The Desktop or Explorer window or folder will automatically refresh itself when you make a change to its contents. This could be creating a new shortcut, creating or saving a new file or folder in it, and so on.
But at times, you may find that the desktop or the window may not auto-refresh and to see the changes, you have to manually Refresh it, either by pressing F5 or via the context menu.
Desktop does not refresh automatically
If you find that you need to frequently refresh the desktop, you can follow these steps to try and fix the problem.
Open Registry Editor and navigate to the following registry key:
Here right-click and search for dontrefresh. If you find it, and if it has a value set to 1, change its value to 0.
This is known to have helped fix the problem in most cases.
Some have found that deleting the thumbnail cache and/or rebuilding the icon cache has helped them resolve the issue.
This problem appears to be quite common – so much so that there is even an acronym made for it: WEDR – Windows Explorer Doesnt Refresh! So the BSOD now has a companion!
Microsoft has released some hotfixes to resolve such issues at KB960954 and KB823291. Please check IF they are applicable to your operating system and situation before you decide to download and apply them.
Check this post if you find that your Recycle Bin does not refresh correctly.