All of a sudden, a number of my icons changed from their specific normal Vista icons to a generic Windows 2000 icon. This happened to icons on the Desktop, in Windows Explorer, and in Windows’ Taskbar (including Quick Launch and the display of open programs).
I tried several things — including restoring to an earlier point from the same day. Nothing worked to fix the problem, until… I Googled about it and came up with this link:
Don Varnau, an IE MS MVP, posted a solution that worked for me. I eliminated a step to avoid confusion:
Right-click the desktop and choose Personalize®Tasks (left side)®Change desktop icons®Restore default. When you click Personalize, the Personalization section of the Control Panel opens. Click on Change desktop icons to display the Desktop Icon Settings dialog. Finally, click Restore Default.
And, presto! I’m back in business.