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Can MysticThumbs automatically generate / pre-cache thumbnails on my system?


The simple answer is no - there is no way to do this.


The more long winded version is that there are a good many reasons why there is no facility to perform this kind of operation, although it could be possible to some degree. Let us examine some of the reasons why there is no function to achieve this:

MysticThumbs provides thumbnails for Windows when it requests them and those thumbnails are cached by the *BLACK BOX* Windows thumbnail cache.

The thumbnail cache is managed by the Windows shell, which is for most intents and purposes a black box to the outside world, so whilst asking it to generate thumbnails is possible directly, the user does not know what the cache is going to do with them, which brings us to the next real sticking points:

Windows manages the size of the cache, keeping an MRU (most recently used) type of strategy and dumping older thumbnails when it feels fit to do so.

In order to fully cache a thumbnail, you need to know the size of the thumbnail as the cache actually has a number of different sizes it requests depending on view mode etc. such as medium, large, extra large etc. So potentially you could ask it to generate each file on all sizes but it will blow out the size of the cache, and make it also inefficient, especially given Windows till dump half of it at any random point in time. Also, as already noted, due to Windows internally optimizing the cache, many thumbnails generated in this manner will be dumped. This will really only serve to thrash the hard drive (SSD) potentially causing disk fragmentation and shorter life span of the drive.

There are other potential issues.



If you feel for some reason that you would have liked this feature, perhaps we can address your specific problem(s) as there may be a better solution.


- Are files taking too long to generate? Some file types are much slower than others in generating thumbnails, specifically PDF, and some other postscript file types. This is due to having to use Ghostscript to render them and it’s not especially fast. Perhaps you could disable these file types or try using the embedded thumbnail option if the file type(s) supports it. You can tell if a file format supports embedded thumbnails if you set the control panel apply to mode to either file format or file extension mode, and checking if the embedded thumbnail option is disabled (grayed out).


- Are thumbnails rebuilding every time you open a File Explorer window? If they are - then you need to clear your thumbnail cache. As mentioned, the Windows thumbnail cache is a managed black box and sometimes gets corrupted and a clean is the only way to fix it. If you see files that should already have a thumbnail rebuilding thumbnails each time you open a folder again, then clear the thumbnail cache.


- Are your files particularly large in file size? That obviously can slow down thumbnail performance. Perhaps try setting the file or image dimensions performance options for that file type.


- Do you have small icons enabled? If you don’t need them - disable them (which is default) as they just add extra processing time.


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