One of our readers was facing this problem in his Windows 7 system that all the programs in his system showed the same icon (of Yahoo Messenger in his case) and on clicking which opens the Yahoo Messenger. But on navigating the actual installed program and double clicking it from there, started the actual program.
If you are also seeing the same icons for all the programs in your system then this solution will help you. The reason why this problem occurred is that the default startup for the .lnk extension (which act as the startup shortcut) were replaced by this some new program (as YM in this case).
This is clearly a registry problem and thus you don’t need a system format. So if you don’t have any backup of the registry, here is a simple fix that will solve your problem.
1. Try system restore to some earlier point when the system was running fine and no issues related to .lnk
2. If this doesn’t help, then you should try this registry fix that will restore the .lnk file extensions for you automatically. The file is named as lnkfix.zip, which you need to download and extract before merging it in the registry.
Our user was able to solve this problem with the help of this registry and if it did solve yours, then let all know.