How to Configure Windows 10 File Explorer to Open with This PC View

Back in Windows 7 and Windows 8, File Explorer opened by default to the ‘Computer’ or ‘This PC’ view, respectively, giving users an overview of their home folders, local drives, and network locations. This view is still available in Windows 10, but File Explorer now opens by default in the new ‘Quick Access’ view. The Quick Access view is similar to the ‘All My Files’ option in Mac OS,  showing users their frequently accessed folders and documents.

How to Configure Windows 10 File Explorer to Open with This PC View

Some users love this type of interface as it makes it easy to quickly find the most recently accessed files and folders, as well as related data. Other users, particularly longtime Windows users, hate it. Good file management obviates the need for Quick Access’s simplistic display of user data, and power users would prefer to get an overview of their current PC—including information about drive formatting, mounted network shares, and available capacity—instead. Further, the This PC view has unique options in its ribbon toolbar, such as shortcuts to map a network drive and view system properties, making it far more useful than Quick Access for many users.

Thankfully, Microsoft has included an option that lets Windows 10 users choose which view File Explorer will use by default. Here’s how to configure File Explorer to open in the This PC view in Windows 10.

Switching Views

The File Explorer in Windows 10 has a number of views that allow you to view your content in the way you want, but you’ll need to know where to look to switch your views.

Step 1: In Windows 10, open a new File Explorer window and click the View tab from the ribbon toolbar.

Step 2: In the View tab, find and click on Options, listed by default on the far right side of the ribbon.

Step 3: In the Folder Options window, make sure you’re on the General tab and then find the drop-down box labeled Open File Explorer To. Click the drop-down menu and select This PC. Click OK to save your changes and close the window.

There’s no need to log out or reboot your PC. Just open a new File Explorer window and you’ll see that it automatically displays the This PC view by default. The Quick Access view is still there and can be viewed at any time, but users who prefer the more detailed This PC view won’t have to acknowledge Quick Access unless they choose to switch. The File Explorer in Windows 10 is an extremely powerful tool that let’s you change how you use your PC—you’ll just need to know where to look.

29 thoughts on “How to Configure Windows 10 File Explorer to Open with This PC View”

Avatar Bob Calnan says:
I tried this and it worked temporarily. I went through 13 .jpg’s and they all displayed, then went back to the first file and it did not display; now none of these .jpg files display in Preview Pane. Non-jpg files display in other folders. I confirmed that the recommended settings are in place. Any suggestions? Thanks…
Avatar Mike says:
Just did a fresh install and forgot how to change this. I kept looking right over that drop down box. Thanks for keeping this post alive and updated!
Avatar Joe B says:
I know this is old, but thank you! Very helpful.
Avatar Kunj says:
Thank you so much. It works
Avatar S Teps says:
IT WORKED!!! YES! Thank you
Avatar kristine says:
This option still won’t work. Please help…
Avatar George says:
While we are discussing File Explorer defaults, anyone found a way to “SET ALL COLUMN TO FIT” PERMANENTLY without doing it EVERY TIME you to see the entire FILE NAME?
Avatar Jay TJ Bee says:
I suspect but cannot find a registry setting, but WE (pointlessly renamed File Explorer) seems to be a sloppy hodgepodge of several programs purchased by Ms & forced to incorporate Bing & some other obligations. “The faults” thereby incorporated include slipshod sorting, random scope, undocumented view mode sorts, etc.
Avatar Shayne Gardner says:
My Options button is greyed out/not available. Where do I fix that, so that I can fix my File Explorer preview pane?
Avatar Mattie says:
Login as a local administrator (not the Admin or SuperUser accounts, just an account with admin privileges). Check your Control Panel > Users to see who might have it. Pretty sure this can be set as a user policy as well, but I’m no longer certain of the config required.
Avatar Sandee Jacek says:
Printer keeps asking for the property dialogue box saying it can’t communicate with the printer.and to enable the bi directional support,,,,,,,,,any clues ?
Avatar js78749 says:
Keystrokes that can be added to a Macro for opening “This PC” would be:
Shft Tab
T (might need 2 Ts if there is another folder starting with T.
( I use these command for X-Keys along with the proper pauses.)
Avatar m says:
Avatar vc50er says:
Of course clear Privacy boxes.
Avatar Rainer says:
I can’t believe I didn’t figure this out. kek.
Avatar Adrienne Boswell says:
Thank you so much for this. It was driving me crazy. I don’t use the default Windows locations, simply because it is a PITA if you have to create a new user account if and when your user account become corrupt, as mine has, twice. Keeping files in folders not in the Users folder makes them accessible no matter what user, and you don’t have to give yourself permission to view things in the old user account.
Avatar Taha Kazi says:
Many thanks… was getting irritated by quick access
Avatar Graham B says:
Thanks – As a member of the old school I’ve been trying for a year to get a handle on the ‘untidy’/confusing windows 10 default layout. Things are much clear now
Avatar Leonard Osher says:
Thanks ……….
Avatar Nalin Khurb says:
Avatar Brad Smith says:
If ‘Options’ is greyed-out, try File > Folder Options. Screencast tutorial:
Avatar Umer Farooq says:
But how to remove system properties bar (in the right) in Windows 10? 🙁
Avatar Umer Farooq says:
Thank You man! It really helped me.
May Allah bless you. 🙂
Avatar Yan says:
thank you! this was driving me crazy! XD
Avatar KimE Jay says:
Anyone know how to get file explorer to remain open in Windows 10? I open it and then it crashes, same with One Drive. I can only open files from the App (Word or Adobe) but can not search for a file
Avatar cypherstream says:
Is there a group policy or registry tweak I can use to enforce this for all users across the domain?
Avatar davidebravo says:
I was looking for the same answer: using RegShot the related key is HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerAdvancedLaunchTo (value 1 is This PC, value 2 is Quick Access)
Avatar TekRevue says:
Awesome, thanks for tracking that down! And sorry, cypherstream, for missing your initial question. I’ve been struggling with a Disqus issue where half of new comments don’t generate an email alert like they’re supposed to.
Avatar Bob Burwell says:
Thanks very much for that
Avatar Chris in Vic says:
Does anyone know how to get File Explorer to open at drive C: and not “This PC”?
Avatar TekRevue says:
It’s not a perfect solution, but try this: Open File Explorer and right-click on your C: drive in the sidebar. Select Pin to Start. This will create a tile in your Start Menu that, when clicked, will open File Explorer at C:
Avatar Chris in Vic says:
That’s a very good solution. Thank you!
Avatar Hugh Beaumont says:
Cool, daddy-o.
Avatar nmharleyrider says:
Tried it but it did not stick after I closed and reopened explorer
Avatar Chris in Vic says:
After you’ve set the view layout the way you like it, close File Explorer in a special way. From the menu or keyboard select File then do a [Shift]-C to close. I seem to remember this [Shift]-C trick from way back when.
Avatar Michael Wilson says:
Doesn’t work me me either.
Avatar Paul Trott says:
Anyone know how to set List view as the default? Instead of large thumbs?
Avatar Paul Trott says:
Found it.
Set view style for a single folder.
Options > View > Apply to Folders
Avatar mikebeintekzs says:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Disclaimer: Some pages on this site may include an affiliate link. This does not effect our editorial in any way.