How to Fix It When Windows Photos App Is Slow to Open

Featured Fix Windows10 Photos App Too Slow

Have you encountered a familiar problem with Windows Photos app being slow and taking up to 30 seconds to open simple JPG files? Even with sizeable RAM and few apps running, you may feel the Photos app is taking too much time to respond. The reason: it has more to do with the app than your machine.

Using a few simple fixes, you can ensure that your pictures and videos load instantly with the Photos app. These fixes only use native methods for Windows 10. As an extra tip, the time delays fix for another app is also shared: Windows Photo Viewer, which still is a powerful alternative to Microsoft Photos.

Why Is the Windows Photos App So Slow?

The root of the problem is due to the configuration settings in the Photos app, which you may have failed to turn off. As a result, the Photos app appears with a black, followed by a white background for around 15 to 35 seconds, and only after, does it start showing the image or video.

Photos Slow More Time

Usually, it takes a lot of time to open just the first picture using the Photos app, after which the others open smoothly. There is a lot of background disk consumption for this application. The Photos app in Windows 10 is very memory-intensive for some reason, but we won’t go into detail here.

Photos App Memory Intensive

All the troubleshooting steps discussed below are in the order of priority.

Repair and Reset the Photos App

If you’re encountering sudden delays with the Photos app, you should immediately restore it to its default configuration. Navigate to the Photos app in the Start menu and right-click to open “App settings.”

Photos App Settings

Repairing and resetting the Photos app is quick and easy, and you will not lose any app data. Once you complete both steps, you should expect an immediate improvement in load time.

Photos Slow Repair Reset

During the reset, some of the app data is deleted but can be restored with a simple login using a Microsoft account.

Photos Slow Repair Reset Checkmark

Troubleshoot the Photos App

After following the above two steps, you should notice a drastic improvement in the speed response of the Photos app. If there are still issues, open “Troubleshoot settings” from the Start menu.

Photos App Troubleshoot Settings

Navigate down to the Windows Store apps and run the troubleshooter to detect any possible issues with the app.

Photos App Windows Store Apps

Detecting the problems takes a few minutes, and if there are any issues with the Photos app, they should be resolved after an analysis.

Photos App Run The Troubleshooter

You can also run System File Checker in the Command Line window to repair any corrupt files. Use the following command:

Photos App Sfc Repair Corrupt Files

Ensure the Latest Updates in the Photos App

It is best to not use an outdated Windows 10 version on your PC, as it may cause issues with the Photos app. Always install the latest system updates on the computer, restart it, and then try to launch the photos app again to see if the issue has been resolved.

Alternatively, you may open the Photos app in Microsoft Store and go to “Downloads and updates” from the three-dot menu.

Photos App Downloads And Updates1

Use the “Get updates” icon to get the latest version of Microsoft Photos.

Photos App Get Updates

Extra Tip: Speed Up Windows Photo Viewer

One of the best alternatives to the Photos app is the classic Windows Photo Viewer. You can set it as a default photo viewer application from the “Default apps” settings followed by fixing its registry keys for speed.

Open the Registry menu from regedit in the Start menu and navigate to the following path.

Photos App Winphotoviewer Registry

Right-click and modify the slideshow speed from “1” to “0.”

Photos App Windowsphotoviewer Value Speed

The above fixes should solve the issue of the Windows Photos app being slow to open. If you are a frequent user of the Photos app, you can learn how to better organize your photos with the Photos app or even add Google Photos to it.

Sayak Boral Sayak Boral

Sayak Boral is a technology writer with over ten years of experience working in different industries including semiconductors, IoT, enterprise IT, telecommunications OSS/BSS, and network security. He has been writing for MakeTechEasier on a wide range of technical topics including Windows, Android, Internet, Hardware Guides, Browsers, Software Tools, and Product Reviews.

3 comments

  1. I certainly need this fix. But I find it impossible to follow. It shows the screens, but it’s not at all clear what to do. For example, on clicking REPAIR it shows APP ADD ONS, the Photos.DLC.MediaEngine. Should I click to download that? Is THAT the repair I am looking for?

    Would appreciate some clarity on what to do. Thank you.

    1. Try not to download “Photos.DLC.MediaEngine”. It’s an under-developed Windows AI feature that works with OneDrive Cloud. Will only burden your CPU (not everyone sees this update).

      Just do a “reset” (Step1) followed by turning off all the options within “Optimize Photos App’s Internal Settings” (Step 2). For Photos apps updates, only use the Microsoft Store (Step 4) or schedule a Windows update.

      The good thing is only the first picture takes too long to open on the Photos app. The next ones will open instantly if you’ve done the fixes.

  2. Thanks, Sayak,
    Still not totally resolved, though the second picture opens a bit quicker.

    What I wouldn’t give for a free alternative to Windows Photos!

    Sincerely,
    Dr. Stan

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