How to Remove or Modify the Shortcut Overlay in Windows

This article describes how to remove or modify the overlay (arrow icon) shown for Shortcuts in Windows.

Method 1

Download FxVisor (Shortcut Overlay Remover for Windows Vista and 7) by frameworkx. FxVisor allows you to either way to modify or remove the shortcut overlay arrow in Windows 7 and Vista.

Method 2 (All versions of Windows, including Windows 10)

Removing the shortcut arrow: Download and extract the file blank.ico to a folder of your choice. In this example, we use C:\Icons\blank.ico as the path to the icon file you downloaded. And then follow these steps:

  1. Click Start, type regedit.exe and press ENTER
  2. Navigate to the following branch:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\explorer\Shell Icons
  3. In the right pane, create a new String value (REG_SZ) named 29
  4. Double-click 29 and set its Value data as C:\Icons\blank.ico
  5. Close Regedit.exe and restart Windows

Note: If the Shell Icons branch does not exist already, you’ll need to create it.

Setting Light arrow overlay: If you wish to use a light arrow for Shortcuts, you may do so by downloading (includes lightarrow.ico). Copy lightarrow.ico to your Icons folder, and set the Value data for 29 accordingly (see Step 4 above). If you’ve copied lightarrow.ico to your C:\Icons folder, the Value data would be C:\Icons\lightarrow.ico

(Fig) Shortcut overlay – Light arrow

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Ramesh Srinivasan is passionate about Microsoft technologies and he has been a consecutive ten-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award in the Windows Shell/Desktop Experience category, from 2003 to 2012. He loves to troubleshoot and write about Windows. Ramesh founded in 2005.