Thumbnail Tricks Windows XP

A collection of tweaks for how Windows XP handles thumbnails.

Turn off filenames in thumbnail view

Open the folder, or switch to thumbnail view, while holding down the Shift key.

Change thumbnail size

By default, thumbnails are 96×96 pixels in size. You can change this value for the current user or all users. Current user: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer

All users: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer

Go to either key, select Explorer, then create a DWORD value called ThumbnailSize. Double-click it, select Decimal in

the Base section, and enter a value between 32 and 256. Restart Windows Explorer.

Disable thumbnail caching (thumbs.db)

When you switch to thumbnail view, Windows creates hidden thumbs.db files (thumbnail cache) to speed up access to the thumbnails. This is nice but these files also contain the thumbnails of deleted pictures. You can delete the files, but Windows will recreate them as soon as you go back into the folders. You can, however, tell Windows not to cache thumbnails. Control Panel > Folder Options On the View tab, check Do not cache thumbnails. You will have to delete the thumbs.db files that already exist (Use the Search feature).

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