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How to find and open the AppData folder on Windows 10

When an app is installed on Windows 10, it saves files in two different locations; Program Files or Program Files (x86), and the AppData folder. This holds true for most apps but some apps will install only to the AppData folder, while others will install only to Program Files or Program Files (x86), and not to AppData. The AppData folder is unique for each user and it contains app-specific settings for a user. It has three sub-folders; Local, LocalLow, and Roaming.

Open the AppData folder on Windows 10

Opening the AppData folder on Windows 10 is simple. You can open it from a user’s folder however, the AppData folder is hidden by default so even if you’re inside a user’s folder, you won’t see it until you choose to show hidden files.

Show hidden files/folders

Showing hidden files and folders on Windows 10 is easy.

  1. Open File Explorer.
  2. Go to the View tab.
  3. Enable/check the Hidden items folder.

1. Open User folder

Now that you’ve enabled hidden items to show on Windows 10, you can open your user folder, and access the AppData folder.

  1. Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
  2. In the run box, enter a period i.e. . and tap the Enter key.
  3. The user folder will open.
  4. Look for the AppData folder. Its icon will be faded. Double-click to open it.

appdata folder windows 10

2. Direct access

Users can also directly open the AppData folder. It isn’t necessary to go through the user folder.

  1. Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
  2. In the run box, enter %AppData%, and tap the Enter key.
  3. A new File Explorer window will open to the AppData’s Roaming folder.
  4. Click the ‘AppData’ folder in the location bar to go to the main AppData folder.

Deleting folders in AppData

The three main sub-folders in AppData i.e., Local, LocalLow, and Roaming should never be deleted. The folders under these folders can be deleted however, make sure you do not plan on using the app that a certain folder is for. If you’ve uninstalled an app, deleting its folder from AppData is safe.

Conclusion

Accessing AppData is only difficult if you don’t know it’s a hidden folder. Once you unhide it, you can access it fairly easily. You can also pin to Quick Access in the navigation bar in File Explorer, create a desktop shortcut for it, and pin it to the Start menu if you need to access it often. Remember that this folder is created for each user that’s set up on a system and the contents of the folder will differ from user to user.

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