[Solution] Windows Desktop doesn’t Save User Customized Settings

Sometimes people face a problem in Windows when Windows doesn't remember their customization settings on Desktop and taskbar, like icons positions, toolbars positions, taskbar position, etc.

Recently I got a similar mail from a visitor "Onie Ward":

I downloaded something called Vista Customization Pack.

I've tried to uninstall this program (I'm on Windows XP) and it seems to have worked, EXCEPT that every time I login, my icons all line up on the left hand side of the page. I move them back to where I want them, but every login...moved. It all started when I installed Vista Customization Pack. I've emailed them, but haven't heard back.

Can you help?? Thanks.

So if you are also facing such problem, then this tutorial will help you in fixing the issue:

1. Type regedit in RUN dialog box and press Enter. It'll open Registry Editor.

2. Now check for a DWORD "NoSaveSettings" in right-side pane under following keys:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer
HKEY_USERS\.Default\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer
HKEY_USERS\.Default\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Program Manager\Restrictions

Edit_Policies_Explorer_Key.png

The DWORD value will be present in any of the above mentioned locations, most probably in the last one.

3. Once you find the DWORD value, delete it and restart your system. It'll solve your problem and Windows will remember your desktop settings.

NOTE: If the above trick doesn't work for you, try Method C given for Point 19 in following article:

[Help & Support] Frequently Asked Problems (FAQ) with Solutions

Also Check:

[Fix] Desktop Icons Position and Folder View Settings Problem in Windows 10





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Posted in: Troubleshooting, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP


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Comments

  • I have the same problem with Vista. My desktop will not load and windows opens a new temporary desktop with only a few of my icons.

    I´ve tried the solution above but i couldn´t find the "NoSaveSettings".

    Any help??

  • VG

    ^^ Your problem is different. It seems your current user profile has corrupted. Try to create a new user account.

  • If you have installed one of those software programs that "optimize" or "tweak" your computer's settings to help gain "memory" and "speed", check if one of the settings has disabled the windows cache for remembering last access date and/or size/location of folders, and un-select it. This should fix the problem.

  • In windows 7. I tried changing NoActiveDesktopChanges then set it to zero. May or may not work though

  • "k

    If you have installed one of those software programs that "optimize" or "tweak" your computer's settings to help gain "memory" and "speed", check if one of the settings has disabled the windows cache for remembering last access date and/or size/location of folders, and un-select it. This should fix the problem."

    This works for me!!!!! i have jv16 PowerTools 2013 with option enabled "NTFS remembering last access date" unchek it and works again!

  • i have same problem with windows 7 (64 version)..after shutting down it does not remember the desktop setting...as you told i have gone through the registry...but can't find the DWORD value "NoSaveSettings".....pls help me

  • My gf has a Note 3, she used the Espier IO6 launcher to make her icons look like Apple desk top. When she restarts the phone her customized icons have lost their color. 5 of which, she can't recolor. Help?

  • I have a Acer Aspire Z5610 ,with Win7 and that is hapened to me too, i check the registry with
    Registry Editor, and i found :
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer]
    "NoActiveDesktop"=dword:00000001
    "NoActiveDesktopChanges"=dword:00000001
    and i modified dword value to 0, restart computer and evrything is fine now.

    thanks VG !!!

  • I had this kind of problem with Windows XP.
    No way to have Explorer to remember the desired view settings. It maintained the options concerning "view hidden system files" and alike, but not the detail /icon settings. Changing to detail and hitting "apply to all folders" then all the folders where set in that way (including e.g. the recycle bin) and did not accept single change.
    Following your indications I found a "NoSaveSettings" only in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer. Deleted and rebooted everything was fine.
    Thanks indeed!

  • I have Win XP Pro SP3 and when I start the machine I get a 'Classic Windows' task bar.
    I have used your recommendations and have deleted the NoSaveSettings in all of the above mentioned registry locations. Upon re-start the 'Classic Windows' task bar still appears
    but I can change it to the XP style and it will remain for the session up until I re-boot.
    Am I missing something VG??

