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Is it possible to change a folder's color?


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#1 eddman

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 17:39

Is it possible to do through registry or some other way?

 

I know I can use custom icons like these:

 

CGlGjsj.jpg

 

but they do not show if the folder has any contents.

 

P.S. I'm looking to change the COLOR of the folder itself, NOT change it to some other icon, which is already doable and not a solution to my problem.




#2 bigmehdi

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 17:45

This might be what you are looking for:
http://microangelo.us/mod.asp



#3 Ian W

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 17:48

As you mentioned, you have to change the icon of the folder. It is not possible to change the folder color without changing the folder icon. There are various programs that allow you to do this, such as Folderico, and Microangelo On Display that user bigmehdi mentioned.



#4 Max Norris

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 17:51

You'd need a collection of different icons.. there's plenty out there, even Photoshop templates to roll your own, etc etc. Good tools listed above for manually setting it.

After that though, it's easy to set it. Can do it manually via properties, or if you want to automate it, create/edit a desktop.ini file in that directory and set the contents something along these lines, just as an example:
[.ShellClassInfo]
IconResource=C:\Users\Max Norris\Pictures\Icons\My Custom Folder.ico,0
Careful editing existing ones, especially some of the built-ins like Documents, Videos, etc, there's more info that can be in there. Also note the default ones are marked as hidden/system by default so you won't see existing ones without telling your file manager to show those.

#5 UXGaurav

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:02

There is also the free Rainbow Folders: http://www.softpedia...w-Folders.shtml but it also changes the folder icon. There is no way in Windows to change just a single folder's color without basically assigning it a custom icon of a folder with a different color.



#6 OP eddman

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:10

Seems no one gets my comment. If I change the icons, then they will NOT show a preview of the contents that are inside of the folder.

 

I don't need an extra program just to change the icon. I can do it by myself.

 

I want to change just the default color of the folder without changing the icon.

 

You'd need a collection of different icons.. there's plenty out there, even Photoshop templates to roll your own, etc etc. Good tools listed above for manually setting it.

After that though, it's easy to set it. Can do it manually via properties, or if you want to automate it, create/edit a desktop.ini file in that directory and set the contents something along these lines, just as an example:


[.ShellClassInfo]
IconResource=C:\Users\Max Norris\Pictures\Icons\My Custom Folder.ico,0
Careful editing existing ones, especially some of the built-ins like Documents, Videos, etc, there's more info that can be in there. Also note the default ones are marked as hidden/system by default so you won't see existing ones without telling your file manager to show those.

 

Will the folders still show a preview of the contents inside of them?


As you mentioned, you have to change the icon of the folder. It is not possible to change the folder color without changing the folder icon. There are various programs that allow you to do this, such as Folderico, and Microangelo On Display that user bigmehdi mentioned.

Thanks, I know about those programs but not what I'm after.



#7 MarkusDarkus

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:14

Don't worry mate. I get what you mean but I've not done it. I thing you would have to use a resource editor like 'Reshacker' or something newer and amend the original icon in place. As to where that icon is... you can look in %SystemRoot%\system32\SHELL32.dll  but I don't know if editing or replacing the icons in the dll will work. if it's buried deeper into windows you may be out of luck. It would be interesting how you get on though.



#8 zhangm

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:21

Don't worry mate. I get what you mean but I've not done it. I thing you would have to use a resource editor like 'Reshacker' or something newer and amend the original icon in place. As to where that icon is... you can look in %SystemRoot%\system32\SHELL32.dll  but I don't know if editing or replacing the icons in the dll will work. if it's buried deeper into windows you may be out of luck. It would be interesting how you get on though.

 

If you modify the default icon, I believe that will change every single folder. I'm inferring that the OP wishes to apply different colors to specific folders while retaining the baked-in file content preview.



#9 Eric

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:36

The thumbnail previews in the default folder icons are generated by the shell, so in order to have both a different colored folder and show the content preview you'd have to replace the icon in shell32.dll as Markus mentioned. I'm not sure if there's a way to have multiple colors with that method. I've never seen any software that can do multiple colors and the previews at the same time.

