Desktop Background Wallpaper Can’t be Changed in Windows 7 – How to fix it?

The background wallpaper can be changed according to the user desire, but in many cases it was found that the users are unable to change the desktop background on their Windows 7 operating system. The culprit behind this problem is not the windows 7 starter and basic versions. The reasons behind this problem is discussed in this tutorial.

widows 7 background

The first one is when you try to change your desktop background by clicking Control Panel, Appearance and Personalization and change desktop Background, the check boxes can’t be selected when clicked upon it and the select all and Clear all buttons do not work for which you are unable to change the wallpaper.

Sometimes, when you right-click a picture and then select Set as desktop background, you receive the following error message: This image can’t be set as wallpaper. An internal error occurred  (or) you see a black background even though you change your background picture.

The above problems indicate that some of the windows 7 theme files are corrupted or some fault in registry has occurred or files in the registry that might have got corrupted. The files get corrupted due to the following reason.

  • Third-party applications like Display Manager
  • Background setting in the power options is disabled
  • The Remove background images option is incorrectly checked (Control Panel\Ease of Access\Ease of Access Center\Make the computer easier to see)
  • Domain policy disables the background changing
  • Corrupted TranscodedWallpaper.jpg in C:\\windows\web\wallpaper
  • You are using Windows 7 Starter or Windows 7 Home Basic; these versions of Windows 7 do not support changing the desktop background picture

Fix Wallpaper change issue in Windows 7

Incompatible Windows Themes

The themes that you are using as a desktop background may not be compatible with your OS, thus, resulting in an error. Some applications that help manage display settings can cause compatibility issues with setting background pictures, displaying Aero glass and other Windows functionality. You can detect this by disabling or uninstalling any display management applications that are installed on your computer.

Check background settings in the Power options

If the slideshow is not functioning then go the Power Options settings where there is an option that will pause the background slideshow, follow the steps below to check your background settings in power options:

  • Click Start > type Power Options in the Search box > click Power Options from the list
  • In the “Select a power plan” window, click Change plan settings next to your currently selected Power plan
  • Click Change advanced power settings > click to expand the Desktop background settings option
  • Click to expand Slide show and make sure that the Plugged in: option is set to Available

desktop background setting

  • Click OK and then close the Edit plan window.

Check the Remove background setting under the Ease of Access settings

Another option is available in the Ease of Access settings that will remove background images, follow the steps below to check your background settings in power options:

  • Click Start > Control panel > Ease of Access > click Ease of Access Center

make computer easier to see

  • Under Explore all settings click Make the computer easier to see
  • Make sure that the option to Remove background images is unchecked

remove background images

  • Click OK twice and then close the Ease of Access Center window.

Corrupted TranscodedWallpaper.jpg

Due to the corrupted TranscodedWallpaper.jpg file you may be unable to change the desktop background picture. To fix the issue delete the file. Follow the steps below to delete the TranscodedWallpaper.jpg file.

  • Click Start and write the command %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Themes\ into the search box and hit Enter key
  • Right-click the file that is named TranscodedWallpaper.jpg and then click Rename.
  • Rename the file to TranscodedWallpaper.old, (change .jpg to .old) and then click Yes when prompted
  • Double-click slideshow.ini. Slideshow.ini should open with Notepad. Select all the text in slideshow.ini if any exists and press Delete on the keyboard, and then click File and Save to save the changes
  • Close Notepad and close the Windows Explorer window and browse to the picture that will be set as the background image
  • Try to apply a background picture again.

Check for a Domain policy that disables the background changing

If you are connected to a domain, then your domain administrator may have disabled the changing of the desktop background, follow the steps below to check the desktop background policy:

  • Click Start and type group policy in the Search box and then click Edit Group Policy from the list
  • Click to expand the following policy tree structure: User Configuration, Administrative Templates, Desktop, Desktop, and double-click Desktop Wallpaper

Group Policy desktop

  • Select Not Configured to enable the changing of the desktop background.

Upon  following the above methods, you will be able to resolve the problem and you can change the background wallpaper as per your wish.


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