Restoring the Built-in Windows Libraries

by Barry Dysert
(last updated November 7, 2016)

Libraries are a great feature of Windows. They collect in one place files and folders that may be scattered among several disks and several folders. The libraries don't actually contain the files, so if you delete a library your files are still in place.

By default Windows includes four built-in libraries:

  • Documents
  • Pictures
  • Music
  • Videos

These libraries are maintained by Windows in system files located at the following path. (Replace the username placeholder with the username of the person whose libraries you want to get rid of.)

C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Libraries

It is possible to delete these built-in libraries (how to do so is covered in another Tip). Don't worry though—if you later wish you had your built-in libraries back, just follow these steps:

  1. Open a Windows Explorer window.
  2. Right-click the "Libraries" node in the Navigation pane at the left side of the window. Windows displays a Context menu.
  3. Select the Restore Default Libraries option.

When they are restored, they even still contain the pointers to the files and folders that they had before the library was deleted.

 This tip (12746) applies to Windows 7.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 30 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer.  He is currently a senior software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. ...

MORE FROM BARRY

Checking a Disk Drive for Free Space

Keeping track of your resources can help you avoid serious computer problems. Having an adequate amount of disk space is one ...

Discover More

Performing Complex Calculations Using the Scientific Calculator

The next time you need to perform calculations at your computer, there's no need to fire up a big spreadsheet program or even ...

Discover More

Disabling System Restore

Restore points are good to have in case a problem occurs while trying to make changes to your system. If for some reason you ...

Discover More
More WindowsTips

Getting Rid of a Built-in Windows Library

Most people like the Library feature of Windows, but for those who don't, this tip explains how to get rid of a built-in ...

Discover More

Moving the Pictures Library

The Pictures folder is one of several system libraries created in Windows by default. This library is specifically optimized ...

Discover More

Understanding the Music Folder

The Music folder is one of several system libraries specifically optimized to hold digital music. This tip tells you about ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 9 - 2?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.