Change default Save location for Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos in Windows 10

Windows 10 lets you easily change the default Save location for Documents, Music, Picture and Video files. The procedure was different in Windows 8.1, Windows 7 and earlier, and now things have changed a bit. It has become easier now. You can now save your personal files like Documents, Music, Picture, and Videos to another drive or partition or even an external drive by default.

We have already seen how to move apps to another location and how to install Windows 10 Apps to another Partition. The procedure for changing the default save location for personal files is similar.

Change default Save location in Windows 10

While you can change the default location of the Documents folder via Documents properties or by editing the registry, Windows 10 makes things easier as you can do so via the Settings app.

Open Start Menu > Settings > System settings.

Next, click on Storage in the left pane.

Scroll down a bit and find Change where new content is saved.

change default save location

Click on it to open the following panel.

Change default Save location in Windows 10

Here you will see New documents will save to setting – and similar settings for Music, Pictures & Videos.

Select the location from the drop-down menu.

Thus you can set different Save locations for different types of files.

If you are suffering from the low space issues after upgrading, you can use this technique to move Documents and other personal folders from the default system drive to another drive.

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Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.

28 Comments

  1. Moulie Costco

    Nice post. The feature falls short, since you can’t change the exact folder location. I would like to change the default account folders to something completely different. Is there a way to do that in Win 10? Thanks

  2. Dave

    On my clean install of W10 the dropdowns have no other option in them?

  3. D Brown

    The latest update of Windows 10 has removed the folder location tab. There does not seem to be anyway to change the folder location on the drive. I had mine set to sync with OneDrive. Now I cannot change this. Seems a step backward to me

  4. Stefan

    This solution sucks, here is the work around:

    Open My Pictures
    Select Camera Roll Folder
    Drag or Cut/Paste this the Camera Roll Folder to desired destination

    All newly taken photos will appear in this folder.

    Mine now uploads straight to Google Drive.

  5. Tim

    OK, but what I want and am unable to set is to a network drive on my server. When I follow the instructions above the only option I have is for the C drive. I don’t want to move the documents or photo’s or music personal folders I want to set this up to look at my ‘Y’ drive (one of my server drives where 90% of what I want to save is).

  6. Roberto Delpiano

    This is crazy.
    As I try to keep files of the same “use” in the old directories where they are coming from, now I have to do long tours to save them in the “right” directory.
    I have to say, to the Win 10 programmers, that I do not work with only one project, but maybe hundreds of little projects, so saving in a common directory is just the most idiotic thing I could ever imagine.
    So far advantages seems to have been more than problems, with win10, but this one is really a pain in the butt.
    And your instructions help a little, but not totally. Thanks for trying, anyway.

  7. TG2

    Anand,

    does this method automatically create a “Users” and sub folders on the destination drive? And will this move existing users folders to that drive? And what if we already have a “Users” folder created (my case it probably doesn’t have the right owner and permissions/security/acl’s)

    Thanks!!

  8. Distilled1

    I just did this having to clean install due the fantastic black screen boot loop, repair loop. Anyway It did not use my Users folder and created another one with my login name- I will just move the files by hand from the old Users /name/photos docs etc. a bit of a hassle but don’t want to fill the SSD up

  9. Scubaray InAlaska

    My issue is a little different, but this seems to be the closest string to it. When I am “saving as” to browse for a folder Windows opens File Explorer, but instead of opening at the top where Quick Access appears, it moves down to OS (C:). As a result I have to scroll up to get to the Quick Access area where 90% of my files can be quickly located. Is there a way to set the view so that it opens at the top of File Explorer where the Quick Access folders are?

  10. Arubaknight

    Ok, so I downloaded images from my camera. Oops, disclaimer, I’m a MAC head just got this acer laptop. So I’m in settings, see three drives where my camera download landed. I open D drive see all the images but a) how do I create a folder in pictures folder to select the images by project, b) I haven’t upgraded my onedrive so it’s full with just one download but my acer has a ton of storage (1/2 tb) so I’d like to keep them there until I figure out how to partition my images by folders within the picture folder. (does that make sense to anyone?) c) please help instruct me from download to saving images in windows 10. I’m dissilusioned by not giving up.

  11. Peter Tanner

    For some reason, I cannot change the Save Location for documents nor photos. They were both set to OneDrive (without me agreeing to thIs) and when I try to switch them back to the C Drive, an Apply button pops up, I press it, and after thinking a few seconds, it reverts back to OneDrive. Any thoughts?

  12. mparniani

    does not work. When I change location to “this PC” and click apply, it reverts back to OneDrive.
    I have no idea how OneDrive was selected as my default picture folder and can not get rid of it.
    Please help

  13. zvkk2p

    Unfortunately for my saved locations each and every one of the drop downs only show ‘This PC.’ The drop downs don’t give me any other options. Can you help with this?

  14. Vince

    Why is it that I can not change my “New Photos and Videos”? It will always go back to OneDrive. Please give a solution. Hope anybody can reply soon. Thanks

  15. Kay Walker

    This doesn’t allow me to find the Folder that Photos are saved into, only the Drive, ie. C:.

  16. Steve Bradford

    In the newest version of windows 10 you need to go to the above but then go under “More storage settings” and click “Change where new content is saved”. In my case I wanted it to go to my optical drive and not my SSD so I change it all to that drive, it created all new folders and then I moved the little bit I had over. As far as Downloads I just changed that in my browser.

  17. John Joyce

    I am trying to change my default saving location from One Drive (since it is full, keeps notifying me and does not allow me to save updated documents that were originally saved on my one drive) to ‘This PC.’ However, every time I try to change this setting, I press ‘Apply,’ and it automatically reverts back to OneDrive. Any ideas?

  18. Acquista Dali

    Ditto, well written but useless article, since does not show how to change what folder to save to as default.

  19. R Lifset

    I too would like to change this. Do you find out how to do so?

  20. Zaur

    I had to also change the shortcut location, click move to option to the new location and finally remove the old locations from file history under backup and add the new locations. The above did not accomplish this although you would think MS have had this automated.

  21. Diane Hill

    nope doesn’t work – while there are several “drop down menus,” none of them actually “drop down” so there is no way to change the default save locations

  22. William 1

    drop down window drops nothing down??????it is inoperable?????greyed out not active???

  23. William 1

    mine will not drop down????

  24. Paul

    Just go to My Pictures click create shortcut and then click and drag the shortcut to where ever you want it to be. You’ll have two folders with the with duplicate photos in each but its much easier to access this way once you place the shortcut where its easiest for you to get to.

  25. Mickey D

    Having the same issue with windows 10. The drop down boxes are all stuck on “This PC” and can not be changed. There are no options to change the “save location” for files. Only “This PC”.

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