with Anniversary Update for Windows 10You can omit the 260-character at the end maximum path limit in Windows. You just need to make a small edit in Windows Registry or Group Policy. Here’s how to do it.
related: Why is Windows reporting this folder is too long to copy?
Windows does not accept long paths by default
Prior to Windows 95, Windows only allowed file names that were eight characters long, with a three-character file extension—commonly known as an 8.3 filename. Windows 95 dropped this to allow longer file names, but still limited the maximum path length (which includes full folder paths and file names) to 260 characters. This limit has been in place ever since. If you’ve ever run into this limitation, it was probably when you were trying to copy deep folder structures into other folders, such as when copying the contents of a hard drive to a folder on another drive. . Windows 10 Anniversary Update finally adds the option to skip that maximum path length.
There is a warning. This new setting may not necessarily work with every application, but it will work with most. In particular, any modern application should be fine, as should all 64-bit applications. Older 32-bit applications need manifest to work, which actually means that the developer has indicated in the application’s manifest file that the application supports longer paths. The most popular 32-bit apps should have no problem. Still, you don’t risk anything by trying the setting. If an application doesn’t work, the only thing that will happen is that it won’t be able to open or save files saved in places where the full path is longer than 260 characters.
Home Users: Remove the 260 Character Path Limit by Editing the Registry
If you have the Windows Home edition, you will need to edit the Windows Registry to make these changes. You can also do it this way if you have Windows Pro or Enterprise, but feel more comfortable working in the Registry than Group Policy Editor. (If you have Pro or Enterprise, we recommend using the handy Group Policy Editor, described in the next section.)
related: Learning to Use the Registry Editor Like a Pro
Warning: Registry Editor is a powerful tool and misuse of it can make your system unstable or even inactive. This is a very simple hack and as long as you follow the instructions you should have no problems. That said, if you’ve never worked with it before, consider reading about it. How to Use Registry Editor before starting. and certainly back up registry (And your computer!) before making changes.
To get started, open Registry Editor by clicking Start and typing “regedit.” Hit Enter to open Registry Editor and allow it to make changes to your PC.
In Registry Editor, use the left sidebar to navigate to the following key:
On the right, find the value of the name
LongPathsEnabled and double-click on it. If you don’t see the value listed, you’ll need to create it by right-clicking
FileSystem key, choosing New > DWORD (32-bit) Value, and then naming the new value
In the value’s properties window, change the value in the “Value data” box from 0 to 1, and then click OK.
You can now close Registry Editor and restart your computer (or sign out of your account and sign back on). If you ever want to reverse the changes, just go back
LongPathsEnabled value, and change it from 1 back to 0.
Download Our One-Click Registry Hack
If you don’t feel like diving into the registry yourself, we’ve rounded up two downloadable registry hacks you can use. One hack removes the 260-character path limit, and another hack restores the default limit. Both are included in the following zip file. Double-click the one you want to use, click through the prompts, and then restart your computer.
related: How to Build Your Own Windows Registry Hacks
These hacks are really just
FileSystem key, stripped down
LongPathsEnabled The values we described above, and then exported to a .REG file. Running the “Remove 260 Character Path Limit” hack sets up
LongPathsEnabled for the value 1. Running the “restore 260 character path limit (default)” hack sets the value back to 0. And if you like messing with the registry, it’s worth taking the time to learn. How to Hack Your Own Registry,
Pro and Enterprise Users: Remove 260 Character Path Limit with Local Group Policy Editor
related: Using Group Policy Editor to Tweak Your PC
If you are using Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise, the easiest way is to disable new app install notifications by using the Local Group Policy Editor. It’s a very powerful tool, so if you’ve never used it before, it will take some time Learn what it can do, Also, if you are on a company network, please everyone and contact your administrator first. If your work computer is part of a domain, it is also likely that it is part of a Domain Group Policy, which will take the place of Local Group Policy.
In Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise, hit Start, type gpedit.msc and hit Enter.
In the Local Group Policy Editor, in the left-hand pane, drill down to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > File System. On the right, find the item “Enable win32 long paths” and double-click on it.
Select the “Enabled” option and then click “OK” in the Properties window that opens.
You can now exit the Local Group Policy Editor and restart your computer (or sign out and back in) for the changes to take effect. If you want to reverse the changes at any time, just follow the same procedure and set that option back to “Disabled” or “Not Configured.”
The maximum path limit may not be something you’ve ever seen, but for some people, it can certainly be an occasional disappointment. Windows 10 has finally added the ability to remove that limitation. All you need to do is make a quick change in the registry or Group Policy to do this.
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