  • Windows XP isnt support anymore :(

  • VG

    @OJ
    Did you install UXtheme patcher to use 3rd party themes?

  • Hi there VG, thanks for getting back to me.....No, the only themes I have are the XP originals
    although I have added different wallpaper. I'm only an averagely competent user and changing
    wallpaper/appearance settings is about my limit. I have re-checked my actions in the registry and all of the suggested changes are done as per your instructions.
    This problem is more of an irritating nuisance rather than anything very serious but I don't like Win 95's 'Classic' look at all and when the machine is started the first thing I do is to reset the appearance to what I like.
    This is the 'administrator' account as I'm the only user. I must be missing something.....
    Best wishes,
    OJ

  • VG

    ^^ Did you try to re-apply default Luna theme using Desktop properties?

  • No VG, I haven't done that, Should I?

  • VG

    ^^ Yes. First apply a different theme and then apply default Luna theme.

  • OK VG done that and still upon reboot I'm seeing the 'Classic' task bar.
    I have to say that I'm close to giving up! To be fair it only takes a few clicks to get the XP taskbar
    for the current session. What could have caused this? Many thanks and best wishes to you, sir.

  • VG

    ^^ You can try following things as well:

    1. Try to create a new user account and check whether the problem still persists.

    2. Try method 4 given in following tutorial:

    http://www.askvg.com/how-to-remove-or-uninstall-3rd-party-transformation-packs-in-windows/

  • It's been a long day, VG! I'm almost 70 years old and it doesn't come as easily as it used to!
    OK: I set up a new user account and the default XP theme loaded fine. However the thought of
    having to manually transfer all of my programs to the new user account is indeed a daunting one.
    For the time being I've left that account with admin. status. I'll change it later or delete the account if I can mend the original.
    I've tried the sfc scannow command via Task manager. I wasn't sure what to do once the Windows XP SP3 (v 5.1.2600) disc was loaded so I've left it sitting at the "What do you want to do?" screen.None of the options on that screen seem appropriate...
    Earlier today I ran the command from the 'Run' option in the Start Menu, just had the Windows disc in the DVD drive and I couldn't see any access to the disc at all. The account I'm trying to repair has admin. privileges anyway.
    The machine has just finished the 'scannow' process and I've restarted the machine....
    Nothing has changed still have the Classic taskbar with the default theme......Ho Hum!
    I suppose all that is left is to boot from the Windows disc and do a Repair Windows.

  • VG

    ^^ You can perform repair. It'll only restore default system files and settings.

  • I'll let you know how I get on VG,
    Thanks for your valuable time and advice.
    OJ

  • All done, VG! As my XP disc is SP2 and my existing system was SP3 I had to roll back and install SP2 then SP3 from a download. Advanced System Care 7 then applied the Windows updates and Driver Booster took care of updating drivers. The whole job took about six hours and I'm happy to report that all of my programs are intact and working and the taskbar's behaviour is now normal. My only problem now is that on Boot-up Windows is trying to find hardware drivers for a RAID array which hasn't been used for many years! I can find it in device manager and did delete it....all to no avail! Story of my life!!
    I need to thank you for helping me out VG, you were very patient with this old fool!!

  • VG

    ^^ No problem. Glad to help you. :)

  • Actually I jst changed my window....and my data saved on the desktop is lost...is there any way to get my data back?

  • i have same problem with windows 7 (64 version)..after shutting down it does not remember the desktop setting...as you told i have gone through the registry...but can't find the DWORD value "NoSaveSettings".....pls help me

  • King,
    I have Windows 7 with same issue as you.
    Bog's comment above will give you 2 more strings to look for:

    ...
    I have a Acer Aspire Z5610 ,with Win7 and that is hapened to me too, i check the registry with
    Registry Editor, and i found :
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer]
    "NoActiveDesktop"=dword:00000001
    "NoActiveDesktopChanges"=dword:00000001
    and i modified dword value to 0, restart computer and evrything is fine now.
    ...
    seems to have fixed mine but I won't know for sure for a day or two to see if it handles the auto sleep mode after locking the computer and leaving it. (I manually initiated hibernate and/ or a system lock and it held the settings fine).

  • Please Sir, I Am Experiencing The Same Problem You Discussed Above Regarding Vista Customising Tool, I Tried The Method You Provided But Each Time I Restart The System, The Problem Persists And I Continue To Find This So Called "no Save Settings" Each Time I Run The Registry Editor Again. Please Help Me Out Sir, God Bless

  • VG

    ^^ First try following:

    http://www.askvg.com/how-to-remove-or-uninstall-3rd-party-transformation-packs-in-windows/

    Then post your HijackThis log file in following topic:

    http://www.askvg.com/is-your-system-infected-with-a-virus-spyware-adware-trojan/

  • It's 7-14-14 and I was having the problem with my quick launch not working in xp on re boot. I just did what the first post said to do and it fixed my problem. THANK YOU!!!

  • up date,,,,
    Heck, apparently that fixed a few problems I had. My puter is even running faster now.

  • thanks for this page....XP 64 here, have same problem....did find the 'NoSaveSettings' but, deleted it and rebooted but not fixed it....also did what bog did...

    "I have a Acer Aspire Z5610 ,with Win7 and that is hapened to me too, i check the registry with
    Registry Editor, and i found :
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer]
    "NoActiveDesktop"=dword:00000001
    "NoActiveDesktopChanges"=dword:00000001
    and i modified dword value to 0, restart computer and evrything is fine now.

    thanks VG !!!"

    but that hasn't fixed it either....machine also seems to be lot slower on bootup, as though it's recereating EVERYTHING.......i also have 3 machines, one of which is a new build....that one also seems very slow on startup now....graphic settings ok on that, but wnt remember other settings- for example i got things 'auto starting up' now that aren't on my startup list....

    other big problem is commodo firewall.....network working fine, just no internet on the network computers....and all this happening last couple of weeks......i figure they all got to be interrelated somehow, just can't figure out how to fix it?

  • also to add....my primary machine is quadruple boot, xp32, xp64, W7 and linux....not checked linux, but it's done the same thing on all 3 OS simultaneously......if u can believe that? ;-)

  • VG

    ^^ First try following tutorial to speedup Windows:

    http://www.askvg.com/master-tutorial-to-make-your-windows-xp-super-fast/

    After that post your HijackThis log file in following topic:

    http://www.askvg.com/is-your-system-infected-with-a-virus-spyware-adware-trojan/

  • only tried on new build so far...TBH it doesn't seem to have made much difference...still few odd things going on, it's a quad core with 8 gig ram...wd expect lot quicker!

    thanks!

  • oh, other thing to add....this machine xp64 as well, but skype no longer works....i suspect they've discontiuned for the OS, but they won't come right out and admit it....but i wonder?

  • My problem is similar but erratic, as it occurs frequently but not every time. Since I've started tracking it, my custom desktop has failed to load on 9/2, 9/11, 10/5, 10/14, 10/26, and 10/28. The other days, it worked fine.

    Running Microsoft System Restore to an earlier restore point works sometimes and so far, has eventually the problem. I've had instances where the process did not complete successfully but fixed the issue and others where System Restore completed successfully but didn't fix the issue. Sometimes Restore Points when the desktop was correct failed.

    I was trying to follow the advice above about creating a new user account, even though it would have taken many hours, possible days, to create a fully usable one.

    So Mike2 was created as an Admin account, as is the original Mike. Under Permissions, it was given the same as Mike (everything checked except for special permissions) and rebooted.

