Windows Spotlight feature is only accessible on devices running Windows 10. When the feature is enabled, your lock screen shows a really nice background image that changes on a regular basis. Most of these pictures are high-quality nature shots or photos of great cities around the world. Windows keeps last several images as cache in a hidden directory. So, if you see an image you like, you can’t easily save a copy of it on your PC. This post will guide you, how you can save Windows 10 lock screen images and use them as desktop wallpaper.
First of all, check if Windows Spotlight is enabled on your computer. Just open the ‘Settings’ app, then click ‘Personalization’ > ‘Lock screen’. Under the ‘Background’ option, choose ‘Windows Spotlight’ from the drop-down. Once the feature is enabled, it will download new images ongoing basis and display on the lock screen.
Find Windows 10’s Lock screen Images locally
You can find lock screen images buried deep inside your user profile folder. To find them, follow any of these two methods.
Using Windows Explorer
Step 1: Open Windows Explorer. Copy the below path and paste it into the address bar, and hit Enter.
Step 2: In the folder that opens, you’ll see a bunch of files with random names and no extensions. Some of these files are the images we’re looking for. Just select all the files larger than 200KB and copy them into a new folder anywhere you like. If a warning message popups, just click ‘Ok’ to finish copying the files.
Step 3: Rename the files and include a .jpg extension at the end of their names.
Once you rename the files, you should start seeing previews of the images in Explorer. And you’re now able to view the images in any image editor.
Using PowerShell script
If you’re non-technical, just download this PowerShell script. It will save a lot of your time and manual work. When this script is invoked it copy the cached images to a destination folder and add a .jpg extension as a suffix. The destination folder is by default set to OneDrive\Pictures\Wallpaper\Spotlight.
Step 1: Click on Start > type ‘powershell’ > click on ‘Windows PowerShell’ app.
Step 2: Double-click on the file that you’ve downloaded. Then, copy the command and paste into the Powershell window. Press Enter.
That’s it! Just open the folder mentioned above and you’ll get all the images.
Download All Spotlight images
You can’t get all the Spotlight images locally as Windows replace previously cached images with new ones. But there are some websites and apps available from where they can be downloaded on your device.
Using a website
Head over to this site, browse the collections, and pick your favorite pictures. To download an image, right-click on it and select ‘Save image as’ option afterward.
Using a Windows Store application
The Microsoft Store application called Spotlight Wallpapers can search for the latest Spotlight images and download them individually to your system.
- Install the application from Windows 10 app store. The app is free to use.
- Launch the app, then click on ‘Spotlight’ tab. It will then scan for available pictures. To scan more pictures, click on the arrow at the bottom.
- After the scan, you can download any of the images in just two clicks. Simply, select the image and click on the ‘Down-arrow’ at the bottom-right.
Set Windows Spotlight/Lock Screen images as desktop wallpaper
Once you have found the images you like, you can set a specific image as your desktop wallpaper, or you can even create a slide show using a group of your preferred Spotlight pictures. To do so, open the Settings app. Click Personalization > Background. From the drop-down, select Picture to use only one, Slideshow to use multiple images as your desktop wallpaper. Finally set the images.
Now, here’s the pro tip. If you want your desktop background automatically update with the lock screen image, use this app. This is the perfect app for people who want to automate the process without manual intervention.
Read more: Turn on Dark Theme on Windows 10