Most Windows users rely on File Explorer (in Windows 10 or 8.1) or Windows Explorer (in Windows 7), to access and organize their files and folders. If you want to personalize how Explorer works, you must first open the Folder Options window, where you can set things like how folder and files are opened. Here are all the ways we know for opening the Folder Options window, in all versions of Windows:
NOTE: This guide covers Windows 10, Windows 7, and Windows 8.1. Some methods work in all three versions of Windows, others just in one or two. For each method, we mention the Windows version in which it works. If you do not know the version of Windows that you have, read this tutorial: What version of Windows do I have installed?
1. Open Folder Options using search (all Windows versions)
One method that works in all versions of Windows involves using search. In Windows 10, use the search field from the taskbar and enter the keywords “folder options.” Then, click or tap “File Explorer Options.” If you like using Cortana, you can say to her: “Open folder options.”
In Windows 7, open the Start Menu and, in its search box, type “folder options” and click on the search result with the same name.
In Windows 8.1, go to the Start screen and search for “folder options.” Then, click or tap the Folder options result.
2. Open Folder Options from the Control Panel (all Windows versions)
Another method that works well is to open the Control Panel, and go to “Appearance and Personalization.” Then, if you are using Windows 10, click or tap “File Explorer Options.”
If you are using Windows 7 or Windows 8.1, click “Folder Options.”
3. Use the View tab in File Explorer to open Folder Options (Windows 10 and Windows 8.1)
4. Use the Organize menu in Windows Explorer, to open Folder Options (Windows 7 only)
In Windows 7, open Windows Explorer and then click Organize in the toolbar on the top. In the menu that opens, choose “Folder and search options.”
The Folder Options window is opened, and you can set how Windows Explorer works.
5. Use the Run window to open Folder Options (all Windows versions)
Press Windows+R to open the Run window. In the Open field, type one of the following commands and press OK:
- control.exe folders
- rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Options_RunDLL 0
Both commands open the same Folder Options window.
6. Use the File menu in File Explorer to open Folder Options (Windows 10 and Windows 8.1)
7. Use the Command Prompt or PowerShell to open Folder Options (all Windows versions)
For those of you who like using the Command Prompt (CMD), start it and then type “control.exe folders” or “rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Options_RunDLL 0” (without the quotation marks) and press Enter.
Others may prefer PowerShell. Open it and type one of the same two commands: “control.exe folders” or “rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Options_RunDLL 0” (without the quotation marks). Do not forget to press Enter, so that your command is executed.
8. Use the Folder Options shortcut that we created for you (all Windows versions)
We have created the most extensive collection of shortcuts for Windows. Download it, extract it and you look for the Folder Options shortcut in the Appearance and Personalization sub-folder for your Windows version.
Which method do you prefer for opening the Folder Options?
Now you know several methods for accessing the Folder Options window, which allows you to personalize how File Explorer works in Windows 10 and Windows 8.1, as well as how Windows Explorer works in Windows 7. Try them out and let us know which one is your favorite. Also, if you know other ways of accessing the Folder Options window, do not hesitate to share them in a comment below. We promise to update this guide based on your feedback.