Introduction: Hidden Windows XP and Vista Folders "How to Hide Files and Folders"

About: So what ideas would you like to try?

Many locked, private or hidden folders in Windows XP can simply be browsed or 'unlocked' and 'unhidden' by the same switches in Windows Explorer you'd used to enable the same features.

But what if I make it "invisible' or "transparent" then even if found it looks just like the background!

Try this trick on most any OS. Note this is not foolproof but along with locked, hidden and passworded/encrypted folders is very helpful and very safe from command line browsing as the directory/folder names are not "typeable" with any US keyboards...

Vista works similarly but seems to leave behind a "ghost" image?...hum...?


On the note of security don't collaborate with people you don't know about, ok? I can remove this from the face of the internet but it won't do me much good. ~llama13

'Security sux that's the point. Dude collaborate...not deface...add some value and post some results or do some test. YOU JOINED the GROUP so you get to see what I contributed to the site ...noobs... what did you post? 'ERCK

Step 1: Overview - OS Versions & Variations

Variations I've found-

Windows XP - no Media or Language support - Use ASCII codes in the name field with "num lk" keypad then 'alt'+0160 in the Name field from the Properties tab "New Folder".

Windows Media Center - varies see above or below

Windows Language support - use "right click" and insert Unicode in the 'New Folder' clear text from name field under the Properties tab.

Vista - has similar variations between ASCII, UniCodes and language options that vary by install and country of origin.

see on for examples, screen shots & limitations.

Step 2: Properties - Edit Name and Icon

Edit properties (New Folder) now has a name like

from an ASCII code - <num lk>, <alt>+0160 *

  • must use numeric keypad & NOT the Number keys above qwerty!

from Unicode - Insert any non-printing character

Now let's hide the Icon!

Step 3: Appearance & Visualization

Some ways they/you can list your newly Gone files...

...hum...perhaps some reverse psychology is required here?
have these 'invisible' folders be empty. Make a Default 'New Folder' as empty but put a sub-folder inside with your files...

You cannot look at every directory with "New folder" inside it.


Step 4: Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks

TIP -Check for language support on toolbar...

TRICKS-always have an odd number of folders, add an extra as needed and keep that hidden one bottom right, right row.

TRICKS-Consider always having a folder called New Folder (inside it's EMPTY) add your hidden folders in this, alone, then lock and set read only bits on this New Folder.

TIPS-Remove the hidden folders from backups & archives and searches.

TIPS-Add language support on your tool bar...See embedded comments below...


Step 5: Suggestions or Ideas...

Please...any comments welcome here!

You may have to add text service below for some Unicode languages to work...

Step 6: VISTA!

Screen Shots HERE...!

Step 7: VMWare Image...

What if I distribute a public VMWare player image and you find the easter egg?



Strategies? Suggestions?

...see you later....maybe....I may not be visible!


EDITED by Hugo.B at 16:21 15/6/07GMT
Reason? To prove a point, see my comment below.
Sorry for any inconvenience, I'm not malicious.


EDITED by Erck 6/17/07 CST
Is everyone a noob here? Guys post SOMETHING ON TOPIC!
I added this to the GROUP for "c-o-l-l-a-b-o-r-a-t-i-o-n".

col·lab·o·rate (kə-lāb'ə-rāt') Pronunciation Key
intr.v. col·lab·o·rat·ed, col·lab·o·rat·ing, col·lab·o·rates

To work together, especially in a joint intellectual effort.
To cooperate treasonably, as with an enemy occupation force in one's country.

Use the former and not the later....ERCK