Troubleshooting Favicons in IE7

I posted a short FAQ on troubleshooting Favicons in IE7 on my blog.  The post has been fairly popular since the initial posting, and these questions come up a lot, so we thought we’d bring it to the attention of the larger IE community.  If you have further questions, I will be happy to answer them.

–Jeff Davis, SDE

Comments (48)

  1. jack says:

    So, thats all great, but what about the bugs with favicons in IE7?

    1.) GIF transparency issues when viewed in IE7 in a Remote Desktop or VMWare viewer.

    2.) Constant flickering/reloading when mousing over anything on a page that has Javascript functions event handlers! (Not a reload of the page, or DOM… just a CSS change)

    3.) Icon gets stretched (vertically distorted) in the properties dialog for a Bookmark when you change tabs (in the properties dialog)

    Just to name a few.

  2. John West says:

    I have to problems/questions, and I don’t know who to direct them to.  

    First, some of my rss feeds keep finding "new" items that are actually very old, and have been shown before.  I’d like to have a way to clear them out, if possible, short of deleting and importing.  Is this possible?

    Second, I can’t sort my feeds.  I know you’re supposed to be able to, and I can drag them, but they go back to their alphabetical position once I drop them.

    I know I could probably hook into the RSS APIs via .NET and maybe do some of this myself, but I’m hoping it’s in IE somewhere, and I just haven’t found it.


  3. Jaihan says:

    this ie7 always hang during browsing. why this things happen. always.

  4. jeffdav says:


    1.  I’m not certain I understand.  We only support .ico’s.  If you have an example page, I would take a look.  

    2.  I’m not aware of this issue either, but I’ll take a look if you point me at a page where the issue is reproducable.

    3.  This is a known issue.  Most favicons are 16×16, but properties pages and other parts of the shell like to show things at 32×32 (or larger).  Hopefully we’ll see bug fixes in some future version.

  5. Monica says:

    Question about Zone setting.

    Is there some kind of bug adding websites ending with in the trusted zone?

    I can add a website but it is not recognized, i.e., the green tick at the bottom of the page does appear. However when I add a website that ends with .com, like, it works just fine.


    I tried adding the url, It worked! Green tick and everything else works.

    Then i tried to add, the url appears at the list of trusted sites in Internet Options, but the green tick at the bottom of the window doesn’t appear and the javascript, activex, etc, doens’t work.


  6. Hans says:

    I have one icon that is missing. IE 7 installed with Windows Update after rebooting the system the IE Icon on top of my start page is gone. The shortcut is still ther but there is no icon……

  7. BillD says:


    You’ve installed a bad add-on such as google toolbar. Use this cleaner: Tools -> Internet Options -> Advanced tab -> Reset button

  8. Eric says:

    Hey folks,

    Not an issue with icons per se, but do graphics count?!

    .PNG graphics (only) simply do not show up-all I get is the infamous red "x" where the graphic is supposed to be.

    Yes, yes, I tried ad nauseum, but no joy. There is but one page that even tries to address the matter, but as I said, no luck.

    Anyone else having problems?


  9. Mary Jo Dey says:

    I was wondering if anyone else has had a problem with the look of the Fonts when upgraded to IE 7?  I have had 3 times now that when I upgraded to IE7 some of the fonts became kind of irridecent and I had to go back to IE 6 to get the font back where it belonged.  This often affected my e-mails also.  

  10. Eric says:

    LOL, cancel my .png issue.

    I just installed XP64 SP2 Beta and IE7 is happy all of a sudden again 😉

    My apologies for stepping on the thread.

  11. Cliff says:

    Now that I have IE7,  When I open into the web, I always get the small screen. I stretch it to the larger screen, then close, but it comes back small screen. I can get the full view screen and close it as full screen, but it also comes back as small screen. Is there an option that I am missing?

  12. @ jeffdav

    I think I have a repro of jack’s #2 on our community site at Just mouse over the toolbar buttons and watch the icon in IE’s tab.


