Why isn't .ico file defined when setting window's icon?


When I tried to change the window icon in the top left corner from the ugly red "TK" to my own favicon using the code below, Python threw an error:

from tkinter import *
root = Tk()

#some buttons, widgets, a lot of stuff


This should set the icon to 'favicon.ico' (according to a lot of forum posts all over the web). But unfortunately, all this line does is throw the following error:

Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "d:\ladvclient\mainapp.py", line 85, in <module>
  File "C:\Python33\lib\tkinter\__init__.py", line 1637, in wm_iconbitmap
    return self.tk.call('wm', 'iconbitmap', self._w, bitmap)
_tkinter.TclError: bitmap "favicon.ico" not defined

What I already did:

  • I checked the path - everything is 100% correct
  • I tried other file formats like .png or .bmp - none worked
  • I looked this problem up on many websites

And for the third point, effbot.org, my favorite site about Tkinter, told me that Windows ignores the iconbitmap function. But this doesn't explain why it throws an error!

There are some "hackish" ways to avoid that issue, but none of them are Written for Python 3.x.

So my final question is: Is there a way to get a custom icon using Python 3.x and Tkinter?

Also, don't tell me I should use another GUI Library. I want my program to work on every platform. I also want a coded version, not a py2exe or sth solution.

This question is tagged with python python-3.x tkinter windows-7 tkinter.iconbitmap

~ Asked on 2013-08-30 16:51:37

The Best Answer is


You need to have favicon.ico in the same folder or dictionary as your script because python only searches in the current dictionary or you could put in the full pathname. For example, this works:

from tkinter import *
root = Tk()


But this blows up with your same error:

from tkinter import *
root = Tk()


~ Answered on 2013-08-30 17:27:50


No way what is suggested here works - the error "bitmap xxx not defined" is ever present. And yes, I set the correct path to it.

What it did work is this:

imgicon = PhotoImage(file=os.path.join(sp,'myicon.gif'))
root.tk.call('wm', 'iconphoto', root._w, imgicon)  

where sp is the script path, and root the Tk root window.

It's hard to understand how it does work (I shamelessly copied it from fedoraforums) but it works

~ Answered on 2017-04-24 12:18:52

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