    However, when booting as Mike2, many folders aren't visible. I had counted on being able to copy the various data files to the new account, i.e. Outlook, Password Safe, etc.

    So now I've got two issues, but am back to using my original account.

    HP DV7-4270US (almost 4 years old, but if I could solve this issue, would prob just upgrade the HD)
    WIN 7 64 PRO

    One contributing factor could be that I'm running out of HD space. (8.71 gb free out of 571 gb) I'm 100 miles from my USB HDDs, but when I get them, can free up 200GB. However, the desktop issue predates the space shortage.

  • I too, had this problem with XP Home and fought with it for a long long time. Then that machine died on me. I had a newer machine running XP Pro and it just recently started doing the same thing. I was getting so frustrated with constantly setting my desktop groups back to icon view and placing the icons where I wanted them. I found this site and made the modifications suggested, but did not fix the problem. I have 31 desktop icons, but 22 of them are groups with as few as 5 icons in a group to 25 icons in a group. Then I remembered a link that I had tried to increase the maximum number of icons allowed. I found the website again and made that change as well. Instead of having to change my icons back 4 or 5 times a day, it has been 6 days and working great. So, if you have a lot of icons on your desktop, install this modification above and increase you Max Icon Cache Size. Should fix you up. If you need instructions on increase the maximum icons, follow this.

    Hope this helps you folks that were frustrated like me.

  • You can also set its value to 1.

  • I am using Windows 10 and having the problem that icons sizes won't be remembered and they get back to list mode.
    There is no "NoSaveSettings" in my regedit.
    Changing the values of Active Desktops to zero, did not work either.
    What should I do to get rid of this frustrating problem?????

  • VG

    ^^ Did you try Method C given for Point 19:

    http://www.askvg.com/frequently-asked-problems-with-solutions/

    You can also try some freeware such as following:

    midiox.com/desktoprestore.htm
    softwareok.com/?Download=DesktopOK

  • Dear VG,
    Yes, I did the Method C. (Actually there was no String like that and I created it and set and restarted my PC but it did not help.)
    The two apps, I tested them they are for desktop icons and they did not help me either.

  • VG

    ^^ Did you try following:

    http://www.askvg.com/how-to-fix-annoying-folder-view-type-problem-in-windows-vista/

  • No, sir. Unfortunately I did the changes in my registry but nothing of icons were changed. It only had effect on windows sizes.
    I appreciate your helping me. But any other ideas?

  • I tried but, no, sir, it did not help. Unfortunately I did the changes in my registry but nothing of icons were changed. It only had effect on windows sizes.
    I appreciate your helping me. But any other ideas?

  • VG

    ^^ Close all running Windows Explorer windows and then apply Registry script. After that open Windows Explorer and apply your desired icon view settings on any folder. Then apply the same settings to all using the information given in PS at the end of the tutorial:

    http://www.askvg.com/how-to-fix-annoying-folder-view-type-problem-in-windows-vista/

  • I did. But there are 3 problems. Now everywhere in explorer is set to what I want. But I don't want EVERYWHERE to be the same. And desktop icons (like before) don't remember to be "Auto arrange icons". And "folder view" doesn't close (like before) in "This PC".

  • Wow... None date all along this page! How we supose to do to know if this information is up to date?

  • I have just upgraded to windows 10.
    Some of my programs require to be re registered this I have do and I am then able to use the program as normal.When finished I close down my PC but when I reboot to use the program again I have to re register before it can be used. Have you a fix for this problem? All so the saved items I had in my Documents fold have vanished It's driving me up the wall.

  • VG

    ^^ Right-click on that program shortcut and select "Run as Administrator" option and then register the program. Now when you'll re-launch the program, it should remember the settings and registration status.

  • If I change the setting so the right mouse if the default, it will work only until the next shut down and restart.
    Where is the SAVE so that I don't have to reset the settings ever day. :Unsatisfactory

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