SOLVED: How to Move PUBLIC Folder In Windows 10

If you need to add more space to your computer, one way to do this is to add a second disk.  The problem then move-public-folder-win10becomes what should you move to that disk.  In home theaters and other PC’s with lots of shared storage it is common practice to move the PUBLIC folders.  However, this is not as easy as moving other profile folders, but it is not that difficult.

HOW TO MOVE PUBLIC FOLDERS:

  1. COPY (don’t MOVE) the C:\USERS\PUBLIC folder to a different disk or partition
  2. Click the START button and type REGEDIT (not case sensitive) and press enter
  3. Expand HKLM > SOFTWARE > MICROSOFT > WINDOWS NT > CURRENT VERSION > PROFILE LIST
  4. Double click on PUBLIC
  5. Correct the path
  6. Reboot the PC
  7. Go to C:\USERS\PUBLIC and delete everything

CLEAN UP:

The remaining clean up is optional:

  1. Go to c:\USERS
  2. Right click on PUBLIC and select SECURITY
  3. Click ADVANCED
  4. Click CHANGE on OWNER and set it to you (rather than system)
  5. Then delete C:\USERS\PUBLIC
  6. Go to your new PUBLIC folder (in the video below this is E:\PUBLIC)
  7. Right click on PUBLIC and select the SHARING TAB then the ADVANCED SHARING button
  8. Click SHARE THIS FOLDER (it should show PUBLIC,  if it shows PUBLIC2, then your original C:\USERS\PUBLIC is still being shared and you should remove it)
  9. Click PERMISSIONS and set EVERYONE FULL CONTROL then OK
  10. Click the SECURITY tab and click EDIT and set whatever security you want (in my case, I used EVERYONE FULL CONTROL) and click OK
  11. From a DIFFERENT computer on the network launch FILE EXPLORER then NETWORK and try to find your new share OR from FILE EXPLORER, type \\<hostname>\public (i.e. \\theater4\public) and make sure it comes up

Enjoy

Comments

  1. Avatar
    Eric December 16, 2019 at 2:56 am

    Thanks Bill for the link command. I did it too because I found out some of my softwares got the public documents path during install, put their files there, but keep using the original value instead of looking for the current one at each starts.

  2. Avatar
    Tina Watkins July 23, 2019 at 11:09 am

    Nice, but I don’t have a HKLM option in regedit, they’re all HKEY

    • Avatar
      infiniteflightcommunity October 2, 2019 at 1:30 am

      HKLM is an acronym for HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

      • Ian Matthews
        Ian Matthews October 2, 2019 at 11:34 pm

        Hi Kevin, Yes it is and HKCU is HKEY_CURRENT_USER

  3. Avatar
    Thank you! March 16, 2018 at 1:15 pm

    Thank you for this. I followed your instructions and then added a tweak of my own. After deleting C:\USERS\PUBLIC i created a junction (mklink /J C:\USERS\PUBLIC mynewpublic) from C: to mynewlocation. Then i change the registry entry back

    I don’t know if it was worth it but it has the advantage of PUBLIC still showing up in the C:\USERS directory which i like.

    Bill L

Questions or Comments?