Windows saves two types of favorite on your computer File Explorer Internet Favorites, used as bookmarks. In Internet Explorer, and links to local folders that appear in the Favorites section when searching your hard drive. You can configure both sets of your choice to make it easier to access commonly available locations, both online and on your computer.

Favorites folder

Microsoft integrates Internet File Explorer into Windows in several ways, including storing your Web browser’s Favorites list in the Favorites folder in your User Account folder. You can find this folder by opening the folder with your username, as well as accessing the My Documents folder. Alternatively, press “Windows-R” and run the command “% userprofile% \ Favourites” to open it directly. Any web links in this folder will appear in IE’s Favorites list, but other browsers will not have a Favorites or Bookmarks list.

Favorites in Internet Explorer

To see your favorites using Internet Explorer, click on the star icon and open the “Favorites” tab. The list matches the contents of your favorite folder. To save the current website to the list, click “Add to Favorites” or click “Control-D”. Links stored in the Favorites bar subfolder appear in the toolbar in IE. Right-click on an empty space near the address bar and select “Favorite Bar” to turn this bar on or off.

Links folder

When you browse through local folders in Windows, the sidebar displays the Favorites section at the top of the folder tree. This list includes common locations such as the desktop. Windows saves this list into the Links folder in your User Account folder. Click “Windows-R” and type “% userprofile% \ Links” in the Run box to open it directly. The places listed in the Links folder are shortcuts, not the original directories, so you can delete them or modify them without affecting your original files.

Adding Favorites Folders and Files

To add a currently open folder to the Favorites list, right-click the “Favorites” header and select “Add a current place to Favorites.” To delete the folder, right-click on it in the Favorites list and select “Delete.” You can sort the items in the list by dragging them. You can also add individual files to your Favorites File Explorer list. Open the Links folder, as well as the file-containing folder in another window. Use the right mouse button to drag the file into the Links folder, then select “Create Shortcut Here.” As with folders, you can later delete files without losing the actual files from your Favorites.

Version Alert

The information in this article applies to Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1, as well as Internet Explorer 11. It may be slightly different or significantly different from other versions or products.

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