How to View PDF Thumbnails in Windows 7 32-bit Systems?

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by Question Mark, May 15, 2011.

  1. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Hello,

    I've spent the last couple of days trying desperately to resolve this issue. I have looked everywhere but cannot find an answer...
    PROBLEM: I have thousands of PDFs in hundreds of folders. When I go to a particular folder, I use the slider to change the Explorer views from "Content" to "Extra Large Icons" but cannot get a thumbnail preview of the PDFs - all I see is an Acrobat Icon preview.
    I know that this is an issue on the X64-bit verson of Windows 7, but I'm running 32-bit Windows 7 (Ultimate)!
    ATTEMPTS: I've tried several ways to resolve this but nothing worked so far. Specifically, I:
    1. Made sure that the File Type Associations are correct.
    2. Unchecked Folder options>View>"Always show icons, never thumbnails".
    3. Made sure that Folder options>View> "Display file icon on thumbnails" is checked.
    4. Made sure that Performance>Settings>"Show thumbnails instead of icons" is checked.
    5. Tried the simple method suggessted at other forums: going into Adobe and opening the directory to preview the files as thumbnails from there and then refreshing the folder in Windows Explorer to display a thumbnail preview of the PDF file - Didn't work either!
    6. Ran "Repair Acrobat Installation".
    7. Uninstalled and Reinstalled Acrobat 9 (including associated registry files).
    8. Installed the latest version of Reader.
    9. Tried installing other software (PDF-XChange and Foxit) but these don't create PDF thumbnails in Windows Explorer either.

    Please note that all other files (such as JPGs and WMVs) show thumbnails as usual in my Windows Explorer.
    Also, there appears to be an unofficial fix but it only addresses X64 systems:
    www.pretentiousname.com/adobe_pdf_x64_fix/index.html

    Can ANYONE please HELP? I want my thumbnails back :(
    Thanx in advance!
     
  2. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    How to View PDF Thumbnails in Windows 7 Explorer?

    Hello,

    I've spent the last couple of days trying desperately to resolve this issue. I have looked everywhere but cannot find an answer...
    PROBLEM: I have thousands of PDFs in hundreds of folders. When I go to a particular folder, I use the slider to change the Explorer views from "Content" to "Extra Large Icons" but cannot get a thumbnail preview of the PDFs - all I see is an Acrobat Icon preview.
    I know that this is an issue on the X64-bit verson of Windows 7, but I'm running 32-bit Windows 7 (Ultimate)!
    ATTEMPTS: I've tried several ways to resolve this but nothing worked so far. Specifically, I:
    1. Made sure that the File Type Associations are correct.
    2. Unchecked Folder options>View>"Always show icons, never thumbnails".
    3. Made sure that Folder options>View> "Display file icon on thumbnails" is checked.
    4. Made sure that Performance>Settings>"Show thumbnails instead of icons" is checked.
    5. Tried the simple method suggessted at other forums: going into Adobe and opening the directory to preview the files as thumbnails from there and then refreshing the folder in Windows Explorer to display a thumbnail preview of the PDF file - Didn't work either!
    6. Ran "Repair Acrobat Installation".
    7. Uninstalled and Reinstalled Acrobat 9 (including associated registry files).
    8. Installed the latest version of Reader.
    9. Tried installing other software (PDF-XChange and Foxit) but these don't create PDF thumbnails in Windows Explorer either.

    Please note that all other files (such as JPGs and WMVs) show thumbnails as usual in my Windows Explorer.
    Also, there appears to be an unofficial fix but it only addresses X64 systems:
    www.pretentiousname.com/adobe_pdf_x64_fix/index.html

    Can ANYONE please HELP? I want my thumbnails back :(
    Thanx in advance!
     
  3. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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  4. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Thank you Elmer but I have already tried all of the tips you mentioned in that thread (see my OP).
    And, my system is x86 not x64 so I don't think the pretentiousname Adobe PDF fix will work for me...
     
  5. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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    My eyes appear to be number dyslexic this morning!! Sorry 'bout that!
     
  6. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    Re: How to View PDF Thumbnails in Windows 7 Explorer?

    Strange since you have already tried, but I used the "Display file icon on thumbnails" and my .pdfs changed from the Adobe logo to a picture with the Adobe logo on them.

    I switched it back by unchecking the option and the thumbnail stays without the icon. I will try logging off to see if it changes back by itself. Let you know.
     
  7. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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    As an afterthought.
    After changing all your settings as per your first post, did you delete your iconcache.db in C:\Users\Your User Name\AppData\Local and also delete the thumbnails caches through the Disk Cleanup before a re-boot?
     
