Accessing the Application Data folder
applies to Windows 7, 8 and 8.1
On this page you will find information on accessing the Application Data (AppData) folder within Microsoft Windows.
What is the AppData folder?
The AppData folder contains application (app) settings, files, and data specific to the application (apps) on your Windows PC. The folder is hidden by default in Windows File Explorer, and has three hidden sub-folders: Local, LocalLow, and Roaming.
This folder (%appdata%) contains data that can move with your user profile from PC to PC—like when you're on a domain—because this data has the ability to sync with a server. For example, if you sign in to a different PC on a domain, your web browser favorites or bookmarks will be available.
This folder (%localappdata%) contains data that can't move with your user profile. This data is typically specific to a PC or too large to sync with a server. For example, web browsers usually store their temporary files here.
This folder (%appdata%/.../locallow) contains data that can't move, but also has a lower level of access. For example, if you're running a web browser in a protected or safe mode, the app will only be able access data from the LocalLow folder.
During installation, applications are saved to the Local, LocalLow, or Roaming folders, depending on installation settings. Most desktop application use the Roaming folder, while most Windows Store applications use the Local folder.
How do I access the AppData folder?
The AppData is by default a hidden folder. With the following steps you can access the contents.
1. Open Windows File Explorer
2. Navigate to this folder: C:\Users\YourUserName
3a. Windows 7: In the topleft corner you will see the button Organize, click on it to expand the menu.
Click on 'Folder and search options' and continue to step 6.
3b. Windows 8: In the topleft corner you will see File | Home | Share | View
4. Windows 8: Click on View
5. Windows 8: Click on Options on the right side of the ribbon:
6. The following screen will appear:
7. Click on View and make sure the option 'Show hidden files, folders, and drives' is ON:
8. Click Apply to apply the new settings without closing the screen or click on OK to apply the new settings and close the screen.
You will now see the AppData folder in C:\Users\YourUserName.