Problem Loading Thumb Previews:
This started to happen after upgraded Ubuntu from 12.04 to 12.10.
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This may happen if you get a different UID from the one you had before (this will remove you the ownership of those files). Try executing this on a terminal:
sudo chown -R $USER:$USER ~/.thumbnails
From 12.10 onward, thumbnais are also stored in
~/.cache/thumbnails, so you may repeat the same process for this location.
If none of those solves your issue, you can always remove them (they are automatically generated, and I think failed thumbs generations are cached):
sudo rm -rf ~/.thumbnails/* ~/.cache/thumbnails/*
Note: it's not the case of OP, but if you don't get previews to video files (ex: mkv, mp4) probably you are missing the video codec. This can be easily fixed by open the video with "Movie Player": it will propose a suitable codec.
I had the same issue.
I solved it by moving the .thumbnails folder and setting a symbolic link to .cache/thumbnails instead.
mv ~/.thumbnails ~/thumbnails ln -s ~/.cache/thumbnails ~/.thumbnails
Is it possible that there were some changes?
It looks to me like the thumbnailers create their thumbnails in .cache/thumbnails, while nautilus keeps looking in .thumbnails.
there may be another factor causing this - perhaps you didn't install the right codec as suggested here: http://iwillfolo.blogspot.co.il/2013/10/thumbnail-doesnt-load.html
try installing ubuntu restricted extras. Open a terminmal and type:
sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras -y
Depends on version of glib, the change was in the Gio module starting in the 2.35 series.
The thumbnail cache directory is prefixed with
$XDG_CACHE_DIR/ and the leading dot removed (since
$XDG_CACHE_DIR is normally
$HOME/.cache). The glib ChangeLog indicates the path for large sizes was "fixed" (Added
starting with 2.35.3 so as to match the path for normal sizes, implying some versions using the added prefix, pior to 2.35.3 (I did not find any) are broke. The solution to add the symbolic link would provide a work-around for these broken versions.
In my case it was pretty simple: All I had to do is to change the preference in nautilus, by switching from "show thumbnails: only local files" to "show thumbnails: always" (my JPGs located in my smartphone weren't being shown). I found the issue thanks to Aswn, practically, so thumbs up for him/her.