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Speed up your Win9x/ME machine

Why don't I have a ShellIconCache file? by GrandpaCarl
Posted: 19 Jul 02 (Edited 10 Aug 02)

If the ShellIconCache file in Windows gets deleted, it may not get recreated like Microsoft and otghers say it should be. That slows up the boot process and any time icons need to be painted on the screen.

The secret seem to be: DON'T use a shortcut to shutdown or reboot Windows.  I love shorcuts, because I hate the round about way Windows must shut down.  Shortcuts omit more than mouse clicks! If you want your ShellIconCache file to be rebuilt, use the long way around:  START/SHUTDOWN/SHUT DOWN/OK.  RESTART works as well.  I am embarrassed to say how many hours I wasted on this one before the light bulb turned on.  Maybe I can save someone else some grief!

cdogg has mentioned that the ShellIconCache file is not always rebuilt just by exiting windows via the Start/shutdown/shutdown\OK approach.  While it did for one of my computers, it would not consistently do that for one of the others, even thougfh both were running Win98SE.  The best way is to delets the ShellIconCache file, either by Windows Explorer, FIND, TweakUI133,or by use of something like Ztree.  Caution: Unless your computer is configured to allow you to see hidden files, you may not be able to see the file.  For some computers, you might then have to change the screen resolution or icon sizes and then exit.  Like I said, this aspect of windows is anything but consistent!  The key thing is not to make the same mistake I did, repeatedly, of taking a shortcut when exiting Windows.  If you do, then the ShellIconFile will almost definitely not be recreated.  If your computer Icons change as much as they do on my computers, you definitely need to delete and then rebuild the ShellIconCache file every month or so just to flush out any garbage leftovers.  This should be done especially when you have gone through and deleted a bunch of programs you no longer need or use.  

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