AppData, a folder that is an integral part of Windows 10, stores settings and data for the various applications on your computer. This folder is a crucial part of Windows 10 that maintains the functionality of all installed software.
Finding the AppData folder
AppData is located in the user directory. You must navigate through multiple layers to access the AppData folder. Here’s how:
- You can open the File Explorer by clicking on the folder icon in your taskbar or pressing Windows key + E. Click on the folder icon in the taskbar, or press Windows + E.
- Click “This PC” at the top left.
- Navigate to C: and then click on the folder ‘Users.
- Choose your user profile. Your username is usually your user profile.
- You won’t be able to see the AppData directory at this stage. The folder is hidden by default in order to prevent accidental deletions or modifications.
- Click the “View Tab” at the top of File Explorer.
- Select the “Hidden Items” checkbox under the Show/Hide section.
Now you should see the AppData directory in your user directory.
Structure of the AppData folder
When you open the AppData folder, three subfolders will appear: Local, LocalLow and Roaming.
- Local : This folder contains information that is specific to your PC. This folder contains temporary files as well as other data which does not have to be moved with the user’s profile.
- LocalLow is similar to Local but with even lower privileges. This folder is typically used by applications that require the lowest privileges, such as Internet Explorer in Protected Mode.
- Roaming : This folder contains information that can be moved with the profile of an individual. If you are on a network that has a roaming user profile, then this data can be moved to other machines.
How to use the AppData folder
The AppData folder has a specific purpose. This is not the place to keep documents, photos, or personal files. It’s actually a place to store application settings, temporary data, and other information needed by the software on your computer.
Be careful when manipulating files within the AppData folder. Accidental deletion of or alteration to files in the AppData folder may cause software malfunctions or settings to be lost. Accessing the AppData folder is only recommended when it’s necessary. For example, when troubleshooting or backing up settings for an application, or when following a guide.
Accessing AppData via Run Command
Run is another way to quickly access the AppData directory. Enter “%appdata%” by pressing Windows + R and then entering the command. You will be taken directly to the Roaming directory within AppData. You can navigate one level up in the directory to access the main AppData Folder.
AppData is an important component of Windows’ operating system. The AppData folder is where settings and data for applications are stored. It’s hidden to prevent accidental modifications. However, users may access it if necessary. Be careful when working in the AppData directory. Only make changes you are confident about.