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How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10
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How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10

Windows 10 thumbnails give you a quick preview of the contents of a folder or file before you open it. However, the operating system uses editing and memory resources to load the thumbnails each time you open a folder.

File Explorer - How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10

Although this is not a problem on home computers and instead is a great convenience, on machines that work professionally in an office it can be a problem. Especially if the folder contains not only a few images, small PDFs or other objects, but huge PDFs, autocad drawings, large photo lists, etc.

When you access a folder with hundreds of images, thumbnails can slow down your computer. You can turn off the feature for your business users to reduce the time it takes for your folders to open. In any case, you can open any file in Windows 10 without previewing its contents.

There are four ways to turn off file thumbnails in Windows 10, namely:

  • File exploration
  • Visual effects
  • Political group
  • Registry Editor

1. How to turn off Windows 10 thumbnails via File Explorer
You do not need to be familiar with the technology to turn off thumbnails in Windows 10 using File Explorer. Follow these easy steps:
a. Launch the File Explorer application

b. Click the View tab

c. Click Options

d. In the new "Folder Options" window that will open, go to the View tab

e. Go down to the list and find "Always display icons, never thumbnails". Click on to activate it.

icons 1 - How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10

f. Click Apply. click on Ok

After applying the above setting, you will no longer see thumbnails every time you open a folder with pictures, documents, etc.

2. How to turn off Windows 10 thumbnails via visual effects settings
As you may know, Windows 10 Settings is one of the most powerful services for customizing your operating system to your liking. Well, you can use it to personalize the visual behavior of a wide range of tools and functions, such as menus, icons, application windows, controls, and buttons.

Here's how to turn off file thumbnails using Visual Effects configurations:

a. Simultaneously press Win + Pause to go to Control Panel / System

b. On the left click on "Advanced System Settings"

c. In the new "System Properties" window that appears, go to the Advanced tab and click "Settings" under the "Performance" chapter

d. In the new "Performance Options" window that will appear go to the "View Effects" tab

e. Click on "Customize" and in the list below find and disable "Show thumbnails and not icons".

icons 2 - How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10

f. Click Apply. Click OK

Applying the above measures stops Windows 10 from loading thumbnails every time you open a folder.

3. How to turn off Windows 10 thumbnails using the local group policy
Local Group Policy is another way to stop Windows 10 from displaying thumbnails along with folders or files. If you are a network administrator, this option is useful when you need to make the change to multiple computer users.

Follow these steps:

a. Press win + R at the same time and in the Execution window that appears type gpedit.msc and press Enter to start the Local Group Policy Editor

b. In the Local Group Policy Editor, in the left pane, go to: User Settings> Management Templates> Windows Components> File Explorer

c. A list of File Explorer configuration options appears in the right pane of the policy editor. Right-click "Disable thumbnail display and display only icons" and click "Edit"

icons 3 - How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10

d. Click the "On" radio button

e. Click Apply. Click OK

After clicking OK, all users in the affected group will no longer see thumbnails when opening files in Windows 10. You can also use the local policy editor to turn off thumbnails for network folders only.

4. How to remove thumbnails in Windows 10 through the Registry Editor
If you are brave enough to modify the Windows 10 registry, this method is just for you. Follow these steps:

a. Backup the Registry for better or for worse, following these instructions.

b. Press Win + R at the same time and in the run window that appears type regedit and press OK.

c. In the Registry Editor window, locate the key that appears in the first red box in the image below
d. In the right window locate the DWORD value IconsOnly, right click on it, click modify, and enter the number 1 in the value data.

icons 4 - How to disable folder thumbnails in Windows 10

e. Click OK to save the setting
Once you save the Windows registry change, you will no longer see thumbnails in your folders, including those that contain images. Note that this is user-level editing, so other users on the same computer will not be affected.

In conclusion:
Sometimes folder or file preview thumbnails in Windows 10 may have multiple resources. Operation could slow down your computer, especially when navigating a folder with multiple images or large design files.

Fortunately, you can use any of the above methods to disable thumbnails on your operating system and free up your computer for critical tasks.

While you want to proceed with this setting, be sure to choose a method that matches your know-how to avoid destabilizing your operating system. In case you need your thumbnails, follow the same steps upside down.

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