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…

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

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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

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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.

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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”

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Lowell is the founder and CEO of How-To Geek. He’s been running the show since creating the site back in 2006. Over the last decade, Lowell has personally written more than 1000 articles which have been viewed by over 250 million people. Prior to starting How-To Geek, Lowell spent 15 years working in IT doing consulting, cybersecurity, database management, and programming work.
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