Using Your Own Pictures as Wallpaper

by Barry Dysert
(last updated March 12, 2018)

There are several pictures and slide shows that come with Windows, thus letting you change your desktop background ("wallpaper") from the default. You are not limited to what comes with Windows, however. You can use your own pictures as wallpaper just as well.

Almost any type of digital image can be used as wallpaper, e.g., jpg, bmp, png, etc. Perhaps the simplest way to change the background is to use Windows Explorer to navigate to the picture file you wish to use for your background. Right-click on this file and choose Set as Desktop Background from the Context menu.

There are other ways to set the background image as well, but the steps vary a bit depending on the version of Windows you are using.

Windows 7 and Windows 8

You can change the background by right-clicking on an empty spot on the desktop and choosing Personalize from the Context menu, then clicking Desktop Background. Or, if you prefer, you can get to the same place by displaying the Control Panel and clicking the Change Desktop Background link under the "Appearance and Personalization" category. Either way, you should see the Personalization window. (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1. The Personalization window.

By clicking the Desktop Background link in the lower-left area, you'll be taken to the Desktop Background window. (See Figure 2.)

Figure 2. The Desktop Background window.

From here you would click the Browse button and navigate to the picture(s) you want to use for your wallpaper. You can create a slide show of your pictures by selecting more than one. Clicking Save Changes sets the wallpaper to the picture(s) you chose.

Windows 10

Things changed a bit in Windows 10. You can no longer get to the proper area by using the Control Panel. Instead, just right-click an empty spot on the desktop and, from the resulting Context menu, choose Personalize. Windows displays the Settings dialog box. (See Figure 3.)

Figure 3. Changing your background image in Windows 10.

If necessary, you should use the Background drop-down list to choose Picture. When you do, you can then click the Browse option. This allows you to navigate to the picture(s) you want to use for your wallpaper. You can create a slide show of your pictures by selecting more than one. Clicking Save Changes sets the wallpaper to the picture(s) you chose.

When you are done changing your wallpaper, you can dismiss the Settings dialog box.

 This tip (12117) applies to Windows 7, 8, and 10.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 35 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer. He is currently a software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. When not working with Windows or writing Tips, Barry is an amateur writer. His first non-fiction book is titled "A Chronological Commentary of Revelation." ...

MORE FROM BARRY

Pinning a Shortcut to the Taskbar

It's usually easy to pin items to the Taskbar. But if what you want to pin is not a shortcut to an application? This tip ...

Discover More

Determining If a Drive Should be Defragmented

Disk fragmentation is one of those things which, if severe, can adversely affect your system's performance. This tip ...

Discover More

Connecting a Bluetooth Device

If you're the proud owner of a Bluetooth device you probably want to get right to connecting it to your computer. This ...

Discover More
More WindowsTips

Customizing Quick Actions

Action Center provides quick access to notifications and quick actions. Quick actions provide a fast way to perform tasks ...

Discover More

Using Desktop Themes from Around the World

When you install Windows, it installs desktop themes appropriate to where you live. You can access a number of themes ...

Discover More

Sharing Resources on a Network

Business or home networks can make efficient use of resources by sharing them. You can establish a print server and/or a ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 - 4?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.