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How to disable Taskbar thumbnail preview on Windows 10

On Windows 10, every time you hover over an app icon in the taskbar you get a small pop-over preview of the app's window. If you happen to have multiple windows or tabs of that app open, that preview expands to show every one of them. They can be useful — clicking one takes you straight to that app. But sometimes it just gets in the way. Thankfully, you can disable this feature. It's not as easy as it used to be, but there's a workaround for killing app preview thumbnails on Windows 10.

In this Windows 10 guide, we'll walk you through the steps to edit the Registry to disable Taskbar thumbnail preview, and only make them appear when clicking the app button.

How to disable Taskbar thumbnails

Important: As always, this is a friendly reminder to let you know that editing the registry is risky, and it can cause irreversible damage to your installation if you don't do it correctly. It's recommended to make a full backup of your PC before proceeding.

To disable Taskbar thumbnails on Windows 10, do the following:

  1. Use the Windows key + R keyboard shortcut to open the Run command
  2. Type regedit, and click OK to open the registry.
  3. Browse the following path:HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced
  4. Select the System (folder) key, and right-click on the right side, select New, and click on DWORD (32-bit) Value.

  1. Name the new DWORD ExtendedUIHoverTime and press Enter.
  2. Double-click the newly created DWORD and change its value to 30000.

  1. Click OK.
  2. Close the Registry.
  3. Restart your computer to complete the task.

It's important to note that Windows 10 doesn't have a particular option to turn off Taskbar thumbnail, but we can use the ExtendedUIHoverTime Registry tweak to delay the time to show the previews as an alternative workaround.

In the steps, we used the value 30000, which represents the delay time in milliseconds. This means that we're delaying thumbnails to appear on hover for 30 seconds, which should be more than enough to effectively disable the feature.

Once you completed the steps, you will no longer see Taskbar previews when hovering over apps, but you will still be able to see the thumbnails by clicking the app button, which is less intrusive.

At any time you can revert the changes by following the steps, but on step 6 change the value from 30000 to 0. Alternatively, you can right-click and select Delete to remove the ExtendedUIHoverTime DWORD.

More Windows 10 resources

For more help articles, coverage, and answers on Windows 10, you can visit the following resources:

Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.

9 Comments
  • I am gonna try this but only to make the extended hover shorter.
  • Not sure what you mean. I think the default is 0
  • Coincidentally thumbnail previews are not working for me at all right now. But normally for me there is a delay and I often have problems where it stays open until I click it which is extremely annoying. I do like this feature but I wish it would just work only while I am hovering. 
  • I also have a lot of problems with the thumbnails. Often I get into a state where they don't work half the time, and I've also experienced the problem where they just stay open.
  • Does anyone know how to enable that for Edge? is it possible? I just think is odd that that is not available for Edge
  • All of these Taskbar how-tos should be integrated into simple on/off switches in the Taskbar personalization section...
  • That I called opportunity for dev to make apps.
  • This is built into Windows 10 settings already isn't it.
    Just type 'performance' or 'faster' in start and you'll see 'Change appearance ... to make ... pc faster' or something like that.
    .
    There are 3 options - Performance, appearance, custom.
  • Do any of these registry hacks have the potential for unintended consequences with future Windows updates? Let's say Microsoft were to add functionality to enable/disable thumbnail preview, would it override this sort of registry hack or would it lead to delays on pushing an update and sorting out bugs caused by the update not knowing how to play with a customization already in place?