A thumbnail provides information about the content, mostly images and videos. Even it helps to know more about what is the type of file in other formats.

Windows File Explorer can show thumbnails – be it images, videos, excel sheets, documents, or PDFs. Even we can adjust the size of the thumbnail accordingly. But not showing a PDF thumbnail is particularly a problem.

Several reasons took place for this issue, either you might have disabled the feature or corrupted the cache. However, if you are looking for how to deal with it. Here’s the full tutorial about how to fix PDF thumbnails now showing on Windows to follow.

How to Fix PDF Thumbnails Not Showing on Windows

Regardless of the reason for the problem, you can prevent this inconvenience by taking a few steps. However, here are the steps you should apply to fix this issue. So without any further delay, let’s dive deep into methods.

1. Reset the Thumbnail Cache

The cache is the main reason for such problems in the Windows system. Creating files and folders always increase caches. But when it gets corrupted, the Windows system stops showing the thumbnail. Thus, resetting the thumbnail cache emerges to fix the issue.

  1. Press Windows > Settings > Sytems.
  2. Then click on Storage.
  3. Next, click on the Temporary files.
  4. Now select only Thumbnails, and click on Remove files. It will clear all stored cache and now check PDF thumbnail is showing or not.

2. Disable the Shows Icon

If you have disabled the settings of showing thumbnails, then you are never going to see PDF thumbnails. So make sure you have the appropriate setting on File Explorer. Let’s follow these simple steps to disable it.

  1. Click on Windows > click on File Explorer.open file explorer
  2. Next, click on the three dots at the top bar. And select Options from the lists.
  3. Then, go to the view tab. Thereafter, unchecked the box of Always show icons, never thumbnails option to get thumbnail view. And finally, click on Apply, and then the Ok button.

3. Use PDF Preview Pane on File Explorer

Preview Pane is another advanced feature of File Explorer. It allows viewing file content rather than showing the thumbnail icon only. So, using the preview pane is a good idea to know more about the PDF file, up to 10 pages. Now follow these steps:

  1. Click on Windows > click on File Explorer > Open it.open file explorer
  2. Next, click on the View > Show > Preview pane.Preview pane
  3. Now, all set to view your PDF thumbnail in a large area on the right side of the File Explorer. Click on any PDF file. It will show you the cover page, including the first few pages.

4. Use Registry Editor to View PDF Thumbnails

Here’s another considerable fix to get PDF thumbnails on File Explorer. You may be unaware of Registry Editor. Since it’s a graphical tool, by changing a few settings, you can view PDF thumbnails in File Explorer.

Follow our shared method carefully, a single mistake can lead to another problem.

  1. Press Windows > search for Registry Editor > click Open and allow the permission.
  2. Now type this command on Registry Editor, and click the enter button.
  3. type this command Then, you need to find {DC6EFB56-9CFA-464D-8880-44885D7DC193}.
  4. If you get the file, it’s okay. Otherwise, you have to create the key. Follow this, to create the key. Right-click on CLSID, and click on New, after that, create the key as the name of this {DC6EFB56-9CFA-464D-8880-44885D7DC193}.create key
  5. You have successfully created the key. Next, you need to click on the key and select AppID. Some users may not get AppID. Therefore, you have to create AppID as well. However, now right-click on the right side, select String value, and name it AppID.create AppID
  6. Now replace this value {534A1E02-D58F-44f0-B58B-36CBED287C7C} on AppID value data. Then, click on Ok.replace the value
  7. And finally, restart the system and check whether the File Explorer is working fine or not.

5. Use PowerToys to View PDF Thumbnails

Microsoft has several utility tools, and PowerToys is one of them. It helps you with add-on file explorer, image resizer, etc. Somehow it can fix PDF thumbnails not working on Windows. This is what you need to follow.

  1. First of all, download PowerToys executable file from GitHub, and install it.
  2. Next, open PowerToys, and go to File Explorer add-ons.
  3. Then turn on the toggle button of Portable Document Format under the Thumbnail preview icon section.
  4. Now, as usual, restart the system to apply changes. It will show you a thumbnail of the PDFs.

6. Use Adobe Acrobat to View PDF Thumbnails

Adobe Acrobat is one of the prominent full-featured PDF editors. If you have it in your Windows system, then what else do you need? Getting PDF thumbnails in Windows using Adobe Acrobat is very easy.

Download Adobe Acrobat

  1. First of all, you have to download Adobe Acrobat.
  2. Now install its executable file.

Select Adobe Acrobat Default PDF Viewer

Once you have installed Adobe Acrobat, you need to make it the default PDF viewer. Let’s follow this.

  1. Now, right-click on the PDF file, and select Open With > Choose another app.
  2. Next, select Adobe Acrobat, and click the Always button. It makes Adobe Acrobat as the default PDF viewer and reader.
  3. Then, click Edit from the menu, and select Preference from the lists.
  4. Here you have to click on the General and scroll down. Now click on the box of Enable PDF thumbnail previews in Windows Explorer.
  5. After this, scroll down to click on the Ok button. Now you can go with a PDF thumbnail in Windows File Explorer and other places.
Final Words

Personally, I like thumbnails to know about the file and its content at a glance. But not showing it really needs a solution. However, after digging a lot, we have come up with this how to fix PDF thumbnails not showing in Windows.

I hope you like it and all the shared methods are working fine. If you are facing any issues regarding this, let us know in the comment section.


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