Shell: folder shortcuts

Description Shell: folder shortcut Equivalent System User
Display installed Windows Updates shell:AppUpdatesFolder Control Panel > Programs and Features> Installed updates System folder
Open the user‘s Start Menu\Administrative Tools folder (if any) shell:Administrative Tools %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools
  User folder
Open All Users Start Menu\Administrative Tools folder shell:Common Administrative Tools %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools\
=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools
System Folder
Open the Public Application Data folder shell:Common AppData %ProgramData%
= C:\ProgramData
System folder
Open the user‘s Application Data folder shell:AppData %AppData% = C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\   User folder
Open the user‘s Application Data folder shell:Local AppData %LocalAppData% = C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\   User folder
Apps folder shell:appsFolder      
Open the Temporary Internet Files folder shell:Cache %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\iNetCache\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\iNetCache
Internet Explorer User folder
Open the user‘s certificates folder shell:SystemCertificates %AppData%\Microsoft\System Certificates\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\System Certificates
  User folder
Open the Client Side Cache Offline Files folder, if supported shell:CSCFolder Client Side Cache, if enabled   User folder
Open the folder where files are stored before being burned to disc shell:CD Burning %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Burn\Burn\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Burn\Burn
  User folder
Open the user‘s Windows Contacts folder shell:Contacts %UserProfile%\Contacts\ = C:\Users\<username>\Contacts   User folder
Open the Internet Explorer Cookies folder shell:Cookies %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\iNetCookies\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\iNetCookies
Internet Explorer User folder
Open the user‘s Credentials folder shell:CredentialManager %AppData%\Microsoft\Credentials\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Credentials
User folder User folder
Open the list of Network Connections shell:ConnectionsFolder Control Panel > Network Connections Control Panel
Display the Control Panel shell:ControlPanelFolder Control Panel Control Panel
Open the user‘s encryption keys folder shell:Cryptokeys %AppData%\Microsoft\Crypto\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Crypto
  User folder
Open the user‘s desktop folder shell:Desktop

