Windows 10 Creators Update breaks Spotlight feature [Fix]

Ivan Jenic By: Ivan Jenic
4 minute read

Home » Windows 10 Creators Update breaks Spotlight feature [Fix]

One thing is for certain when it comes to Windows 10‘s UI: even though it’s not always intuitive, it looks great aesthetically. One of the features that’s not essential but impacts the overall impression must be Microsoft Spotlight.

For you that don’t know, Microsoft Spotlight basically automatically switches wallpapers for your Lock Screen. It uses Bing gallery photos from the whole world and changes them every time you log out. It’s a great way to brighten up your initial screen while you stare in awe in the beautiful and unique parts of the globe.

However, it seems that the Creators Update ruined the experience for some users. Luckily, we’re there for you. We prepared the list of the possible solutions that should help you resolve Spotlight issues. So, continue reading for the detailed explanation.

How to fix Spotlight on Windows 10 Creators Update

Check your connection

The first step you should take is to check the connection. The Spotlight feature is dependable on the internet connection and without it, you won’t be able to get yourself that special nature scenery. When you start your PC, you should see the connection signal or LAN notification on your Lock Screen. If it’s not there, make sure to troubleshoot your connection before we proceed to the next steps.

On the other hand, if your connection is functioning as intended and the Spotlight is still stuck/unresponsive, you’ll need to put more effort in the trouble at hand.

Restart Spotlight

Another step you can take is to restart the Spotlight feature manually. Since this is a built-in system process, you can only perform standard enable/disable procedure instead of standard switching off. And this is how to do it:

  1. Right-click on the desktop and click Personalize.
  2. Select the Lock Screen tab.
  3. In Background pane, switch from Windows Spotlight to a Picture or the Slideshow.
  4. Click OK to confirm the selection.
  5. Log off and log in.
  6. Navigate to Lock screen and enable Windows Spotlight again.

If the photos still won’t load or you’re seeing the same picture every time, move down to the next steps.

Clean the Spotlight’s download folder

Additionally, you can clean the content from the download folder where the Spotlight photos are stored. That resolved the issue for some users, so it’s worth a try. This is how to find and delete image files from the folder:

  1. Right-click on the desktop and open Personalize.
  2. Open the Lock Screen tab.
  3. Under Background, switch from Windows Spotlight to a Picture or the Slideshow.
  4. Now, navigate to:
    •  C:\Users\Username\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.ContentDeliveryManager_cw5n1h2txyewy\LocalState\Assets
  5. You’ll need to enable Hidden Folders in order to access the files.
  6. In Assets folder, press Ctrl + A to select all files and delete them.
  7. Return to Desktop > Personalize > Lock Screen > Background.
  8. Enable the Spotlight again and log off.

The problem should be resolved. However, if it’s not, your best bet is our final solution.

Reset/Reassign the Spotlight service

As we already said, Spotlight is an integrated feature and can’t be reinstalled or disabled in the standard way. But, at least, it can be reassigned and thus restored to default settings. This procedure has two parts that can be used as two distinctive workarounds. But we’ll unite them here. Now, these are not exactly the easiest steps to perform, so follow the instructions closely:

  1. Right-click anywhere on Desktop and open Personalize.
  2. Open Lock tab and change the Background from Windows Spotlight to Slideshow or Picture.
  3. Confirm with OK.
  4. Press Windows key + R to open the Run command line.
  5. Copy-paste the following command and press Enter:
      • %USERPROFILE%/AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.ContentDeliveryManager_cw5n1h2txyewy\Settings
  6. Right-click settings.dat and rename it to settings.dat.bak
  7. Right-click roaming.lock and rename it to roaming.lock.bak
  8. Restart the PC.
  9. Navigate to Desktop > Personalize > Lock Screen > Background.
  10. Enable Windows Spotlight.

The second solution needs you to utilize Windows PowerShell in order to reset Spotlight. And this is how to do it.

  1. Right-click on the desktop and open Personalize > Lock Screen > Background
  2. Make sure that the Spotlight feature is enabled.
  3. Under Windows Search bar, type Windows PowerShell.
  4. Right-click Windows PowerShell and Run as Administrator.
  5. In the command line, paste the following command:
      • Get-AppxPackage -allusers *ContentDeliveryManager* | foreach {Add-AppxPackage “$($_.InstallLocation)\appxmanifest.xml” -DisableDevelopmentMode -register }
  6. Restart your computer.
  7. This should restart Windows Spotlight and fix your issue.

That should wrap it up. In case you have any questions or an alternative solution, be so good to share it with other readers. The comments section is below.

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