How to Change the Icon of a File Type in Windows

In Windows you can easily customize any folder icon by simply opening the folder properties window and then clicking on the Change Icon button under the Customize tab. However, when it comes to changing the icon of a specific file type, Windows doesn’t have any built-in options to do so.

There may be any number of reasons to change the icon of a certain file type. For instance, the current icon of a file type is not to your liking or the custom file format you are using doesn’t have an icon. No matter what the reason is, here’s how you can easily change the icon of a file type in Windows 10.

Note: though I’m showing this in Windows 10, the procedure is the same for Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Change the Icon of a File Type in Windows

Before moving forward, download the icon of your choice in ICO format. You can use Icon Archive to download public domain or copyright-free icons in ICO format. In my case, I’m downloading the text file icon.


Windows has no built-in options to quickly change a file type icon, so we are going to use a free and portable software called FileTypesMan by NirSoft. Download it and extract the .exe file onto your desktop.


After extracting the executable, double-click on it to open the software. Once opened, it will list all the known file types in your system. Scroll down to find your target file type. Alternatively, you can use the Find option. Just click on the little Search icon appearing on the top navigation bar.


Enter the file extension and click on the “Find Next” button. In my case, I’m searching for the “txt” file type.


Once you find the target file type, right-click on it and select the “Edit Selected File Type” option.


The above action will open the Edit File Type window. The first thing you need to do is copy the default icon path and save it somewhere. You can use it when you want to revert back. Once you’ve done that, click on the “Browse” button appearing next to the Default Icon field.


As soon as you click on the button, it will show you all the available system icons. If you like one of the listed icons, then select it. Otherwise, click on the “Browse” button to select your own custom icon.


Navigate to the folder where you’ve stored the icon, select it and click “Open.”


The selected icon will be listed in the “Change Icon” window. Again, select it and click on the “OK” button.


In the main window click on the “OK” button to save the changes.


As soon as you save the changes, the file type icon will be changed instantly.


If you ever want to change back to the default icon, simply go through the same procedure again but replace the custom icon path with the default icon path you copied earlier.

Do comment below sharing your thoughts and experiences about using the above method to quickly change the icon of a certain file type in Windows.

Vamsi Krishna

Vamsi is a tech and WordPress geek who enjoys writing how-to guides and messing with his computer and software in general. When not writing for MTE, he writes for he shares tips, tricks, and lifehacks on his own blog Stugon.

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