Desktop merged from %UserProfile%\Desktop + %Public%\Desktop\

Public folder User folder
Open the Public Desktop shell:Common Desktop %Public%\Desktop\
= C:\Users\Public\Desktop
System folder
Opens the user‘s AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Protect folder shell:DpAPIKeys %AppData%\Microsoft\Protect\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Protect
  User folder
Open the Public Documents folder shell:Common Documents %Public%\Documents\
= C:\Users\Public\Documents
System folder
Open the user‘s downloads folder shell:Downloads %UserProfile%\Downloads\ = C:\Users\<username>\Downloads   User folder
Open the Public Downloads folder shell:CommonDownloads %Public%\Downloads\
= C:\Users\Public\Downloads
System folder
Open the Internet Explorer Favorites folder shell:Favorites %UserProfile%\Favorites\
= C:\Users\<username>\Favorites
  User folder
Open the Fonts folder shell:Fonts %SystemRoot%\Fonts
= C:\Windows\Fonts
System folder
Open the user folder of downloaded Sidebar Gadgets shell:Gadgets   Internet Explorer
Open the default Sidebar Gadgets folder shell:Default Gadgets   System folder
Open the Games folder shell:Games   System folder
Open the user‘s Game Explorer folder shell:GameTasks %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\GameExplorer\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\GameExplorer
  User folder
Open the user‘s History folder shell:History %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\History\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\History
  User folder
Open the HomeGroup folder shell:HomeGroupFolder   System folder
Open the HomeGroup folder for the currently logged-on user (if any) shell:HomeGroupCurrentUserFolder   System folder
Launches Internet Explorer Applets and applications shell:InternetFolder   Internet Explorer
Open the hidden ImplicitAppShortcuts folder shell:ImplicitAppShortcuts %AppData%\Microsoft\InternetExplorer\ImplicitAppShortcuts\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\ImplicitAppShortcuts
Internet Explorer User folder
Open the Libraries folder shell:Libraries Libraries Library
Open the Documents library shell:DocumentsLibrary Libraries\Documents Library
Display public libraries, if any shell:PublicLibraries %Public%\Libraries\ = C:\Users\Public\Libraries Library
Display your Music library shell:MusicLibrary Libraries\Music Library
Open the Public Music folder shell:CommonMusic %Public%\Music\ = C:\Users\Public\Music Multimedia
Open the user‘s Music folder shell:My Music %UserProfile%\Music\ = C:\Users\<username>\Music   User folder
Open the Sample Music folder shell:SampleMusic %Public%\Music\Sample Music\ = C:\Users\Public\Music\SampleMusic Multimedia
Open the user‘s Pictures\Slide Shows folder (if present) shell:PhotoAlbums      
Account Pictures Shell:AccountPictures %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Account Pictures\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Account Pictures
Display your Pictures library shell:PicturesLibrary Libraries\Pictures (previously My Pictures)
= C:\Users\<username>\Pictures
Library User folder
Open the Public Pictures folder shell:CommonPictures %Public%\Pictures\ = C:\Users\Public\Pictures Multimedia
Open the Sample Pictures folder shell:SamplePictures %Public%\Pictures\Sample Pictures\ = C:\Users\Public\Pictures\Sample Pictures Multimedia
Open the Windows Photo Gallery Original Images folder, if installed shell:Original Images   Multimedia
Display your Videos library shell:VideosLibrary Libraries\Videos Library
Open the user‘s Links folder shell:Links %UserProfile%\Links\ = C:\Users\<username>\Links   User folder
Open the Computer folder shell:MyComputerFolder "This PC" System folder
Open the user‘s Network Places folder shell:NetHood %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Network Shortcuts\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Network Shortcuts
  User folder
Open the Network Places folder shell:NetworkPlacesFolder "Network" System folder
Display links provided by your PC manufacturer (if any) shell:OEM Links   System folder
Open the user‘s Documents folder shell:Personal %UserProfile%\Documents\ = C:\Users\<username>\Documents   User folder
Open the user‘s printer shortcuts folder shell:PrintHood %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Printer Shortcuts\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Printer Shortcuts
  User folder
Open the user‘s profile folder shell:Profile %UserProfile% = C:\Users\<username>   User folder
Access shortcuts pinned to the Start menu or Taskbar shell:User Pinned %AppData%\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\User Pinned\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\User Pinned
  User folder
Open the user‘s \Music\Playlists folder shell:Playlists      
Open the folder holding all user profiles shell:UserProfiles C:\Users System folder
Open the Printers folder shell:PrintersFolder Control Panel > Printers System folder
Open the user‘s Start Menu Programs folder shell:Programs %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs
  User folder
Open the Public Start Menu Programs folder shell:Common Programs %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\
=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs
System folder
Open the Control Panel "Install a program from the network" applet shell:AddNewProgramsFolder Control Panel > Get Programs from the network Control Panel
Open the Control Panel "Uninstall or change a program" applet shell:ChangeRemoveProgramsFolder Control Panel > Uninstall or change a program Control Panel
Open the Program Files folder shell:ProgramFiles %ProgramFiles%
= C:\Program Files
System folder
Open the Program Files\Common Files folder shell:ProgramFilesCommon %ProgramFiles%\Common Files\
= C:\Program Files\Common Files
System folder
Display 32-bit programs stored on 64-bit Windows,
or the \Program Files folder on 32-bit Windows
shell:ProgramFilesX86 %ProgramFiles(x86)% = C:\ProgramFiles (x86) System folder
Open the Common Files for 32-bit programs stored on 64-bit Windows,
Or the Program Files\Common Files folder on 32-bit Windows
shell:ProgramFilesCommonX86 %ProgramFiles(x86)%\Common Files\
= C:\ProgramFiles (x86)\Common Files
Internet Explorer
Open the Public Game Explorer folder shell:PublicGameTasks %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\GameExplorer\
System folder
Open the Users\Public folder (Shared files) shell:Public %Public% = C:\Users\Public Public folder
Open the Quick Launch folder (disabled by default) shell:Quick Launch %AppData%\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch
  User folder
Open the user‘s Recent Documents folder shell:Recent %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Recent\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Recent
  User folder
Open the Recycle Bin shell:RecycleBinFolder "Recycle Bin" System folder
Open the Windows Resources folder (themes are stored here) shell:ResourceDir %SystemRoot%\Resources\ = C:\Windows\Resources System folder
Display the user's Ringtones folder shell:Ringtones %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Ringtones\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Ringtones
  User folder
Open the Public ringtones folder. shell:CommonRingtones %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Ringtones\
System folder
Open the Saved Games folder shell:SavedGames %UserProfile%\Saved Games\ = C:\Users\<username>\Saved Games   User folder
Open the saved searches folder shell:Searches %UserProfile%\Searches\ = C:\Users\<username>\Searches   User folder
Open the Windows Search tool shell:SearchHomeFolder Windows Explorer Search box System folder
Open the user‘s Send To folder shell:SendTo %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\SendTo\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\SendTo
  User folder
Open the user‘s Start Menu folder shell:Start Menu %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu
  User folder
Open the Public Start Menu folder shell:Common Start Menu %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\
=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu
System folder
Open the user‘s Startup folder shell:Startup %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup
  User folder
Open the Public Startup folder shell:Common Startup %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\
=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup
System folder
Display Sync Centre shell:SyncCenterFolder Control Panel > Sync Centre Windows Sync Centre
Display Sync Centre Conflicts shell:ConflictFolder Control Panel > Sync Conflicts Windows Sync Centre
Display Sync Centre Results shell:SyncResultsFolder Control Panel > Sync Results Windows Sync Centre
Open the Sync Centre Setup options shell:SyncSetupFolder Control Panel > Setup new Sync Partnerships Windows Sync Centre
Open the Windows System folder shell:System %SystemRoot%\System32\ = C:\Windows\System32 System folder
Open the Windows System folder for 32-bit files on 64-bit Windows,
Or \Windows\System32 on 32-bit Windows
shell:Systemx86 %SystemRoot%\SysWOW64\ = C:\Windows\SysWOW64 System folder
Open the user‘s Templates folder shell:Templates %AppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Templates\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Templates
  User folder
Open the Public Templates folder shell:Common Templates %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Templates\
System folder
Display further user tiles shell:Roaming Tiles %LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows\Roaming Tiles\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\RoamingTiles
  User folder
Display your user tiles (the images you can use for your account) shell:UserTiles %UserProfile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\AccountPictures\
= C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\AccountPictures
  User folder
Open the Public user tiles folder shell:PublicUserTiles %ProgramData%\Microsoft\User Account Pictures\
= C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\User Account Pictures\
System folder
Open the user‘s Videos folder shell:My Video %UserProfile%\Videos\ = C:\Users\<username>\Videos   User folder
Open the Public Video folder shell:CommonVideo %Public%\Videos\ = C:\Users\Public\Videos Multimedia
Open the Sample Videos folder shell:SampleVideos %Public%\Videos\Sample Videos\ = C:\Users\Public\Videos\Sample videos Multimedia
Open the Windows installation folder (usually \Windows) shell:Windows %SystemRoot% = C:\Windows System folder

