Windows Spotlight is a great tool to add some variety to your PC. It displays a different background image nearly every day, and they are frequently beautiful.
In fact, they're so nice you may be wondering how to save Windows Spotlight images for use as a desktop background. Unfortunately, this isn't as easy as you might expect as there is no option to save a spotlight background / spotlight wallpaper directly.
The Windows 10 spotlight images location is in AppData with unintuitive file names. Additionally, searching for a Windows spotlight images download instead can net out of date results.
Instead, we're going to walk you through the process so you don't need to figure it out yourself. We'll cover how to find the Windows spotlight images location manual backup, or how to save them automatically via an app. Let's get started:
How to Find the Windows 10 Spotlight Images Location and Save Them Manually
Windows 10 Spotlight images are found in your hidden app data folder, under
%LocalAppData%\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.ContentDeliveryManager_cw5n1h2txyewy\LocalState\Assets. Navigate to that folder before starting. If you can't find that folder, change your File Explorer folder options to show hidden files. Then you will see a cryptic list of files for all previously shown windows spotlight wallpapers.
- How to save Windows Spotlight images
The folder mentioned above will contain a set of files with random strings of numbers and letters. Copy and paste them to your Pictures folder to save them for later.
- Open PowerShell at your Windows spotlight images location
Still in File Explorer, press the “File” button in the top-left, then click “Open Windows PowerShell > Open Windows PowerShell”.
- Bulk change the file extension
In PowerShell, type
You may have noticed at this point that though you have saved your Windows Spotlight images, you can't open them. This is because they don't have the jpg file type. To remedy this, we can run a simple command in PowerShell to add “.jpg” to the end of each file.
ren **.jpgand press Enter. This set all windows spotlight pictures to the JPEG image format.
- Enable the dimensions sorting filter
Right-click the empty column next to “Size” in File Explorer, then tick “Dimensions”. If the option isn't there for you, click “More…” and enable it from the list.
Though our Windows Spotlight images are in here, so are a lot of other Windows assets. To find just our Windows 10 lock screen backgrounds, we need to sort them by image dimension. First, though, we have to enable the dimension filter.
- Sort the Windows Spotlight backgrounds by dimension
Now, click the “View” tab in File Explorer and then press “Sort by” in the middle of the ribbon. Tick “Dimensions” and “Descending” to have the largest resolution images appear at the top.
- Delete the other images
Look for all images with a resolution of 1920×1080 and above either select them and copy them to a new folder, or delete all of the other images with a low resolution.
- Find the lock screen image you want
View your images in the extra-large icon view so you can quickly scan them for the one you like. Set is as your background, send it to a friend, or do whatever else you wish with it.
How to save Windows Spotlight Images Automatically
If you followed the steps above you probably will have realised you wouldn't want to repeat the process on the regular. If you want to save a Windows Spotlight background every day, we instead recommend the Dynamic Theme app. You can grab it from the Microsoft Store here.Once installed, Dynamic Theme will start to automatically download your Windows Spotlight image each day. First, though, you have to enable this option.
- Open Dynamic Theme
Once you have Dynamic Theme installed and a few Spotlight image downloads, it's time to open the app. Press “Start”, then type “Dynamic Theme” and click the top result.
- Enable autosave for Spotlight images
In the sidebar of Dynamic Theme, press the “Daily Spotlight image” heading. Then, in the main pane, tick “Automatic save of daily Windows Spotlight image in the folder of your choice” and select the default save folder for your spotlight images.
- Open Settings
For Dynamic Theme to work, we must set enable it for the lock screen. Press the Start button, then click the settings cog in your Start Menu, above the power button.
- Click ‘Personalization'
- Add your Windows Spotlight Images
Click “Lock screen” in the sidebar, set your background to “Slideshow”, and then press “Add a folder”.
- Select your Spotlight images folder
Navigate to your Windows Spotlight Images location, click the folder, and press “Choose this folder”.
- Check your lock screen albums
From now on, you can enjoy your Windows Spotlight images without worrying that they're going away any time soon.
Under the “Choose albums for your slideshow” heading, it should now read “Windows Spotlight Images”.
If you found this tutorial helpful, you may also be interested in learning how to fix Windows Spotlight if it stops working or how to enable the lock screen if it's missing.