Desktop.ini is a Windows XP system file that stores information about customized folders. If you have customized the display of a folder in any way, such as changing its icon or manner of display, Windows has saved those settings in a desktop.ini file.
I use Windows XP, and I see a file called Desktop.ini in a lot of my folders. What is that? How can I get rid of it?
In the following screenshot, I have right-clicked on a folder and am about to customize it.
Since Desktop.ini is a Windows system file, you are probably seeing it because you have set Explorer to display hidden/system files. By reversing this setting, you can get rid of Desktop.ini.
- In any Windows Explorer window, click Tools → Folder Options…
- Click on the View tab.
- Check off the radio button next to “Do not show hidden files and folders”.
- Put a check in the box next to “Hide protected operating system files (recommended)”.
- Click OK.
Here is a picture of the settings I have just described:
Once you have made these changes, Desktop.ini should be out of sight and out of mind. Here is a screen shot of the same folder from Figure 1. It’s still customized, but Desktop.ini is nowhere to be seen.