I would like to replace the standard icon for an Automator application that I created with a PNG. Unfortunately, the resulting icon is the generic PNG icon, not the actual PNG image.


  • downloaded the desired image (512 x 512)
  • verified that the image had a transparent background
  • Opened the file's inspector window (+I):

enter image description here

  • Dragged the PNG to the image well:

enter image description here

The final result:

enter image description here

Is there a way to get the actual icon to be used?

  • 2
    Have you tried copy-pasting the image? I.e.: open .png in Preview,select all, copy, open inspector on automator app, click on icon and press cmd+v. Jan 30, 2015 at 14:25
  • 1
    OK, that worked. Why? What's difference between the two approaches?
    – craig
    Jan 30, 2015 at 14:32
  • Is your Finder configured to show the icon or the preview of an image file? If it's set to show the icon, then this might be the culprit. Jan 30, 2015 at 15:21

2 Answers 2


Copy paste the .png image onto the icon shown in the Inspector.

  1. Open the .png with Preview
  2. Select all with CMD+A
  3. Copy with CMD+C
  4. Select the application of which you want to change the icon.
  5. Press CMD+I to open the Inspector
  6. Click on the icon and paste the copied image using CMD+V

I have no clue why that works differently compared to dragging and dropping the image.


Also, the above worked for me, but only after I was still having some puzzling difficulties, so if that's you, on your desktop (make sure you are clicked on your desktop) go up to the top, to Finder - View - Show View Options

... and use the little slider to adjust the size of your icons, slide it back and forth, even back to where it started and I found for me that for some strange reason my icon just popped up. (I was trying to get a new transparent icon the image for a Hard Drive and all I was getting was a standard PNG graphic but when I used the slider, it changed to my new icon. Go figure.)

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .