The Windows 10 Logo.

If you organize your Windows 10 folders now, you won’t struggle to find your most important files later. You can bookmark your favorite folders in Windows for easy access. Here are a few ways you can do it.

Folder Shortcuts

The easiest method to link to your favorite folders is to create a shortcut. Windows allows you to create a shortcut to any folder in the Windows File Explorer. When you double-click a shortcut, it immediately takes you to the folder location.

After you create a shortcut to your folder, you can place it somewhere more convenient to access later, like the Desktop or a folder that contains other shortcuts.

To create a shortcut, right-click any suitable folder on the Desktop or in Windows File Explorer, and then click “Create Shortcut.”

This creates a shortcut in the same location as your folder, but you can move it manually to another location.

Alternatively, right-click your folder, click “Send To,” and then click “Desktop (Create Shortcut).”

This creates a shortcut that links to your selected folder, and it immediately appears on your Desktop.

Task Bar Jump Lists

Unless you’ve hidden it, the Windows task bar is always present. It offers immediate access to the programs you use most often. If you have Windows File Explorer as a task bar shortcut, you can quickly access your favorite Windows folders with task bar jump lists.

If you don’t know what a jump list is, right-click Windows File Explorer in the task bar; a list of your recently accessed folders appears. For convenience, you can pin your favorite folders to the top of this list.

By default, the Windows File Explorer jump list displays around 12 items, but you can increase that number if you’d like.

RELATED: How to Increase the Number of Jump List Items in Windows 10

To add a folder to this pinned list, drag and drop it onto the Windows File Explorer shortcut on the task bar.

A taskbar jump list in Windows File Explorer.

Your folder now appears as a pinned item in your jump list. If you want to remove it in the future, right-click the Windows File Explorer shortcut, hover over your pinned folder, and then click the unpin icon that appears on the right.

File Explorer Quick Access List

Similar to your task bar jump list, Windows File Explorer has a navigation pane on the left-hand side with a Quick Access list. As the name suggests, you can pin your favorite folders here for quick access.

The Quick Access list also feeds into your File Explorer task bar jump list. When you pin an item to Quick Access, the same folder should appear when you right-click File Explorer in the task bar.

You can add items to the Quick Access list in several ways. Right-click one of your favorite folders, and then click “Pin to Quick Access.”

If you’re in Windows File Explorer, you can also add folders manually to the Quick Access list. To do so, just drag and drop your folder on the “Quick Access” text. This pins your folder, and it’s ready for you to access any time.

Pin Folders to the Start Menu

The Windows 10 Start menu offers more than just a list of your installed programs. You can customize the tile list to the right of your installed programs with shortcuts to apps, settings, and folders.

This makes the Start menu a good place to bookmark some of your favorite folders. Open File Explorer and locate the folders you want to bookmark. Right-click them, and then click “Pin to Start.”

Your pinned folders appear as tiles at the bottom of the list. From here, you can move your folders to more prominent positions or create a tile group to organize them.

To do that, hover below the last list of tiled items. The “Name Group” option should appear; click it, and then type a name for your grouped folder shortcut tiles.

Type a name for your shortcut tiles.

Once you’re done, move your folder shortcuts to that group. You can then rearrange the group that contains your folder shortcut tiles to a more prominent position.

A pinned tile group in the Windows 10 Start menu.

Custom Task Bar Toolbars

Task bar toolbars are an old-school feature available in Windows 10. They allow you to customize the task bar with toolbars that give you access to extra features or shortcuts.

For example, you can create a custom task bar toolbar for easy access to all the files in one of your favorite folders.

To create a custom task bar toolbar, right-click the task bar, head to the “Toolbars” submenu, and then click “New Toolbar.”

In the selection menu, choose one of your favorite folders, and then click “Select Folder.”

A new toolbar appears. Click “>>” next to the toolbar’s name (which should match the name of your chosen folder).

A list of all the files and folders within that folder appears for easy access.

You can take it a step further and create a folder with shortcuts to your other favorite folder locations, and then create a toolbar for that folder, as well. Your shortcuts will then be available in the task bar. Unlike the limited jump list, which lists only 12 items, a custom toolbar can contain far more.

File Explorer Libraries

Microsoft decided to hide the libraries tab from File Explorer, but the feature is still available. To use it, just bring the libraries tab back to your navigation pane.

RELATED: How to Bring Libraries Back on Windows 8.1 and 10's File Explorer

To re-enable access to libraries, right-click in the white space of the File Explorer navigation pane, and then click “Show Libraries.”

Next, click the “Libraries” tab that appears in the navigation pane. From here, right-click the white space within the “Libraries” window, head to the “New” submenu, and then click “Library.”

Give your new library a name, and then double-click it to open it.

Your new library won’t have any folders yet, so click “Include a Folder,” and then select the folder you want to add.

Your library now displays your folders in a list for easy access. To add or remove folders in the future, click “Library Tools” in the File Explorer top menu, and then click “Manage Library.”

From here, you can add or remove folders. When you’re done, click “OK.”

The "Manage Library Locations" menu in Windows File Explorer.

Your new library updates, and you have immediate access to your chosen folders.

Profile Photo for Ben Stockton Ben Stockton
Ben Stockton is a freelance tech writer from the United Kingdom. In a past life, he was a UK college lecturer, training teens and adults. Since leaving the classroom, he's been a tech writer, writing how-to articles and tutorials for MakeUseOf, MakeTechEasier, and He has a degree in History and a postgraduate qualification in Computing.
Read Full Bio »