Windows folders are the containers that your computer uses to keep related files together. They work pretty much like “real world” folders in a filing cabinet.
Computers can store thousands of individual files (pictures, documents, music etc) and keeping everything organised is the job of the folders.
In this guide, we’re looking at how to create a folder, name a folder, rename it and ultimately how to delete a folder when you’ve finished with it.
How To Create & Name A Windows Folder.
You can create (or make) a folder in virtually any location on your computer, but generally, they’ll be inside your user default folders. So we’ll start by creating a folder on the Desktop.
To create a new folder on the Desktop, move your pointer into a bit of “free” space. That is, not touching any of the icons or other files or folders.
Right-click once and a menu will open.
Move your pointer onto the word NEW. A second menu opens. Left-click FOLDER on the second menu.
Or you can use your keyboard to create a new folder.
Press CTRL (Control) and Shift and the letter N all at the same time.
And Windows will create your shiny new folder.
Naming A New Folder.
Every file and folder on your computer has to have a name. And the folder that you’ve just created is no different.
But Windows doesn’t know what you want to name your folder, so the folder receives the temporary name “New Folder”. You can and should give it a “proper” name.
Looking at the newly created folder, you’ll see that the words “New Folder” are highlighted.
Which means you can just start typing. You don’t need to click on the folder, or click in the name box, or even press the delete key on your keyboard.
Simply begin typing the name for your folder and the words “New Folder ” will automatically disappear and be replaced with whatever you’re typing.
Try it out for yourself, you’ll see how it works. Right-click on the desktop – Move pointer onto the word New – Left click the word Folder -Immediately type the name of the folder.
When you’re naming your folders, try to give them descriptive names.
You can name a folder anything provided it makes sense to you.
A quick glance should be good enough to tell you what’s going to be inside the folder.
Create A folder Anywhere.
Windows comes with a set of default folders already set up for you
Documents – Downloads – Music – Pictures – Videos.
Over time you’ll “collect” files. Documents, pictures etc will begin to amass on your computer and if they’re simply dumped haphazardly in your default folders it becomes difficult to find the one your looking for.
So it makes sense to subdivide these folders by creating your own, specific, folders.
To create folders inside your Windows default folders, open the folder. As an example, I’ll open my Pictures.
But you could be in your Documents, Downloads, Music or Video folders.
On the main window, move your pointer onto some free space, not touching any other folders or files.
Right-click once, move your pointer onto the word NEW and then left-click FOLDER on the second menu.
Immediately the New Folder appears, type a name for it.
Sometimes you’ll find that you’ve got so many files and folders that it’s difficult to find a bit of free space.
That’s where the keyboard shortcut comes in.
Press CTRL and SHIFT and the letter N at the same time. Job done.
Create Sub Folders.
Each new folder that you create can also have subfolders inside them. There aren’t any real limits to how many folders you can create, and you can have folders within folders within folders.
It doesn’t really matter what filing system you employ on your computer, so long as it makes sense to you and you can use it effectively.
If you have say, a thousand photos, and you drop them all into your Pictures folder. Then that will work.
Your computer will look after your pictures, it doesn’t matter how many files you put inside a folder.
The problem is when you come to look for a single photo. A particular picture. You’ll have to scroll through up to a thousand pictures looking for just that one (it’s always the last one you look at).
But if you organise your photos into folders and sub folders, then it’s much quicker and easier to find the one you’re looking for.
And although a sub folder could still have lots of pictures inside it, it’ll be far less than the total amount of pictures.
How To Rename A Folder.
We all do it. Sometimes you’ll mistype the name of your folder, or maybe you accidentally clicked and set the name of your folder to “New Folder”, or sometimes you’ll just want to repurpose an existing folder.
Windows makes it very easy to change the names of the folders that you’ve created.
To rename a folder, right-click on it.
The options menu will open.
Left-click on RENAME.
The original name of the folder will become highlighted.
Now you can simply type the new name that you want to give to the folder.
How To Delete A Windows Folder.
Occasionally you’ll want to remove or delete a folder, and Windows makes that easy to do as well. All too easy sometimes.
The thing to be aware of is that when you delete a folder, everything inside that folder will also be deleted.
And I know that sitting here reading this, you’re probably thinking that’s pretty obvious, but you’d be surprised at the number of people I get calling up saying “I’ve deleted a folder and now all my pictures have gone”. It happens.
Windows folders are containers, boxes if you like, for our files, for our pictures, documents, video etc.
If you throw out that container, if you dump that box, then obviously everything that’s been left inside the box will also go.
Before deleting a folder, have a quick check inside it. You never know.
Anyway, to delete a folder, right-click on it.
On the options menu, left-click DELETE.
On previous versions of Windows, whenever you deleted a folder (or a file for that matter), Windows would ask if “you’re sure”.
Giving you the chance to reflect on what you’re about to do.
But since no one ever reflected or reconsidered, opting to simply click YES, that feature has been removed from a standard install of Windows 10.
So clicking delete, deletes the folder. No questions asked. So double check.
Folder Is Too Big For Recycle Bin.
When you delete a folder (or individual files for that matter), it’s not normally properly deleted from your computer. Rather, it’s moved to what’s called the Recycle Bin.
Most of the time that’s what will happen, but occasionally you’ll be deleting a folder that is too large to be stored in the Recycle Bin.
Sometimes the folder will be too big to be moved to the Recycle Bin. Which is when you’ll see a message like this.
It means what it says. The folder will be permanently deleted from your computer and there’s no going back.
Are you sure?
If so, click YES.
How To Undelete A Folder.
Since we’ve just touched on the Recycle Bin, we may as well have a quick look at how to use it.
If you delete a folder (or a file) and then decide you shouldn’t have deleted it, then all is not normally lost.
Deleted files and folders are normally moved into the Recycle Bin from whence they can be restored (recovered).
If you’ve deleted a folder and want to recover it, double left click on the Recycle Bin.
Scroll through the files and folders inside the bin until you find the folder you’re after.
Right-click on the folder and on the menu, left-click RESTORE.
The “Restored” folder will be returned to the place from which it was deleted.
Eg, if you deleted it from your Desktop, then it will be returned to your Desktop. If it was deleted from your Documents folder, then that’s where it will go.
The folder will be restored (recovered) intact. Meaning all the files and sub-folders inside it will also be restored.
Windows Folders – Summary.
If you (like me) store lots of files (pictures, documents, music etc) on your computer, then you really should get to grips with Windows folders.
Organise everything. It takes just a few seconds to create and name a folder. But it’ll save you hours of searching and frustration.
It doesn’t really matter how many folders you have, or how many files you store in those folders. If it makes sense to you, it’s right.
Once you’ve created your folders, don’t forget that you can pin them to Quick Access (which we covered in File Explorer).
Or Pin them to Start, as we looked at in Windows Desktop.
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