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How to Fix a Slow-Opening Windows Downloads Folder

By on in Windows

189 words, estimated reading time 1 minutes.

When you're browsing through your hard drive in File Explorer (aka Windows Explorer), most folders open quickly. However, the Downloads folder, which is one of the most frequent and important places on your computer, often takes 10 seconds or longer to fully load.

Even if you have a speedy SSD, a status bar in Explorer slowly fills itself for no apparent reason while you watch and wait for your files to show.

The slow-loading Downloads folder problem occurs because, by default, Windows is trying to create thumbnails for photos and videos in the folder, even if none of the files are pictures. With a quick settings change, you can make the Downloads folder open quickly in Windows 7, 8 or 10. Here's how.

  1. Open File Explorer. You can get there by hitting Windows Key + E or clicking on the explorer icon in your taskbar.
  2. Right click on the Downloads shortcut in the right window pane and select Properties.
    How to Fix Windows 10 Slow Downloads Folder
    How to Fix Windows 10 Slow Downloads Folder
  3. Navigate to the Customize tab.
  4. Select "General items" from the "Optimize this folder for:" list.
    How to Fix Windows 10 Slow Downloads Folder
    How to Fix Windows 10 Slow Downloads Folder
  5. Click Ok
  6. Your Windows Downloads folder speed should now be much improved and should open as fast as any other folder. If you have similar problems accessing other folders you can use the same steps to improve performance, just set the folder optimisation to general and click ok.

    Last updated on: Friday 29th December 2017

 

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