Backup User Folders in Start Menu in Windows 10

Start Menu Big Icon

Windows 10 allows the user to add folders like Documents, Pictures, Videos and other folders from the user profile directly to the Start menu. Having those folders enabled in the Start menu is very useful since you can access them faster. In this article, we will see how to backup the folders you have added to the left side of the Start menu and restore them when needed.

In Windows 10, the Start menu is completely different. It has nothing common with the its previous implementations. It is a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) app which combines the list of installed apps with Live Tiles and shortcuts pinned to the right pane.

Starting with build 14951, Windows 10 allows you to add links to the user folders in the Start menu.

The following folders can be added:

  • Documents
  • Downloads
  • Music
  • Pictures
  • Videos
  • HomeGroup
  • Network
  • Personal Folder

Each mentioned folder can be visible on the left side of the Start menu, under your account picture. Besides folders, you can add or remove Settings and File Explorer. See the article

How To Add User Folders To Start Menu In Windows 10

To backup User Folders in Start Menu in Windows 10, do the following.

    1. Open the Registry Editor app.
    2. Go to the following Registry key.

      See how to go to a Registry key with one click.

      Replace the {GUID} portion with the actual value for your computer. It is different for each computer. In my case, it is 5683873f-8bc1-487c-9acf-02858c0dedf3, so the full folder name is $de${5683873f-8bc1-487c-9acf-02858c0dedf3}$$

    3. Right-click on the Current folder on the left and select Export... from the context menu.
    4. Go to the folder where you want to save the Current key to as a *.REG file, type the file name and hit the Enter key to save it.


Restore User Folders in Start Menu


  1. On the same PC, under the same user account, just double-click on the *.REG file you have created early.
  2. On a different PC, or under the different user account on your PC, right-click the *.REG file and select  Edit from the context menu.
  3. Correct the GUID value as shown below to match the GUID value you have under the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CloudStore\Store\Cache\DefaultAccount\, then save the file.
  4. Double-click on your *.REG file.
  5. To make the changes done by the Registry tweak take effect, you need to sign out and sign in to your user account. Alternatively, you can restart the Explorer shell.

That's it.

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

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