Sep 21 2008

Use Shell Folders in Vista to Quickly Navagate to System Folders

Remember the last time you needed to access one of your system folders, maybe your Music or Pictures or any other system folder. You had to click Computer then navagate through all that mess of folders untill you found the right one.

Well here’s a way to quickly get to any system folder. Just click the Start Orb > Run. In the Run dialog box type shell:foldername with foldername being the folder you want to view. Example shell:My Music click OK.

Below are some common Vista shell folders.

Multimedia:

shell:My Music
Shows the user Music folder.

shell:CommonMusic
Shows the Public Music folder.

shell:My Pictures
Shows the user Pictures folder.

shell:CommonPictures
Shows the Public Pictures folder.

shell:SamplePictures
Shows the Sample Pictures folder.

shell:SamplePlaylists
Shows the Sample Playlists folder.

shell:Original Images
Shows the folder containing the original versions of images modified by Windows Photo Gallery.

shell:PhotoAlbums
Shows the user Pictures\Slide Shows folder.

shell:My Video
Shows the user Video folder.

shell:CommonVideo
Shows the Public Video folder.

Internet Explorer:

shell:Cache
Shows the Temporary Internet Files folder.

shell:Cookies
Shows the Internet Explorer Cookies folder.

shell:Favorites
Shows the Internet Explorer Favorites folder.

shell:InternetFolder
Shows Internet Explorer.

Applications:

shell:Administrative Tools
Shows shortcuts to the applets in your Control Panel\Administrative Tools folder.

shell:Common Administrative Tools
Shows shortcuts to the Public applets in your Control Panel\Administrative Tools folder.

shell:AddNewProgramsFolder
Shows the Control Panel “Install a program from the network” applet.

shell:ChangeRemoveProgramsFolder
shows the Control Panel “Uninstall or change a program” applet.

shell:ConnectionsFolder
Shows the list of Network Connections.

shell:ControlPanelFolder
Shows Control Panel.

shell:SearchHomeFolder
Shows the Windows Vista Search tool.

System Folders:

shell:AppUpdatesFolder
Shows installed Windows Updates.

shell:Common AppData
Shows the Public Application Data folder.

shell:Common Desktop
Shows the Public Desktop.

shell:Common Documents
Shows the Public Documents folder.

shell:CommonDownloads
Shows the Public Downloads folder.

shell:Common Programs
Shows the Public Start Menu Programs folder.

shell:Common Start Menu
Shows the Public Start Menu folder.

shell:Common Startup
Shows the Public Startup folder.

shell:Common Templates
Shows the Public Templates folder.

shell:Default Gadgets
Shows the default Sidebar Gadgets folder.

shell:Fonts
Shows the Fonts folder.

shell:Games
Shows the Games folder.

shell:MyComputerFolder
Shows the Computer folder.

shell:OEM Links
Shows links provided by your PC manufacturer.

shell:NetworkPlacesFolder
Shows the Network Places folder.

shell:PrintersFolder
Shows the Printers folder.

shell:ProgramFiles
Shows the Program Files folder.

shell:ProgramFilesCommon
Shows the Program Files\Common Files folder

shell:Public
Showss the Public folder.

shell:PublicGameTasks
Shows the Public Game Explorer folder.

shell:ResourceDir
Shows the Windows Resources folder. (where your themes are stored)

shell:RecycleBinFolder
Shows the Recycle Bin.

shell:System
Shows the Windows System folder.

shell:UserProfiles
Shows the folder holding all user profiles.

shell:Windows
Shows the Windows installation folder.

User Folders:

shell:AppData
Shows the user Application Data folder.

shell:CD Burning
Showsthe folder where files are stored before being burned to disc.

shell:Contacts
Shows the user Windows Contacts folder.

shell:CredentialManager
Shows the user Credentials folder.

shell:Cryptokeys
Shows the user encryption keys folder.

shell:Desktop
Shows the user desktop folder.

shell:Downloads
Shows the user downloads folder.

shell:Gadgets
Shows the user folder of downloaded Sidebar Gadgets.

shell:GameTasks
Shows the user Game Explorer folder.

shell:History
Shows the user History folder.

shell:Links
Shows the user Links folder.

shell:Local AppData
Shows the user Application Data folder.

shell:Local AppDataLow
Shows the user Application Data (Low Integrity) folder.

shell:NetHood
Shows the user Network Places folder.

shell:Personal
Shows the user Documents folder.

shell:Playlists
Shows the user \Music\Playlists folder.

shell:PrintHood
Shows the user printer shortcuts folder.

shell:Profile
Shows the user profile folder.

shell:Programs
Shows the user Start Menu Programs folder.

shell:Quick Launch
Shows the Quick Launch folder.

shell:Recent
Shows the user’s Recent Documents folder.

shell:SavedGames
Shows the Saved Games folder.

shell:Searches
Shows the saved searches folder.

shell:SendTo
Shows the user Send To folder.

shell:Start Menu
Shows the user Start Menu folder.

shell:Startup
Shows the user Startup folder.

shell:SystemCertificates
Shows the user certificates folder.

shell:Templates
Shows the user Templates folder.

Congratulations if you made it to the bottom of this long list. At last count there are 90 Shell folders on my computer. to see the complete list open Regedit and navigate to the following key.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\explorer\FolderDescriptions

After you have the shell folder open you can also add a shortcut of it to your desktop by right clicking the icon in the navigation bar and dragging it to your desktop and choosing create a shortcut.

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    3 Comments on this post

    Trackbacks

    1. Fastfreddie1959 said:

      This is 100% Awsome.
      I can’t thank you enough..

      September 23rd, 2008 at 8:08 am
    2. Kevin said:

      @Fastfreddie1959, Thanks for the nice comment.
      Kevin

      September 23rd, 2008 at 7:33 pm
    3. Ostal said:

      A lot of them work on Windows XP as well. (checked on professional version)

      November 23rd, 2012 at 7:05 am

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