How To Fix Windows 11/10 Thumbnail Not Showing

Thumbnails of photos are useful since you can view the contents of a photo well in advance. What if thumbnails are not showing on your Windows File Explorer? How would you resolve the issue? Here are some tried and tested ways to fix the issue.

How To Fix Windows 11/10 Thumbnail Not Showing

1. Check File Explorer Options

An issue in File Explorer settings can lead to the issue at hand. Here you might see icons instead of thumbnails. Here is how you can turn this option in File Explorer, and then you will be able to see Thumbnails instead of just icons – 

1. In the Windows search, type File Explorer Options and click on Open from the right-hand side. 

2. When the File Explorer Options window opens, click on the View tab. 

windows thumbnail not showing

3. Uncheck the checkbox next to Always show icons, never thumbnails

4. Click on Apply and then OK.  

2. Restore File Explorer Option To Its Default Settings

You can also try resetting the File Explorer options to default. This way, you can see thumbnails on your Windows 11/10 PC. The steps are almost the same as above –

1. In the Windows search, type File Explorer Options and click on Open from the right-hand side. 

2. When the File Explorer Options window opens, click on the View tab. 

3. Click on the Restore Defaults button, as shown in the screenshot below.

windows thumbnail not showing

3. Use A Photo Recovery Tool

If you cannot see thumbnails of photos on your Windows computer, you may have deleted them accidentally. Even if that’s the case, worry not! A photo recovery tool like Systweak Software’s Photos Recovery can help you recover deleted or lost photos. 

What is Photos Recovery? 

Photos Recovery is one of the best recovery utilities that can help you recover deleted videos, photos, and audio files from all external and internal drives regardless of the reason – virus attack, corruption, formatting, human error, etc. 

How To Recover Accidentally Deleted Photos Using Photos Recovery for Windows?

1. Download, install and run Photos Recovery.

2. Select the drive from where you want to recover images and click on the Start Scan button.

Photos Recovery

3. Once the scanning is over, you will see a list of photos. Select the ones that you can recover. You can see the file preview of the images on the right-hand side. 

Photos Recovery

4. Once you have selected the photos you want to recover, click the Recover button. 

5. Select a location where you want to recover the image. You should select a location other than the one from where the photo was initially deleted.

4. Delete Thumbnail Cache

One reason thumbnails of photos are not showing up in Windows is because a lot of corrupted or damaged cache has been accumulated. Here is how you can delete the thumbnail cache on your Windows 11/10 PC:

1. In your Windows search box, search for Disk Cleanup and click on Open from the right-hand side. 

2. When the Disk Cleanup window appears, click on OK

windows thumbnail not showing

3. Click on the checkbox next to Thumbnails and click on OK.

windows thumbnail not showing

Once Disk Cleanup deletes the thumbnail cache, Windows will rebuild the thumbnail cache, and you should now be able to see thumbnails.  

5. Free Up Some Storage Space

Several users have reportedly been able to fix the issue by freeing up space on their system drives. We have already covered several ways you can clear up space on your system’s hard drive. You can refer to this post and check if you have been able to resolve this issue. 

6. Change Visual Effect Settings

You can also try checking and changing your Windows’ visual effects settings. Users have reported that by doing this, they could show picture thumbnails. To do that – 

1. In the Windows search bar, enter View advanced system settings and click on Open.

windows thumbnail not showing

2. Under System Properties, click on the Advanced tab. 

windows thumbnail not showing

3. Under Performance, click on Settings

4. Under Performance Options, click on Visual Effects

5. Click on the Custom radio button and then select checkboxes that say – Save taskbar thumbnail previews and Show thumbnails instead of icons options

windows thumbnail not showing

6. Click on OK to save changes. 

7. Run SFC Scan

Corrupt system files can be attributed to why thumbnails are not showing on your Windows 11/10 PC. The best bet is to run an SFC scan in the administrative command prompt. Here are the steps to do just that – 

1. In the Windows search bar, type cmd

2. Click on Run as administrator from the right-hand side

3. When the Command Prompt window appears, type SFC /scannow, press Enter, and wait for the scan to complete. 

Once the scan is over, check if you can now view thumbnails that earlier were not visible. 

8. Run Antivirus

Despite all the above measures, you cannot view thumbnails on your Windows computer; it could be that your computer is under the clutches of a File Explorer hijacker. In such a case, you can run Windows Security or a third-party Antivirus tool like T9 Antivirus. T9 Antivirus exhibits the following features – 

T9 Antivirus

  • Real-time and on-demand scanning
  • Exploit protection to steer clear of zero-day vulnerabilities
  • Multiple scan modes
  • Updated database of latest threats 
  • Windows and firewall protection

You can check out our review to know more about T9 Antivirus – pricing, features, etc. 

Wrapping Up

Thumbnails are handy, and you may consider them over icons to preview photos’ content on your hard drive. We hope that thumbnails will appear on your Windows PC after trying out these troubleshooting steps. For more such content, keep reading WeTheGeek.

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