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How to Disable Quick Access in Windows 10 File Explorer

Windows 10 introduces a plethora of new options compared to previous versions. One of which is in File Explorer and called Quick Access. It replaces Favorites from in the File Explorer navigation pane which allows you to access frequently used files and folders.

One thing you might not like is it opens to Quick Access by default anytime you open File Explorer. Here’s a look at how to disable Quick Access if you’re not a fan of it displaying your recent work, and would rather it open to the familiar This PC view instead.

Disable Windows 10 Quick Access

Note that this is being done in the most recent version of Windows 10 build 10130. This process might vary slightly when the final version is released, and if it does, we’ll upgrade the article to reflect any changes.

First, you need to go to folder options by opening the Start menu and type: folder options into the Cortana search box and select File Explorer Options at the top.

Or you can open File Explorer, click the View tab and then Options > Change folder and search options.

Either way you go about it, the Folder Options windows will open. From there change the Open File Explorer to dropdown to This PC and click OK.

Now when you open File Explorer, you’ll see the familiar PC View that you’ve been used to from previous Windows versions.

Registry Method

You can also turn off Quick Access by tweaking the Registry, too. This will give you the same results shown above, opening File Explorer to My PC – which is the easiest way. But some people like to go the Registry route, so we thought we’d include it here. Of course, before doing this, make sure to back up the Registry first or create a Restore Point in case something were to go awry.

Type: regedit in the Cortana search box and hit Enter.

Navigate to: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced.

And in the right pane double-click LaunchTo and change its value data to zero. Now open File Explorer and you’ll see it opens to This PC.

Personally I find Quick Access to be a beneficial feature. It saves a lot of time, not having to dig through a bunch of directories to find what I need. You can also pin folders that you frequent to Start, which is also beneficial.

What is your take on the new Quick Access feature in Windows 10 — love it or hate it? Leave a comment below and let us know your thoughts. Or, as always, you can join more in-depth discussions in the Windows 10 Forums.

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6 Responses to How to Disable Quick Access in Windows 10 File Explorer

  1. David August 10, 2015 at 4:39 pm #

    If it becomes cluttered it can crash file explorer, so keep deleting files you don’t use any more. Big files are a really bad culprit.

  2. Derek August 22, 2015 at 6:11 am #

    I have a problem in file explorer when I’m looking through the files in a folder and I scroll down it will always go back up to the top of the folder. What can I do to fix this?

    Thanks for your help.

  3. NickP August 24, 2016 at 5:22 pm #

    Quick Access breaks and causes explorer to crash if it refers to network files that aren’t there anymore.
    Corporate rollout nightmare when all desktops break after a week.

    This REALLY needs a Group Policy bypass.

  4. JP February 27, 2017 at 8:03 am #

    Same here, I have some people that are completely confused by it and have deleted folders they assumed where duplicates. I personal dislike it and never use it. Also why the hell do we need to access to the same file locations three different ways: Quick Access, This PC and Libraries! Seriously this is user interface overload for most users!

  5. Almond April 25, 2017 at 6:53 am #

    One of the worst defaults in Windows 10 without asking the user before changing it. It took me so long to do something about it. It kept adding elements that I didn’t want on that list even after I removed them repeatedly. – Also, what JP mentioned already, it’s unintuitive to me to see the same location more than once. This could have been programmed much more intelligently, more modular and dynamic. Or just not add this at all, and instead improve the actual file explorer with some of the features why people use alternatives like Total Commander etc.

  6. JLP April 25, 2017 at 7:29 am #

    Concur a TERRIBLE feature and basically worthless. it attempts to abstract the location of where your files are really located causing nothing but confusion amongst our users. Several thought they had duplicate folders and went to delete the one they see in the “favorites”!

    Someone at MS made a poor decision using poor research.

    To boot in 15063 they have removed network browsing. It is fine to restrict the average domain user from this capability but, they should at least allow Admins the ability to set a GP to govern who can use that feature. The one GP (Turn on Mapper I/O) that could have controlled this is now broken no matter what setting that GP has.

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