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I've seen so many messages on how to rearrange the Windows Start Menu and none mentioning the real problem in doing so which has been around since XP at least. I go to ProgramData/Microsoft/Windows/Start Menu and have a day making everything the way I want. For one thing, their Maintenance menu, the Accessories menu and the Administrative Tools menu, I like to put under a Tools folder that I've created. And they seem to move OK.

However, within a few hours, I see some of the shortcuts have been moved back or copied back and a new copy of these folders suddenly appears again on my Start Menu at the root. This is maddening and no one seems to even notice in all the tutorials I've read. Anyone know how to change this behavior?

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I don't think you can. Most of these shortcuts are per-machine (for all users). So if you move or remove them, Windows may automatically restore them. Also, you cannot control the shortcuts order. This is a known Windows limitation. – mrnx May 11 '11 at 14:57

This unusual behaviour is happening because these start menu folders (Maintenance, Accessories and the Administrative Tools) are both in your profile start menu folder AND the 'All Users' start menu folder.

To modify the folders like you've indicated you will need to make the changes in both profile folders.


All users: C:\Users\all users\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

Your profile: C:\Users\%UserName%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

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