  13. Hahahahah says:

    You guys are poor excuses for developers, all of you. Destroy the framework and make something new, you pansies.

  14. jeffdav says:

    Eric den Doop:

    I see the behavior, but I do not believe this is a bug in IE.  I wasn’t able to untangle the jscript on that site, but I suspect the page is doing something on the mouseOver event that causes IE to think it needs to show the loading icon.  Perhaps an XMLHttpRequest?  I wasn’t able to see anything with Fiddler, but there is nothing in IE’s favicon code that would cause this to happen.

  15. Aedrin says:

    "You guys are poor excuses for developers, all of you. Destroy the framework and make something new, you pansies."

    You can do better?

  16. jack says:


    Re: #3, nope, the issue is in the dialog.  16×16 scales to 32×32 just fine.

    Try this:

    1.) Bookmark this blog.

    2.) Open the properties dialog, for the Bookmark.

    3.) Toggle back and forth between the General and Web Document Tabs.

    4.) Notice how on the Web Document tab, the icon gets stretched vertically.

  17. tom says:

    @Mary Jo Dey

    Turn off the Clear Type setting.  This is what causes the "rainbow" text you are refering to.

    Still can’t believe IE7 shipped with this on by default.

  18. IEBlog reader says:

    I love favicons but sadly I don’t think IE7 (and IE6 when I was using that version) doesn’t hanlde them well.  I’d said after a week or so, IE7 stops displaying the favicons on sites or in the Address Bar drop-down menu and all I get is the generic IE7 icon.

  19. rick says:


    No, the flashing icon has nothing to do with an XMLHttpRequest.  you can see this behavior on lots of sites, that are not making a server request.

  20. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @Mary: See for help on your font issue.

  21. christina says:

    I have one icon that is missing. IE 7 installed with Windows Update after rebooting the system the IE Icon on top of my start page is gone. The shortcut is still ther but there is no icon

  22. Frank says:


    Why post a link to the article that tells her "how great ClearType is" when she clearly, like every sane person, wants to turn it off!

    From the article (edited for purpose)

    "We do realize and have received lots of feedback that almost everyone does not like ClearType text rendering. So it is important to us that we provide a way of disabling ClearType permenantly. You need to use the option in the IE Internet Options Control Panel to turn it off. Simply uncheck the box shown below."

    Remember K.I.S.S.

    Users do not want fancy features to blur their text.  Yes, the technology is neat, but it fails in the execution.  When we are all running 3600×3600 natively, on 21" monitors, then yeah, go for it, but until then, no one wants this feature.

  23. Dao says:

    > When we are all running 3600×3600 natively, on 21" monitors, then yeah, go for it

    Errr, you don’t need Cleartype then, since you’d already have a fairly high DPI rate.

  24. trevor says:

    In IE7, you fixed the window.onresize event firing, to fire when a user double-clicks the title bar to resize a browser window. (great!)

    but since we still need to support IE6 for the foreseeable future, do you have any hooks/tricks on how to observe/capture this event?

    I know I can set up a timer, that checks every ‘x’ seconds, but I was hoping for something less obtrusive and resource intensive.



  25. harry_richter says:


    It is nice to receive the verdict, that I am not sane via this blog, and from somebody, who has never gotten to know me in person to boot.

    Yes, I like Clear Type, and from now on, I will humbly live on, knowing that I am insane. Still, I wont turn Clear Type off, just to redeem myself in your eyes, and to embrace the brotherhood of sane people like you and yourslike.

    I will continue to thank MS for this technology, that makes for better reading on MY monitors.

    One more thing I will continue to do: I will continue to live, knowing, that I have NOT called somebody insane, just because he or she was of a different opinion than myself.



  26. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @Monica: You shouldn’t need to put a site in the trusted zone to enable script, unless you’ve set your security settings that way to start with.

    The reason that you see "Unknown zone (mixed)" rather than "Trusted" when you visit that page is that there are frames from other domains that are not on your trusted list, so the overall security zone of the page is "mixed" rather than "trusted".

