1.    04 May 2016 #1
    Join Date : May 2016
    Posts : 1
    Windows 10

    Windows 10 "Documents" folder deleted


    I recently told a friend to update her computer to Windows 10. I thought that it would be a nice change for her, but she started calling me with issues. One issue was that she couldn't locate her Documents. She would open the folder in file explorer, but it would appear empty. I walked her through the steps and we managed to find it in her Local Disk's user folder. I thought it was just the issue of misplaced files so I mentioned that she could move them into her current documents to make it a little easier to find. The next day, she turned it on and couldn't see any files that she had moved. I restarted her computer and, for some reason, Windows 10 (which she had been using for the past week, turning it on and off frequently) had just displayed the messages "HI" and "Your files are right where you left them". I let it boot fully thinking that it might fix the problem, but it looks like it made it worse. The entirety of the Documents folder is now missing, even though other folders have been restored. There were very important files and pictures in the Documents, but it doesn't seem to be anywhere. Is there anyway to retrieve this? I've asked and she hasn't ever back it up.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    04 May 2016 #2
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    Posts : 25,708
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro build 17046

    Hello Mewzero, and welcome to Ten Forums.

    As a test, type shell:Personal in the address bar of File Explorer and press Enter to see if it may open to her Documents folder.

    If not, then you could see if using step 4 in OPTION TWO below may restore it.

    https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/2...dows-10-a.html
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  3.    04 May 2016 #3
    Join Date : May 2016
    Posts : 10
    Windows 10 Home

    Quote Originally Posted by Mewzero View Post
    She would open the folder in file explorer, but it would appear empty.
    [...]
    I restarted her computer and, for some reason, Windows 10 (which she had been using for the past week, turning it on and off frequently) had just displayed the messages "HI" and "Your files are right where you left them". I let it boot fully thinking that it might fix the problem, but it looks like it made it worse. The entirety of the Documents folder is now missing, even though other folders have been restored.
    This sounds similar (though not quite exactly) like an issue I ran into when I upgraded from 7 to 10.

    You can read all about my misadventures on the road to recovery (which I was able to do, saving all my files) in the following two threads on other boards:

    Windows 10 upgrade nightmare at the Straight Dope

    After Windows 10 upgrade, my user profiles are blank at microsoft.com

    Both are long-ish, so if you don't want to immerse yourself in my frustration, here's the CliffsNotes:

    The free upgrade from 7 to 10 went smoothly, everything worked for several days. Then one day (within a week of the upgrade) my user profiles were blank. Looking at the C:\Users from My Computer, I saw copies of my user profiles with weird names alongside the normal-named profiles. (The weirdly named "Ellis.Test-PC" user was alongside the normally named "Ellis" user.)

    The normally named profiles were blank, and that's what Windows was logging me into. The weirdly named profiles had all my documents and settings and everything I cared about. When I tried to revert back to Windows 7, it told me I had moved user profiles and I had to move them back before I could revert. (I had not moved profiles myself; the system had.)

    When I created a new user profile to try and copy my files into it, the computer stopped working altogether. Booting up hung at a blank screen with a circular progress meter, before even getting to the welcome screen. So at this point the machine was a doorstop.

    I used my old computer (from years ago, still running XP) to burn a Windows Media Disk (aka "recovery disk") from here:

    Windows Media Creation Tool

    Booting the impaired computer from the recovery disk (had to switch the boot order in the bios) lets you run a command prompt, like back in the DOS days. This command prompt can see your hard drives, though it will give them weird letters. (My C: drive was F:, I think.) You can also plug in a flash drive and access it, but again, look for weird drive letters. (Mine showed as H:, I think.)

    I then used XCopy to bulk copy the weirdly named profiles to a flash drive for safe-keeping, then tried Repairing windows with the recovery disk: Failed. So I tried Resetting (save files): Failed. Then I tried Resetting (delete files): Failed. So I punted and re-installed Windows 10 from scratch using that same recovery disk, choosing to format the C: drive at the start. This worked, of course. As an added bonus, when the install asked for a product key I chose "Skip this" at the bottom, then Windows 10 silently re-activated itself properly at some point during/after the install. That was awesome.

    I hope some of this ends up being helpful. Check for weirdly named profiles in your users folder, and if you find any, immediately back them up to something. Once everything is backed up, I would consider a full re-install, formatting the hard drive. My Windows 10 has been great ever since, and the end result was something like 50 gigs of drive space freed up from years of garbage collection that got blissfully washed away by the reformatting.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 


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