Where’s My… <Fill in the blank Admin tool>?

If you are me you like that every few years we get a new version of Windows.  Great new features, new tools, new this, new that… and new frustrations trying to figure out where the hell all of my tools are!

Yeah yeah I know… this is the last version of Windows we are getting as a major release; from now on it’s going to be incremental updates released as patches.  Frankly I don’t know how crazy I am about that idea, but okay I’ll live with it.  In the meantime I want to know where I go to adjust my time and date, set default programs, add devices, set up ODBC data sources, and so much more. 

We know where those were in Windows XP, and then Windows Vista came about but nobody really used it anyways.  Three years later we got Windows 7 and they were moved, but we got used to them.

Windows 8 came about and they were moved again… crap, now not only do we have to find them, and this time I don’t have the Start Menu to look in.  Oh wait, here comes Windows 8.1, and my Start Menu is back… but they’ve moved my tools again!  Phew, I found them… just in time for them to release Windows 10.

So there is a hidden trick in Windows… it has been there since Windows 7 (DO NOT try it in Windows Vista… as if there was a lot of chance of that!) that allows you to place a full ‘Admin’ file on your desktop.  Do this:

  1. Right-click on your desktop and click New – Folder.
  2. Name the folder Admin.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}.

That’s it!  You now have a shortcut on your desktop called Admin (Although technically you can call it anything you want).  It will look like this:


When you open it up it will look like this:


Notice the scroll-bar along the side… there are dozens of categories, which are:

  • Administrative Tools
  • AutoPlay
  • Backup and Restore
  • BitLocker Drive Encryption
  • Color Management
  • Credential Manager
  • Date and Time
  • Default Programs
  • Devices and Printers
  • Display
  • Ease of Access Center
  • File Explorer Options
  • File History
  • Fonts
  • HomeGroup
  • Indexing Options
  • Internet Options
  • Keyboard
  • Language
  • Mouse
  • Network and Sharing Center
  • Pen and Touch
  • Personalization
  • Phone and Modem
  • Power Options
  • Programs and Features
  • Region
  • RemoteApp and Desktop Connections
  • Security and Maintenance
  • Sound
  • Speech Recognition
  • Storage Spaces
  • Sync Center
  • System
  • Tablet PC Settings
  • Taskbar and Navigation
  • Troubleshooting
  • User Accounts
  • Windows Defender
  • Windows Firewall
  • Windows Mobility Center
  • Work Folders

Wow… 42 categories, and 250 items.  That’s a lot of admin tools all in one place! Smile

So go ahead and try it… It won’t hurt, it will just be one more icon on your desktop.  Frankly if you are like me, it will allow you to remove several desktop shortcuts that you placed previously Smile


One response to “Where’s My… <Fill in the blank Admin tool>?”

  1. Thank you for the post, you helped me a lot.

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