How to hide the contents of a window while dragging it in Windows

Deepak Gupta August 20, 2022
Updated 2022/08/20 at 1:16 PM

If your PC isn’t very good, it’s a good idea to disable some less important features in Windows to help speed things up. And hiding the contents of a window while it’s being dragged is a small performance tweak.

So here’s how to turn off the view of the contents of windows when you move them.

Disabling this feature does not make Windows much faster. However, when combined with other simple adjustments, it can improve the performance of a struggling PC.

Why should the window contents be hidden when moving it?

Having the contents of a folder displayed when you move the window is classified as an animation. Windows must continually render their elements, and the icons inside them, as it is moved.

On most computers, this happens effortlessly and fluidly. Elements to be redrawn repeatedly are not seen. But if your PC is more limited or low on system resources, animation can be slow.

By hiding the contents of a window when it is moved, may reduce the resources used by this animation. It may not result in a massive performance boost, but on an older computer, and in combination with other ways to boost Windows performance, it helps.

How to hide using Windows Performance Options

Performance Options for Windows contains a list of effects and animations that can be tweaked. To access them:

1. Open Windows Search and enter "Adjust Windows appearance and performance".

2. On the "Visual Effects" tab, uncheck the "Show window contents while being dragged" box.

3. Click Apply.

note: you may need to restart your computer before the changes are visible.

How to hide window contents using Registry Editor

You can also use Registry Editor to hide the contents of folders when they are dragged. This method is more complicated, but getting used to working in Registry Editor is a good idea for any Windows user.

1. Open Registry Editor via Windows Search.

note: you don't need to open it with administrator privileges.

2. In the Registry Editor, go to "ComputerHKEY_CURRENT_USERControl PanelDesktop". To do it more easily you can copy the path and paste it in the place indicated in the image below.

3. Find and double-click "DragFullWindows" in the list on the right.

4. In the new window that opens, change the "Value data" from 1 to 0.

5. Click "Ok" and close the Registry Editor.

Improving the performance of an old or underpowered PC doesn't always mean having to upgrade components. Simple tweaks like hiding the content of windows being dragged can help. Especially when combined with other small, discrete changes.

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