Removing Unused Shortcuts from Your Desktop

There may be such a thing as having too many shortcuts on your desktop. I have seen desktops with very few icons to those whose desktops are cluttered with shortcuts to various programs to the point where you can’t even see the actual desktop. I like to keep a simple and clean desktop with the bare minimum shortcuts needed. I only put shortcuts on my desktop to programs that I use on a regular basis. Windows has a feature that can help clean up your desktop by removing those shortcuts that hasn’t been used in a while and putting them in a folder on your desktop called “Unused Desktop Shortcuts”.  These instructions were taken from the Help section of Windows.

“Remove unused desktop icons

To remove unused desktop icons

  1. Open Display in Control Panel.
  2. On the Desktop tab, click Customize Desktop.
  3. Under Desktop cleanup, click Clean Desktop Now.
  4. Follow the directions in the Desktop Cleanup Wizard.


  • To open Display, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Display.
  • The Desktop Cleanup Wizard displays a list of the desktop icons that have not been used for 60 days or more, enabling you to remove those icons that you don’t want on your desktop. You can retrieve icons you have removed by opening the Unused Desktop Shortcuts folder on your desktop.
  • Clear the Run Desktop Cleanup Wizard every 60 days check box if you don’t want the wizard to run automatically every two months.
  • You can remove an individual desktop icon by right-clicking the icon and then clicking Delete.
  • To add or remove the icons for My Documents, My Computer, My Network Places, or Internet Explorer, select or clear those items under Desktop icons.