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Tip of the Day
Language: Dynamic Content
Expertise: Beginner
Nov 3, 1999

Add a Custom Favorites Icon

Question:
When I add sites to my Microsoft Internet Explorer Favorites, the site's logo (or icon) appears by the Web page's name instead of the little "e" that usually appears in MSIE Favorites. How can I do that when my Web page gets added to Favorites? Is this done using JavaScript or HTML?

Answer:

Adding a custom Favorites icon for your site requires no programming whatsoever. This IE5-only feature is simple enough for nearly anyone to implement. To set the custom icon, add a 16x16 Windows icon file (not a BMP) to the root of your Web site with the name "favicon.ico". IE5 will automatically try to download this file whenever someone bookmarks your site.

However, you may run into a couple problems. First, if you don't own your domain name chances are you're out of luck. If your Web presence is on a shared server or if you use a free Web hosting service (like GeoCities) you won't be able to put your icon into the root of the Web server's file hierarchy.

If you can get past that first hurdle you may find yourself hunting around for an editor that can save 16x16 ICO files. If you own Microsoft Visual Studio, you're in luck; you've already got a decent icon editor built into the Visual Studio IDE. Otherwise, you can download one of a number of shareware icon editors that should do the job.

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