Icons not showing up properly

It must be something in the water. Another weird issue came up recently. This time around it desktop icons that are not showing up properly.  So I started to dig and search and found a part of Windows I had never seen before: icon cache

This is the location to which Windows save application icons (all icons really) so that it can load them faster than having to search or go to a specific application folder.

The easy way to fix the problem mentioned is:

  1. Navigate to c:\users\(usernamer)\appdata\local
  2. Make sure you have show hidden files turned on
  3. Delete the file iconcache.db

WIndows will rebuild this file as needed. You may notice a small performance hit the first time loading you desktop (very small) but that should fix the problem

If that doesn’t work or you just want to look like a 1337 coder try this

  1. In Windows 7,  click Start button then hold Ctrl+Shift & Right Click on a blank area in the Start Menu and click “Exit Explorer”
  2. Press Ctrl+Shift+escape to open task manager
  3. Click File – New task (run)
  4. Type CMD
  5. enter these commands in Command prompt
    1. cd /d %userprofile%\AppData\Local
    2. attrib –h IconCache.db
    3. del IconCache.db
    4. start explorer

This will also delete the cache so you will see a very small performance impact the next reboot.

Enjoy your icons!

Save to desktop not working

It happens. Things disappear. No – its not early onset senility this really happens.  But when it happens to computers there must be a way to get it back.  The particular instance here is the “Desktop” in Windows Explorere (not Internet Explorer)

When trying to save a file you may notice that you can no longer “save to the desktop”.  It happened to one of our users recently and I was taken by surprise. A quick bit of keyboard kung-fu and I was able to restore the missing entry

Here are 2 solutions:

  1. Right click the “Favorites” in Windows Explorer and select “Restore Favorite links”
  2. If that does not work you can try to browse to the user profile, double click on the Links folder and then double click on the desktop folder
    When the desktop folder is open you will then right click the Favorites root and select ” Add current location to favorites”

Resetting Java the hard way

I have posted in the past how to reset Java settings.  But we have run into a few situations where this does not work.  Here are some advanced steps to try.  BEWARE: REGISTRY CHANGES ARE SCARY 🙂

  1. refer to my previous post on how to locate your user SID if you are not sure how to find it
  2. navigate to the Hkey users hive key in the registry (after backing up the registry first of course)
  3. navigate your your sid
  4. go into the wow6432nod entry (if you don’t see it then check under the USERS hkey for your SID with `_classes` at the end
  5. expand the CLSID and find the Java CLSID
    1. (to find Java CLSID go to the Internet Explorer – settings – manage add-ons – (make sure you are seeing all add-ons and not just currently loaded ones (in the bottom left)) – locate Java – double click – locate the CLSID and path
  6. Navigate to the following registry key: HKU\(USERSID)\wow6432nod\CLSID\(CLASSID)\inprocServer32
  7. Update the ”default” entry with the path found above

The main reason this works is that Java path can get mixed up from upgrades or other system changes.


Happy hunting!

Who am I ?

This is not a trick question.  This is not a test.

It has happened to lots of us admins out there.  What account have I logged in as and what permissions are set!?  It can get confusing when logging in as multiple different users and admin accounts.  Here are 2 commands (really just one but the second uses a switch) that really help lots

Start – run – CMD whoami

start – run – CMD whoami /user


As you can see the first command returns the name of the account who ran the request

The second one show the SID.  This is crazy useful so stay tuned for next post where I show you a reason why 🙂

More fun with Adobe reader being blocked by group policy

Hi again,

As promised here is the second part of my post on dealing with Adobe and Group Policy blocking the application.  If the steps in my previous post did not help then maybe these will.

  1. Close any open Adobe windows
  2. On the affected system navigate to the install location of Adobe reader (usually c:\program files (x86)\adobe\reader 11.0\reader)
  3. Right click the icon for AcroRd32.exe and select properties
  4. Go to the Digital Signature tab
  5. High light the certificate and click details
  6. On the general tab click “view Certificate”
  7. Click “Install certificate”
  8. Follow the prompts from the wizard.
  9. Import should show as being successful
  10. Close File Explorer
  11. Launch the .PDF file

Good luck!

Adobe Reader blocked by group policy

Hi All,


This will turn into a two part post.  In this installment I am going to show you a weird way to fix this issue.  In the second post I will show a more common way

Let the weirdness begin!

If you have been having issues getting GP to allow Adobe reader to run you can try this trick we found recently

  1. Try gpudate /force as the first thing to try. Steps below are only to be used in exceptional circumstances
  2. Close any open Adobe windows
  3. On the affected system navigate to the install location of Adobe reader (usually c:\program files (x86)\adobe\reader 11.0\reader)
  4. Right click the icon for AcroRd32.exe and select properties
  5. Go to the Digital Signature tab
  6. High light the certificate and click details
  7. On the general tab click “view Certificate”
  8. Click on all 3 tabs. Then click Okay
  9. Test if this solved the problem by closing open windows and trying to launch Reader
  10. Click on details in the countersignature section
  11. Click on all 3 tabs. Then click Okay
  12. Close the properties dialogue and test again.

Windows 10 Cloud update

Looks like the news is true. The newest offering in the windows family is going to be limited to Windows store apps… for your security. Not sure how I feel about this

And there is currently no real tie in with the cloud. This branding could be an internal name and will not actually see the light of day but if it does this blogger hopes that the cloud tie in is there – add some cloud based apps and storage and you really have a wonderful, cheap and resource efficient device!

Here’s to hoping!