How to use Icon Shepherd

Basically, you don't need to do anything to "use" Icon Shepherd, it does most of the work by itself. After you've installed Icon Shepherd, it runs half-asleep quietly in the background, waking up only when the icons on your desktop are moved. When that happens, it memorizes and keeps track of the icon layouts as they are changing. If you decide you don't like the current arrangement of the icons, you would select the desired icon layout to restore it from the Icon Shepherd menu.

In addition to this basic functionality, Icon Shepherd offers several ways to streamline its operation, to fit your specific preferences.

First, if you have arranged the desktop icons the way you like, you don't need to wait for Icon Shepherd to memorize this specific layout automatically. Instead, you can directly ask it to save the layout and give it a name, to be able to quickly recognize this specific layout when selecting it from the menu.

Icon Shepherd menu, Save As command

You can save as many icon layouts as you want. You can find this capability especially useful if you often switch monitors or change the screen resolution. You could save several icon layouts, one for each screen configuration that you use, and then restore the appropriate layout from the menu, as needed.

Now, if you prefer to save the icon layouts only when you want, you can deselect the appropriate option on the Options screen and that would stop Icon Shepherd from creating the automatic restore points:

Icon Shepherd options screen with the option to remember icon layouts automatically deselected

While you have the Options screen open, you can designate one of the stored layouts as the one to restore the icons from every time Icon Shepherd starts. Since Icon Shepherd starts automatically when you log in to Windows, this option would make that specific layout restored automatically every time you log in to Windows:

Icon Shepherd options screen with the option to automatically restore a specific icon layout on start

If you need to delete some of the stored icon layouts, or rename them, or change their order, you can use the Manage Icon Layouts screen to do all that:

Icon Shepherd Manage Icons Layouts screen

You can also use this screen to export the icon layouts into a file to back it up or save for later, or to transfer the layouts to a new computer.

Finally, if you have a large computer network, you will find the Icon Shepherd Administrator's Kit of great help.

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