Windows 10 Startup Folder Location, How to Change Startup Programs

Where is the startup folder in Windows 10 or Windows 11? How to add a program to run automatically at startup? This tutorial shows the full guide for Windows 10 Startup folder, including how to fix the Startup folder not working and how to restore deleted Startup folder on Windows 10 with reliable data recovery software.

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Updated on

09 May 2024

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9 Min

The Windows Startup folder is a hidden and important system folder, and any program in the startup folder will automatically start and run when the computer is turned on. You will learn the full guide of the Windows 10 Startup folder, including:

Where Is the Startup Folder in Windows 10

The startup folder keeps shortcuts of programs that needed to run with Windows. You can find and access the Startup folder in Windows 10/11 through the following paths:

The current users' Startup folder location is located at:

  • C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

windows 10 startup folder location

The Startup folder locations for all users is located at:

  • C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

windows 10 startup folder for all users

Find Windows 10 Startup folder in Command

Or, you can access Windows 10 Startup folder in Command. 

Step 1. Press Win+ R keys to open the Run box.

Step 2. Type shell:startup and hit "OK" to open the Current Users Startup folder.

run startup folder

Or type shell:common startup and hit "Enter" to open the All Users Startup folder.

run startup folder for all users

Show Hidden Files on Windows 10 

Note that AppData is a system-protected and hidden folder. To access it, you need to change some settings to show hidden files.  

Step 1. Press Win + E to open Windows File Explorer.

Step 2. In the top toolbar, click "View" tab > "Options".

Step 3. Click the View tab in Folder Options windows, tick "Show hidden files, folders and drives".

Step 4. Uncheck the "Hide protected operating system files" option if it is selected.

Step 5. Then, click "OK" to save all the changes.

show hidden files

How to Change What Programs Run in Startup Folder on Windows 10

How do I change programs that run at the Startup folder Windows 10? You can easily add or remove an app from the Startup folder by taking the steps below.  

Add an App to Run at Startup Folder

Step 1. Find the app you need to start automatically. Right-click it, select "More", and then select "Open file location". This will open the location where the program saves its shortcut. If there is no Open file location option, this means that the application cannot run at startup.

open file location

Step 2. Go to the Startup folder location on your computer or open it using the command above.

Step 3. Copy and paste the application shortcut to the Startup folder. Then, it will start automatically when Windows boots.

Remove Windows 10 Startup Programs in Startup Folder

Step 1. Access the Startup folder in this file path: C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

Step 2. Right-click the program you don't want to open at startup and click "Delete". Then, the app won't start when you boot the computer.

remove app from startup folder

The program shortcut will remain in the Recycle Bin until you empty it.

How to Fix Windows 10 Startup Folder Not Working in 4 Simple Ways

Every time you log into the computer, your favorite program already opens automatically, this will save you a lot of time. What if the program no longer opens automatically? How to fix Windows 10 startup folder not working? Try these methods.

Fix 1. Check Windows Startup in Task Manager

Go to Task Manager to find the application that prevents the Startup folder from loading apps.

Step 1. Pres CTRL + SHIFT + ESC or CTRL + ALT + Delete keys to open Task Manager .

Step 2. Click the "Startup" tab in the Task Manager window.

Step 3. Right-click the program you want to boot automatically and choose "Enable".

enable app to run automatically

Step 4. Restart your PC and check if the program runs automatically.

Fix 2. Copy the App's Shortcut Manually

Step 1. Press Windows + R to open the Run command line.

Step 2. Type shell:startup in the Run box to open the Startup folder.

Step 3. Copy the program's shortcut and paste it into the Startup folder.

Step 4. Restart your PC and check for changes.

Fix 3. Create a Batch File to Force a Program to Start

You can try creating and running the batch file that enables you to run any program at the startup:

Step 1. Open a New text document.

Step 2. In the document, paste the following lines. Change the file path with your own program's location.

@echo off
C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe

Step 3. Click "File > Save As...". Change the TXT's extension to .bat.

Step 4. Double-click the batch file to run it. Next time you start your system, the program will run simultaneously.

Fix 4. Edit Windows 10 Registry

If all the above-given solutions fail to fix Windows 10 startup folder not working issue, then you may finally try to edit your registry.

Step 1. Open the search bar > type regedit in the search bar.  Click "Registry Editor" in the search results.

Step 2. Go to the following path to make changes to the certain registry key:


Step 3. Right-click on the empty space and choose "New > String Value".

set new string value

Step 4. The value name is exactly the same as the name of the program to run.

Step 5. Next, right-click on the newly-created value and choose "Modify".

Step 6. In the Value Data Field, paste the path of the.EXE (executable) for the program you want to run.

Step 7. Finally, save the changes and restart your computer.

How to Restore Startup Folder on Windows 10/11

Some users reported that the Startup folder and programs disappeared on Windows 10 due to uncertain causes. If you run into the same problem and want to restore the lost Startup folder on a Windows computer, try EaseUS data recovery software.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is developed with the most advanced data recovery algorithms that cover all storage media like HDD, SSD, external devices, memory cards, USB drives, and other devices. You can easily use this software to recover permanently deleted files and folders due to accidental deletion, hard drive formatting/corrupting, OS crash, virus attack, etc.

 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
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This tool still enables you to repair corrupted files after data recovery. Document recovery, photo recovery, and video recovery in all file formats are supported. Download this full-round file recovery and repair tool to get back lost folders.

Step 1. Select a folder to scan for lost files

Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard. Double click "Select Folder" to browse the the location where you lost the folder and click "OK" to scan the lost folder. 

select folder to scan

Step 2. Find and preview found files in the lost folder

If you remember the folder name, type the folder name in search box to quickly find the lost files. Then, open the found folder and double-click to preview scanned files. Or you can use the Filter feature to find a certain type of files. 

choose files to recover

Step 3. Recover and save the lost folder 

Last, select the folder and files you need, click "Recover" and choose a new & secure location on your PC or cloud storage like OneDrive, Google Drive, or Dropbox to keep the recovered data. 

Restore lost folder data

Concluding Words

The startup folder on a Windows computer is helpful to manage the startup programs in an easy way. The Windows 10 Startup folder location is: C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup. You can also access the Startup folder with shell:startup command.  

This post also shows you several useful ways to fix the Startup folder not working problem and how to use EaseUS data recovery software to restore deleted or lost Startup folder with simple clicks.

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  • Updated by

    Cedric Grantham is a senior editor and data recovery specialist of EaseUS. He mainly writes articles and how-to tips about data recovery on PC and Mac. He has handled 10,000+ data recovery cases and is good at data recovery of NTFS, FAT (FAT32 and ExFAT) file systems, and RAID structure reorganization. …
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