How to remove black background in folders icon in Windows 10

There is apparently a bug in Windows 10 that adds a black background to the folders icon. It does not affect the data within them; it just makes the folders look, well� ugly. It can happen due to corrupted files, a problem with the folder thumbnail cache or with the Windows image. The purpose of this post is to help you remove the black background from icons in folders.

I also had this problem and after experimenting with multiple solutions I managed to solve it for good. If you have the same issue then I can help you fix it using the same methods that I have tried. Let’s see which solution works for you.

Remove black background from folders in Windows

Solution 1: restore the default icon

This method only temporarily fixed my problem as it turned black again after rebooting. However, many users reported that this solution fixed the problem permanently. And it is easier to execute. Let’s try this first.

Right-click on the affected folder and select  Properties  from the context menu. In the properties, go to the Customize tab   and click the Change Icon button  .

Randomly select any icon you want and click  OK  to select it. Then click  OK  again to apply the changes.

Now go back to the same Change Icon option  , and this time click the Restore Defaults button  . When you click  OK, the default icon will be restored and the black background issue will probably be resolved as well.

Solution 2: uncheck the read-only attribute

There is a possibility that the folder’s read-only attribute is causing the folder to display with a black background. Just remove the read-only attribute and see if it fixes the problem.

Right-click on the folder and select Properties. Here uncheck the checkbox next to  Read Only  in the Attributes section  . When you click  OK, the folder icon can be repaired.

Solution 3: Clear thumbnail cache

Corrupt thumbnail cache is apparently the most common reason for this problem. Clearing the thumbnail cache and resetting it solved this problem for many users. There are many ways to clear thumbnail cache, but I think it is easier to use Windows Disk Cleanup tool.

Press Windows + R keys , and then type cleanmgr.exe  in the Run dialog box. When you click OK, the Disk Cleanup tool will open . The system drive (drive C) will already be selected, just click the OK button   to start scanning.

After scanning, it will display a list of data that can be deleted to save space. Scroll down here and check the checkbox next to  Thumbnails, and then click  OK. A message will appear, confirm to delete all thumbnail cache. Then restart the PC and see if the black background is gone or not.

Solution 4: check system files

If the problem persists, it could be due to a missing or corrupted system file. Windows System File Checker (SFC) built-in scan can search for any missing or corrupt system files and automatically recover them (if possible).

To run the SFC scan, right-click the Start menu icon and select  Command Prompt (administrator)  from the list.

This will open a Command Prompt window where you need to enter the command sfc / scannow. Then you hit the Enter key and the analysis will start. This may take a few minutes to complete, so be patient. Once finished, it will show if there were any corrupted files and if they were fixed or not.

Solution 5: Run DISM scan

A problem with Windows images can also cause the background of folders to turn black. You can run the DISM  (Deployment Image Servicing and Management) scan  to see if there are any problems and fix them.

To run the scan, you’ll need to run a command from an elevated command prompt window. Follow the process mentioned in Solution # 4 to open a command prompt window as administrator.

At the command prompt, enter the command DISM.exe / Online / Cleanup-image / Scanhealth. This will look for any problems and alert you if it finds any.

If the scan above reports problems, you can use another command to repair it. After scanning, enter the DISM.exe / Online / Cleanup-image / Restorehealth command  and press Enter. The scan will run and attempt to troubleshoot the Windows images and their components.

Both scans can take a little time (10-15 min). When it’s done, restart your PC and see if the problem is fixed.

Keep the system up to date

The above solution should solve the problem permanently, or at least for the time being. Since this problem appears to be a Windows bug, there is a chance that one of the updates could fix it for good. So far no that has not happened, but a future update may fix the problem. One more reason to keep your operating system updated.


Resetting the thumbnail cache usually solves the folder icon black background issue. Although I will recommend that you try to restore the default icon first, as it is easier and you will not have to regenerate the thumbnails if it solves the problem. And of course you can run SFC and DISM scan to fix any corrupted files.

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