Issue: How to fix wide space between Windows desktop icons?
Hello. I encountered a strange issue on my Windows 11 computer. The desktop icons have too much space between them. If I move them it does not work. Is there any way to fix this?
Microsoft released Windows 11 at the end of 2021. It came with a new user interface, design, and features. Unfortunately, users encounter various bugs. We previously wrote about Windows 11 issues, like icons keep disappearing from taskbar, Security Dashboard won't open, stuck in Dark Mode, etc.
Recently, Windows 11 users encountered another weird problem – the space between desktop icons is too wide. The wide space does not disappear if people try to move the icons. It is unknown what exactly could have caused this. It could be the auto arrangement setting or the icons are simply set to the largest size.
It is also possible that the problem is caused by an outdated graphics driver or changed registry settings. In this guide, you will find 7 steps that should help you fix wide space between Windows desktop icons. Keep in mind that the manual troubleshooting process can be lengthy.
If you want to avoid it, you can use a maintenance tool like FortectMac Washing Machine X9. It can automatically fix various system errors, BSODs, corrupted files, and registry issues. It can also clear cookies and cache automatically which should optimize your device. Otherwise, follow the step-by-step instructions below.
Solution 1. Disable Auto Arrangement
- Right-click any blank space on the desktop and click View
- Deselect Auto arrange icons and Align icons to grid
Solution 2. Resize Desktop Icons
- Right-click on the open space on the desktop and click on View
- Select Small icons
Solution 3. Restart Windows Explorer
- Open Task Manager app by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys together on your keyboard
- Then, Select the Processes tab and right-click on the Windows Explorer process
- Click on the Restart option from the context menu
- Check now if the issue is resolved
Solution 4. Update the Display Driver
- Open Device Manager and expand the Display Adapters tab
- Right-click on your graphics driver and select Update Driver
- Press on Search Automatically for Drivers
- If a graphic driver update is available, install it and then restart your PC
- You may also use a dedicated utility like DriverFix that ca find the best drivers for your machine and install them automatically
Solution 5. Repair Corrupted System Files
Use Command Prompt commands to repair system file corruption:
- Open Command Prompt as administrator
- Use the following command and press Enter:
- Reboot your system
- If SFC returned an error, then use the following command lines, pressing Enter after each:
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
Solution 6. Check the Registry Editor
- Search for regedit in the taskbar, open the Registry Editor, and then find the following path:
- In this path, change the value of IconSpacing and IconVerticalSpacing to -1125 respectively
- Now log out of your account and log in again – the icon spacing should return to normal
Solution 7. Repair Install Windows
- Download the Windows 11 ISO file
- Now mount the ISO file
- Double-click on the file setup.exe to start the repair, install from the mounted drive
- When the installation provides the License Terms, read them and click Accept
- Windows 11 will now check for updates and will install the ones available
- When all is set, click Install
- When the installation is complete, follow the on-screen instructions
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