#10 +Jack Unterweger

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:44

This might be what you are looking for:
http://microangelo.us/mod.asp

 

have not clicked on the link but even reading the name brings back memories. i remember having used this in my win98/2000 days, also to design some icons (where i sucked badly). but it was good fun, despite it being shareware.

 

what i expect today from an OS: that i can change every folder icon individually. please don't tell me that this is still not possible in todays windows. i remember after the 30 days of microangelo i had to rely on shortcuts to folders to at least get a new folder icon and then i had to use powertoys to remove the shortcut-arrow from it. busy times...



#11 Eric

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:58

have not clicked on the link but even reading the name brings back memories. i remember having used this in my win98/2000 days, also to design some icons (where i sucked badly). but it was good fun, despite it being shareware.
 
what i expect today from an OS: that i can change every folder icon individually. please don't tell me that this is still not possible in todays windows. i remember after the 30 days of microangelo i had to rely on shortcuts to folders to at least get a new folder icon and then i had to use powertoys to remove the shortcut-arrow from it. busy times...


Nope, you can change every folder icon to a different piece of fruit if you like, but the thumbnails of what's inside won't appear unless it's using the icon inside shel32.dll.

#12 +Jack Unterweger

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 18:59

Nope, you can change every folder icon to a different piece of fruit if you like, but the thumbnails of what's inside won't appear unless it's using the icon inside shel32.dll.

 

ok i get this. can you or anyone else technically explain why this is no problem in linux. i am using kubuntu 14.04 and in dolphin i can set different folder icons and still activate the preview and it will show.



#13 _dandy_

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 19:01

what i expect today from an OS: that i can change every folder icon individually. please don't tell me that this is still not possible in todays windows.

 

It's been possible for at least a decade, I had been doing it with Windows 2000 and probably before that.  You just have to be prepared to edit lots of desktop.ini files and provide your own replacements.  Or use some of the tools others have pointed out above.

 

However, based on what you're describing, this doesn't fully cover what it is you want.  Windows will do its own thing to show previews of a folder's content, and merge that with the default yellow folder icon (which you want to change).  This is where, I think, you're expecting just a little too much.


ok i get this. can you or anyone else technically explain why this is no problem in linux. i am using kubuntu 14.04 and in dolphin i can set different folder icons and still activate the preview and it will show.

 

Because they're not using the same code?

 

Don't look for a longer technical explanation, because that's all there is to it.



#14 Eric

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 19:05

ok i get this. can you or anyone else technically explain why this is no problem in linux. i am using kubuntu 14.04 and in dolphin i can set different folder icons and still activate the preview and it will show.


It's a different OS. I'm guessing every DE for Linux doesn't support that, either.

@dandy: You don't have to mess with the desktop.ini file. The properties for the folder (under "customize" tab) have an option to change both the icon displayed on the folder and the folder icon itself.

#15 Max Norris

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 20:00

Nope, you can change every folder icon to a different piece of fruit if you like, but the thumbnails of what's inside won't appear unless it's using the icon inside shel32.dll.

This -- you can easily assign different folder icons, but if you want the live previews, that's technically 2 or 3 different images that get "stacked" together, it's not a single icon. Misunderstood what he was trying to do, sounded like he wanted something a bit automated, hence the desktop.ini file. You can still change it, but you're still limited to one "end" image overall.
 

ok i get this. can you or anyone else technically explain why this is no problem in linux. i am using kubuntu 14.04 and in dolphin i can set different folder icons and still activate the preview and it will show.

That's just how Explorer works. Microsoft has to target a gazillion people with one program, so they have to pick a balance of usability versus not throwing a ton of options at people. Some people would find Dolphin grossly complex for what they need to do. Say, the difference between Nautilus and Dolphin.. one size doesn't fit all, which is what they have to do, they have to set a baseline of sorts. Doesn't mean you're stuck with it, just like Linux you can replace it with something that works better for you. Even Dolphin. Out of the box defaults doesn't set the OS's capabilities in stone in any way.

Just for example, here's a couple now, Explorer, DOpus, Dolphin, Midnight Commander and Free Commander.. and there's quite a few more. Pick one that does what you want it to do.
filemanage.png