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How to create an empty icon file on Windows 10

Creating an icon isn’t difficult if you know how to use a basic image editor that can save a file in the PNG format. The image editor’s own features will determine what the icon looks like. Paint or Paint.net will create basic images while Photoshop can be used to create far better looking ones. If you don’t have the skill set needed to create an image, you can find free to use PNG images and convert them to an icon. That said, if all you need is an empty icon file for Windows 10, Paint.net is more than enough to get the job done.

Create empty PNG image

We’re going to create an empty PNG image and then convert it to an icon file.

Download, install, and run Paint.net. Go to Layers and select the Add new layer option. Also, under the Minimize, Maximize, and Close buttons, you will see a button to show the layers window. Click it to enable the layers window.

After you add the new layer, use the Ctrl+A keyboard shortcut and select everything on the layer. Tap Delete on your keyboard and it will delete everything. Then, on the layers window, uncheck the box next to the Background layer.

That’s all you need to do. Go to the File menu and save the file as a PNG.

Convert PNG to ICO file

That is most of everything done. All you need to do now is convert the PNG file to an ICO file that will work with Windows 10. We recommend using IcoConverter. Upload your PNG image to this web app and then scroll to the very end. Click the Convert ICO button, and then the Download your icons button. Don’t change any of the settings that the app has.

The image that you have is an empty icon file. You can use it for anything that lets you change the icon. The screenshot below shows Chrome except the icon has been changed to the empty icon file that was just created.

The icon file contains multiple sizes of the image so you will be able to use it for just about anything on Windows 10 which is what makes IcoConverter a great app to use.

Remember what you use the empty icon file for. If you forget and find something is ‘missing’ it will take a considerable amount of effort to figure out what’s wrong. Also, move the file somewhere you know you won’t delete it before you start using it for something.

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