How to List All Hidden Files and Folders in Windows

Forgot where the hidden file or folder is located? Follow these steps to find and list all hidden files and folders in Windows.

Windows has a lot of hidden files and folders. Generally, most system folders and files that don’t require user access or interaction are hidden by default. In addition to that, you can also hide the folders and files of your choice manually. For example, if you have a documents folder that you don’t want other users accidentally modifying, you can hide it in File Explorer. To hide a folder or file, you right-click on it, go to the General tab and select the “Hidden” checkbox.

To unhide a folder, you select the “Hidden items” checkbox in the File Explorer’s “View” tab. As soon as you do that, all the hidden folders and files in the entire system will be visible. This makes it easy to access or open the hidden files and folder.

However, what if you don’t know where the hidden folder or file is? What if you want to know how many and what folders and files are hidden in your computer? After all, going through all the folders to find a single hidden file or folder is a pain in the back. Unfortunately, the File Explorer has no option to see them all in one place.

That being said, you can use a single-line command to list all the hidden files and folders and export them to a text file. It is pretty easy to do. Here is how you can do it.

List hidden files and folders in Windows

To list all the hidden files and folders, follow the below steps.

  1. Open the Start menu.
  2. Search and open “Command Prompt.”
  3. Type “DriveLetter:”.
  4. Replace “DriveLetter” with the actual driver letter where you want to find the hidden files and folders.
  5. Press the “Enter” button.
  6. Type “dir /S /A:H > hidden.txt”.
  7. Press the “Enter” button.
  8. Close the Command Prompt window.
  9. Now, open File Explorer.
  10. Go to the drive you chose earlier.
  11. Open the “hidden.txt” file to see a list of all hidden files and folders.

First, we need to open the Command Prompt window. To do that, open the Start menu, search for “Command Prompt,” and click on the result.

After opening the Command Prompt window, we need to go to the drive where you want to find all the hidden files and folders. To do that, execute the below command while replacing “DriveLetter” with the actual drive letter. For example, I want to find the hidden files in the D drive. So, I typed “D:” as the command.

DriveLetter:

go to the drive

Once you are in the drive, paste the below command in the prompt and press Enter.

dir /S /A:H > hidden.txt

command to list all the hidden files and folders

After executing the command, open the File Explorer and go to the drive you chose earlier. Here, you will find a new file called the “hidden.txt” file. Open it, and you will see a detailed list of all the hidden files and folders in that drive. If you have multiple drives, execute the same command multiple times after changing the drive.

text file with a list of hidden files and folders

That is all. It is that simple to find and create a list of hidden files and folders and export them to a text file.

I hope that helps.

If you are stuck or need some help, comment below, and I will try to help as much as possible.

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