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In a previous movie we looked at the important concept of folders and files, and how this organizational system is used by you and your operating system to manage all the contents of your hard drive. Now it's important to note that many of the files and folders on your computer are not for your use. They are there for the operating system to run properly. In some cases these files and folders are protected by the operating system, so you'll be unable to move, rename, or delete them. But there are files and folders you can move around if you know what you are doing. But you can also potentially damage system if you don't. That's why your personal account on your computer includes a user folder.
Let's take a look at how we get to the user folder before we learn what it is. Now there are faster ways to get to some of the folders inside your user folder than one I am about to show you. But I also want you to see exactly where this folder is located so bear with me. Currently I don't have any windows open or any applications running. I am going to click the Start button and here I'll click Computer. This opens a window displaying all the hard drives currently installed on my PC as well as any drive on my network and removable media drives like my DVD drive. In this case I only have my local disk and my DVD drive showing up.
The local disk labeled as the C drive is my main or start up hard drive containing the operating system. I am going to double- click it to open it. And this displays the contents of the C drive. Now most of these folders you see here are for the Windows operating system's use you generally don't want to mess around with them unless you know what you are doing. But what I am interested in here is the Users folder. Let's take a look inside it. In the Users folder you'll find a folder with your name on it or whatever the name of your account is. And you'll also find folders for any other user accounts on this computer.
To view the contents of your user folder just double click it. So your user folder is your folder. It's where you can store all of your documents, music, photos, videos and so on. Now you can store files in other parts of your hard drive outside your user folder but there are very few reasons to do that. It's best to keep all of your personal files here in your user folder so they are all located in one central place. You are also free to create additional folders in your user folder or within any of these default folders that you see here. So if I wanted to say organize my documents a little bit more, I could open up My Documents.
And in here I could create a new folder and I might call this Work files and then store all of my work related files in there. Let me go back to my main user folder. So that's your user folder. Any time you are using an application and you want to save a file for example if you are writing a paper and want to save it you should navigate to your My Documents folder in your user folder, or into a folder you have nested inside the My Documents folder. We'll talk about how to save and open files in the next chapter. But for now I just want you to know where you should be storing your stuff on your PC. I also want to point out that since you'll probably need to access folders like My Documents, My Music and My Pictures frequently, you should be aware that you can easily get to them by clicking the Start button and then from here selecting Documents, Pictures or Music.
So for example if I select the Documents here you can see that opens a window showing me the Documents folder we were just looking at. And here's that Works file folder I created. Okay so that's your user folder in Windows. Again I highly recommend that you store and organize all your personal files and other media in this location.
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