So I'm used to Linux and work with proper paths all the time. I use windows only for Visual Studio and some games that wouldn't run on wine or mono otherwise. There is this annoying "feature" that makes file paths in the explorer show up for example as This PC/Desktop

instead of C:/Users/<username>/Desktop and hitting the parent folder button will not bring me to my user directory, but instead to this This PC virtual folder, which I guess is nice, but I wouldn't want that unless I go up from C:/ or click it directly. The same is true for Documents, Music, Downloads and other such directories. They all appear under this "This PC" folder and it's really annoying me.

I have already set "Show full path" in the explorer view settings.
This shows the full folder path if it's not a library folder (Desktop, Music, etc) as C:/Users/Username/Desktop/test for example, but in the path bar it is the same old This PC nonsense.

Is there some way to change that behavior?

  • I thought this would work, but it didn't for me... maybe give it a shot and see if it works for you? tenforums.com/tutorials/…
    – Meow_ly
    Jul 7, 2020 at 20:42
  • @Meow_ly I had already set it to display the full path. And I should probably mention that I'm using Windows 10. I'll add it to the tags.
    – FalcoGer
    Jul 7, 2020 at 20:55
  • 1
    Explorer is a namespace browser. It is not a file manager. It merely asks the object to display itself. It has no idea of the contents or even what it is. See my comment here superuser.com/questions/1566062/… for more info.
    – Mark
    Jul 8, 2020 at 0:33
  • @Mark not that it's your fault, but this is ridiculous (if it is your fault add an option or fix this garbage for the next update,thx). Even so, that doesn't answer the question or solve the problem. Even if it is such a ridiculous construction, surely there is some way to arrange the namespaces in such a way that they resemble the directory and file structure, not some arbitrary abstraction nonsense that has little to do with what is on the disks. I understand that "This PC" or search results aren't really folders. But I want My Documents to be the child of my user folder, abstraction or not.
    – FalcoGer
    Jul 8, 2020 at 2:15
  • Microsoft would have done thousands of hours of user testing. Windows is DESIGNED for normal people who have zero idea of most of their folders. Why not use your profile folder. I ONLY use This PC (which I call My Computer) when I'm accessing other drives. I always open Explorer to a profile folder. It works the way you expect.
    – Mark
    Jul 8, 2020 at 3:31

2 Answers 2


Agreed: this is a deficiency in Windows Explorer, but there is a workaround: press Shift while right-clicking a location in either the left or right Explorer pane, and select Copy as path.

If you wish to make that menu item available without holding Shift, you can make a Registry file to change that behavior:

  • Copy the text below to Notepad.
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
@="Copy &as path"
  • Save the file as CpyToPth.reg .
  • Execute it.
  • 1
    There is also a open source 3rd party utility called PathCopyCopy that does this (and some other neat tricks) without having to mess with the registry.
    – Tonny
    Jul 7, 2020 at 21:44
  • 1
    I don't want to copy the path to the clipboard. I want to have the path in the path bar and have the parent directory ('up') button to work that way, too.
    – FalcoGer
    Jul 7, 2020 at 22:02

Rather than battling Explorer's built-in preference for the namespace path, I added a context menu option to open the File system location of the selected item. Save the following as a .reg file, right-click, & merge.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

@="Open FileSystem Location"

@="\"explorer.exe\" /select,\"%1\""

enter image description here

Opens a new Explorer window: enter image description here

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