How can I find all my video files in windows 8.1? I go into the windows 8.1 start screen and start typing "*.avi". It finds a small number of videos on my C drive. Search appears to only look on the system drive. It does not bother to search D or E where the files are actually located. Also, I don't know what file extensions I have on my machine....avi, .mov, .mp4, I can't name all the file extensions that exist for videos.

Ideally, I want:

  1. The ability to exclude directories from the search
  2. Find all videos of all types without specifying each file extension
    • I'm thinking common known file extensions. Not looking at binary data or anything like that.
  3. Search all drives
  • Have you added D and E to the search index? Apr 11, 2014 at 19:44
  • @techie007 - No. I was not aware such a thing existed. Please note I want to search all files in all places on my machine. I don't think that's a good fit for index searches where I specify specific locations. Apr 11, 2014 at 19:45
  • usually indexes are required for 'contents' searches, not simple filename/type. indexing speeds them up, but isn;t required. @P.Brian.Mackey, in Windows Explorer, select the "Computer" node in the treeview on the left, and then put in your search query. it will search all objects under "Computer". as for your type dilema, this may help: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_file_formats#Video Apr 11, 2014 at 19:52
  • I'm not sure I follow -- You add the drives to the index once, they get indexed form there on in, you can search them. As you say, video files could have just about any extension they want, so having something that can recognize all possible "video" types (past, present and future) is practically impossible (IMO). Apr 11, 2014 at 19:53
  • 1
    you can search for multiple extensions by delimiting them with OR them: *.avi OR *.mov OR *.mkv OR ... *.N. theoretically semicolon should work, but having trouble replicating it on win7. more info here: vistax64.com/tutorials/158288-advanced-searches.html?ltr=A Apr 11, 2014 at 20:26

1 Answer 1


Open up File Explorer and make sure your current directory is on This PC. Copy kind:=video in the search bar. This should bring up all the video formats. This should also search your entire PC including all drives, files and folders.

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You can also see which folders are indexed, by click Advanced options > Changed indexed locations.

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  • Sure wish type:video worked as well, since it's the first thing I tried that failed to work. kind:video (and kind:=video) work on Windows 10 as well. Dec 5, 2018 at 6:55

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