With Windows 8.1, Microsoft has introduced a set of folders inside the This PC folder (Windows 8 had the Folders category hidden).
These folders are:
In other words, Microsoft just provided quick access to the main folders inside user profile. This is very convenient, because you have 1-click access to these folders when you open File Explorer using Win+E hotkey.
Besides, not every modern desktop app uses the newer Open File dialog with the navigation pane and Favorites. Many desktop apps still use the older Open dialog, which has Recent places and opens in the Computer/This PC location by default. Folders inside This PC are especially useful for that older dialog.
You may want to customize the folders shown in This PC, e.g. remove some built-in folders and add one or more custom folders. I would like to share an exclusive tutorial which will show how to add custom folders to This PC in Windows 8.1 and Windows 8, or remove any any of those folders.
One of my friends, Gaurav, discovered a hidden secret trick which allows you to add any folder into This PC. While we were happy when we discovered this trick, the method to add folders is not easy for the average user. It requires ActiveX manipulation and some other non-trivial tricks. So, we decided to make it simple and useful for everyone. I made a new version of my freeware, This PC Tweaker, which allows you now:
- to add any folder to the This PC Folder in Windows 8.1 and Windows 8
- to remove any folder from This PC
- to change the icon for any folder in This PC
- to add some shell location like God Mode or Recycle Bin inside the This PC Folder.
Note, you cannot change the icon of special shell locations added to This PC, you can only change the icons of custom folders you add yourselves. I designed this intentionally to prevent you from breaking Control Panel. Believe me, this is required.
Follow these simple instructions below to customize your This PC folder.
How to add a custom folder into This PC in Windows 8.1 and Windows 8
- Download This PC Tweaker. It is a free portable app and does not require to be installed.
- Extract the contents of the zip file you have downloaded and choose the appropriate version for your PC. This PC Tweaker works with Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. Also, there are different versions for 32-bit and 64-bit Windows (see how to determine which version of Windows you are running).
- Run the ThisPCTweaker.exe file. The application's main window will appear on the screen:
- Click the "Add Custom Folder" button. The Select Folder dialog will appear. Click on the folder that you would like to see in This PC. For example, let's add my portable apps collection in there:
- Click the Select Folder button, and the folder you selected will be added to This PC.
- Let's set some fancy icon for the folder we just added. Select it in the list and click the "Change Icon" button.
Choose some nice icon.
- That's it. Close the This PC folder and open it again to see the changes:
- You also can make the folder you added visible in the navigation pane. Select it in This PC Tweaker and tick the "Show in the navigation pane" check box.
The folder will appear in the navigation pane:
- Also, you can add some shell locations to This PC (see the most comprehensive list of shell locations in Windows 8 if you are not familiar with them). There is a special button called "Add Shell Location". Click on it and pick some useful shell location to be added in This PC:
It will be visible in This PC:
As I mentioned above, one limitation is that you cannot change the icon of the shell location. Not a big deal, right?
How to remove folders from This PC in Windows 8.1 and Windows 8
- In This PC Tweaker, select one folder. Hold the CTRL key on the keyboard to select multiple folders.
- Click the Remove Selected button. The selected folders will be removed from This PC:
See the following video if you have any questions:
As you can see, This PC Tweaker is a powerful freeware tool which allows you to easily customize the This PC folder in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. Using this app, you can have only your favorite locations inside that folder and get rid of the rest.