Windows spotlight is an awesome service provided by Microsoft for the Windows 10 operating system. Spotlight automatically downloads and rotates images on a user’s lock screen. Photos are sourced from Microsoft’s own Bing Photos and changed every 24 hours. This service makes the Windows 10 Lock Screen more interesting by displaying beautiful, high-quality photographs of exotic locations throughout the world.
Windows Spotlight doesn’t only display exotic photos. It also includes useful tips and tricks for the Windows OS, makes recommendations based on the user’s profile, and shares fun facts about the image being displayed. On occasion, you’ll also get a fun quiz you can take! This is called the Windows Spotlight Quiz.
Windows Spotlight Quiz
As I mentioned above, the Windows Spotlight Quiz is a cool feature that most people will only be presented with randomly. It doesn’t appear every time you log into your PC. Instead, sometimes you will get fun facts about the location displayed, other times useful Windows tips and tricks will show up, and on occasion, you’ll get this fun trivia question! That quizzlet will include a multiple-choice question about that day’s Windows Spotlight photo. After answering, Windows will offer a Bing web search with all sorts of fun facts about that location.
Where can I find the photos from Windows Spotlight?
People love these Windows Spotlight photos. Amazingly, Microsoft still doesn’t have a way to turn Spotlight images into desktop wallpapers, though you can download a few from the Microsoft Themes Websites. Retrieving those spotlight images is easy to do if you want to display them in other places besides the Windows Lock Screen.
For the tech literate, the Spotlight images can be found here: %localappdata%\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.ContentDeliveryManager_cw5n1h2txyewy\LocalState\Assets
For those that need a few extra instructions, don’t worry. We have a thorough tutorial below that will easily walk you through retrieving those images and saving them in a folder of your choosing.
How to Retrieve Windows Spotlight Images
- Open File Explorer on your PC.
- Press the Start Button
- Click on the fourth icon above the Start Button. This icon will look like a sheet of paper with a folded corner. (Documents Icon)
- Once the File Explorer window opens, copy and paste the link below into the URL bar. If opened with the steps above, the URL bar will most likely have ‘> This PC > Documents’ written in it.
- A new directory will open within the File Explorer window. This folder location stores all image assets used by the Windows Content Delivery System. Not all images within this folder are Windows Spotlight Images. We will need to follow some extra steps to discover which images are the Windows Spotlight Images.
- Click on the ‘Home’ tab at the top of the File Explorer window. The Ribbon Tollbar should appear.
- The last section of the Ribbon Bar is ‘Select’. Within this section is an option that says ‘Select All’. Press that button.
- Now, press the button that says ‘Copy’.
- Click on the ‘Desktop’ button under ‘Quick Access’ in the left-hand navigation pane.
- Click on the ‘Home’ tab again.
- Once the Ribbon bar appears, locate the icon that says ‘New Folder’ and clicks it.
- A new folder will be created. Name this folder ‘pics’.
- Open this folder, click the Home tab, then click ‘Paste’. The contents of the Windows Content Delivery folder will be paste here. We will use this folder to easily locate the images and rename them as a batch process. Each file needs to have the ‘.jpg’ extension appended to the end of the file. This will be a difficult process to rename each image individually. Instead, we will use the command line to do this for us.
- Click on the ‘Start Button’.
- Type CMD on your keyboard. The Windows Search will display an application called ‘Command Prompt’. Click on that application to launch it.
- A black window will appear with some text. In this window type CD %userprofile%\Desktop\pics. This command will take you to the folder that we just copied the Windows asset files to. To confirm this, type DIR and press return. The files names of those assets should be listed in the window.
- Now, type Ren *.* *.jpg into the command window and press enter. All of the files within that folder will automatically have the .jpg file extension appended at the end of each file name.
- Now you will be able to browse through these files easily, open them, and save the pictures you want.
You might have noticed that all of the files in that folder we created are displayed as one giant list. It’s hard to tell which picture is which without opening each one. Let’s make these files display their preview thumbnails, and to do that, we have one final set of instructions for you. Don’t worry, it’s only a few steps.
- Open the ‘Pics’ folder on your desktop that we created in the last instruction set.
- Click the ‘View’ tab at the top of the File Explorer window.
- Locate the button that says ‘Extra Large Icons’ and press it.
Now you will easily be able to see which picture is a Spotlight image and which picture isn’t right from the file explorer window without having to open each image.
How do I Enable Windows Spotlight
Enabling Windows Spotlight is really easy! All you need to do is change your Lock Screen background in your personal settings. To do this, follow the steps below.
- Click the Start Button.
- Press the Gear Icon above in the Start Button in the Start Menu once it appears.
- Click on Personalization.
- In the left-hand navigation menu, click on Lock Screen.
- In this menu, you will see a drop-down menu under Background. Select Windows Spotlight in this drop-down menu.
That’s it! Windows Spotlight is now enabled on your Lock Screen. Every time you turn on your PC or lock your computer, you will see these beautifully awesome images by Microsoft.
How do I Disable Windows Spotlight
You may want to disable Windows Spotlight for various reasons. Perhaps it isn’t working properly, or you would rather have a picture of your family as your lock screen background. Thankfully, disabling Windows Spotlight is as easy as enabling it. Follow the same steps above, but this time select Picture or Slideshow in that drop-down box. After selecting one of these options, you can configure which picture, or group of pictures if you’ve chosen the slideshow option, will display on your Lock Screen below that setting.