What does refresh button in windows actually does.

Admit it, you have done it a lot of times. Probably thousands. Hitting refresh button in windows is the first thing you always do whenever you face any problem with your PC. No matter whether your window hangs or just some other issue arises.

You just hit the refresh button and pray things will go fine now. Actually, this is the natural reflex everyone would do. So let’s know today what this refresh button in windows actually does.

In windows, Desktop is a GUI for the end user but when you put yourself in operating system’s shoes, you will find that for your Desktop is nothing but just a folder. Be it be Linux or Windows or any other Operating System, Desktop is just a folder with some additional capabilities. Windows to consider desktop as just a folder as it considers your actual folders folder.

A desktop folder such a type of folder which is auto refreshed by windows itself from time to time. But sometimes it becomes unable to do so due to a variety of reasons. So for a short answer,

Hitting the refresh button is like doing that auto refresh thing for your desktop folder manually.

I know this can be hard to digest, but this is the only function refresh button do. It is more of a legacy feature of windows which is sustained till now just to give the user the power to refresh Desktop manually.

Back during Windows 98 era, this was the common problem in windows of Desktop items not being refreshed regularly or getting struck due to some other process. Hence the feature was introduced.

Sometimes there are chances that you copy a folder to your desktop or you just rearrange some items on the desktop but the changes do not show up. This is the time when you should press refresh button for the refreshing folder so that changes can be considered by Windows.

There is nothing related to RAM or any performance improvements when coming to refresh button. Manually refreshing the desktop or folder may only re-order its contents as, folders first, then files, in an alphabetical order. That’s it. There will be no other solutions that you will be getting by hitting refresh hard and harder. No struck memory will be released, no deadlocks will be recovered. Just nothing!

Conditions in which you should hit refresh:

  • You need to re-align your desktop icons.
  • You find that you cannot use the desktop icons.
  • The desktop does not display the files or folders you just created, moved, deleted, renamed or saved on it.
  • Files that were created to the desktop by some 3rd-party application do not appear.
  • And such similar situations where the contents of the desktop or the folder do not change when expected to.
  • I move a folder from C: drive to E:. The folder in E drive is not shown after moving is complete. -> REFRESH
  • Windows desktop becomes unresponsive.
  • Hardware connected but device list not showing anything. ->REFRESH(If it is not an internal problem. Worth a try)

So from now on whenever you see someone pressing the refresh button in windows to solve big problems on their system, Do slap them with your new knowledge. And if you ever see a technical doing it, Hail mercy!

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