The most comprehensive list of shell locations in Windows 8

There are lots of shell locations in Windows, that you can access via shell:::{GUID} commands from the "Run" dialog. They are also known as "Shell Folders". With each version of Windows, many new shell locations are added.

What are Shell Folders

Shell folders are ActiveX objects that implement a special virtual folder or a virtual applet. In some cases, they provide access to physical folders on your hard drive or even to special OS functionality like "Minimize all Windows" or the Alt+Tab switcher.

What you can do with Shell Folders

You can use them in various scenarios, but in the general case you can use them to create a shortcut to a specific Control Panel applet or a Windows feature.  For example, the following command will open the "Network Connections" folder:

shell:::{7007ACC7-3202-11D1-AAD2-00805FC1270E}

Network Connections

Note: Press Win+R keys on your keyboard, copy the command above and paste it in the "Run" dialog.

The following command will open Control panel always in "Category" view:

shell:::{26EE0668-A00A-44D7-9371-BEB064C98683}

And the following command will open Control Panel in icon-view, either small or large, that was set by the user the last time he opened it.

shell:::{5399E694-6CE5-4D6C-8FCE-1D8870FDCBA0}

There are lots of interesting things there. You may already know the famous so called God Mode/All Tasks shell location. Another interesting one that I have found is the "Command Folder" that represents Explorer ribbon/toolbar commands:

shell:::{437ff9c0-a07f-4fa0-af80-84b6c6440a16}

The result looks as follows:

CommandFolder

Today I would like to share with you the most comprehensive list of shell locations I have discovered in Windows 8.

You can use them to create shortcuts to access your favorite Windows features directly. Also, you can create a new folder and name it "<Anything>.{GUID}" to access the shell location directly from there instead of creating a shortcut.

Note: You have to use Explorer.exe shell:::{GUID} as the shortcut target to create a shortcut to a specific shell location. In the following example, I will create a shortcut to the Show Desktop  command.

