General Change Template of Drive, Folder, or Library in Windows 11 File Explorer

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Folder_views_banner.png

Windows 11 includes the default General items, Documents, Pictures, Music, and Videos templates used to optimize the layout and view of every drive, folder, or library.

Windows 11 uses Automatic Folder Type Discovery to detect the contents of a folder and automatically optimize the folder for the proper template. If a folder contains a mixture of file types, Windows will use the General items template. If there is an overwhelming number of files with the same file type in a folder, Windows will automatically optimize the folder with the proper template to match the majority.

A template is just a default layout and view, you can customize the layout and view of a folder to how you like in File Explorer.

This tutorial will show you how to manually change the template of a drive, folder, or library for your account in Windows 11.


Contents



EXAMPLE: Default templates
General_Items.png
Documents.png

Pictures.png
Music.png

Videos.png






OPTION ONE

Change Template of a Drive or Folder


1 Open File Explorer (Win+E).

2 Perform one of the following actions: (see screenshots below)
  • Select a drive (except Windows "C:" drive) or folder, click/tap on See more (3 dots) button on the command bar, and click/tap on Properties.
  • Right click or press and hold on a drive (except Windows "C:" drive) or folder, and click/tap on Properties.
  • Right click or press and hold on an empty space on the background of an open drive (except Windows "C:" drive) or folder, and click/tap on Properties.
Folder_properties-1.png
Folder_properties-2.png
Folder_properties-3.png

3 Click/tap on the Customize tab in Properties. (see screenshots below step 5)

4 Select the General items, Documents, Pictures, Music, or Videos template you want to optimize this drive or folder for. (see screenshots below step 5)

5 Click/tap on OK. (see screenshots below)

Customize_Properties-1.png
Customize_Properties-2.png






OPTION TWO

Change Template of a Library


1 Open Libraries in File Explorer (Win+E).

2 Perform one of the following actions: (see screenshots below)
  • Right click or press and hold on a library (ex: "Saved Pictures"), and click/tap on Properties.
  • Select a library (ex: "Saved Pictures"), click/tap on See more (3 dots) button on the command bar, and click/tap on Properties.
Library_template-1.png
Library_template-2.png

3 Select the General items, Documents, Pictures, Music, or Videos template you want to optimize this drive or folder for. (see screenshot below step 4)

4 Click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

Library_template-3.png






OPTION THREE

Specify Template for All Drives and Folders using BAT file


Specifying a template for all drives and folders will disable Automatic Folder Type Discovery.

Specifying a template for all drives and folders does not affect the Quick access, This PC, Libraries, and Network shell folders.


1 Do step 2 (undo), step 3 (General items), step 4 (Documents), step 5 (Pictures), step 6 (Music), or step 7 (Videos) below for which template you want to specify.


2 To Undo Specified Template for All Drives and Folders

This is the default setting to undo a specified template for all drives and folders.

This will reset the template and views of all folders back to default, and enable Automatic Folder Type Discovery.


A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the BAT file below, and go to step 8 below.​

Undo_specified_template_for_all_folders_for_current_user.bat


(Contents of BAT file for reference)
Code:
@echo off

Reg Delete "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\BagMRU" /F
Reg Delete "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags" /F

:: To kill and restart explorer
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start explorer.exe

3 Specify General items Template for All Drives and Folders

A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the BAT file below, and go to step 8 below.​

Specify_all_folders_use_General_Items_template_for_current_user.bat


(Contents of BAT file for reference)
Code:
@echo off

REG ADD "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\AllFolders\Shell" /V FolderType /T REG_SZ /D NotSpecified /F

:: To kill and restart explorer
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start explorer.exe

4 Specify Documents Template for All Drives and Folders

A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the BAT file below, and go to step 8 below.​

Specify_all_folders_use_Documents_template_for_current_user.bat


(Contents of BAT file for reference)
Code:
@echo off

REG ADD "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\AllFolders\Shell" /V FolderType /T REG_SZ /D Documents /F

:: To kill and restart explorer
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start explorer.exe

5 Specify Pictures Template for All Drives and Folders

A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the BAT file below, and go to step 8 below.​

Specify_all_folders_use_Pictures_template_for_current_user.bat


(Contents of BAT file for reference)
Code:
@echo off

REG ADD "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\AllFolders\Shell" /V FolderType /T REG_SZ /D Pictures /F

:: To kill and restart explorer
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start explorer.exe

6 Specify Music Template for All Drives and Folders

A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the BAT file below, and go to step 8 below.​

Specify_all_folders_use_Music_template_for_current_user.bat


(Contents of BAT file for reference)
Code:
@echo off

REG ADD "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\AllFolders\Shell" /V FolderType /T REG_SZ /D Music /F

:: To kill and restart explorer
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start explorer.exe

7 Specify Videos Template for All Drives and Folders

A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the BAT file below, and go to step 8 below.​

Specify_all_folders_use_Videos_template_for_current_user.bat


(Contents of BAT file for reference)
Code:
@echo off

REG ADD "HKCU\SOFTWARE\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\AllFolders\Shell" /V FolderType /T REG_SZ /D Videos /F

:: To kill and restart explorer
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start explorer.exe

8 Save the BAT file to your desktop.

9 Unblock and run the BAT file.

10 You will now notice your screen flicker and a command prompt quickly open and close as the explorer process is restarted to apply the registry changes.

11 When finished, you can delete the downloaded BAT file if you like.


That's it,
Shawn Brink

 

Attachments

  • Undo_specified_template_for_all_folders_for_current_user.bat
    475 bytes · Views: 35
  • Specify_all_folders_use_Documents_template_for_current_user.bat
    432 bytes · Views: 28
  • Specify_all_folders_use_General_Items_template_for_current_user.bat
    435 bytes · Views: 34
  • Specify_all_folders_use_Music_template_for_current_user.bat
    428 bytes · Views: 27
  • Specify_all_folders_use_Pictures_template_for_current_user.bat
    431 bytes · Views: 23
  • Specify_all_folders_use_Videos_template_for_current_user.bat
    429 bytes · Views: 26
  • Folder_views.png
    Folder_views.png
    10.7 KB · Views: 16
Last edited:
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