Windows XP
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How do you repair Active Desktop in Windows XP?

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Wiki User
January 12, 2016 7:32AM

The answer below works instantly if you are wanting to get rid of the black background for file name. I'm not sure what other symptoms Active Desktop has but will probably cure all.

  1. Open the Control Panel.
  2. Open Display Properties.
  3. Click the Desktop tab.
  4. Click the Customize Desktop button.
  5. Click the Web tab in the Desktop Items window.

If you wish to disable Active Desktop, make sure all checkboxes in this window are un-checked. (If you wish to enable the Active Desktop, check "My Current Home Page". Add your current home page into your desktop or click New to add another web page and/or other Active Desktop features. To update the content, click the Synchronize button.)

Couple of options to try.

Right click on desktop, select properties, then Themes, and change your current theme. Once you have done this, you should be able to go back to your original theme without the problem appearing.

If that doesn't work, try searching for a file called desktop.htt and deleting it (it is a hidden file so go to "advanced search" and make sure to check the box to search for hidden files). You can also try manually deleting this file, it should be located in your "Document and Settings" under your username -> Microsoft ->.


If any of the above options do not work, go to Start > Run > type in "cmd" > Type in regedit and hit enter.

Once in regedit, go to Edit > Find > type in DeskHtmlVersion and click Find.

Change value from 110 to 0, and after clicking ok press F3.

Change the value each time you see DeskHtmlVersion pop up after pressing F3 - continue until it has reached the end of the registry.

Once completed, click any blank space on the desktop and press F5.

Your desktop should be back to normal after this.