By looking at the mime.types
file in the apache conf folder, as far as I can tell, there is no reason for Apache in XAMPP not to send an animated gif favicon to a browser - it does not distinguish a file by it's name only it's file extension and in this case .ico .gif and .png are covered.
First check that the file animated_favicon1.gif
is still animated by opening it in your image viewer as sometimes a download can corrupt a file.
Or test by opening the file in your browser - http://yoursiteatxampp/animated_favicon1.gif
- it may also display in the address bar but see below not in IE perhaps.
Displaying an animated gif in a web browser test page link is not the same as displaying it in the address bar - what may work from a link to a page may not work in the address bar as this is entirely up to how the browser presents the file.
It is your browser that decides what it should do with a file named favicon.ico or animated_favicon1.gif or just favicon.gif for example.
There are many online animated favicon generators
and this note in red from one of them at http://www.animatedfavicon.com/Note: An animated favicon ico is currently not supported in Internet Explorer.
So try testing in Firefox or Opera etc. and if the icon animates then test again in IE.
What may be the issue is the order of the lines in your head section as the server may just send to the browser the first favicon it finds in the head and then to ignore the rest, or it sends both to your browser but your browser uses the first one it receives, as the display of the favicon file is up to the browser not the server - if you have a browser cache reader it may be possible to see which files are stored in the cache for use by the browser.
From what I gather the reason for the 2 lines in the head section is for those browsers that don't support an animated icon then the first favicon.ico is used.
Always remember to clear your browsers cache when ever developing at localhost level as the cache can be a real pain.
Try some experimentation - here are a few examples for you to try that may also seed some ideas of your own to try.
Try changing the order of the 2 entries in the head section so the favicon.ico is second.
In IE check the Favorites/Bookmarks for the animation as IE prefers to put favourite icons
there which was the original intension of creating the favicon in the first place.
Again experiment with the gif file name and remember to clear the browser cache after each experiment.
Finally if you do get it to work then please do post back here so it may help others when searching the forums for a solution to a similar problem.
Thanks and good luck.