Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Does anyone know the actual path used for the Windows 8 lock screen background image, or if it has a registry key? Is it even stored as a file? I know how to change it, I want to recover the image currently in use.


share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

The answer of Karan gived me the right path. Your customs lockscreens are located in the SystemData folder, but as you are going to see this folder is not accessible. You don't have the right to open or copy it even as an administrator. You have to take the ownership. No need to use a VM.

Open a console (Win+S "cmd") as administrator (right click "run as administrator") and run this command:

takeown /F "C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\SystemData" /R /D Y

I used my own path to the folder, it mights differs for yours.

After navigates to find folders LockScreen_A, LockScreen_B, etc. Each letters are linked to one of our customs lockscreens.


Just copy the one you want and it is done.


share|improve this answer

Look in the C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\SystemData\S-1-5-18\ReadOnly directory. Under that you should see some sub-dirs like LockScreen_X, LockScreen_Y, LockScreen_Z etc. Each one will contain a different wallpaper named something like LockScreen___Width_Height.jpg (basically the images you selected, but resized/cropped to fit your screen resolution).

share|improve this answer
Interesting, Windows won't actually allow me to look in SystemData at all, I'm loathed to take ownership (assuming it will even let me) in case that messes everythihng else up :/ – Ian Nov 1 '12 at 11:19
I didn't mind (taking ownership) since I did it in a VM. :) Maybe you can try accessing the files by using a Linux LiveCD/USB? – Karan Nov 1 '12 at 15:17
How infuriating, I'll give it a go with a live cd and see what I can find. – Ian Nov 1 '12 at 21:33

The image for the lock screen is located in C:\Windows\Web\Screen. The image name is img000.png.

share|improve this answer
Thanks, for my system that includes the default screens, but not my lock screen, or a file called img000.png :/ – Ian Oct 31 '12 at 17:25

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.