  27. Monica says:

    @EricLaw: Sorry, didn’t made myself clear. Sorry for my poor English too.

    I don’t see the "mixed zone" I see "Internet" and the red circle (privacy). The url’s tested doesn’t have frames. All domains put in the trusted zone used to work fine with IE6 (green tick appears at the bottom). The problem occurs only after upgrade to IE7.

    The reason I need to configure it this way, is because, only websites added to trusted zones should be able to use scripts, java, activex, etc. I need to restrict it.

    Is there a way for me to edit Windows registry and fix it?

    Talked to some friends and they have the same problem. Domains ended with aren’t recognized as trusted.

    Thank you!

    System info: Windows XP Home SP2, IE7. All updates installed.

  28. steve_web says:

    @Harry re:Frank

    I think Frank was venting his frustration over this feature (as have I, on many occasions) that *most* people do not want or like it.

    To put it into a technology example:

    I personally would rather use a 56k dialup line for downloading DVD images over HTTP than use ClearType on any of my monitors (LCD or otherwise)… and other than yourself (and the developers that made it on by default, the end-users, IT staff, developers, students, teachers and business associates I work with, all agree that it is a pain to view ClearType, and we have all turned it off.

    If "IE Feedback" was still up (yup, another dig), you’d be able to log in and see all the complaints about this feature.

    I’ve personally reached that point though, where I don’t care anymore, we all wanted to help IE7(+) be great releases, but the lack of interest in any feedback/bug reporting has turned me off completely.

  29. John says:

    Has there been any word regarding the extension contest that ended in the middle of February?  It’s been almost a month and I haven’t seen anything posted on the contest page or the IEBlog.  Mix ’07 is coming up soon and one of the prizes was attending.


  30. jack says:

    Feature requests on the next version.

    IE search

    can we drag and drop on IE search box and can we highlight a word and right click it then select search on the context menu. I’m just tired of copyirng and pasting all the time.

    Pop-up blocker

    when opening Pop-up Blocker Settings can you automatically put the website address so that user don’t have to type it in. Just like the feature found on trusted sites and restricted site where user don not even have to type the website address.

    A way to block Flash ad. I am no seeing this on most website.

  31. Phil says:

    @Steve_web :-

    Cleartype is good.  Cleartype is cool.  I like it and so does everyone else I’ve shown it to.  It makes fonts so much more readable, on a variety of LCD and CRTs.

    Deal with it.

  32. rc says:

    Internet Explorer Developer Toolbar does not run on Windows Vista x64. It installs and shows an icon on IE toolbar, but clicking on this icon has no effect.

  33. harry_richter says:


    Guess you are right, that for some ClearType is NOT the cool feature I believe it to be. As Frank has shown us, its easy to switch off, and as for the matter of the default setting, in the end, I believe its a matter of personal taste and the matter of the type of monitor you use. There is only yes or no, and maybe, had the one person, that finally made the decision used another monitor, the decision might have been different. Possibly you would read a different set of complaints in this blog now, asking why it has to be turned ON, and is not the default setting.

    But that is beside the point I was trying to make, as is the fact, that I am also frustrated, that the feedback site is down.

    I was trying to make the point, that we should approach each other with a certain amount of respect, even if we dont agree on certain issues. I am not really sure, if I expected a reply from Frank, rephrasing his grief.

    But I think that the respect for people of different opinions should stop the use of words, that imply, that such are not sane.

    I further belive, that this blog would not only be much more readable, but it would also be taken more seriously by those, who should take it serious. Thus we might succed in areas, where commenters might not be taken for full because of their language.

    But maybe I am just a hopeless dreamer.


  34. TEK GUN says:

    OK FOR ONE I CHANGED THE REGISTRY ON AS FAR AS PUTTING THE ADDRESS BAR BELOW THE How to move the address bar below the menu bar





  35. TEK GUN says:



  36. delinetciler says:

    The reason I need to configure it this way, is because, only websites added to trusted zones should be able to use scripts, java, activex, etc. I need to restrict it.

