Desktop icons moved from Primary Monitor to Secondary Monitor in Windows 10

If you have recently updated your computer to Windows 10 v1803 and then found that all the Desktop icons had moved from the Primary Monitor to the Secondary Monitor, here is a simple suggestion that will help you bring back all the icons where they were.

It could happen because of wrong cable setup. Generally, Graphics cards give HDMI cable/port the first preference, DVI-D cable/port the second preference and VGA cable/port the third preference. If you have used the wrong cable to power wrongly placed monitor, you may face the same problem after each major Windows upgrade. You can then either replace your monitors or make this change in Windows Settings to get things done.

Desktop icons moved from Primary Monitor to Secondary Monitor

If the Desktop icons are not on the Primary monitor (Monitor 1), but instead are moving to the Secondary monitor (Monitor 2) on a Dual-monitor setup, here is what you need to do to make the desktop icons display correctly on your Windows 10 computer.

You need to set the Monitor 1 as primary display if you want to get all the icons on monitor 1. So open Windows Settings and go to System > Display.

Select the monitor that where you want to get the icons and scroll down until you get Multiple displays option. Here, you should find a checkbox labeled Make this my main display. Select the checkbox.

Desktop icons moved from Primary Monitor to Secondary Monitor

That’s all! Now you will find all the icons on your primary display.

Read nextHow to set up Dual Monitors on Windows 10

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Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.

6 Comments

  1. Invino Veritas

    Does not work – the primary already listed as the main display – icons still jump to second screen. There doesn’t appear to be a fix for this, as when you start hearing sfc /scannow and other bullshit answers, you know there is no fix.

  2. This post does not recommend running SFC – so what are you talking about!?

  3. Jason

    Same thing is happening to me.I can’t fix it

  4. jzjfks

    If you want your desktop icons to “follow” the monitor that is set as your ‘main’ monitor, you must do this:
    1_Right click desktop, go to ‘view’ and….
    2_Choose medium icon size
    3_Use ‘auto-arrange icons’
    4_Use ‘align icons to grid’

    Whenever you flip-flop your monitors as main and secondary, your desktop icons should remain on the monitor currently set as ‘main’. I do this using a small program called ‘MultiMonitor Tool’ when I want to game on my larger monitor while having football games etc going on my secondary monitor.

  5. Huynh Minh Quang

    Right click on the taskbar, open “Taskbar settings”, and uncheck the checkbox that says “Show taskbar on all displays”

  6. Lesley Pyle

    Thank you! This worked as I was having the same problem.

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