Windows 7 - How do I change my destop icon text from white to a darker color

Asked By Cindy on 04-Mar-09 03:22 PM
On my Windows desktop my Icons are a white font color. I changed my

Justin Thyme replied on 04-Mar-09 04:41 PM
Cindy, my desktop background color is dark green so white text is fine for
me, but you might try this approach -- do it carefully:

My Computer > Control Panel > Display > Appearance > Advanced > Item
dropdown > Selected Icons > Font > Color (dropdown) select to change to the
desired color > OK your way back out.

Be sure you can retrace your steps if necessary to back out of this.  I
didn't try it myself.

Ken Bland
Unknown replied on 04-Mar-09 04:56 PM
Selected Icons?????? What windows version are you using?
Justin Thyme replied on 04-Mar-09 06:20 PM
Windows XP Home Edition SP3 (build 2600).

Ken Bland
Justin Thyme replied on 04-Mar-09 06:28 PM

Version number is 5.1

Ken Bland
Olórin replied on 05-Mar-09 04:25 AM
He was being sarcastic, Ken. Double-check - do you actually have an entry in
the drop-down saying "Selected Icons"?
Unknown replied on 05-Mar-09 10:58 AM
I was not or did not mean to be sarcastic. I do not find a 'selected icons'
on my system. I thought he was using
some other version of XP than the one I have.
Unknown replied on 05-Mar-09 11:02 AM
BTW, most you Londoners misinterpret our English (American) language.
Justin Thyme replied on 05-Mar-09 12:30 PM
I do indeed.  Third up from the bottom.

Ken Bland
Cindy replied on 05-Mar-09 12:56 PM
Hi Justin,
I didn't think this would be so hard to do.  I am using XP SP3.   I do not
have a choice of  'selected icons'  -   I have  Desktop, icon, icon spacing,
etc.   But no selected icons.   When I select Icon it is giving me a choice
of size and font, but no color choice.   Looks like I will have to either
change my wallpaper or just live with the white font color.
Any other suggestions.
Thanks,   Cindy in AR
Justin Thyme replied on 05-Mar-09 12:57 PM
Another addendum:

My interpretation of "Selected Items" was incorrect.  Apparently it means
the desktop icon descriptive text stayed white.  But when I selected
something from my Inbox, for example, the text was yellow; not the message
itself, but the indication that I had chosen the message.

My earlier instructions shouldn't have hurt Cindy but they wouldn't have
answered her question.  Sorry for all the confusion.

Ken Bland
Cindy replied on 05-Mar-09 12:58 PM
P.S.   My third from the bottom says  - selected items
Mike Torello replied on 05-Mar-09 02:02 PM


You had the OP and others searching for something that does not exist
because you "interpreted" that "items" is the same as "icons".
Unknown replied on 05-Mar-09 02:15 PM
Limeys have a different meaning for the word 'interpreted'.
Justin Thyme replied on 05-Mar-09 03:51 PM
Aw, gee, Mike, you have done gone and hurt my feelers.

May I please be excused now?

Ken Bland
Mike Torello replied on 05-Mar-09 04:05 PM
In the UK, does it mean "cannot freaking read"?
Olórin replied on 06-Mar-09 04:08 AM

If it actually, really, genuinely, "I have-double-checked-it-carefully" does
say "Icons" and not "Items" then someone or something has tweaked your
machine's registry.
Olórin replied on 06-Mar-09 04:10 AM
In that case, I apologise.

Olórin replied on 06-Mar-09 04:15 AM
There was no misinterpretation of your *language*, just your meaning. That
was probably because I am not a Londoner, which you oddly assume.

Olórin replied on 06-Mar-09 04:15 AM
Are you being sarcastic *now*? <bg>
Unknown replied on 06-Mar-09 02:59 PM
English however?
Rob replied on 06-Mar-09 11:30 PM

Hi Cindy,
I set my desktop (Xp Home SP3) a long time ago, but I traced along the steps
that JT gave you, and worked for me.
When you say you changed the wallpaper, did you do it in  Control
panel/desktop/appearance /advanced/then from the "item" long list select
On my pc the 'colour 1' dropbox for desktop, determines the background
colour of the box of the desktop icon, as I have a picture as my wallpaper.
The colour of the icon text, and the icon font type is selected from
My combo is light gray background and black text.

Olórin replied on 09-Mar-09 05:58 AM
Brian A. replied on 09-Mar-09 08:19 AM
Hi Cindy,

In order to change the desktop icon text you need to use a third party
CursorArts has a free app named ActivIcons:

Once ActiIcons is installed, run it, in the left pane click Interface,
change the text color to what you want, close ActivIcons and reboot.


Brian A. Sesko   { MS MVP_Windows Desktop Experience }
Conflicts start where information lacks.

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