Pinch or stretch gesture scales desktop icons smaller or larger

Applies to: Windows 8.1Windows 8.1 ProWindows 8.1 Enterprise


Consider the following scenario:

  • You have a Windows 8.1 PC that has a precision touchpad.
  • You are at the desktop.
  • You have several icons on the desktop. 
  • You take one of the following actions:
    • You open a File Explorer window and then minimize the window to return to the desktop.
    • You change the theme from the default Windows theme to another theme and then return to the desktop.
  • You use the pinch or stretch gesture on the precision touchpad while you are on the desktop.

In this scenario, the desktop icons are scaled smaller or larger.


On Windows 8.1 PCs with precision touchpads, using the pinch or stretch gesture on the desktop ordinarily has no effect. However, when the desktop is accessed in the scenario that is described in the "Symptoms" section, the gesture is interpreted as a zoom command. 

Be aware that the desktop can also zoom on non-precision touchpad systems. For example, on a system that has a mouse and keyboard, the desktop will also zoom when you hold the Ctrl key and scroll with the mouse wheel. 


To resize the icons, use the pinch or stretch gesture again.

More Information

For more information about precision touchpads, go to the following Microsoft website: