on what it is.
The most likely things to find on the desktop:
1. Shortcuts to other files or folders or a location on the Internet. If you know how to open them and don't use that particular shortcut, they can safely be deleted.
2. Folders you put there yourself (right click>New Folder). If you delete those, they are gone, including their contents.
3. Files you put there yourself, including downloaded files (if you told your browser to put them on the desktop). If you delete those, they are gone also.
Having a look at the properties of the icon (right click) or in your Desktop folder (Documents and Settings\<username>\Desktop, use Detail view) helps a lot to determine what it is.
Once you know what it is, you have to know if it is safe to delete it. That's a different issue.
Please help me understand a basic issue.
Can you delete any icon on your desktop, whether it has a shortcut arrow symbol or not, without affecting any related programs: toolbars, .exe files (Do these just install the program and then you should delete them?) or whatever?
I just downloaded an update to Google Earth. There are 2 new icons on my desktop for this, one has the arrow indicating a shortcut and one does not.
I would prefer to deal with them directly instead of allowing a wizard to put them in an unused icon file. When you delete a shortcut icon you get a message that you are only deleting the icon, not the program itself.
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