I’ve often heard that someone wants to have an exe hidden in a picture and run it by clicking on it, so in this article I will show you how you can run an executable file as png.
(If you open the task-manager it will show you the png in it)
It’s the best solution I found so far and I think it might help.

What do I need?

You need at least 2 Files to do this!

File 1: Your executable File [ file1.exe ]
File 2: A link [ file2.lnk - You usually won’t see the .lnk ]
Just create a link to the file 1 and use it as file 2.

File 2 will run the first file. If you click on the File 1 you will get an error.

File 1 - The executable file

Let’s start with the first File..
You can just take any *.exe you want to test it!
I made a simple C-Console Program to do it, so you can just use a ‘Hello World!’-Program!

#include <stdio.h>  
#include <stdlib.h>  
int main() {  
    printf("Hello World!\n");  
    return 0;  

You now change the file extension to .png (You can also change it to .jpg, .gif, or whatever you want).
Once you’ve done that you may want to rename the file to something like IMG_0115022013.png.

So the first thing you do is to rename: file1.exe
To: IMG_0115022013.png

File 2 - The link which runs the executable

Now the file 2!
This file actually is the only problem because this file will still be the same. You can actually see that it is a link!
But many people don’t see the file extension (because they didn’t activate them) and even if they have them activated you will see the file extension .png.
So the first thing you do with the file 2 is that you rename it to IMG_0215022013.png or something like that..
Now you right-click on it and change the target to:

C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /c IMG_0115022013.png  

You now might want to change the Icon of the link (file 2: IMG_0215022013.png). Just choose an Icon that fits for a png.

How to use it

You now should have this:
File 1: IMG_0115022013.png (Your executable file)
File 2: IMG_0215022013.png (Your link which runs the executable file via cmd)

If you now want to run the file 1 you’ll have to click on the file 2. If you now take a look in the task-manager you will find the file: IMG_0115022013.png (File 1)

If you want to make someone run it without knowing that he will run your file 1 you can just copy the file 2 as often as you want and rename it. Now you hide your file 1 between all those other files. You can now just send him a folder with all your files in it.

Shortened Form

  1. File: File1.exe –rename to–>IMG_0115022013.png
  2. FIle: File2.lnk –rename to–> IMG_0215022013.png –right-click–> change target to–>
C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /c IMG_0115022013.png  

IMG_0215022013.png –change icon to–> an icon that fits to a png file

Double-click on the IMG_0215022013.png to run the executable file.

Pros & Cons


  • You can hide your executable file between ‘images’
  • The task-manager will show you an image and not an executable
  • Someone who doesn’t expect an executable file won’t notice the link


  • You will need at least 2 files
  • You can hide the executable file but not the link
  • You will get an error if you execute the file 1 directly