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How to Make Your Own DLL File with Customized Icons
My old XP machine, and I mean old!!, was continually crashing. I got fed up with re-installing and having to re-do my own personal customizations, so I took a leaf out of someone else's book and used this method to quickly reset my PC as to how it was. This I've carried on now I've got Seven.
We're not actually going to be making our own dll file here to store your customized icons, we're going to borrow one. So to start.
Things you'll need.
I'm going with ResHacker, an old and trusted program. If you have a personal favourite then that is fine. If you're running a 64bit system make sure you get the latest, 3.5.2 version of ResHack from HERE. Scroll down the page until you see this box:
Microangelo Librarian trial is good for viewing, but always seems to stumble at saving, specially when the icons contain a 256 png image. It's up to you.
Open C:\Windows\System32 and locate the MORICONS.DLL File.
Copy and paste it into a new "work in progress" folder, Preferably on a different partition so you'll not lose it if things go wrong with your system and you need to re-install.
Now use the "Take Ownership", just to make sure it belongs to you.
Rename the MORICONS.DLL using a unique name (yours?? Unless you are called shell32!). I'm using fimbles here so mine is now called fimbles.dll. Next create a folder with an "AA+" name in the System 32, and the SysWOW64 folder (if you've got it). Occasionally when changing icons you'll get sent to the SysWOW64 folder instead. It depends on what you are changing. By putting your dll in an AA+ folder it will always be the first (maybe second) folder you see when you open the System32 folder. It saves a search!
Open your borrowed MORICONS.DLL file, now, for me, called fimbles.dll with ResHack.
Expand the Version Info key. You'll want to change the two MORICONS.DLL names to your new (fimbles.dll) name. This is not absolutely essential, until your system starts trying to use icons from MORICONS.DLL (highly unlikely, but why chance it?) and discovers there are two. Easier, and more consistent, just to change it now. Once changed, press the Compile Script button, then File, then Save. Well that's the hard bit done!
If you have an icon viewer similar to Microangelo Librarian we can now view the icons already installed in our (my) fimbles.dll file.
Aren't they some beauties? Just crying out to be changed. What interested me though was that there are 113 different icons I could change before I worried about how to add extra icons (easy enough once you know but won't go into that just now, suffice to say you can use ResHacker).
So now all you have to do is replace the original icons in "your" dll file with your modified icons. Once done drop your "fimbles.dll" into your folder(s) you added in to your system and then start changing your icons over.
If you use something like Regshot (I'm attaching, can sometimes be hard to find), to take a "before icon change" and an "after icon change" registry snapshot, you'll then see which registry key, if any, has been changed. You can then export (save) this so you only need to re-enter it after a system re-install to maintain your modified icons. I've actually merged all my registry changes in to one reg file so now I drop two folders in my system folders, double click one reg file, delete the icon and thumbs caches, re-boot and TA-DAA! All modified icons are in place.
For a bit of consistency I've kept numbers 004 and 005 as my default folders open and closed replacements and number 030 as my shortcut arrow overlay replacement. Always remember that Icon Groups are one number lower than the viewed number. This is because your number 001 icon is read by Windows as the default or "no number" icon. So your number 002, to Windows, is 001 etc..
This may sound a bit long winded, but once started is easier than writing it down/reading it. And you only have to do it the once, not every time you re-install.
I've started adding my modified string tables to mine now, but I'll save that for another day.
Computer type PC/Desktop System Manufacturer/Model Number Self Assembled OS Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit SP 1 CPU Intel Core i3 2120 @ 3.30GHz Motherboard Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd. H61M-DS2 DVI Memory Corsair 2GB x2 (Single-Channel DDR3 @ 665MHz) Graphics Card 2047MB GeForce GTS 450 (ZOTAC International) Sound Card Onboard (Realtek High Definition Audio) Monitor(s) Displays LG Flatron E2040T Screen Resolution 1600x900
Keyboard Logitech MK220 Mouse Logitech MK220 PSU uMAX 750 watt. Case iBall Cooling Air/ Fans Hard Drives Western Digital 1 TB
Seagate 500 GB Internet Speed BSNL Broadband Antivirus Microsoft Security Essentials Browser Waterfox Other Info Dell Studio 15" Laptop
Looks interesting. Maybe I'm dense and not so nimble at the registry as you, but where, exactly did you insert your own icons? How also. This is like a statement "create a .bat file"... I don't know how to do that either.
Computer type PC/Desktop System Manufacturer/Model Number Home Built Desktop By DataTech OS Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1 CPU Intel i5-2550K, Differing ~4.4-4.8GHz No built in GPU Motherboard ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 Memory 16GB G.Skill Sniper 2133MHz 2x8GB Graphics Card ASUS GTX650TIB-DC2OC-2GD5, (650TI Boost) Sound Card Onboard Realtek 5-1 Monitor(s) Displays Samsung P2570HD Screen Resolution 1920x1080
Keyboard E-Z Eyes, bright yellow keys with large characters Mouse steelseries SENSEI Laser Pro Gaming PSU Corsair HX650W Case Inwin Dragon Rider Cooling Hyper 212 EVO w/two Noctua fans, push-pull, @1300 RPM Hard Drives Smasung 840 Pro 256GB for OS, 500GB Seagate Constellation (Enterprise drive) for Data Internet Speed 48-51Mbs Mbs down, 11 Mbs up Xfinity Cable Antivirus Norton Internet Security 2013 Browser IE 10, Opera when needed Other Info 4 case fans, LG BluRay-RE, ASUS DVD-RW, Mr. Fusion power supply, 1.21 gigawatts.
System Manufacturer/Model Number Custom self assembled OS Windows 7 Ultimate x64 CPU Intel Core i7 930 Motherboard Gigabyte GA X58A UD7 Memory Gskill 2x3 GB Ram Graphics Card Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 5870 Monitor(s) Displays Samsung 20'' LCD Monitor Screen Resolution 1600x900
Keyboard Logitech G15 Gaming keyboard Mouse Logitech MX518 Gaming Mouse PSU Cooler Master GX 650W Case Cooler Master 690 II Plus Cooling Intel stock cooler Hard Drives Seagate barracuda 1 TB Internet Speed Broadband 1.3 Mbps speed [MTNL] Other Info Xbox 360 Wired Controller (x2)
AverMedia TV tuner Card [Internal]
Logitech HD C110 Web Camera
Netgear WGR614 Wireless-N 150 Router
Razer Goliathus Fragged Alpha Control Edition Mouse Pad