How do I regenerate the little random geometric avatar it produced for me? Mine is a bit ugly.


8 Answers 8


The avatar uses your email address and falls back to IP address, so:

  • if you want to keep a registered email address you will need to either go to gravatar.com to register a different avatar or keep entering email addresses until you find one you like. Suggestion: if your email provider supports it (like gmail) use sub-addressing, e.g. if your email address is [email protected] try [email protected].
  • if you don't have a registered email address you will need to use a different IP address.

email address avatar

  1. edit email address in profile
  2. go to http://www.miraclesalad.com/webtools/md5.php and convert the lower-case email address to an MD5
  3. enter http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/{MD5}.jpg?s=32&d=identicon in your browser, replacing {MD5} as appropriate. This gives the same avatar as stackoverflow.

IP address avatar

  1. delete your email address in your profile.
  2. in your profile you will see a grey pawn-like avatar, but if you find a post of yours this will now show an IP based avatar
  3. convert your IP address to an MD5
  4. enter http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/{MD5}.jpg?s=32&d=identicon in your browser, replacing {MD5} as appropriate. This again gives the same avatar as stackoverflow.

You could go to gravatar.com to upload your own image.


Change your IP address. Identicons are based off of your computer's IP address. Of course, switching to a Gravatar would probably be easier.

  • 1
    This answer is misleading - I have posted a more detailed explanation seperately Sep 15, 2008 at 22:42
  • I don't think it's misleading. As long as you don't have an e-mail addressed entered you get an IP based Identicon. Enter an e-mail address and you'll get a Gravatar instead. Sep 15, 2008 at 23:32
  • 1
    It is misleading since changing IP address only works as an answer if there isn't an email address in the profile. Sep 16, 2008 at 7:38
  • If I delete my email address from my profile, all I see is a default white-on-gray image representing a person - that looks somewhat like a chess pawn. I get no generated geometric image from my IP.
    – Dan
    Sep 16, 2008 at 15:33
  • It doesn't appear in your profile, you have to go look at one of your posts. Sep 16, 2008 at 15:36
  • Thanks Chris...I stand corrected :-)
    – Dan
    Sep 16, 2008 at 15:50

Stackoverflow uses the email address of your profile "only to generate the gravatar". So you can change that to whatever you'd like to customize it.

I've changed mine a few times, just to get a nicer color/pattern.

  • 1
    Thanks, changed mine from the almost plain square to something more jazzy, +1
    – Ray Hayes
    Sep 15, 2008 at 22:01

If you go into your profile and choose edit there is an option there to "change picture" from there you can use any image you want. They are using gravatar.


The avatar is automatically generated from your email address has by http://www.gravatar.com/

Once you register on this site with an email address, the only way to change your avatar is to go to gravatar.com and sign up, then upload a custom avatar for yourself.


Out of idle curiosity I tested this myself.

If you provide an email address, the geometric pattern is generated by some algorithm that processes your email address. If you leave the email address blank, a default white-on-gray image will appear in your profile, but your IP address will be used to generate an image to mark your posts.

Your email address does not have to be valid - as it is not used for contacting you - but it must be formatted correctly (something @ something . [3 letters])

Enter "[email protected]" or "[email protected]" and see the difference.

[edited to reflect the debated comments under Chris Upchurch's accepted answer]


When originally adding an image it had a comment saying that it may take up to 24 hours for the image to be shown.

So I imagine they have some sort of caching from Gravatar that gets updated daily. If you've already changed the image you may just have to wait for it to refresh. If not, then the first thing to do would be to change the image on gravatar.com


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