Author Topic: Windows 10 desktop icons all align left after electrical outage  (Read 2134 times)

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Offline pastywhitegurl

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So, there was a break in the electrical service which shut down my computer unexpectedly.   When it rebooted,  all my desktop icons were aligned left.  I've had desktop anomalies happen after a sudden power break before, so was not terribly alarmed.

I waited for the reboot to complete, then shut down properly and restarted.  Same problem.

Did something get corrupted in the unexpected shutdown that should be fixed?   Should I do a system restore?   I need some guidance on how to proceed.


I searched a bit and found a few people talking about something similar, but there was nothing definitive other than things people were trying.

Windows 10
version 1703
OS build 15063.540

Offline Digerati

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Re: Windows 10 desktop icons all align left after electrical outage
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2017, 03:03:19 PM »
Right-click on a blank part of your desktop, hover over View, them make sure, "Auto arrange icons" is unchecked. Then arrange your icons how you want them. Right-click again and click on Refresh. Hopefully, they will stay where you put them.

Note this (and similar desktop icon problems) has been a problem nearly forever and not just with W10. Some blame Windows, some graphics drivers. I personally have recently had problems with my desktop icons too. I use two monitors and like to have certain icons positioned on each monitor. But every time my computer woke, all the icons would move to my primary monitor. I tried every fix suggested. I even swapped graphics cards but that did not help (suggesting it was indeed a Windows issue, this time).

I ended up using a program called DesktopOK. This program lets you save your icon layout then restore it next time they mess up. Unfortunately, it does not automatically restore it. You have to right-click on its system tray icon and click on the restore option. But at least that is much easier than manually rearranging them every time.

I was using this program for a couple months when suddenly, I woke my computer one morning and all my icons were exactly where they were supposed to be. ??? And they have been there ever since. So I can only guess some update overwrote some corrupt setting.

Good luck.
Bill (AFE7Ret)
Freedom is NOT Free!
2007 - 2018

Offline pastywhitegurl

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Re: Windows 10 desktop icons all align left after electrical outage
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2017, 03:25:02 PM »
Auto-arrange icons was already unchecked.

But I changed a few and did the refresh and it held. So hopefully that will continue on the next reboot.

I guess we'll see.  I think I'll take the opportunity to clean up the desktop a bunch, so I don't have a bit resort to do should it revert on the reboot.

DesktopOK sounds like the next step.


Offline pastywhitegurl

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Re: Windows 10 desktop icons all align left after electrical outage
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2017, 02:10:09 PM »
I'm happy to report that after a reboot, my desktop icons kept their positions.

Thanks so much for the help, Digerati.  :)


Some of the internet fix suggestions involved registry edits and even re-installing Windows 10. I"m so glad I can come here for a wise progression towards a solution. :)

Offline Digerati

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Re: Windows 10 desktop icons all align left after electrical outage
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2017, 02:29:41 PM »
Yeah, the "Refresh" option is usually your best bet. There are many things that can cause the icons to move - most involve changes to the graphics driver I believe. So if (or rather when) it happens again, try right-click and Refresh first.
Bill (AFE7Ret)
Freedom is NOT Free!
2007 - 2018