A screen saver that displays pictures stops working in Windows

Applies to: Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit EditionWindows Vista Home Basic 64-bit EditionWindows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition More

Symptoms


You create a screen saver for your operating system to display pictures from one of the following locations.

Windows XP

  • My Pictures
  • Windows Live Photo Gallery

Windows Vista

  • Windows Photo Gallery
  • Windows Live Photo Gallery

Windows 7

  • Windows Live Photo Gallery
However, the screen saver may stop working if one of the following conditions is true:
 
  • There are invalid shortcuts in the folder or in the subfolder that stores the screen saver pictures.
  • The power setting is set to "Low Power."
Notes
  • If the screen saver displays pictures from My Pictures, the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value in the following registry subkey is "C:\Windows\system32\ssmypics.scr":
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop
  • If the screen saver displays pictures from Windows Photo Gallery, the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value in the following registry subkey is "C:\Windows\system32\PhotoScreensaver.scr":
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop
  • If the screen saver displays pictures from Windows Live Photo Gallery, the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value in the following registry subkey is "C:\Windows\wlxpgss.scr":
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop

Resolution


Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

322756 How to back up and restore the registry in Windows

To fix this problem, follow these steps:

  1. Change the power setting of the computer to "Balanced."
  2. Delete any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in any subfolders. To do this, follow the appropriate steps for your operating system.

Windows XP

  • If the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is "C:\Windows\system32\ssmypics.scr," locate the ImageDirectory registry value in the following path:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Screen Saver.Slideshow
    Browse to the folder that is indicated in the registry value, and then delete any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in the subfolders.
  • If the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is "C:\Windows\wlxpgss.scr," locate the FolderPath registry value in the following path:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Photo Gallery\Slideshow\Screensaver
    Browse to the folder that is indicated in the registry value, and then delete any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in the subfolders.

Windows Vista

  • If the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is "C:\Windows\system32\PhotoScreensaver.scr," locate the FolderPath registry value in the following path:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Live\Photo Gallery\Slideshow\Screensaver
    Browse to the folder that is indicated in the registry value, and then delete any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in the subfolders.
  • If the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is "C:\Windows\wlxpgss.scr," locate the FolderPath registry value in the following path:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Photo Gallery\Slideshow\Screensaver
    Browse to the folder that is indicated in the registry value, and then delete any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in the subfolders.

Windows 7

  • If the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is "C:\Windows\wlxpgss.scr," locate the FolderPath registry value in the following path:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Photo Gallery\Slideshow\Screensaver
    Browse to the folder that is indicated in the registry value, and then delete any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in the subfolders.
  • If the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is "C:\Windows\system32\PhotoScreensaver.scr," no action can be taken because the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is encrypted.

After you install the hotfix, you may lose any customized power settings.

More information


How the MATS package works to fix this problem

  1. The MATS package scans your computer and detects if the computer is running Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7.
  2. The MATS package detects whether the SCRNSAVE.EXE registry value is set to one of the following values:
    • C:\Windows\PHOTOSCREENSAVER.SCR
    • C:\Windows\SSMYPICS.SCR
    • C:\Windows\WLXPGSS.SCR
  3. The MATS package deletes any invalid photo shortcuts in the folder and in the subfolder.

    Note

    During this process, a dialog box appears. This dialog box gives you the option to fix the issue automatically (this is the recommended option) or to manually select individual issues to fix.
  4. The MATS package verifies that the invalid photo shortcuts were deleted successfully.

Other issues that the MATS package fixes

930097 Computer is slow when Windows Photo Gallery displays TIFF images that do not fit into one page in Windows Vista
944221 Windows Live Photo Gallery freezes or can't start
939395 An image and its background become yellow in Windows Photo Gallery in Windows Vista