How to Clear and Reset the Thumbnail Cache on Windows 10?

What is a thumbnail cache?

The Windows operating system creates thumbnail cache files for images and other file types to speed up the loading of folders on the system. The thumbnail cache is a copy of all your documents, pictures, and video thumbnails stored in a file. When you open any folder or file, it helps to access/open these files without delay.

Windows uses thumbnails saved in the thumbnail cache instead of generating new for them every time. If you notice a corrupt thumbnail in Windows 10, clearing and resetting the thumbnail cache in Windows 10 will solve the problem.

This article will guide you on how to Clear and Reset the Thumbnail Cache on Windows 10.

There are at least four ways to clear and reset the thumbnail cache on Windows 10. These methods are as follows:-

  1. Manually clear and reset thumbnail cache.
  2. Clear thumbnail cache using Disk Cleanup.
  3. Clear thumbnail cache using a third-party program.
  4. Clear thumbnail cache using Command Prompt.

Manually clear and reset thumbnail cache.

To manually clear and reset the thumbnail cache from the user profile, do the following steps:-

Step 1. Open the Windows Explorer by pressing Windows Logo + E keys simultaneously (Alternately, you can open ‘This PC‘ from the desktop shortcut or Start menu).

Step 2. From the “File Explorer” menus, click on the View tab.

Step 3. Check Hidden items under the View tab to show hidden files and folders.

Now all the hidden files and folders will be visible. The files or folders which are slightly transparent were hidden.

Step 4. Once hidden files and folders are visible, navigate to the following path in explorer:-

C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer

Note: Replace the UserName with your current username through which you have logged into your PC.

Step 5. Select and delete all the thumb cache files, and Windows will automatically regenerate them.

Now thumbnail cache issue should be fixed on your Windows 10 machine.

Clear thumbnail cache using Disk Cleanup.

Disk Cleanup is a built-in utility of Windows 10. The Thumbnail cache can be deleted through the Disk Cleanup tool also. To clear thumbnail cache using Disk Cleanup, do the following steps:-

Step 1. Type Disk Cleanup in the Start menu, and from the available results, click on the Disk Cleanup app to open the same.

Step 2. Select Thumbnails on the Disk Cleanup window.

Step 3. Finally, click on the OK button to delete the existing Thumbnails.

Clear thumbnail cache using a third-party program.

There are several free tools over the internet to find and delete thumbnail cache files. Thumbnail Database Cleaner is one of them, which is free and easy to use. You can download the latest version of Thumbnail Database Cleaner from its official webpage here.

To clear the thumbnail cache using Thumbnail Database Cleaner, do the following:-

Step 1. Install and launch the Thumbnail Database Cleaner utility.

Step 2. Click the “Start Search” button to find the thumbnail’s cache on the selected directory.

Step 3. Click on the Clean button to remove all the stored thumbnails from your Windows PC.

Clear thumbnail cache via Command Prompt.

To clear the thumbnail cache using Command Prompt perform the following steps:-

Step 1. Click on the Start button and type CMD.

Step 2. Right-click on Command Prompt app and select Run as administrator.

Step 3. If prompted, enter a username and password of the managed administrator account of your computer.

Step 4. Type the following commands one by one on the command prompt and press Enter from the keyboard after typing every command to execute the same:-

cd /d %userprofile%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer

attrib -h thumbcache_*.db

del thumbcache_*.db


After completing the above steps, it will delete the thumbnail cache from your Windows 10 PC. Now restart the PC to rebuild a fresh thumbnail cache.

That’s all for this article. I hope this article will add some value to your work.

You guys are amazing; Keep reading, learning, and growing.

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