Unless indicated otherwise, all the shortcuts above work in all versions of Windows from Vista upwards.

Shell folder shortcuts can be used directly in the Windows Explorer Address bar:  shell:Desktop

Or in the Start Menu Start | Run | shell:Desktop

Command Line

From the command line shell: shortcuts can be passed to Explorer.exe:
C:\> explorer.exe shell:desktop

You can also pass a variable or string:

C:\> explorer.exe %ProgramFiles%

The START command also accepts shell: shortcuts with spaces but they have to be quoted like so:

C:\> start "" "shell:my music"

C:\> start "" %UserProfile%\Music\

In PowerShell:
Where 'MyVideos' may be any of the constants defined under: [Enum]::GetNames([System.Environment+SpecialFolder])


To create a shortcut to any of the shell folders above: Right click the Desktop > New Shortcut and set the location/target to explorer.exe followed by the shell:option
For example:

  explorer.exe shell:PrintersFolder

Alternatively you can use a variable/string:

  explorer.exe "%ProgramData%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\"

Non admin users will find it difficult to create a Shell: shortcut directly on the Task bar, it can be done but requires creating the shortcut in: %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\User Pinned\TaskBar
It can then be dragged into the taskbar.

Create a 'God mode' shortcut (a full set of Control Panel options) by setting the shortcut target to:

%WinDir%\explorer.exe shell:::{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}

“You go away for a long time and return a different person - you never come all the way back” ~ Paul Theroux

Related commands:

EXPLORER - Open Windows Explorer.
User Shell Folders - Profile, Start Menu - Location of user profile folders.
ms-settings - Shortcuts to settings.
Env. Variables - List of environment variables.
RUN commands Start | Run commands.
Remove sidebar folder shortcuts from “This PC” on Windows 10 -

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