How to fix Icons in Windows 11

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Icons appear blank if Windows cannot find the icon file associated with an app. A few issues can cause icons to go blank:

  1. The app is an outdated version
  2. Your graphics driver is out-of-date
  3. The icon cache file is corrupt


Try these steps in order until your icons are back to normal:

  1. Unhide your desktop icons. If your desktop icons are missing, right-click anywhere on the desktop and select View > Show desktop icons.
  2. Update your apps. If you’re having problems with a specific app, update it to see if that fixes the icon.

  3. Check your Desktop Icon Settings. If icons are missing for Windows system apps like the Recycle Bin or This PC, go to Settings > Personalization > Themes > Desktop icon settings. Check all the boxes, then apply and save your changes.
  4. Restart Windows Explorer. Open Windows Task Manager, go to the Processes tab, then right-click Windows Explorer and select Restart.
  5. Rebuild the icon cache. Windows stores icons in a cache file that can be corrupted or out-of-sync. Delete the icon cache file and restart your PC to rebuild the cache

  6. Perform an SFC Scan. Run System File Checker to repair any corrupted files:

    • Open Command Prompt as an administrator
    • Type the following command and then press Enter: sfc /scannow
  7. Unhide the Taskbar. If you’re missing the icons in your taskbar, make sure the taskbar isn’t hidden. Go to Settings > Personalisation > Taskbar > Taskbar behaviors and uncheck Automatically hide the taskbar.
  8. Uninstall Windows 11 updates. If your icons went missing after a Windows update, go to Settings > Windows Update > Update history > Uninstall updates and select Uninstall next to the latest update.
  9. Perform a System Restore. If you’ve noticed issues after making some changes to your system, use System Restore to roll back your PC to a previous state.

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