Show Desktop
Show Desktop

Full list of Shell locations in Windows 8

Shell locationCommand
Action Centershell:::{BB64F8A7-BEE7-4E1A-AB8D-7D8273F7FDB6}
Add Network Placeshell:::{D4480A50-BA28-11d1-8E75-00C04FA31A86}
Administrative Toolsshell:::{D20EA4E1-3957-11d2-A40B-0C5020524153}
All Control Panel Itemsshell:::{21EC2020-3AEA-1069-A2DD-08002B30309D}
All Settingsshell:::{F90C627B-7280-45DB-BC26-CCE7BDD620A4}
All Tasksshell:::{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}
Applicationsshell:::{4234d49b-0245-4df3-b780-3893943456e1}
AppSuggestedLocationsshell:::{c57a6066-66a3-4d91-9eb9-41532179f0a5}
AutoPlayshell:::{9C60DE1E-E5FC-40f4-A487-460851A8D915}
Biometric Devicesshell:::{0142e4d0-fb7a-11dc-ba4a-000ffe7ab428}
BitLocker Drive Encryptionshell:::{D9EF8727-CAC2-4e60-809E-86F80A666C91}
Bluetooth Devicesshell:::{28803F59-3A75-4058-995F-4EE5503B023C}
Briefcaseshell:::{85BBD920-42A0-1069-A2E4-08002B30309D}
CLSID_SearchHomeshell:::{9343812e-1c37-4a49-a12e-4b2d810d956b}
Command Foldershell:::{437ff9c0-a07f-4fa0-af80-84b6c6440a16}
Common Places FS Foldershell:::{d34a6ca6-62c2-4c34-8a7c-14709c1ad938}
Computershell:::{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D}
Connect Toshell:::{38A98528-6CBF-4CA9-8DC0-B1E1D10F7B1B}
Control Panelshell:::{26EE0668-A00A-44D7-9371-BEB064C98683}
Control Panelshell:::{5399E694-6CE5-4D6C-8FCE-1D8870FDCBA0}
Credential Managershell:::{1206F5F1-0569-412C-8FEC-3204630DFB70}
Default Programsshell:::{17cd9488-1228-4b2f-88ce-4298e93e0966}
delegate folder that appears in Computershell:::{b155bdf8-02f0-451e-9a26-ae317cfd7779}
Devices and Printersshell:::{A8A91A66-3A7D-4424-8D24-04E180695C7A}
Displayshell:::{C555438B-3C23-4769-A71F-B6D3D9B6053A}
Ease of Access Centershell:::{D555645E-D4F8-4c29-A827-D93C859C4F2A}
Family Safetyshell:::{96AE8D84-A250-4520-95A5-A47A7E3C548B}
Favoritesshell:::{323CA680-C24D-4099-B94D-446DD2D7249E}
File Historyshell:::{F6B6E965-E9B2-444B-9286-10C9152EDBC5}
Folder Optionsshell:::{6DFD7C5C-2451-11d3-A299-00C04F8EF6AF}
Folder Shortcutshell:::{0AFACED1-E828-11D1-9187-B532F1E9575D}
Font settingsshell:::{93412589-74D4-4E4E-AD0E-E0CB621440FD}
Gamesshell:::{ED228FDF-9EA8-4870-83b1-96b02CFE0D52}
Get Programsshell:::{15eae92e-f17a-4431-9f28-805e482dafd4}
Help and Supportshell:::{2559a1f1-21d7-11d4-bdaf-00c04f60b9f0}
Homegroupshell:::{6785BFAC-9D2D-4be5-B7E2-59937E8FB80A}
HomeGroupshell:::{67CA7650-96E6-4FDD-BB43-A8E774F73A57}
Homegroupshell:::{B4FB3F98-C1EA-428d-A78A-D1F5659CBA93}
Installed Updatesshell:::{d450a8a1-9568-45c7-9c0e-b4f9fb4537bd}
Languageshell:::{BF782CC9-5A52-4A17-806C-2A894FFEEAC5}
Librariesshell:::{031E4825-7B94-4dc3-B131-E946B44C8DD5}
Location Settingsshell:::{E9950154-C418-419e-A90A-20C5287AE24B}
Media Serversshell:::{289AF617-1CC3-42A6-926C-E6A863F0E3BA}
My Documentsshell:::{450D8FBA-AD25-11D0-98A8-0800361B1103}
Networkshell:::{208D2C60-3AEA-1069-A2D7-08002B30309D}
Networkshell:::{F02C1A0D-BE21-4350-88B0-7367FC96EF3C}
Network and Sharing Centershell:::{8E908FC9-BECC-40f6-915B-F4CA0E70D03D}
Network Connectionsshell:::{7007ACC7-3202-11D1-AAD2-00805FC1270E}
Network Connectionsshell:::{992CFFA0-F557-101A-88EC-00DD010CCC48}
Notification Area Iconsshell:::{05d7b0f4-2121-4eff-bf6b-ed3f69b894d9}
Offline Files Foldershell:::{AFDB1F70-2A4C-11d2-9039-00C04F8EEB3E}
Performance Information and Toolsshell:::{78F3955E-3B90-4184-BD14-5397C15F1EFC}
Personalizationshell:::{ED834ED6-4B5A-4bfe-8F11-A626DCB6A921}
Portable Devicesshell:::{35786D3C-B075-49b9-88DD-029876E11C01}
Power Optionsshell:::{025A5937-A6BE-4686-A844-36FE4BEC8B6D}
Previous Versions Results Foldershell:::{f8c2ab3b-17bc-41da-9758-339d7dbf2d88}
Printersshell:::{2227A280-3AEA-1069-A2DE-08002B30309D}
Printersshell:::{863aa9fd-42df-457b-8e4d-0de1b8015c60}
printhood delegate foldershell:::{ed50fc29-b964-48a9-afb3-15ebb9b97f36}
Programs and Featuresshell:::{7b81be6a-ce2b-4676-a29e-eb907a5126c5}
