It’s dumb that:

  1. Windows 10’s default photo viewing app automatically creates albums for you.
  2. You can’t disable that feature.
  3. Instead, you have to remove the application using PowerShell.
  4. Which means your default photo viewing app becomes something dumb like Paint.


PowerShell command to remove Photos:

Get-AppxPackage *photo* | Remove-AppxPackage

Note: According to some, setting another program (like Paint) as your default photo viewer might disable automatic album generation without removing the app. I didn’t test it, because the only thing I’d use the app for is as a viewer. Not an editor. Just an on-the-fly viewer.

------------ EDIT 1 -------------

It’s possible to restore using the Windows 7 Windows Photo Viewer as the default. The program is still installed in Windows 10, it just doesn’t have its file associations enabled by default. Follow these instructions:

Note: I haven’t tried the above, but TenForums (and its sister, SevenForums) is reputable.

------------ EDIT 2 -------------

I’ve installed the free (for home use) FastStone Image Viewer, set it as as my default photo viewer, and changed one setting. I’m now happy. I can already see this app will make me more productive, and I’ll likely be donating money to it.

Setting I Changed

The default behavior of FastStone is to open a double-clicked image file in full screen mode. I prefer opening in a window because I often need to view the photos while doing something else.

  1. Open FastStone
  2. Settings (F12) > Viewer
  3. Associated image launches in: Windowed View


In full screen mode, moving the mouse to the top, bottom, right or left of the screen reveals a specific menu. For instance, at the top is thumbnails and some command buttons.

FastStone has a lot of features, but here are my needs and how FastStone met them.

Double-click an image and view in window.

  1. Search > Default Programs
  2. For Photo viewer, choose FastStone.


Easily move to next/previous image.

  • In any view, use the arrows to navigate.
  • In windowed view, there are buttons in the tool bar.
  • In any view, bring the mouse toward the screen bottom and arrows will appear/


Quickly get some image properties.

  • In any view, press “I”.
  • In full screen view, move cursor to right side.

View as a slide show.

  • In windowed view, click the Slide Show button image
  • In full screen, move mouse to top, bottom or left and find the Slide Show option in the menu.



Here are 4 Best Image Viewers for Windows 10