gibs: extracting Windows 10 spotlight pictures

yes, i’m alive.

i typed what’s below quite a time ago, why i didn’t publish, i don’t know, but now – yes…

i have more potential posts in mind, so things might pick up here again. it’d be nice to give this old place a new coat of paint, too.

Windows 10 has a thing. A thing where it displays some featured image on the Lock Screen. If you have a look at the ‘Personalization’ settings for the Lock Screen, the thing is called ‘Windows spotlight.’ Well sometimes it’s a rather nice picture and maybe you want it, yes? Well you can have it, and I’ll tell you how to get it.

Open the Run dialogue (press the Windows key and R on your keyboard), and copy that there directory in the line below into the Run box’s text bar, and then hit Enter.

Assuming you did that correctly, you’ll see a new Window open up listing… well, just… listing files. These are the files you’re looking for, only not as you know them… So first, I advise setting your view to Details, and sorting it by date or file size (both descending). Pick out the largest files from, like, the last day or whatever (I don’t know how long ago the image you want showed up…). You want the larger ones because those are the full images and not the other icon and logo images from your Start menu and elsewhere. Now copy those files to some other directory. You want to copy them so you don’t mess with Windows’ sensibilities.

Finally, the magic: rename your copied files, adding a “.jpg” extension to the end of the name. Le viola! (Just go with it.) Those pointless and unhelpful files are now picture things that you can taste with your eyeball! (Just the one, if you please.) Open the pictures up in, uh, a picture viewing application and revel.