Tech Tips of the Week!

My tip of the week comes from dealing with dealing with the problem of dragging an icon out of start menu and on to the desktop. This happens when there are less than knowledgeable about how to use a computer. This can become an issue is there are multiple people sharing a computer and when a different user logs in the icon they need is gone and their think the software is broken.

There is a way to stop this in Windows 7 but not in Windows XP.

Disable Dragging in Windows 7:

If you have to deal with icons being dragged out of the Start Menu and on to a users desktops there is a setting you can change to stop this.

  1. Right click on the Start Button
  2. Click on Properties
  3. Hit Customize on the Start Menu tab
  4. Uncheck “Enable context menus and dragging and dropping”
  5. Hit Ok and Ok

startmenu option

No such fix for Windows XP:

If you lose an application icon in Windows XP the only way you may be able to get the icon back to the start menu is trying to repair the software in Add/Remove Programs. A repair will usually replace any missing files on the computer which includes the missing icon. The repair may not replace the icon and if this is the case you will need to uninstall and reinstall.

If an office program shortcut has been moved out of the start menu there is a way to put it back without re-installing. Running a repair on Microsoft Office is one way to do it but it not work since the repair feature doesn’t always work for Office products, at least that has been my experience. So there is a super hidden Microsoft Office repair that will restore the program icons. Here’s how you run that repair:

 Go to Start -> Programs or All Programs ->  Microsoft Office
Microsoft Office Tools
Microsoft Office Picture Manager

Office picture

I know it sounds weird but we can repair missing office icons from inside picture manager

Help. -> Detect and Repair

Check “Restore my shortcuts while repairing”


 This will start a setup and copy some office files and once it completes the missing icons will be back on the start menu.

 Windows 7 Program Tip:

If you are like me you have many many different applications installed on your computer. I am always installing and uninstalling different software packages to try out new software. Whenever I go to Program and Features I have a hard time finding the software I want to uninstall because I have to scroll through all my apps to find the software I want to install.

I just found out that you can change the layout of Program and Features which will change the way the applications are listed. This is just like changing the layout in windows explorer so you can change it from the defaults list to medium icons to large icons and tiles.


These are my Tech Tips of the week from problems that I have run in to. I hope these tips have helped you deal with common Windows and software problems. If you have any cool tips for dealing with Windows issues let me know so I can check them out and share your tips.

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