Disable Taskbar Thumbnail Cache in Windows 10

How to Enable or Disable Save Taskbar Thumbnails to Cache in Windows 10

In Windows 10, when you hover over a taskbar button of a running app or a group of apps, a thumbnail preview appears on the screen. For a single window it shows a single thumbnail, and for multiple windows it shows a number of thumbnail previews in a row. Windows 10 uses a cache for these thumbnails to show them faster. Sometimes it becomes broken, so you see an outdated or corrupted thumbnail preview.

As you may be aware, Windows 7 introduced a redesigned taskbar which abandoned much loved classic features but introduced some nice improvements like large icons, jump lists, draggable buttons etc. Windows 10 comes with the same taskbar. It does not have many configurable settings exposed in the GUI to tweak its behavior but there are some hidden secret Registry settings which you can fine-tune. In this article, we will see how to change the taskbar thumbnail hover delay in Windows 10.

When you hover over the taskbar button of an open app, it will show you a small thumbnail preview of its window. See the following screenshot:

Taskbar Thumbnails Windows 10

If you are facing cache issues with taskbar thumbnail previews, you may want to disable it. Also, disabling and then re-enabling it will rebuild the broken cache.

When the cache is disabled, Windows renders thumbnail previews for running tasks instantly on-the-fly, so they remain always current. This works a bit slower than with the cache enabled, but the speed difference is not noticeable on modern devices.

To Disable Taskbar Thumbnail Cache in Windows 10,

  1. Press Win + R hotkeys on the keyboard. The Run dialog will appear on the screen. Type the following into the text box and press Enter:
    SystemPropertiesAdvanced

    System Properties Advanced In The Run Dialog

  2. Advanced System Properties will open. Press the Settings button in the Performance section on the Advanced tab. Windows 10 Advanced System Properties
  3. The following dialog will be opened: Windows 10 Performance Options Dialog There are a number of presets available at the top of the window.
    • Let Windows choose what's best for my computer - the operating system will automatically enable and disable some visual effects that it determines will run fine on your hardware.
    • Adjust for best appearance - This will enable all available visual effects.
    • Adjust for best performance - All visual effects will be disabled.
    • Custom - This will allow you to enable or disable visual effects manually. Once you change the check boxes in the list below, this option will be selected by default.
  4. Turn off (uncheck) the option named Save taskbar thumbnail previews.Save Taskbar Thumbnail Previews
  5. You can enable the cache at any moment later by turning on this option.

Alternatively, you can apply a Registry tweak to enable or disable the cache for taskbar thumbnail previews.

Enable or Disable Taskbar Thumbnail Cache in Registry

  1. Open the Registry Editor app.
  2. Go to the following Registry key.
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\DWM

    See how to go to a Registry key with one click.

  3. On the right, modify or create a new 32-Bit DWORD value AlwaysHibernateThumbnails.
    Note: Even if you are running 64-bit Windows you must still create a 32-bit DWORD value.
  4. Set its value to 1 to enable Save Taskbar Thumbnail Previews to Cache.
  5. A value data of 0 will disable the cache feature.
  6. To make the changes done by the Registry tweak take effect, you need to sign out and sign in to your user account. Alternatively, you can restart the Explorer shell.

To save you time, you can download these ready-to-use Registry files.

Download Registry Files

That's it.

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