How to View Hidden Files in Windows 10

Welcome to our article on how to view hidden files in Windows 10! Hidden files are essential components of your operating system, and you may need to access them at some point. Understanding how to view hidden files in Windows 10 is crucial. In this article, we’ll take you through the steps to view hidden files in Windows 10. We’ll also give you some tips and tricks to help you manage your hidden files effectively.

Unlocking Hidden Files in Windows 10

The first step: Open File Explorer

The easiest way to access your hidden files is through Windows File Explorer. Click on the File Explorer icon located on your desktop taskbar at the bottom of your screen.

The second step: Navigate to the Folder Options

When File Explorer opens, click the “View” tab. It reveals many options, but at the end of that list, you’ll find a button labeled “Options.” Robert Clayton will take you to the folder options section that you need to access.

Third Step: Show Hidden Files

In the folder options tab, you’ll find three sections: general, view, and search. You need to click on the “View” tab, and there should be a list of file and folder settings available. Scroll down to locate the “Hidden files and folders” area, and then select “Show hidden files, folders, and drives”.

Fourth Step: Change the Folder View

Changing the folder view option makes it easier to see your hidden files and contents. From the same folder options tab, find the “Hidden files and folders,” then select the “Apply to folders” option, then click “OK.”

Fifth Step: Locate the Hidden Files

Now that you have changed your folder view settings, hidden files are easily visible, and you can access them. Navigate to the directory where the hidden file or folder was located, and they should now appear unobstructed.

Sixth Step: Access Hidden Files in Control Panel

Most of the time, the hidden files that you may require to access on Windows 10 are located in the Control Panels. To view them, click on the “Start” button on your taskbar until you locate the Control Panel. Click on “Control Panel,” and this will take you to a window that contains all types of accessible files.

Seventh Step: Locate Hidden Appdata Folder

Some apps might hide data in the “AppData” folder, but you need to access them to troubleshoot and solve problems. To access them, go to “C: \ Users \ [yourusername] \ AppData\ Local,”, and from there, navigate to the folder you want and view its contents.

Eighth Step: Launch Command Prompt to Access Hidden Files

Command Prompt allows you to view and access hidden files directly through Windows 10. Use the keyboard shortcut “Windows + R” and type “cmd”. This will open up the Command Prompt program. Type “dir / ah” and press Enter. This command allows you to view all the hidden files in the selected directory.

Ninth Step: Use Registry Editor to Access Hidden Files

The Registry Editor is a tool whose primary role is to access system settings on Windows 10, including hidden files and folders. To access it, click on the start button, type “regedit”, and hit enter.

Tenth Step: Check Security Settings to Access Hidden Files

“Hidden” is one of the file attributes that you can access through the Security Settings tab in Windows 10. To check your security settings, right-click on the hidden folder or file, then click on “Properties,” and select the “Security” tab.

Eleventh Step: Create a Shortcut for Hidden Files

Lastly, creating a shortcut to access hidden files saves you time and stress. Right-click on your desktop, and click on “New” and then “Shortcut.” Type “de-mystify hidden files” or anything you like, and you have a shortcut for accessing hidden files.

Tips and Tricks

Tweak Hidden File Settings

You can tweak the hidden file settings by clicking folder options, then change folder and search options. There are other settings you can alter, enabling you to view important hidden files and folders that might cause harm to your system.

Use Third-Party Tools

If you find the process of unlocking hidden files challenging, you can use third-party tools that offer these services. However, ensure to get your software from a trusted source.

Organize Your Hidden Files

Hidden files can clutter your computer and take up space, making it problematic to run your system. Compress them, create a separate folder for them, or delete files that you don’t need.

Refresh Your File Explorer

If you cannot find a hidden file, it would be best to refresh the file explorer.

Use Safe Mode

If you’re struggling to access a specific file/folder, launch Windows 10 in Safe Mode.

Identify Malicious Hidden Files

Some hidden files may be harmful to your computer. Scan your system regularly using reliable antivirus software and identify any potential threats.

Monitor System Changes

Keep an eye on your operating system and monitor changes to your directory folders and files, especially system files.

Resource Monitor

Windows 10 comes with a Resource Monitor that allows you to monitor your computer’s activities, including files, folders, network activity, and more.

Run a Disk Cleanup

Performing a Disk Cleanup can help you remove temporary files and other junk files that might be hidden in your computer.

