over where desktop icons live. They need to stay where I place them.

Glad to help out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Apr 2011   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Pure guess here but do you have a hidden file or folder already there?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Apr 2011   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1
 
 

[QUOTE=dsperber;1367886]
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Slasher999 View Post

But I really don't see how having "align icons to grid" checked could ever have simultaneously allowed you to move your icons anywhere you want them to be on the desktop... even back to Win95. You must perhaps have been "mis-remembering".

For sure, this "align icons to grid" is exactly the option setting that will NOT ALLOW YOU TO MOVE YOUR ICONS ANYWHERE ON YOUR DESKTOP!! It is specifically built to do EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE... forcing your icons into the nearest (or next available) grid cell on the desktop.

The result is "soldier matrix" (of vertical columns and rows, equally spaced) of icons. That's what checking that option does, and that's what results.

Only if you UNCHECK the option can you move your icons wherever you want and have them stay there. It's just always been that way... that's exactly what it was built and intended to provide.


Anyway, I'm glad you have now got this all squared away.

And, I'm with you... I have both of these options UNCHECKED (and have FOREVER), as I too want to have my own complete control over where desktop icons live. They need to stay where I place them.

Glad to help out.
Just to clarify.....

I've always left the "Align to Grid" option checked as I do quite like the "soldier grid" idea. I never used "auto arrange" as I like the icons in a sequence I like. Such as personal folders in one row. AV programs in another row. Network shares in another row. And so on.

This has always worked well I have got used to where things are! My problem started when one of the columns (the far left one, against the edge of the screen) move down by one grid position, leaving this mysterious unusable grid position in the top left of the screen.

I had thought about hidden folders and have left the option to show hidden files and folders selected, but nothing ever appeared in the top left.

Whenever this unexpected shift occured I couldn't move the column back up for a while, but then after "a while" (I never timed it) I could move them back!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Part of Desktop "unusable"




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