Many aspects of some of the most popular operating systems, such as Windows and Mac, are customizable to the point where the system can look completely different from its original appearance. One of the many options users can change is the default icon set of the desktop. Downloading and changing desktop icons is a quick and simple process, and this can be done both to customize the icons and change them back to their default settings.
Icons can be downloaded for free from a number of locations. The best way to look is simply to search for "custom desktop icons" or something similar, then look for any of the free downloads that may show up. For example, Vistaicons.com provides complete icon packages for your own use. Most icons you'll find will come in zipped folders that contain a variety of different icons. Download and unzip these to use the new icons.
Changing PC Icons
In Windows, right-click an empty area on your desktop, then click "Personalize." Click the "Desktop" tab, then at the bottom of the screen click "Change Desktop Icons." From here you can select any of the default icons on your desktop, then click "Change Icon." This will enable you to search through various folders to find the icon you want to replace it with. When you are finished, click "OK," then click "OK" again in the "Display Properties" window.
Changing Mac Icons
Select an icon you want to change. Right-click it, then click "Get Info." Leave that window open for now. Find the icon you want to replace the default icon with. Select it by clicking it once, click "Edit" and then click "Copy." Go back to the "Get Info" window, and at the top-left corner of the window click the icon that displays once. Click "Edit," then click "Paste" to replace the default icon with the one of your choice. Shortcuts such as Command + C and Command + V also work here.