Windows 8.1 – How to get rid of Thumbs.db files

What is Thumbs.db?

Thumbs.db is an image cache which makes thumbnail viewing faster. This file is automatically generated in Windows 8.x whenever images are encountered in a folder.  By default, Thumbs.db is hidden. If you have the “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” option turned on, you will see this file.

Can I delete Thumbs.db?

Yes, you can safely delete Thumbs.db.  However, Windows will re-generate it.

How to get rid of Thumbs.db permanently?

This article shows you how to get rid of Thumbs.db permanently and prevent it from being generated.

  1. Ensure you are logged in using an administrator account.
  2. Hit Win+R, type gpedit.msc in the Run window and click OK.
  3. The Local Group Policy Editor will be launched.
  4. Navigate through the tree to User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > File Explorer
    ThumbsDB1
  5. In the right-hand pane, double-click “Turn off the caching of thumbnails in hidden thumbs.db files”.
  6. Select Enabled to “Turn off the caching of thumbnails in hidden thumbs.db files”
    ThumbsDB2
  7. After clicking OK, Thumbs.db files will no longer be generated.
  8. As part of clean-up, search your drives for Thumbs.db and delete them.

For more advanced users, here is an alternative way of achieving the same result.

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Published in: on August 11, 2014 at 2:58 am  Leave a Comment  

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