Multiple 'My Documents', can I delete all but one?

  griffon 56 00:07 25 Mar 04
Locked

In an inherited XP computer there are a number of 'My Documents'. One on the desktop, one in C:\, one in a named user folder and one in the Windows folder. As far as I can tell at a quick comparison they all contain the same stuff, new as well as old. Can I delete them all but one, say the one in C:\, it would make it a lot easier when backing up. Any suggestions? Incidentally why does 'My Docs' appear both on the desktop and in C:\ as standard in all the versions of Windows I have seen so far? It's very confusing for we oldies.

  mackaycc 00:12 25 Mar 04

Are you sure they are all folders? The one on the desktop is probably a link to the folder. Check the properties of each one to see if they are links or proper folders.

  mackaycc 00:16 25 Mar 04

You could probably delete the one in the root folder of C. As a precaution, if you're not sure about deleting something, rename it first to see if Windows will function properly. If it does, then you know you can safely delete the folder.

  Clint2 00:20 25 Mar 04

If you right click on My Documents on the Desktop and select properties, you will see that it links directly to C:\My Documents. Advise NOT deleting this.

  temp003 05:01 25 Mar 04

It may be that the XP on the computer was upgraded from 98 or ME?

The My Documents folder for 98 and ME is at C:\My Documents.

If profiles were enabled, there might be other My Documents folders at C:\WINDOWS\profiles\[username]\My Documents.

Maybe in an upgrade to XP, these My Documents folders were left alone.

C:\WINDOWS\My Documents is a bit unconventional. I don't know where that could have come from.

In XP, each user has his own My Documents folder, at C:\Documents and Settings\[username]\My Documents.

When you log on to an account in XP, each account has its own desktop, and the target for each account's desktop icon "My Documents" should refer to that path.

Log on to your own account in XP (it probably logs on to your account by default), right click My Documents icon at top left of desktop, look at the target. If it does point to the Documents and Settings folder, that's all right. [If not, post back.]

Then any "My Documents" folders outside the "C:\Documents and Settings" folder are non-XP folders and can be deleted.

Just retrieve any files you need from those folders before you delete them.

  temp003 05:04 25 Mar 04

Sorry, I meant right cick XP desktop My Documents icon and select Properties, then look at target.

  griffon 56 22:53 25 Mar 04

Thanks Mack, Clint, Temp. There's so much in your answers that I am sure I'll be able to clean things up. Griffon 56

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