Every user stores personal files on the hard disk of their computer. Whether It's a file per se, or placed In a particular folder, It will happen to some degree. It doesn't take much effort for someone who has physical or remote access to the PC, to compromise files that contain critical Information. To prevent this from happening, In this tutorial, I will show you how to hide files & folders without using any third-party tools.
Not only will you learn how to hide them, but I'll also demonstrate how to keep them hidden, so only you know how to gain access once again. This Is a very simple process, and performed natively within Windows. Essentially, once you hide a file or folder, It will be completely out of view- as though It does not exist to begin with. So let's rip Into this tutorial.
For the purpose of this guide, I will be referencing a folder. Right-click on the folder you wish to hide, and select Properties.
Next, click the Hidden checkbox, and to finalize the process, hit OK. The folder will Instantly hide completely out of view. Obviously, I cannot provide a screenshot of a hidden folder!
Although the folder Is hidden, It can still be viewed by first clicking on the View tab In Windows Explorer, and then on Options.
Then select View, and click on the Show hidden files, folders, and drives radio button. This setting will show the folder that was hidden above.
Anyone who's aware of how to access this feature, can do so at any point and view your hidden folder. I'll show you how to disable It via the Group Policy Editor. Do note that the GPE Is only available In Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise and Education editions. To access It, open the Run menu, enter gpedit.msc and then hit OK.
Now navigate to the following directory:
User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > File Explorer
Then on the right pane, double-click on:
Do not allow Folder Options to be opened from the Options button on the View tab of the ribbon
On the left of the window, click the Enabled radio button and to finalize the process, hit OK.
Now to put this to the test. I've navigated back to Windows Explorer and clicked on the View tab, and then Options- with the Intention to access the Show hidden files, folders, and drives setting as per Step Four above. As you can see, access Is denied. Perfect!
You've now learned how to not only hide files & folders from prying eyes, but to also keep them out of sight by applying a neat little tweak via the Group Policy Editor. Sure, there are tools available that serve the exact same purpose, but why use a third-party tool when you can achieve the same result within Windows Itself?
In terms of reversing the change from the Group Policy Editor, go back to Step Seven and select the Not Configured radio button. Once you've familiarized yourself with all the above, the entire process will take less than a couple of minutes to apply.