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Windows 7: Hidden Files and Folders - Show or Hide



Hidden Files and Folders - Show or Hide

How to Show or Hide All Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives in Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8
Published by Brink
07 Nov 2008
Published by

How to Show or Hide All Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives in Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8

information   Information
This tutorial will show you how to have all hidden files, folders, and drives to show or don't show in Windows 7. These are set to be hidden by default in Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8.
Note   Note
When you have these hidden files, folders, and drives set to show, the icon shows as transparent to indicate that they are set as hidden.

EXAMPLE: A Hidden and Normal Folder
Name:  Example.jpg
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Size:  6.6 KB
EXAMPLE: A Hidden Protected Operating System File
Name:  Protected_System_File.jpg
Views: 1838715
Size:  5.4 KB



OPTION ONE
To Hide or Show Hidden Files using Folder Options

NOTE: This option only affects the current user.
1. Open Folder Options.

2. To Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives
NOTE: This will also allow hidden drives to show despite if Hide empty drives in the Computer folder is checked.
A) Select (dot) Show hidden files, folders, and drives. (See screenshot below)
B) Click on the Apply button.
Name:  Folder_Options-1.jpg
Views: 225385
Size:  140.5 KB
3. To Don't Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives
A) Select (dot) Don't Show hidden files, folders, and drives. (See screenshot above)

B) Click on the Apply button.
4. To Show Protected Operating System Files
NOTE: For example, desktop.ini files.
A) If you have not already, do step 2.

B) Uncheck the Hide protected operating system files box. (See screenshot below step 5B)

C) Click/tap on Yes to confirm, and go to step 6 below. (See screenshot below)
Name:  Confirm.jpg
Views: 205000
Size:  69.9 KB
5. To Hide Protected Operating System Files
A) Check the Hide protected operating system files box, and go to step 6 below. (See screenshot below)
Name:  Folder_Options-2.jpg
Views: 216868
Size:  138.8 KB
6. Click/tap on OK. (See screenshot above)



OPTION TWO
To Hide or Show Hidden Files using a BAT File Download

NOTE: This option only affects the current user.
1. To Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives
NOTE: This will also allow hidden drives to show despite if Hide empty drives in the Computer folder is checked.
A) Click on the Download button below to download the file below.
Show_hidden_files_folders_and_drives.bat

download
B) Go to step 5.
2. To Don't Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives
A) Click on the Download button below to download the file below.
Don't_show_hidden_files_folders_and_drives.bat
download
B) Go to step 5.
3. To Show Protected Operating System Files
NOTE: For example, desktop.ini files. This also applies step 1.
A) Click on the Download button below to download the file below.
Show_protected_operating_system_files.bat
download
B) Go to step 5.
4. To Hide Protected Operating System Files
A) Click on the Download button below to download the file below.
Hide_protected_operating_system_files.bat
download
5. Save the .bat file to your desktop, and run it.

6. If prompted, click/tap on Run.
NOTE: If you like, you can stop getting the Run prompt by unblocking the downloaded .bat file.

7. You will now notice a command prompt quckly open and close while applying the changes to your registry.

8. When finished, you can delete the downloaded .bat file(s) if you like.



OPTION THREE
To Hide or Show Hidden Files using Registry Editor
1. Open the Start Menu, then type regedit in the search line and press enter.

2. If prompted by UAC, then click on Yes.

3. In regedit, navigate to the location below. (see screenshot below)
For Current User Only:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced

For All Users: (Must be logged in as an administrator to be able to do this option)
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced
Hidden Files and Folders - Show or Hide-reg1.jpg
4. To Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives
NOTE: This will also allow hidden drives to show despite if Hide empty drives in the Computer folderis checked.
A) In the right pane of Advanced, right click on Hidden and click on Modify. (see screenshot above)

B) Type 1 and click on OK. (see screenshot below)
Name:  Modify-1.jpg
Views: 201817
Size:  18.5 KB
C) Go to step 8.
5. To Don't Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives
A) In the right pane of Advanced, right click on Hidden and click on Modify. (see screenshot below step 3)

B) Type 0 and click on OK. (see screenshot below step 4B)

C) Go to step 8.
6. To Show Protected Operating System Files
NOTE: For example, desktop.ini files.
A) Do step 4.

