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How to Remove Shared Documents Icon from My Computer in Windows XP

Have you ever wondered how to remove “Shared Documents” from your My Computer window in Windows XP? If you don’t use that feature, it seems rather silly to have it wasting space on the screen when all you really want to do is open up your hard drive or flash drive.

We can disable the shared documents icon easily using a registry hack or through TweakUI, the only problem is that it will also remove the regular user documents from the folder as well…

image

Once the setting is applied, you’ll no longer see either document folder:

image

If you are fine with that, then continue reading.

Manual Registry Hack

Open up regedit.exe through the Start Menu Run box, and then browse down to the following path, creating the keys if they don’t exist.

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer

image

On the right-hand side, create a new DWORD value with the following values:

  • Name: NoSharedDocuments
  • Value: 1

You’ll have to logoff and back on for the settings to take effect.

The Easy Method

Instead of bothering with the registry, you can simply use Microsoft’s Tweak UI utility… click on “My Computer” on the left-hand pane, and then uncheck “Files Stored on This Computer” from the right side, and click Apply.

image

That’s pretty much all there is to it.

Note: If you are using XP Professional, you could also use the Group Policy editor… the setting is found under User Configuration \ Administrative Templates \ Windows Components \ Windows Explorer, and it’s called “Remove Shared Documents from My Computer”

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 07/16/08

Comments (10)

  1. Ayo

    i do not have operating system in my pc and if i try to iastall operating system, on the procces it will give an information that no any hard disk is found and pres f3 to guit.
    please i do not have an operating system yet install in my pc and will like to install it now but know way because of the above information.
    thank you

  2. fast

    Richard,
    I have more than one admin user acct on my Windows machine and ran into a situation where apps I installed as one administrator only affected that particular account. Then, when using another user acct, an app I knew I had installed would not be available. My solution has been to use the shared docs folder.
    Am I going about this wrong and should be using another method I don’t know about?

  3. jd2066

    @Ayo: See the article at http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows/resolving-setup-did-not-find-any-hard-disk-drives-during-windows-xp-installation/
    If you need any more help you can post to the forums.

  4. thomas

    i’m having priblem with burning it’s already in my computer. real player favrorate and library all tv programs i down loaded from computer.do i need a hardware? chip? or am i be able to get it from my computer vaio xp?

  5. PJ

    PLEASE, PLEASE help! I have Win XP and had a user profile and admin. My “My Documents” icon has disappeared from the My Computer window in the user profile only- removing and restoring the user profile does NOT work- I had found a registry hack to correct this at one point and can’t find again… please help! Thanks!!!!!

  6. N. Hahn

    Please help
    I would like to remoce this program “Shared Documents”I don not understand this explanation. How TO remove it.
    I wish not to lose any of my files. Please help me.
    ThANK YOU SO MUCH.

  7. cleanheart

    I’ve remove the shared doumnets from my computer list
    BUT now I want to HAVE it BACK

    how???

    thanking you in advance

  8. rosanne m bennett

    I am also figment_wolf the writer. The student , the mother , the grand mother , please remember this could happen to you.

  9. rosanne m bennett

    Thank you for every thing. I will try it .

  10. siavash

    suddenly, “My Documents” Icon was missing from “My Computer” page!! after some struggles, here is the Solution:
    right click on My Document’s folder on desktop
    Press Move
    Select a new place
    answer the question with YES!
    then transfer back your My Documents folder to where it was!!!

    Good Luck
    VASHI

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