Black background behind Folder icons in Windows 10

Windows 10 File Explorer provides a variety of ways to organize the contents of files and folders of the system. The Window users can use some efficient styles to view the contents of the file system as per the user’s requirement. One may opt to display the file picture in a large size thumbnails or may prefer to set the icons of files and folder in a small or medium size list. However, while setting up the different styles for the file and folder icons, some of the Window users have come across the weird problem of black squares showing up behind the folder icons. Even refreshing the file explorer multiple times is of no help and the black square appears to be a perpetual issue.

Black background behind Folder icons

Black background behind Folder icons

While the black squares behind the folder icons look unsightly, the problem, however, is not a major issue and it is just a graphical glitch which will not cause any damage to the content of folders and files. The cause of this visual glitch problem can be, the corrupted system files or an outdated thumbnail caches. The graphical flaws can also occur if users are using an outdated graphics driver. In this article, we explain some solutions on how to fix the black background problem behind the folder icons in Windows 10.

1] Use Disk Cleanup to remove Thumbnail files

Using the Disk Cleanup tool is one way of fixing the black background problem behind the folder icon by deleting all the Thumbnail files on your disk.

Go to Search bar and type Disk Cleanup. Select the C: drive to clean up from the drop-down menu and click OK.

After the scanning is complete, select the files you want to delete.

Make sure you select the box with the option Thumbnails under Files to Delete section and click on Ok.

In the confirmation box, click on Delete files to permanently delete the files.

Restart the system.

2] Reset Thumbnail Cache

Users can delete Thumbnail Cache manually to solve the black square background problem behind the folder icon. Alternatively, you could simply use our freeware Thumbnail Cache Rebuilder to reset the cache.

Follow the below steps to manually delete an outdated thumbnail cache.

Go to File Explorer and navigate to View tab. Select the option with Hidden items to display all the hidden files and folders.

Go the following path-


Make sure you give your actual username in the field <username>. Now search and locate the filename “IconCache.db”. Right click on the file and click on Delete.

Black background behind Folder icons in Windows 10

Next, go the following path-


Select all the files and delete them.

If you are prompted with the window saying that “The files are in use and cannot be deleted”, select the option with “Do this for all current items” and click on Try Again.  If you receive an error message, click on Cancel to close the window.

Restart your system.

3] Update Graphics Driver

To update Graphics Drivers, go to Start menu, type, and open  Device Manager.

Click on Display Adapters and expand the section. Right click on the graphics card and click on Update driver from the drop-down menu.

Click on “Search automatically for updated driver software” in the Update Driver pop up window to install the latest updates.

I am sure that one of these suggestions will help you.

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Pavithra is a Windows enthusiast, who loves keeping abreast with the latest in the world of technology.