By default, Microsoft Windows hides certain system files and folders from the user’s view in order to keep us from accidentally altering, moving or deleting a file and end up crippling our PCs.
But there are times when it’s necessary to be able to see the hidden files and folders (such as while we’re troubleshooting Windows problems and removing malware).
It has always been possible to temporarily turn off the “Hidden Files an Folders” setting, but the way we do so has changed in Windows 8.1 (and in Windows 8 which preceded it). Follow these steps to display hidden files and folders in Windows 8 and 8.1:
1 – Press the Windows+S key combination to open the “Search” box.
2 – Type folder into the Search box, then select Folder Options from the list of search results. The “Folder Options” window should open.
3 – Select the View tab.
4 – Under “Advanced Settings”, select Show hidden files, folders, and drives.
5 – Click Apply, then click Ok.
Now all of your system’s hidden files and folders should be visible.
Note: I strongly suggest hiding those critical system and folders again after you have completed the task at hand. Simply follow steps 1-5 again, but select Don’t show hidden files, folders, and drives in step 4.
Click here (#ad) to check out a great resource for learning and mastering Windows 8.1. It’s called Windows 8.1: The Missing Manual, and I refer to it all the time.