Safe Removal of Hidden Files

Be cautious when handling hidden files and avoid deleting critical system files unless you know what you’re doing. Conclusion: In this article, we have shown you how to view hidden files in Windows 10, provided you with tips and tricks, and explained why accessing hidden files in your operating system is crucial. Use our steps and tips to improve your understanding of how to view hidden files in Windows 10. With this knowledge, you are one step closer to mastering the use of your Windows 10 OS.

Advantages and Disadvantages of How to View Hidden Files in Windows 10


1. Finding important files: With the help of this feature, important files that may have been deleted or corrupted by viruses can be found.

2. Customization: This feature allows the user to customize their computer and remove unnecessary files or folders.

3. Protection: By viewing hidden files, it is easier to detect malware or spyware that may be hiding on the computer.

4. Increased Knowledge: By being able to view hidden files, users can learn more about how their operating system works and where certain files are located.

5. Troubleshooting: In the event of a problem with the computer, viewing hidden files can help identify the root of the issue and find a solution.


1. Delete Important Files: If the user is not familiar with the files being viewed, they may accidentally delete important files which can cause problems for the system.

2. Virus Risk: Viewing hidden files may increase the risk of viruses and malware if the user is not careful.

3. Confusion: The sheer amount of files that can be viewed can be overwhelming and confusing.

4. Unauthorized Access: Viewing hidden files may make it easier for someone else to access private information on the computer.

5. System Disruption: Viewing certain hidden files may interfere with the normal operation of the computer and cause instability.


1. Why do files in Windows 10 get hidden?

Files in Windows 10 can get hidden for security reasons or as a way to prevent users from altering important system files. Programs can also hide files on your computer to prevent accidental deletion or editing.

2. How can I view hidden files in Windows 10?

You can view hidden files in Windows 10 by opening File Explorer and clicking on the View tab. Then, check the Hidden items box. Hidden files will now be visible in File Explorer.

3. Can I hide files in Windows 10?

Yes, you can hide files in Windows 10 by right-clicking on a file and selecting the Properties option. Then, check the Hidden box next to Attributes and click Apply.

4. Are hidden files dangerous?

Not necessarily. Hidden files are generally just files that have been marked as hidden to prevent accidental deletion or editing. However, some files could potentially be dangerous if they contain malicious code.

5. How do I know if a file is hidden?

A file is hidden in Windows 10 if it has the hidden attribute checked. You can view the file’s properties to check if it is hidden or not.

6. Can I change the attribute of multiple files at once?

Yes, you can change the attribute of multiple files at once. Simply select the files you want to change, right-click on them, select Properties, and then check or uncheck the Hidden box under the Attributes section.

7. How do I unhide a file?

You can unhide a file in Windows 10 by opening its properties and unchecking the Hidden box under the Attributes section. You may need to show hidden files in order to find the file in the first place.

8. Are all system files hidden by default?

No, not all system files are hidden by default. However, Windows 10 does hide some important system files to prevent users from accidentally deleting or modifying them.

9. Can I still access hidden files if I don’t show hidden files?

No, you cannot access hidden files if you do not show hidden files. Hidden files are intentionally hidden from view and cannot be accessed unless you explicitly show them.

10. Can I hide files on a USB drive?

Yes, you can hide files on a USB drive in the same way that you can hide files on your computer. Simply select the files you want to hide, right-click on them, select Properties, and then check the Hidden box under the Attributes section.

11. Can I password protect hidden files?

No, you cannot password protect hidden files in Windows 10. However, you can use third-party encryption software to encrypt your files and protect them with a password.

12. How can I find hidden files from the command prompt?

You can find hidden files from the command prompt by using the dir command with the /a:h switch. This will display all hidden files in the current directory.

13. Can I make files automatically hidden?

Yes, you can make files automatically hidden by changing the default folder options in Windows 10. To do this, open File Explorer, click on the View tab, and then click on Options. Under the View tab, select the Don’t show hidden files, folders, or drives option, and then click Apply. Any new files you create will now be hidden by default.

How to View Hidden Files in Windows 10

Have you ever wondered if there were hidden files on your Windows 10 computer? It’s actually quite common for certain files and folders to be hidden by default, but the good news is that it’s easy to change your settings and reveal them. In this article, we’ll take you through the steps to view hidden files in Windows 10.


Now that you know how to view hidden files in Windows 10, you can easily access those files and folders that were previously out of reach. Remember to be cautious when making changes to your computer’s settings, and always research any unfamiliar files before deleting them. With these tips, you’ll be able to navigate your files and folders with ease.


Thank you for reading this article on how to view hidden files in Windows 10. We hope that this information has been helpful to you. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. And remember, always stay curious and don’t be afraid to explore your computer’s settings and files.