The “Shell” Command

4 minute read

Description:

Use these shortcuts to navigate through Windows. You use by typing: Run – (command)

ex: Run – shell:downloads – I have to use this one often to help people find their downloads folder because they don’t know where it is.

Folders from Current User Profile:

shell:Profile – User Profile folder of logged-on user

shell:UsersFilesFolder – Same as shell:profile

shell:Personal – Documents folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:My Music – Music folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:My Pictures – Pictures folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:My Video – Videos folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Contacts – Contacts folder from profile of logged-on user (deprecated)

shell:Desktop – Desktop folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Downloads – Downloads folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Favorites – Internet Explorer Favorites folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Searches – Searches folder from profile of logged-on user; contains saved searches

shell:Links – Links folder from profile of logged-on user; contains shortcuts from Favorites node in Windows Explorer navigation pane

shell:Start Menu – Start Menu folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Startup – Startup folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Programs – Start MenuPrograms folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Quick Launch – Quick Launch folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Recent – Recent folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:SendTo – Send To folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:User Pinned – All shortcuts that have been pinned to the Taskbar and Start Menu by the currently logged-on user

shell:ImplicitAppShortcuts – In User Pinned folder, contains shortcuts to system-managed Start Menu items, including Control Panel, Help and Support, and auto-published applications from Windows Virtual PC

shell:GameTasks – Custom Games Explorer shortcuts for logged-on user

shell:Administrative Tools – Administrative Tools subfolder from Start MenuAll Programs

shell:Ringtones – Ringtones folder stores custom files created by Windows ringtone editor using a compatible phone in Device Stage

shell:Templates – Templates folder from profile of logged-on user (rarely used)

shell:Gadgets – User-installed Windows Gadgets, including those that have been removed from the desktop but are still available

shell:Playlists – Playlists subfolder, in Music folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:PrintHood – User-created printer shortcuts

shell:CD Burning – Burn folder, used to store temp files before burning to disc

Folders from Public User Profile:

shell:Public – Public User Profile folder

shell:Common Desktop – PublicDesktop folder

shell:Common Documents – PublicDocuments folder

shell:CommonDownloads – PublicDownloads folder

shell:CommonMusic – PublicMusic folder

shell:CommonPictures – PublicPictures folder

shell:CommonVideo – PublicVideos folder

shell:SampleMusic – Sample Music folder (by default in PublicMusic folder)

shell:SamplePictures – Sample Pictures folder (by default in PublicPictures folder)

shell:SampleVideos – Sample Videos folder (by default in PublicVideos folder)

Internet Explorer and Security:

shell:Cache – Internet Explorer Cache (aka Temporary Internet Files)

shell:Cookies – Internet Explorer Cookies (open Low subfolder to see cookies for sites with Low Integrity Level)

shell:History – Internet Explorer History

shell:SystemCertificates – Signed copies of digital certificates for system; use Certificate Manager to view details and add or remove certificates

shell:CryptoKeys – Crypto folder, stores machine keys

shell:dpapiKeys – Protect folder, holds user keys for data encryption, including Encrypting File System

shell:CredentialManager – Credentials folder

Virtual Folders:

shell:MyComputerFolder – Opens Computer Folder

shell:RecycleBinFolder – Opens Recycle Bin

shell:Fonts – Settings for installed fonts and font families

shell:Games – Opens Games Explorer

shell:Libraries – Displays contents of Libraries node in Windows Explorer

shell:UsersLibrariesFolder – Same as shell:Libraries

shell:DocumentsLibrary – Opens default Documents library

shell:MusicLibrary – Opens default Music library

shell:PicturesLibrary – Opens default Pictures library

shell:VideosLibrary – Opens default Videos library

Shell:HomeGroupFolder – Displays contents of Homegroup node in Windows Explorer

shell:NetworkPlacesFolder – Displays contents of Network node in Windows Explorer

shell:NetHood – User-created network shortcuts

shell:ConnectionsFolder – Network Connections

shell:PrintersFolder – Printers and Faxes

shell:AppUpdatesFolder – Installed Updates, including those delivered by Windows Update and Microsoft Update

shell:CSCFolder – Offline Files folder

shell:SearchHomeFolder – Opens Search Results window with focus in search box (same as pressing Windows logo key+F)

Control Panel Folders:

shell:ControlPanelFolder – Opens Control Panel and displays All Control Panel Items (icon view)

shell:AddNewProgramsFolder – Install a program from a network location on a managed Windows network

shell:ChangeRemoveProgramsFolder – Programs and Features folder

shell:SyncCenterFolder – Sync Center, used mostly with Offline Files and Windows Mobile Device Center

shell:SyncSetupFolder – Sync CenterSync Setup

shell:SyncResultsFolder – Sync CenterSync Results

shell:ConflictFolder – Sync CenterConflicts

shell:InternetFolder – Opens 32-bit Internet Explorer

System Folders:

shell:Windows – Windows installation folder

shell:System – WindowsSystem32 folder

shell:SystemX86 – On 64-bit Windows systems only, opens WindowsSysWOW64

shell:UserProfiles – Users folder, which contains profiles for all local users and a Public profile

shell:ProgramFiles – Program Files folder

shell:ProgramFilesX86 – On 64-bit Windows systems only, opens Program Files (x86) folder, which stores 32-bit programs

shell:ProgramFilesX64 – On 64-bit Windows systems only, opens Program Files folder

shell:ProgramFilesCommon – Program FilesCommon Files folder

shell:ProgramFilesCommonX86 – On 64-bit Windows systems only, opens Program Files (x86)Common Files folder

shell:ProgramFilesCommonX64 – On 64-bit Windows systems only, opens Program FilesCommon Files

Application Data:

shell:AppData – Roaming Application Data folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:Local AppData – Local Application Data folder from profile of logged-on user

shell:LocalAppDataLow – User Local Application Data (Low Integrity Level) folder from profile of logged-on user

Per-machine Folders: **

shell:Common AppData – ProgramData folder, which holds global settings saved by applications

shell:Common Start Menu – Start Menu folder, containing shortcuts and subfolders for all users

shell:Common Programs – Start Menu Programs for all users

shell:Common Startup – Startup folder for all users

shell:Default Gadgets – Default Windows Gadgets

shell:ResourceDir – Resources folder, which contains Windows themes, including Aero and ease-of-access themes

shell:CommonRingtones – Stores default ringtones for use with Windows ringtone editor using a compatible phone in Device Stage

shell:PublicGameTasks – Custom Games Explorer shortcuts for all users

shell:Common Templates – Templates folder for all users; rarely used

shell:device Metadata Store – DeviceMetadataStore folder, which contains digitally signed files, downloaded from Microsoft, with icons and custom settings for Device Stage items