Programs Foldershell:::{7be9d83c-a729-4d97-b5a7-1b7313c39e0a}
Programs Folder and Fast Itemsshell:::{865e5e76-ad83-4dca-a109-50dc2113ce9a}
Publicshell:::{4336a54d-038b-4685-ab02-99bb52d3fb8b}
Recent placesshell:::{22877a6d-37a1-461a-91b0-dbda5aaebc99}
Recoveryshell:::{9FE63AFD-59CF-4419-9775-ABCC3849F861}
Recycle Binshell:::{645FF040-5081-101B-9F08-00AA002F954E}
RemoteApp and Desktop Connectionsshell:::{241D7C96-F8BF-4F85-B01F-E2B043341A4B}
Removable Storage Devicesshell:::{a6482830-08eb-41e2-84c1-73920c2badb9}
Results Foldershell:::{2965e715-eb66-4719-b53f-1672673bbefa}
Run...shell:::{2559a1f3-21d7-11d4-bdaf-00c04f60b9f0}
Searchshell:::{04731B67-D933-450a-90E6-4ACD2E9408FE}
Searchshell:::{2559a1f0-21d7-11d4-bdaf-00c04f60b9f0}
Set Program Access and Computer Defaultsshell:::{2559a1f7-21d7-11d4-bdaf-00c04f60b9f0}
Show desktopshell:::{3080F90D-D7AD-11D9-BD98-0000947B0257}
Speech Recognitionshell:::{58E3C745-D971-4081-9034-86E34B30836A}
Storage Spacesshell:::{F942C606-0914-47AB-BE56-1321B8035096}
Switch between windowsshell:::{3080F90E-D7AD-11D9-BD98-0000947B0257}
Sync Centershell:::{9C73F5E5-7AE7-4E32-A8E8-8D23B85255BF}
Sync Setup Foldershell:::{2E9E59C0-B437-4981-A647-9C34B9B90891}
Systemshell:::{BB06C0E4-D293-4f75-8A90-CB05B6477EEE}
Taskbarshell:::{0DF44EAA-FF21-4412-828E-260A8728E7F1}
The Internetshell:::{871C5380-42A0-1069-A2EA-08002B30309D}
Troubleshootingshell:::{C58C4893-3BE0-4B45-ABB5-A63E4B8C8651}
User Accountsshell:::{60632754-c523-4b62-b45c-4172da012619}
User Accountsshell:::{7A9D77BD-5403-11d2-8785-2E0420524153}
User Pinnedshell:::{1f3427c8-5c10-4210-aa03-2ee45287d668}
UsersFilesshell:::{59031a47-3f72-44a7-89c5-5595fe6b30ee}
Windows 7 File Recoveryshell:::{B98A2BEA-7D42-4558-8BD1-832F41BAC6FD}
Windows Defendershell:::{D8559EB9-20C0-410E-BEDA-7ED416AECC2A}
Windows Featuresshell:::{67718415-c450-4f3c-bf8a-b487642dc39b}
Windows Firewallshell:::{4026492F-2F69-46B8-B9BF-5654FC07E423}
Windows Mobility Centershell:::{5ea4f148-308c-46d7-98a9-49041b1dd468}
Windows SideShowshell:::{E95A4861-D57A-4be1-AD0F-35267E261739}
Windows Updateshell:::{36eef7db-88ad-4e81-ad49-0e313f0c35f8}
WWan Shell Foldershell:::{87630419-6216-4ff8-a1f0-143562d16d5c}

6 thoughts on “The most comprehensive list of shell locations in Windows 8

  1. Bob

    Hi,

    Is there a way to restrict/stop the running of these shell commands?

    Regards
    Bob

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      Hi Bob
      There is no way to disable them

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      Reply
  2. endri

    Hi, Sergey.. How can you find this shell?

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      I made a tool for searching.

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      Reply
  3. SwahiliWizz

    Hi Sergey,
    I am running Win8.1.
    First, you hint, but do not propertly name, explain, or clarify the basic difference between creating a shortcut, an a file folder, using a Windows {CLSID} shell command. There is a vital difference in result, and the effects in a Taskbar toolbar of the “Desktop” folder is fundamental.
    Second, on my PC, the file folder-version of “Show Desktop” does not work. It also emits a Windows default dong-sound (?warning) if moused-over in the Desktop-folder toolbar on my Taskbar. The shortcut-version of “Show Desktop, by contrast, does work.
    Why?

    In addition, why does the vital “Recent Items”, or “Recent” shell command name, not have a {CLSID} anywhere I can find, in order to use it directly, like you explain above?

    Curious…

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    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      What is there to explain? Some locations have CLSIDs, some have shell commands. It is in Microsoft’s hands, there is no reason why some don’t have a CLSID and vice versa

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