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Why can't I see all my files?

If you are using Windows 7 PC, files and folders that likely to be used by the system itself are hidden from view by default. Temporary files - whose names often end with and start with $ or . - are also hidden by default.

This makes it easier to find your own files and prevent accidental deletion, but if you do want to show the hidden files:

  • open Windows Explorer and navigate to the folder which contains hidden files you want to see
  • from the Organize drop-down list, choose Folder and search options
  • click the View tab
  • in the hidden files section, click Show hidden files

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This is question number 2433, which appears in the following categories:

Created by David Guest on 12 January 2012 and last updated by Sandy Radford on 14 August 2015