[Feature Request] Option to disable auto-generated thumbnails (sports spoilers)


This seems to be the only way to request features from the plex team (I assume they read these?) so here goes…

It would be fantastic to be able to disable episode thumbnails being generated by plex for a particular library. I often use plex for watching sports, and for some reason plex insists on grabbing a frame from NEAR THE END (!!!) of the media file, which seems bizarre, and is a total spoiler fest for pretty much any kind of sport. Plenty of others are complaining about the same thing, e.g:


There is a hacky workaround (manually creating a jpg named the same as the media file and putting it in the same folder) but a simple tickbox on library settings would seem to be a trivial addition to plex and would stop it from spoiling the results. Or, why can’t it pick a frame from near the beginning?

Please don't commandeer "Ctrl-F" to force a Forum Search

Huge +1 for this. I watch most of my sports delayed and I always have to sort of strategically avert my eyes while pulling the file up in Plex so I don't accidentally see a score. I fail at this more often than I'd like to admit. A library level option to disable thumbnails completely would be very welcome.


Me too! So surprised this isn't already possible...


Another that would love this feature!


Yes, or just the option to create the thumbnail early in the file, say 30 seconds in! I'm new to Plex and it is by far the most irritating oversight I've found.


Yes! I would really like this feature too. I hate having games spoiled.


+1 was hoping this already existed!


+1 This has spoiled numerous sporting events for me. I simply don't get why Plex grabs the thumbnail so late in the file. An easy fix would be to grab the thumbnail early in the file or allow you to disable it all together.


Absolutely! Not only with sports. Also with TV series. Just a glance at thumbnails of a whole season gives you massive spoiler frustration ("oh, so this guy somehow had a resurrection" or "whaaaaat? she will be in prison soon??" or ... the examples are - well - endless)

it would be perfect if plex would just use the shows logo instead of the images. plex is already hiding the synopsis.


If you are using PlexHT, OpenPHT or Rasplex, install the Plex Black Edition skin which has a toggle to turn these off.



I would like to be able to specifically select a frame for a whole season of episodes. For instance, I have a set of 24 educational videos that have title screens for only 1 second at the beginning. If I could tell Plex to generate a poster from one of the frames in the 1st second then they all would have the correct titles showing in the poster image.

Similarly, I have a whole set of fitness videos that have title screens at second 6. So, I could have all correct posters for a whole set of videos by being able to specify the screenshot be taken at second 6.

This type of feature would save a ton of time from manually taking your own screenshot from the episode. Moving the jpg to the video folder, and pointing Plex Media Server to use that image as the Poster.

Obviously, PMS is already grabbing a screenshot by some unknown method. Giving the user some control would make a lot of people happy.


As a workaround, I wrote a small PowerShell script to automatically create thumbnail files (same as filename but end with jpg). You can run it as a scheduled task, or as a post-download step (qBittorrent has such a feature). Simply place some thumbnail jpg in a folder of your choosing and update the script below with its path (instead of C:\Thumbnail.jpg):

param (

echo "Iterating path: $path"

$thumbnail = 'C:\Thumbnail.jpg'
echo "Master thumbnail: $thumbnail"

#escape path from brackets, otherwise enumeration will fail if they appear in the path (-Recurse ignores -LiteralPath so that won't do)
$escapedPath = $path.Replace("[","``[").Replace("]","``]")

foreach ($file in (dir $escapedPath -File -Recurse) )
   $filePath = $file.FullName
   echo "Processing file: $filePath"
   if ($file.Extension -in @(".mkv", ".vob", ".avi", ".mov", ".qt", ".wmv", ",webm", ".rm", "rmvb", ".asf", ".ogv", ".mp4", ".m4p", ".m4v", ".mpg", ".mp2", ".mpeg", ".mpe", ".mpv", ".m2v", ".3gp", ".3g2", ".nsv", ".frv", ".f4p", ".flv", ".f4a", ".f4b", ".mxf", ".svi", ".yuv"))
       $fileThumbnailPath = Join-Path $file.DirectoryName ([io.path]::ChangeExtension($file.Name, ".jpg"))
       echo "File ends with video extension, copying over master thumbnail to: '$fileThumbnailPath'..."
       copy $thumbnail $fileThumbnailPath

For Linux/Mac, You can find a similar script written in bash here: https://www.reddit.com/r/PleX/comments/2ku3b6/sports_on_plex_how_can_i_prevent_spoilers_from/cn83iq5


Hi, the script sounds interesting but I have no idea how to implement it? Also will this affect all libraries? I only want to stop thumbnails/backdrops for my sport library.

Many Thanks


Bump - just in hopes of finally getting this feature (which people have been requesting for years) on Plex's radar. Can auto thumbnail and background generation simply be disabled? Another sports season, another year of matches/races spoiled by Plex's image grabber.


yes, I hope so too djjd, just the ability to choose where to grab the thumbnail/backdrop or to disable it completely would make a lot of peoples lives a lot better :-S


+1 million. As someone who watches motorcycle races via plex, I cannot tell you how HEART-BREAKING it is to see the f-ing podium as the video thumbnail!

Please, please, please. This would be such an unbelievably easy fix to just make a toggle for a given section to just show a generic icon instead of a frame grab.


Exactly the same happened to me tonight!!!!! Saw the MotoGP Winners circle as the backdrop!!! Gutted! :((


Wow Plex don't seem interested in this!!!! I loved Plex till it started spoiling numerous sporting events for me...
Plex actually chose a thumbnail of one boxer on his back with people including his opponent stood over him, leaving no doubt who won & how!

It seems a fix would be simple? the people that cap these files are very carefull to use a non spoiling pic, why can't plex use this? or a generic Plex non spoiler thumbnail?

I'm gonna stop using Plex in the future for anything it could potentialy spoil especialy sport. Unless Plex present somekind of fix?


I don't watch sports but this ruins a lot of reality TV for me. I almost always know who's evicted/cast out/etc. before that episode. I often accidentally find out who wins the entire series too. There needs to be an option to flag some shows/series/libraries as being spoiler-prone so the images can be handled differently.


Can we have an update on this from a developer please? just an indication? is it being looked at? will it ever be changed? Anything!

It would be good to know where we stand as paying subscribers as this situation makes watching sport impossible on Plex.

The Backdrops of results/spoilers is very difficult to cast your eyes away from, especially when fast forwarding/rewinding.

Thank you