7 Methods How To Change Download Location Windows 11

Changing the default download location in Windows 11 is a useful way to keep your files organized and save space on your system drive. Whether you want to move your downloads folder or customize the download location for specific applications, there are several methods on how to change download location windows 11. In this article, I will guide you through 7 different methods that will help you change the download location in Windows 11 to suit your needs.

Key Takeaways:

  • Changing the download location in Windows 11 can help you better organize your files and free up space on your system drive.
  • You can change the download location via the properties menu in File Explorer, using third-party software, browser settings, Microsoft Store settings, the Windows Registry, Known Folder IDs, or the Group Policy Editor.
  • By following these methods, you can easily customize the download location in Windows 11 to suit your needs.
  • Remember to back up your important files before making any changes to the download location.
  • Always restart your computer after making changes to ensure the changes take effect.

Method 1: Change the Download Location via File Explorer

The easiest way to change the default download location in Windows 11 is to use the properties menu in File Explorer.

Here’s how you can do it:

Open File Explorer and right-click on the Downloads folder.

Select “Properties” from the menu.

how to change download location windows 11
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Go to the “Location” tab.

Click on the “Move” button.

Browse to the location where you want to set the new download location.

Click “Select Folder” to choose the new location.

change storage directory win11
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Click “Apply” and then “OK” to save the changes.

Click on Yes to move all the files and folders to new location.

windows 11 save files settings
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By following these steps, you can easily change the default download location in Windows 11.

relocate download location windows 11

Method 2: Change the Download Location in Browser Settings

In addition to changing the download location in the operating system, you can also customize the download location in your web browser settings. This allows you to ensure that files are saved to your preferred location.

Google Chrome:

Go to Settings.

how to set download folder in google chrome
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Click on Downloads.

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Under the Location section, click on Change.

click on change download location from google chrome
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Select the new download location.

Select download folder in google chrome
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Microsoft Edge:

Go to Settings.

how to change download location windows 11,Modify Default Save Path Windows 11,Change Storage Directory Win11,Windows 11 Save Files Settings
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Navigate to Downloads.

click on download location in microsoft edge
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Click on Change under the Location section.

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Choose the new download location.

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Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Go to Options.
  2. Navigate to General and click on Downloads.
  3. Click on Browse.
  4. Select the new download location.

By customizing the download location in your web browser settings, you can ensure that files are saved to your preferred location.

Method 3: Change the Download Location for Microsoft Store Apps

If you want to change the download location for Microsoft Store apps in Windows 11, you can do so through the system settings. Here’s how to Modify Default save path Windows 11:

  1. Right click on Start
right click on start and click settings
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  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Go to System > Storage > Advanced storage settings.
  3. Under the “New apps will save to” section, click on the drop-down arrow and select the new download location.

By changing the download location for Microsoft Store apps, you can control where new content is saved on your system.

AdvantagesDisadvantages
Customize where Microsoft Store apps are savedOnly applicable to Microsoft Store apps
Easily manage storage spaceMay require additional storage if moving the location to a different drive
Organize apps according to your preferencePotential compatibility issues with certain apps

Method 4: Change the Download Location in Windows Registry

If you’re comfortable making changes to the Windows Registry, you can modify the download location by changing specific registry keys. Let’s check Windows Registry method on how to change download location windows 11. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.
ctrl E to run regedit command
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Type regedit and press Enter to open the Registry Editor.

Navigate to the following keys:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell FoldersHKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders.

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click on guid in user shell folders to change download location
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In both key locations, look for the GUID {374DE290-123F-4565-9164-39C4925E467B}.

Modify the value for the downloads folder path to the new location you want.

Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

By changing the download location in the Windows Registry, you can customize the location according to your preference.

Windows Registry download location
AdvantagesDisadvantages
Allows advanced customization of download location.Editing the registry can be risky if not done correctly.
Provides granular control over file storage.May require technical knowledge.
Permanent changes to the system.Potential for system instability if incorrect modifications are made.

Method 5: Use Known Folder IDs to Change Download Location

Windows applications use Known Folder IDs to find the paths to locations like the Downloads folder. By modifying these IDs, you can change storage directory win11.