  37. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @TEK GUN: See for tips on how to tweak your IE UI, and to help you troubleshoot and find out which of your IE extensions is causing IE to crash when you close a tab.

    @steve_web: Sorry to hear you don’t like ClearType on your monitors.  I assume you ran the ClearType-configuration-wizard and still aren’t happy with the results?  

    As for the choice to default it to enabled, as we note in the blog, the data shows that for the majority of users on the majority of hardware, ClearType measurably improves readability of text.  (Personally, I hated ClearType when it first came out, but over the last few years, I’ve come to really like it).

  38. @jack, @tek gun

    Many of your feature requests are already available as add-ons for IE. I would like to invite you to test Quero (, a combined address/search toolbar with an integrated ad blocker, drag&drop support and search term highlighting.

  39. Markus says:


    could anyone check if we’ve done this right at ?

    Since some of our Webprograms still not run on IE7, we’re not going to change…

    Thanks for testing, Markus

  40. steve_web says:

    @EricLaw regarding cleartype

    Yes, I ran the "configuration wizard", but each step was choosing between bad, and worse.

    I’m kind of curious though, since there are (and I am truly surprised by this) people that seem to like cleartype… I’ve got a few questions.

    On my screens/monitors, I can make out details down to the pixel from my view.  This includes reading a monitor at 1600×1200.  As a designer, it is important, and it helps me spot the slightest of errors.  As a result, for me (personally), the rainbow effect that cleartype causes, drives me batty, because I can most definately see it.

    So, here’s the questions:

    1.) Who can clearly see the "stray" pixel fragments with clear type on? (e.g. beside what should be black text, on a white screen, can you see the *red* of a pixel to one side of black, and *blue* on the other?

    2.) To those that see this, does it look to you (as it does to me) as if you are reading with those red/blue "3D" glasses on?

    3.) To those that "like" cleartype, and have it turned on, do you have it turned on in Windows also? (e.g. I think there are a lot of people that have it turned on globally, and aren’t aware of what the difference is)  It is sort of like before your first pair of glasses… you think you are seeing fine, until.. Woah! I was missing all this?



  41. jeffdav says:


    Your favicon appears correctly for me in IE7.

  42. @steve_web

    I am one of those who actually love cleartype. At least this is the case for my monitor configuration (1600×1200). Within reading distance I do not see the red and blue dots any more and I have the subjective feeling that the text looks better and is easier to read.

    @IE team

    Thank you for bringing cleartype to IE and letting the user choose whether to use it or not.

  43. Marc says:

    A discussion on Fonts for the Web, that again confirms the "Clear Type" == "Blurry Type" issue.


  44. Will says:

    Marc– Do you believe everything you read on the interweb?

    Yeah, the guy calling the IE7 team "bastards" is credible, but the reading experts actually employed by Microsoft due to actually ~having~ expertise aren’t?

  45. Marc says:

    "the interweb"?

    Talk about credibility going out the window!

    It was just refreshing to see someone talking about the technical problems with ClearType.

    Vs. I hate, you like, I like, you hate, whose right?

    Microsoft thought it would be helpful, if javascript: based urls were blocked on a blank page in IE7.  Just because Microsoft did it, doesn’t mean that it is a good thing.

    Anyone want to discuss the number of versions of Vista?  "Home" and "Professional" would have sufficed, but instead there is.. never mind, don’t get me started.

  46. jeffdav says:


    You’re right.  I see it now in the property sheet.  This is a small bug in the dialog resource template.  I’ll see if we can’t get that fixed in the next release.


    Okay.  Whatever is causing it is something in the script that gets executed on mouseover that makes IE think it needs to display it’s "loading…" animation.  If it could be narrowed down, perhaps by commenting out different portions of the mouseover behavior, we could figure out if it is a bug or by design.  

  47. Darlene says:

    I got IE7 when it first came out and ever since then when I use a desktop shortcut a blank IE6 window pops up and I have to end this task through task manager this is so annoying how can I get this to stop.



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