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How to disable preview pane in Windows 7

Written by: Oliver Krautscheid - Published: Thursday, September 9th, 2010

If you want to disable the preview pane in Windows 7 that might be a bit annoying sometimes, you can simply hide it or disable it completely through the registry.

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How to disable preview pane

Preview Pane Shortcut

As mentioned in this guide (How to preview pictures in Windows 7), there’s a handy shortcut that allows you to quickly enable/disable the preview pane in Windows 7:

ALT + P (for preview)

Disable Preview Pane via Windows Explorer

1. Step Open the Windows Explorer (Windows key + E)
2. Step Now, on the right side at the top, there’s a square icon with two lines at the top… that’s the icon to hide the preview pane:

Hide the preview pane

Disable Preview Pane via Registry

1. Step Open a notepad and copy and paste the following text:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Modules\GlobalSettings\Sizer]
“ReadingPaneSizer”=hex:6e,01,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,0c,03,00,00

2. Step Save it as a .reg file and select “All files” from the dropdown when you save the file.

3. StepDouble-click on the newly created registry file to add this registry key and disable the preview pane completely.

4. Step Reboot.

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Written by: Oliver Krautscheid
Oliver is the founder and lead editor of this site. He is interested in finding new ways to break Windows, find common errors and help others to fix them. Aside from that, he loves to fully customize systems with Rainmeter and Dreamscene, find out more about ancient civilizations like the Chachapoya, sharpen his digital photography skills and create software with a small group of selected developers. If you would like to connect with him to discuss anything, send him a mail!

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6 Responses to How to disable preview pane in Windows 7

  1. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Tom Ryan said:

    NOT working on win 7 ultimate x64. the original key re-enters after restart

  2. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    sOliver said:

    Tom, that’s very strange I’m on Windows 7 64-bit Professional and it works like a charm. The preview pane was annoying me a lot..

    Please make sure to replace ““ with some real inverted commas.

    Also check this, does it say:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\
    Modules\GlobalSettings\Sizer

    Let me know..

  3. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    dave said:

    Does not work on Windows 7 Pro

  4. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Me said:

    What i’d rather like to know: how to switch to the preview pane, browse the document there and return to Windows explorer, just using the keyboard

  5. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Al said:

    It would be nice if you gave a screenshot of WHAT THE PREVIEW PANE IS so that one might know what the heck you are talking about.

  6. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    oliversk said:

    Al, on the very first screenshot on the right that is the preview one, please read the text as well, it shouldn’t be that hard to figure out

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