Windows Spotlight brings to you some really amazing images that are worth storing. At present, Windows 10 doesn’t have a GUI option to save these Lock Screen images; this has to be done manually. This post tells you how to save Windows Spotlight lock screen images in Windows 10.
- Windows Spotlight “Assets” folder location
- Backup Windows Spotlight images and add .JPG extension
- Remove non-wallpaper files
- Backup Spotlight Images Using Script
- SpotBright tool downloads all Windows Spotlight images from the server
- Find where a Windows Spotlight Image was shot
The Windows Spotlight images are stored in one of the sub-folders several levels underneath the Local App Data folder, with random file names containing no extension. Here is the folder path
The above location is not meant to be used as a permanent storage area, as the images you see today in that folder wouldn’t be available there for ever. If you like to store the images, copy them to a different folder, under your Pictures folder or elsewhere.
To preview them after moving to the destination folder, .JPG extension is to be added to these files. Image viewers such as IrfanView and Windows Photo Viewer can preview the files (via Open with…) even if no extension is added; but adding the extension is suggested.
On the folder where you’ve copied the Spotlight images, click the File menu, and select Open command prompt. Typing the following command would add the JPG extension for all files:
REN * *.JPG
The Windows Spotlight store folder also contains images that are not wallpapers, such as logos or tile images of smaller dimensions, that need to be filtered out. Files with size less than 400 KB are _probably_ not wallpapers; you can preview before clearing them out. [Hint: Sort the listing by Size column.]
Portrait vs. Landscape Images
The Windows Spotlight store folder can contain portrait as well as landscape images (for PC); you may sort the files using the Dimensions column (a column setting that you need to add by right-clicking the Column Header in the folder, and clicking More..), move the Portrait images to a separate folder, and Landscape ones to another folder.
The copying as well as the sorting stuff can be automated by a Batch file, and a PowerShell script made available at this GitHub link, authored by Hashhar (via Windows Central Blog). The batch file does the copying & renaming part, and the PowerShell script does the moving task according to image dimensions. Both these scripts can be scheduled or placed in the Startup folder so that it’s run at every logon, and you don’t miss a single Windows Spotlight image. These scripts are coded to store the Spotlight images to the user’s Pictures\Spotlight directory, but you can modify the path by editing the files using Notepad.
SpotBright a 3rd party app created by T. Partl, is available at the Store for free download. This app can download ALL available Spotlight images directly from the server for you. However, there is no option to preview the images before downloading, and as all images are Hi-Res, you might want to consider the carrier charges if that applies. As a side note, Windows doesn’t download Spotlight images if you’re on a metered connection. [Download: SpotBright Free*]
*Certain features of the SpotBright app, such as “notify when new pictures arrive” work only if you buy the Pro version.
In Windows 10 v1607 and higher, you should be able to see the geographic location of the current Windows Spotlight by hovering your mouse pointer over “Like what you see?” section. For more information, see post Find the Actual Location Where a Spotlight (Lock Screen) Image was Shot.
About the author
Ramesh Srinivasan founded Winhelponline.com back in 2005. He is passionate about Microsoft technologies and has a vast experience in the ITeS industry — delivering support for Microsoft's consumer products. He has been a Microsoft MVP [2003 to 2012] who contributes to various Windows support forums.