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When I right click an image file in Windows, one of the context menu options is "Set as desktop background". I know some entries can be hidden with registry edits, so I'd like to know if it's possible to remove the "Set as background" option.

Note that while most context menu entries can be found under HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\, the "set as background" option seems to be located somewhere else.

marked as duplicate by Michael Frank, Pimp Juice IT, Run5k, DavidPostill windows Mar 26 '17 at 9:29

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • Why do you want to do that? – Eric F Mar 14 '17 at 19:05
  • Because my context menu is fairly bloated with excess options, and I have accidentally reset my background to random photos though this menu in the past. – Stevoisiak Mar 14 '17 at 19:07
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    The question marked as a duplicate is unlikely to be found by anyone looking to remove specifically Set as desktop background, but the answer is the same. Use ShellMenuView mentioned in the accepted answer to both questions. – AlainD Jul 25 '17 at 8:48

While it's possible to remove the "Set as desktop background" option by editing the registry manually, it's much easier to do using ShellMenuView.

Simply run the program, search for the Menu Key setdesktopwallpaper, and right click each entry to disable them.

Disabling "set desktop background" with ShellMenuView

If you do want to try manually editing the key with Regedit, it should be listed as HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Classes\SystemFileAssociations\.‌​png\Shell\setdesktop‌​wallpaper. Be warned that removing this key may disable the ability to change your wallpaper altogether.

Source: The How-To Geek

  • This program reference was taken from my answer's reference link... – Eric F Mar 14 '17 at 19:53
  • I actually found this program from an unrelated answer by The How-To Geek. I've amended my answer to give credit to the original source. – Stevoisiak Mar 14 '17 at 19:56
  • It is worth noting that HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\SystemFileAssociations is a merged registry view of both the system (HKLM) and user (HKCU) settings so can be used in preference, see msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/… – AlainD Jul 22 '17 at 22:09

Yes you can do it one of two ways:

Method 1

You can modify Windows Registry.

  1. Press windows key + R to open Run
  2. Type regedit and click ok.
  3. Type the following:

  4. Each folder inside this registry folder represents an item that is in the context menu. Simply delete the one you do not want. You may want to copy the registry value and save it somewhere else in case you ever want to get it back.

enter image description here

Be careful about breaking windows and making the ability to switch desktop images still work. You do not want broken windows:

enter image description here

Method 2

Download a context menu editor third party software.

A few that are out there (free):




Source for answer:


  • Tried method 1. Got the following error. I did find a relevant looking key under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Classes\SystemFileAssociations\.png\Shell\setdesktopwallpaper, but I've read removing this key can disable the ability to change your wallpaper altogether. – Stevoisiak Mar 14 '17 at 19:25
  • @StevenVascellaro ha I forgot a step. Look at my answer again. That is probably true about disabling the ability to change the wallpaper again. I would personally go with third party software instead. – Eric F Mar 14 '17 at 19:27
  • Makes sense. It's worth noting that HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers doesn't contain any entries about setting desktop background. – Stevoisiak Mar 14 '17 at 19:30
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    Well usually having Windows run in "ways that Windows wasn't intended to run" can lead to broken windows (punny) :p Hopefully this option at least answered your question and gave you some ideas. If you are satisfied please mark it as your answer – Eric F Mar 14 '17 at 19:32
  • Very true. Though, for the sake of completion I'd mention that context menu options can be found in registry either at HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers or in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Classes\SystemFileAssociations\ – Stevoisiak Mar 14 '17 at 19:35

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