  1. Open the Registry Editor.
  2. Navigate to the following keys:
    • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\FolderDescriptions
    • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\FolderDescriptions
  3. Look for the key with the GUID {374DE290-123F-4565-9164-39C4925E467B}.
  4. Modify the value for the path to the new location you want.
  5. Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

Using Known Folder IDs, you can change the download location in Windows 11.

change download location windows 11

Method 6: Use Group Policy Editor to Change Windows 11 Save Files Settings

If you’re using a Windows 11 Pro or Enterprise edition then, let’s check Group Policy method on how to change download location windows 11. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type gpedit.msc and press Enter to open the Group Policy Editor.
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  1. Navigate to User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Internet Explorer > Internet Control Panel > General Page.
  2. Double-click on the “Default Download Location” policy.
  3. Select the “Enabled” option and enter the new download location.
  4. Click “Apply” and then “OK” to save the changes.

With the Group Policy Editor, you have the flexibility to modify the download location for Internet Explorer in Windows 11, providing you with a seamless downloading experience tailored to your preferences.

Method 7: PowerShell Script On How To Change Download Location Windows 11

The essence of changing the download location via PowerShell lies in modifying certain registry keys. Specifically, the Downloads folder path is stored under the User Shell Folders within the Windows registry. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Open PowerShell as Administrator: Right-click the Start button, select “Windows Terminal (Admin)” or “PowerShell (Admin)” if you’re using an older version of Windows, and ensure you’re running it with administrative privileges.
  2. Execute the Script: Copy and paste the following script into your PowerShell window, replacing "D:\NewDownloads" with your desired new download location.
Download location before running powershell command
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$NewDownloadPath = "D:\NewDownloads" 
Set-ItemProperty -Path "HKCU:\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders" -Name "{374DE290-123F-4565-9164-39C4925E467B}" -Value $NewDownloadPath

This script sets the Downloads folder to a new location. Ensure that the path you specify exists and is correctly typed to prevent any issues.

  1. Restart Your PC or Log Off: After executing the script, you might need to restart your computer or log off and back on for the changes to take effect.
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Important Considerations

  • Back Up Your Registry: Always have a recent backup of your registry before making any changes.
  • Be Precise: Ensure the path to the new download location is correct to avoid any potential system issues.
  • Administrative Rights: Running scripts that modify the registry requires administrative privileges.
  • Testing: If possible, test the script on a non-critical system or virtual machine to ensure it works as expected without affecting your primary system.

Conclusion

Changing the download location in Windows 11 is a simple yet effective way to better organize your files and optimize storage space on your system drive. In this article, I have provided you with 7 different methods to set a new download location according to your preferences and needs.

By using the properties menu in File Explorer, you can easily change the default download location in Windows 11.

If you prefer to customize the download location within your web browser, you can do so by adjusting the settings in popular browsers like Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Mozilla Firefox. Additionally, Windows 11 allows you to change the download location for Microsoft Store apps through the system settings.

For more advanced users, modifying the download location in the Windows Registry or using Known Folder IDs can provide further flexibility and customization options. Lastly, if you are using Windows 11 Pro or Enterprise edition, the Group Policy Editor enables you to change the download location for Internet Explorer.

By following any of these methods, you can easily change the download location in Windows 11, enhancing your file management experience and optimizing your system’s storage utilization.

FAQ

How can I change the download location in Windows 11?

There are 7 different methods you can use to set a new download location in Windows 11. These methods include using File Explorer, a professional folder and app mover, browser settings, Microsoft Store settings, the Windows Registry, Known Folder IDs, and the Group Policy Editor.

How can I change the download location via File Explorer?

To change the download location via File Explorer, right-click on the Downloads folder, select “Properties,” go to the “Location” tab, click on the “Move” button, browse to the new location, select the folder, and click “Apply” and then “OK” to save the changes.

How can I change the download location in browser settings?

In Google Chrome, go to Settings > Advanced > Downloads and click on “Change” under the “Location” section. In Microsoft Edge, go to Settings > Downloads and click on “Change” under the “Location” section. In Mozilla Firefox, go to Options > General > Downloads and click on “Browse” to select the new location.

How can I change the download location for Microsoft Store apps?

Open the Settings app, go to System > Storage > Advanced storage settings, and under the “New apps will save to” section, select the new download location from the drop-down menu.

How can I change the download location in the Windows Registry?

Open the Registry Editor by pressing Win + R, type “regedit,” and navigate to the key locations: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Folders and HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders. Look for the GUID {374DE290-123F-4565-9164-39C4925E467B} in both key locations, modify the value for the downloads folder path to the new location, close the Registry Editor, and restart your computer.

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