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How to reactivate the Photo Viewer in Windows 10

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How to reactivate the Photo Viewer in Windows 10

With Windows 10, Microsoft has introduced several changes to the popular operating system compared to previous versions. Not only have some classic configuration options moved , but many programs and services have been replaced by new solutions. This includes the old and popular default application for opening pictures and photos, the so-called Windows Photo Viewer. Replaced in the current edition of Windows by the Photos application, it is only possible to reactivate and use it indirectly. In the following paragraphs, we will explain why it would be worth reviving the Photo Viewer in Windows 10 and how.

  1. Classic photo viewer: advantages over the new application
  2. Activate Photo Viewer in Windows 10 step by step

Classic photo viewer: advantages over the new application

Compared to the Viewer, the new Windows 10 Photos app is much more than just an image viewing program. Unlike the classic Windows program, the application offers numerous additional functions and editing options for your graphics, images and photos. In principle, this makes Photos more versatile, but it also makes it more resource consuming and more complex than the Windows Photos screen. For example, opening an image file takes much longer with the new application..

Another downside to the new viewer is that it doesn't offer full support for color management . Therefore, the representation of color spaces on the monitor, essential for the correct display of images, graphics and photos, works in a limited way. The old PhotoViewer does not have this problem.

Activate Photo Viewer in Windows 10 step by step

In Windows 10, the graphical viewer has been officially replaced by the Photos app and cannot be selected to open image files. However, with just a few small changes to the registry, you can reactivate it. You will only need the Regedit editor and administrator privileges ..


Windows registry configuration errors can have a negative effect on operating system performance. For this reason, any changes not described here should only be made if you have the necessary knowledge.

The procedure to reactivate the Photo Viewer in Windows 10 is as follows:

Step 1 : Go to the Windows search bar from the Start menu (Windows icon), type? regedit ? or? registry editor ? and select the option? Run as administrator ?. In some cases, you may need to first right-click the editor icon:

Click on the registry editor icon or select the "Open" option. Then start it, not in administrator mode, but in normal mode.

Step 2 : indicate the administrator data if requested and confirm them with? OK ? Then the registry editor or "Regedit" will open. There you will see the current structure of the registry of your Windows installation. Then navigate to the path ? HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE? ? ?SOFTWARE? ? ? Microsoft? ? Windows Photo Viewer ? ? Capabilities? ? ? FileAssociations? :

: In the registry database, you will find the entry for the Windows 10 photos application under the name? Windows Photo Viewer ?.

Step 3 : open the last entry? File associations ? (? FileAssociations?), By clicking the left mouse button. A list of registry keys assigned to this entry will appear in the drop-down menu . In our case, these are the file formats for Windows Photo Viewer that should appear in the selection. For all other formats you want the change to apply to, create a new entry at this point by first right-clicking in the empty area and selecting the option? Chain ? in ? New ?:

With the type? Chain? a new Regedit entry is added.

Step 4 : rename the new string with the name of the format? For example. jpg , .svg, .png or .bmp . Then right-click on the corresponding entries and select? Modify ?:

Select the keys or values ​​in the Windows registry by clicking with the right mouse button to be able to rename, edit or delete them.

Step 5 : enter the following line in the input field? Value ?:


Finally, confirm this value by clicking? OK ?

Windows 10 registry: menu? Edit string ?.

Step 6 : Close the registry and right-click on any image (in this case, a .jpg file ) that you want to open with Windows Photo Viewer. From the pop-up menu, select? Open with ? Y ? Select another application ? successively. In the list, select the entry? Windows Photo Viewer ?. Also, check the option? Always use this application to open .jpg files ? for Windows 10 to use the old viewer as the default program to open photos..

In the example, Windows Photo Viewer is set as the default application to open all .jpg files. You must repeat this process for all other file formats.