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removing program shortcut arrows on Windows 11

If you create shortcuts on the Windows desktop to easily access the programs or folders you frequent, as the vast majority of users of the Microsoft operating system do, you will certainly have noticed this small logo in the lower left part of the icons, which contains an arrow to distinguish between " Shortcuts” and files that come from primarily on the desktop, such as the Recycle Bin icon or This PC. And if you are concerned about the aesthetic and neatness of the desktop icons, you may be annoyed by the appearance of this logo, despite its small size. Fortunately, there is an easy way to help you hide the shortcut arrows on the desktop, whether on Windows 10 or Windows 11, so let's review it for you below.

removing program shortcut

In fact, the problem of shortcut arrows is relatively old, since Microsoft introduced Windows 95 and among the additions that occurred on the desktop was the appearance of an arrow in the lower corner of the icon of any shortcut placed on the desktop, and as everyone is today, users at the time did not welcome the new addition So there have been tools specifically designed to get rid of these stocks and maintain the aesthetic of the desktop. However, in Windows 10 or 11 we don't need to use third-party tools, but the same result can be achieved with a small modification to the Registry — as we explain below.

removing program shortcut

To remove the program shortcut arrows on the desktop on Windows 10 or the newer, Windows 11. All you have to do at first is open the Run window by pressing the Win + R (S) keys together on the keyboard, and then type [regedit] and press Enter . This will open the Registry Editor window and here you will head to the following path:


After accessing the "Explorer" folder, right-click on it in the left side menu, then press "New" and choose from the drop-down menu "Key" to create a subfolder, but replace the name "New Key #1" and assign the name "Shell Icons" to this folder and press Enter.

removing program shortcut

After creating and renaming the folder, click on this folder and then right-click in any empty place on the right side, then select the “New” option, then “String Value” to create a new value, then rename it to “29”. Well, now all that remains is to set the command responsible for removing the shortcut arrows on the desktop, to do this double-click on the new value called "29" and in the Edit String window enter the command "%windir%\System32\shell32.dll, -50" in the field Value data, then press OK.

After you have applied the previous changes, close the Registry Editor window. Then restart the computer, or alternatively, open the Task Manager tool through the shortcut: Ctrl + Shift + Esc together, then in the window that appears, click "More details" and in the "Processes" box, search for the "Windows Explorer" process and after finding it, press Right click on it and choose "Restart" or in the case of Windows 11 you can select the process and click on the "Restart task" option above. In all cases, when you return to the desktop again, you will notice that all the stock logos are gone from the program and file shortcuts!
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