Windows Live Photo Gallery (included with Windows Live Essentials) is a nice program to organize, touchup, and view your digital photos. When Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 was released, people noticed a change in how Photo Gallery displays slideshows. Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 uses a different type of slideshow viewer to display your pictures, and for some, is quite brothering. First off, the pictures don’t fill the entire screen. Even if you are viewing a full screen picture on a widescreen monitor, there are black bars on the top and bottom of the screen. Second, the slideshow always starts off with the “pan and zoom” theme, which becomes quite annoying because if you change the theme, exit the slideshow and run it again, it defaults back to pan and zoom.

After playing around with the Windows Registry, I discovered how to revert back to the old slideshow interface used in previous versions of Windows Live Photo Gallery. The same slideshow interface is also used with the non-Live Photo Gallery’s included with Windows Vista and 7. Reverting back allows better operation of the slideshow interface and gives you a better selection of themes.

Warning: The following involves modifying the Windows registry. Incorrect modifications can prevent Windows from working.

  1. Click Start
  2. In the Start Menu search box, type regedit and hit enter
  3. If the User Account Control dialog appears, click Continue
  4. Navigate to the following folder: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Live\Photo Gallery
  5. On the right side, double click on AutoMoviePlayerSlideshow
  6. In the Base section, change the setting from Hexadecimal to Decimal
  7. Change the Value Data from 1 to 0
  8. Click OK and close the Registry Editor

Open Windows Live Photo Gallery and run a slideshow. The slideshow interface should now be similar to previous versions of Windows Live Photo Gallery and Windows Photo Gallery.

To undo the changes and switch back to Photo Gallery’s 2011 slideshow viewer, repeat the previous steps, but change the Value Data from 0 back to 1.