  8. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    Two seperate yet identical threads moved and merged to help eliminate confusion. Please do not cross post.
     
  9. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    Something else I have discovered. My original Adobe icons were bright red. After I selected the show icon on Thumbnail the Thumbnail appeared with a bright red icon on it.

    I went and checked "always show icons, never thumbnails" and it changed back to an icon, but this time it was the white one with the red Adobe logo. So, perhaps checking the show icons would change yours if you have a similar situation. Then change it back.

    If nothing helps, there was one post that used another PDF viewer and he ended up uninstalling and cleaning both installs and when he reinstalled, it seemed to repair the problem. Perhaps just changing some settings on the other viewer would have some effect, if Elmer's suggestion doesn't work.
     
    #9 Saltgrass, May 15, 2011
    Last edited: May 15, 2011
  10. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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    Thanks Trouble. Wondered where my post went!
     
  11. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    You bet Elmer, no problem. I saw you were working on one and Saltgrass was working on another. So I moved the one from the Software forum here and then merged them together. I did leave an expiring re-direct which should still be visible in the original threads locations. Sorry if I added to the confusion rather than resolved some as I intended.
    Regards
    Randy
     
  12. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    Well, after some research, and testing with some .pdf files on my desktop, I have come to a conclusion. This might be affected by other installed software or a glitch in your system, but it seems the Thumbnails have to be generated and some ways of doing that may be slower than others.

    When you first asked the question, I had 4 older .pdf files and one new file on my desktop. When I refreshed the desktop, the 4 older ones immediately changed to Thumbnails. The last one did not. Several hours later, the last one changed after I refreshed again. Initially I was changing icon sizes in the view menu, but I still had to refresh to get them to go back to the thumbnails. Also, the folder you have them in might be relevant.

    I say this with the understanding all Thumbnails work for you except for the .pdfs.... Elmer was talking about deleting the Thumbnail cache, which you can do using Disk Cleanup, and a note on that utility states the thumbnails will be automatically recreated as needed. You might look at your Disk Cleanup dialog and select Thumbnails and see how much space they are taking. If you have "thousands" of .pdf files, that might take quite a bit of storage space. I don't suppose you run any kind of software that might be removing these files to clean your system?
     
  13. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Yes, Elmer, I have tried this already but it doesn't bring about any changes...
     
  14. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Hi Saltgrass, thank you for the reply. When I check the "Display file icon on thumbnails", neither of my files displays a file icon on the Thumbnail view... Just the Thumbnail!
    I also checked and unchecked the "Always show icons, never thumbnails" which had an effect on all the other files (such as JPGs) but unfortunately nothing changed in the PDF files - they remained an icon throughout...
    PS - The icon which appears on my PDFs is not the cool bright red one that you mentioned, but a white frame with the Adobe logo on it...
     
  15. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Such as... (?)

    Yep, that is correct!

    Yep! I did try this a couple of times but to no avail...

    Well, I am running PC Tools: Performance Toolkit 2011 but I don't think that's the problem since all other files can still be properly displayed in Thumbnail view...
     
  16. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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    You've more than likely tried this but just in case...
     
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  17. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Hello Elmer,
    Yes. I just tried both ways...
    In the first one, I followed all the steps but nothing happened.
    In the second one, even when inside Acrobat, the Thumbnail View cannot be generated. I still get the blank frame-icon view!
    So, this couldn't work either... :(
     
  18. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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    Well sadly that's the only other "method" I could find through a Google :(

    And that's me stuffed for ideas now!
     
  19. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    Just in case anyone migt make a connection, I did what Elmer suggested and opened a folder from within Adobe Reader. It was the Desktop, but it should not matter. This is on a x64 system, but all the Thumbnails showed up fine, whereas they do not show up on the desktop (after cleaning the Thumbnails with Disk Cleaner).

    I also noticed there was an additional tab on the properties dialog window. A PDF tab that showed what made the pdf file. I have not investigated if how the file was made has an effect on how it behaves, but since there is an additional tab with additional information, perhaps there is some metadata that is necessary but is not being provided in some situations.

    Well, it seems Elmer's suggestion has had a profound effect on my system, since after I opened the Desktop folder and went back and refreshed the Desktop, the Thumbnails now show up. My 32 bit system has never had a problem showing the thumbnails.

    The last thing I might mention, is on some occassions, I have seen issues with .pdf files when they had been moved from one system to another.
     

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  20. Question Mark

    Question Mark New Member

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    Oh well...
    Issue is still UNRESOLVED!
    Any more ideas anyone???
     

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