Desktop Background Option is greyed out in Personalize Settings

When you attempt to change my desktop wallpaper, the “Background” dropdown option may be greyed out in Settings → Personalize. The “choose your background color” option may also be grayed out. Also, on the top, it says the following:

Some of these settings are hidden or managed by your organization.

desktop background grayed out due to registry based policies

This happens even if your Windows 10/11 device is activated and the device is a private computer, not connected to any company or school network.

You may have checked the following settings already:

  • In the “Ease of Access” setting, “Remove background images” is not checked.
  • In the Local Group Policy Editor (“Control Panel”: “Personalization”), “Prevent changing desktop background” is set to not configured. Also, setting it to “Disabled” may not help.
  • In the “%AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Themes” folder, you may have already renamed “TranscodedWallpaper” to “TranscodedWallpaper.old”. Still, the setting to change wallpaper may be greyed out.


The desktop background option may be grayed out due one or more registry-based policies — i.e., the “Wallpaper”, “WallpaperStyle”, or the “NoChangingWallpaper” policy.


To reenable the desktop background option, follow one of these options.

Option 1: Remove Personalize policies using REG file

  1. Visit the Personalize Settings Says “Some settings are managed by your organization” article.
  2. Download and run the personalize-policies-remove.reg file.
  3. Click Yes to confirm.
  4. Log off and log back in for the change to take effect.

Note that the .reg file in the above link removes all the personalization policies, if any, including the wallpaper policies. Note that no personalize policies are set in a default Windows installation.

Option 2: Remove Personalize policies using Regedit.exe

  1. Create a Restore Point.
  2. Open Regedit.exe
  3. Delete the following registry keys if they exist.
  4. Exit the Registry Editor.
  5. Log off and log back in for the changes to take effect.

Option 3: Remove the Wallpaper policies using a REG file

Use the following .REG to remove only the wallpaper-related policies. See how to create a .reg file.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00




That should restore the desktop background drop-down options.

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Ramesh Srinivasan is passionate about Microsoft technologies and he has been a consecutive ten-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award in the Windows Shell/Desktop Experience category, from 2003 to 2012. He loves to troubleshoot and write about Windows. Ramesh founded in 2005.

1 thought on “Desktop Background Option is greyed out in Personalize Settings”

  1. Thank you so so much! This article helped this severely uneducated about technology girl! I have struggled with this issue for so long and finally have access to my background wallpaper!


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