I'm running Windows 7 Pro on a Dell Inspiron 1720. I have desktop slideshow enabled and pointed to a folder of my favourite pictures. Occasionally I will force a switch to the next picture from the desktop context menu item "Next desktop background" which appears between the "NVIDIA control panel" and "New" menu items. However, every now and then this menu item disappears and the only way to get it back is to go into the desktop settings (Personalize) and reselect "Desktop Background" and reselect the picture folder. This is very annoying. Does anyone know why this would happen (three times in the last hour)?

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I have no idea because I don't use this at home. I will try to enable it tonight and see what happens. While you wait for that to happen, have you tried searching the Microsoft help site?


I have never had much luck searching the M$ support site. If I do a search on "next desktop background" I get 17000 results which are way too many to search through. If I try "missing next desktop background" I get 342 results and most of them are in no way related to the search terms. Even the ones that are sort of close don't refer to my specific problem.

Try reducing your search to desktop background

"Desktop background" returns 132000 results. My screen is set to 1440x900 32 bit (true colour) and I don't have a screen saver enabled.

Why does the number of results returned bother you if the first few results may be relevant to your problem?

There's nothing that says you have to search through every single one for your answer . . .

Another thought is that menu items sometimes are not presented or 'go missing' depending on the context of what you are doing. What are you normally doing when the menu item disappears?

I'm right clicking on the desktop in order to cycle to the next image. I have a bunch of Irish Setter pictures in a folder and my wife wanted to see the next one. And then the next one, etc. The desktop context menu comes up but is missing the appropriate item.

Ah! OK - thank you for that information. Now that I'm back at my home computer, I can see exactly what you're doing.

Very interesting. I had no idea that a person could do that.

I also believe that I know why no one answered your post for two days.

Let me start by suggesting that you contact the company that sold you your copy of Windows 7. That's really always the best route to go for advice on how to use Windows 7 and minor problems like this that crop up. If it came on your computer, that would be Dell. Here's a page with all of your contact options for Dell:


They most likely have something in their knowledge database that has the answer to your question.

Next, even though it's really simple to choose that menu item, it's not really what it was designed for. And since it's not working for you consistently - you may want to start up Windows Media Player and open the folder that contains all the pictures you want to display. Then it's a simple matter to go to the next picture by clicking the next button (right next to the play/pause button in the center).

I appreciate people who want to participate. And I certainly don't know what the 'rules' or 'norms' are around here - but I thought this was an "IT Discussion Community". To me, personally, the term IT means information technology as plied by engineers or at least technicians.

To ask this question here would be like walking into a room full of architects who are planning the next high rise building and asking why the paint won't stick to the walls of the entry way. That may be why no one answered for two days.

But that's just me. I may be totally off base here.

I hope that this information has been helpful to you and I wish you the best of luck seeking support with the company that sold you your copy of Windows 7

AND . . .

I just now lost my Next background image menu item!

I switched back to my default background that has only a single static image. Because it is the only background image available within that scheme the menu item has gone away.

Changing back to one of the Aero themes restores the Next background image menu item.

Now that we know what causes the menu item to go missing, all we have to do is figure out how the theme is getting changed back to a static, single image theme without your consent.

I hope this helps.

I hope this doesn't come off as argumentative because I appreciate the suggestions but I have to say a few things.

I bought the Windows 7 software at Costco and I really doubt that they can help me with a technical question. I will, however, check with Dell. That was a good suggestion. There was a comment that "Next, even though it's really simple to choose that menu item, it's not really what it was designed for." I cannot imagine that a menu item from the desktop labeled "Next desktop background" could possibly have any other purpose other than the obvious especially since it only appears when the desktop slideshow is enabled.

The same poster also said "but I thought this was an "IT Discussion Community". To me, personally, the term IT means information technology as plied by engineers or at least technicians." I am sorry if I posted this question in error but the forum title is "Windows Vista and Windows 7". Thar certainly sounds like an appropriate place to post this question. I am willing to be convinced otherwise. If Microsoft had an obvious place to post possible bugs I would certainly use it.

That's why I prefaced my comment about with things like "I may be off base here" and other diminutives to indicate that I have no idea if this is the case or not - however I also presented my personal opinion. No big deal - simply observing a reason why your post languished for two days before I picked it up.

The handling of your particular issue (end user support) is one that Microsoft officially delegates to be handled by the retailer. If you purchased from Costco, then they contractually, with Microsoft, must provide end user support for that copy of Windows.

At the Costco.com web site . . .


Near the top of the page, if you hover over the "Computers" button, the last item listed in the drop down is "Free Technical Support".

I would also have presumed that technical support would be unavailable through Costco, but knowing of the requirement by Microsoft that retailers support the end user . . . I thought it would be worth a look-see . . .

and there it is.

Assume nothing.
Be ready for anything.

I hope all of this has helped - thank you!

I appreciate the feedback and suggestions. I had not even thought of trying the Costco web site. I'll have a look. Thanks.

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