B) In the right pane of Advanced, right click on ShowSuperHidden and click on Modify. (see screenshot below step 3)

C) Type 1 and click on OK. (see screenshot below step 7B)

D) Go to step 8.
7. To Hide Protected Operating System Files
A) In the right pane of Advanced, right click on ShowSuperHidden and click on Modify. (see screenshot below step 3)

B) Type 0 and click on OK. (see screenshot below )
Name:  Modify-2.jpg
Views: 201459
Size:  18.9 KB
8. Close regedit.

9. Log off and log on, or restart the computer to apply.
That's it,
Shawn




.

11 May 2009   #1
Dinesh

Windows® 8 Pro (64-bit)
 
 

Hi Shawn, i often use this to hide some files from other users on my pc. Is there a way to create a shortcut on the desktop to hide or unhide files or folders?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

11 May 2009   #2
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hello Dinesh,

I have not tested this in Windows 7 yet, but I found this that may work for you.

Keyboard Ninja: Toggle Hidden Files with a Shortcut Key in Windows :: the How-To Geek

Hope this helps,
Shawn
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 May 2009   #3
Dinesh

Windows® 8 Pro (64-bit)
 
 

Hi Shawn, good find but will it work with laptop too?

UPDATE:
great its working. thanks buddy.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 May 2009   #4
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

You're welcome.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Aug 2009   #5
bartman2589

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 w/SP1
 
 
Show Hidden Files being applied systemwide

I usually enable the option to show hidden files on each pc I build for myself, under XP this setting only seems to affect the individual folder for which I choose to apply it to, under Windows 7 however it seems that this setting gets applied systemwide to every folder regardless of which folder you are actually editing the folder view options for, does anyone know how to enable it only for the folders I specifically select it for (using the folder view options doesn't narrow it down, did that and that's how I found out it applies systemwide to all folders INCLUDING MY DESKTOP)? I don't like seeing 2 desktop.ini files showing up on my desktop, I tried to go into windows explorer and select the desktop folder and 'hide hidden files' but then it hides them on all folders on my system (extremely annoying), which completely defeats the purpose of choosing to display hidden files on all of my other folders.

Thanks for any help you can provide,
bartman2589
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Aug 2009   #6
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hello Bartman, and welcome to Seven Forums.

You can leave protected operating system files hidden (Step 5) to not have the desktop.ini files displayed, but leave system files unhidden (Step 2) to see the rest of them.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Aug 2009   #7
bartman2589

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 w/SP1
 
 
RE: Show Hidden Files being applied systemwide

Brink thanks for taking the time to reply, however I was hoping for a solution that would allow me to still have the system files visible (i.e. fix the behavior of the 'show hidden files' option so that it functions on a per folder basis the way it does in XP). I like many others consider myself to be a 'power user' of sorts and sometimes find myself having to modify various system files in order to get the desired behavior out of windows, having the system files hidden is quite annoying in my opinion (as is Windows 7's decision to not allow me to grant myself full permissions on the files in the Windows folder, that part totally pisses me off). Thanks again for taking the time to reply however. I guess I'll have to wait for Micro$haft to hopefully fix this behavior in a service pack (god knows many system admins would probably want it to work the way I want it to).

Thanks,
bartman2589
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Aug 2009   #8
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Sorry Bartman,

This is how is in Vista and Windows 7. It is unlikely to change.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Aug 2009   #9
multibot

windows 7 rtm ultimate build 7600 x86
 
 
share hidden folders

this is a very general tip guys...

u can easily share all ur files n folders with other computers connected in same domain and thats how i hope u all know.



but to share d hidden file or folders just one thing u have do is just rename that file or folder by adding a"$" symbol at last of its original name without any blank space.

for eg:
if d name of a folder is"music", just rename it by"music$".

but the person or d pc with which u r sharing ur hiddenn files must know ur hidden files/folders locations.

this tip is 4 windows xp.
i dont know whether it works upon other operating systems or not.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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