This article mainly explains to you the knowledge about hard drive icons in different operating systems (OS), and teach you how to change the drive icon in Windows 10. Read more info on the MiniTool partition software official site.

What Is Hard Drive Icon?

Usually, an icon is a little logo picture that represents hardware or software in a computer, a company on a billboard, a group of people or an organization in society, etc. Or, it can also indicate a special meaning in a language or a system.

Generally, a hard drive icon represents a hard drive in common situations. And, in the computer operating system, a hard drive icon is a mini pic representing a hard drive connected to the current computer. With this small picture, you can see your hard drive on your computer screen and operate it with your mouse.

What Does Hard Drive Icon Look Like?

Just as mentioned in the above content, the hard disk icon is a small disk-shaped image.

Hard Drive Icon in Common Situations

There are various kinds of HDD icons in general usage; some are abstract drive images, while some are real & actual disk images; some are of the outer drive case shape while some are of the inner disk architecture; some are simple while the others are complicated…

Different Kinds of Hard Drive Icons

Hard Drive Icon Windows 10/11

However, in the computer system, in Windows Explorer, for example, the icons for hard disks or drive partitions are all similar. They are all of the half-abstract and simple style; they only show a drive case of the drives. The difference is the angles of displaying the drives. In the left menu, it’s a narrow side right facing you; while in the right area, it is the half narrow side and half wide side facing you.

And, there is no difference between an internal hard drive icon and an external hard drive icon in the same section (left menu or right area). Yet, the network hard drive icon is different from the local hard drive icon with the former has an extra network cable.

Tip: The solid state drive icon (SSD icon) is the same as the HDD icon, so as the USB drive icon and flash drive icon.  

Hard Drive Icon Mac

The hard disk icons in MAC OS are similar to the ones in Windows, of half-abstract style and show drive case shape. The differences are that Mac hard drive icons use more colors and are bigger in the right area. Moreover, MAC disk icons are closer to the real hard disk look than Windows hard drive icons.

Tip: The compact disk icon in the MAC system is just like its real look.

Change Drive Icon Windows 10/11

How to change drive icon in Windows 10/11? Here, you will be shown with one of the commonly used ways under the help of the Registry Editor.

Step 1. Save your preferred hard drive icon as a “.ico” file on your PC.

Save .ico File on Computer

Step 2. Search “registry editor” in Windows Taskbar, find and open Registry Editor.

Step 3. In Registry Editor, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\DriveIcons

Tip: If there is no DriveIcons folder, just create one by right-clicking the upper-level folder Explorer and select New > Key.

Step 4. Create a new folder under DriveIcons. Just right-click DriverIcons and choose New > Key. Then, name the folder with the name of the drive whose icon you are going to change.

Create New Key in Registry Editor

Step 5. Further, create a DefaultIcon folder under the above drive folder.

Step 6. In the DefaultIcon folder, double-click the default file in the right section and input the address path of the .ico file into the Value data column. Click OK to save the changes.

Change Value to .ico File Address

Step 7. Finally, reopen Windows Explorer and you can see that the hard drive icon of the target disk has been changed to the target one.

Successfully Changed Hard Drive Icon

You can change all the drive icons (except system drive) at one time in Registry Editor by creating an Expandable String Value file under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Icons and set its value data to the .ico file address.

Also, there are other ways to change hard drive icon like use Drive Icon Changer third-party program, or create an autorun.inf file with the following content:


icon="file name.ico"

Then, put both the autorun.inf and .ico file in the root directory of the target hard drive.

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