How to Turn Off the Desktop Background on Windows 10

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Windows 10 has many accessibility features. One of them is the ability to disable the desktop background, so even if an image is set via Settings > Customization, it will not appear on the desktop. This is a lesser-known feature of the operating system. If it is turned on accidentally, it can be very difficult to understand why Windows 10 does not display the desktop background.

Your desktop is a special folder that displays the background you choose, as well as your files, folders, documents, shortcuts, and anything else you store. It appears every time you log in to Windows.

In earlier versions of Windows, important icons were enabled by default on the desktop: this PC, the network, the control panel, and your user file folder. They were all visible by default. But in modern versions of Windows, Microsoft has hidden most of these icons. In Windows 10, only the Recycle Bin is on the desktop by default. You can enable the classic desktop icons as follows:

Enable or Disable the Desktop Background Image in Settings

  • Open Settings and click/tap the Easy Access icon.
  • Click/tap on Display on the left and enable (default) or disable the option Display wallpaper on the right.
  • When you are finished, you can close the settings if you wish.

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Turn On or Off Desktop Background in Personalization Settings

An alternative to disabling the desktop background is to use a spot color for the background. Users can set the background color to black (or something else), but this does not have the same effect as turning off the background. It still frees up some system resources.

  • Open the Settings application.
  • Go to the Personalization Settings group.
  • Choose the Background tab.
  • Open the Background drop-down list.
  • Choose the color of the stain.
  • Select a preset color or click “Custom Color” and choose the color you want. You can use an RGB or HEX color code to define a specific color.

If you don’t like a solid background, you can always use a background image, as long as it is minimal. Don’t use anything too complicated, for example a 4K image of the moon. Look for simple vector backgrounds or use a black and white or black and grey background.

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