Windows Folder Options missing – Windows XP

Windows Folder Options Missing in Windows XP

Recently my computer was hit by a virus attack, as a result of that some very important aspects of my windows installation was restricted / tampered with. my windows explorer folder options went missing.

I was thinking of doing a re-installation of Windows XP but then again it was just too much for me at that time, was very cold and i wasn’t feeling that well either.. so i just had to get into the core of the problem.

I managed to fix the issues by doing some tweaking with the registry editor (regedit.exe) and the same results can be achieved using the Windows Policy Editor (gpedit.msc).

Issue – Windows Explorer Folder Tool Options Missing in Windows XP!

The windows tool options is a very important aspect of your Windows, it allows you to modify various settings including and most importantly your file-types. If you are having the same problem with your Windows XP. Follow the below instructions and it’ll be resolved.

  1. Go to run and type gpedit.msc.
  2. Look for User Configuration > Administrative Templates >  Windows Components > Windows Explorer.
  3. Find Remove Folder Options menu from Tools menu, Enable it first and then Disable it.
  4. After-wards close all the Windows Explorer or any other Windows and see if that works, it probably should.
  5. Done 🙂

If your problem still hasn’t been resolved, there is another workaround but this method requires you have access to your windows registry regedit.exe; Follow the below instructions to use the registry editor method to fix the windows  explorer tool options.

  1. Goto run and type regedit.exe.
  2. Goto the following key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows
  3. In your regedit.exe right hand panel you should see a value called NoFolderOptions change its value to 0.

0 means to disable it and 1 means you want to hide it. let me know if the above solutions worked for you as it will make me happy to know that.

If you are having trouble using Windows Registry Editor regedit.exe you should read My upcoming post on how to solve the Registry Editor Disabled Issue. The solution will be for those who can’t access the windows registry editor regedit.exe because some administration restriction message is preventing it.

Thanks for reading and please post below if this has helped you or not.

By Zubair

Zubair is a professional freelance Web Designer and Web Developer, and is also the founder of eBloggy. He has been creating highly scalable and accessible web applications since the early days of web.


  1. I have Windows XP Professional. The gpedit.msc does not run and the regedit.exe says disbled by your administrator. The Task Manager is also diasbled by the administrator. What do I do now ?

  2. U ARE GREAT!!!

    I finally solved my problem trying to look for ways to get the Internet Options back in Tools. U’re way better than looking up Microsoft websites for solutions.

  3. I had tried the second option, and that registry entry didn’t even actually exist, which baffled the hell outta me, but the first one definitely fixed it for me, thank you Zubair.
    dunno how it got disabled in the first place :\

    1. @Abdul Wadood:

      Hey, i’m not sure as i haven’t encountered this issue on windows vista yet but try the following:

      Please note that before you follow these step make sure you followed the instructions above:

      HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Windows \ CurrentVersion \ Policies \ Explorer

      Navigate to the above using RegEdit.exe.

      Delete the NoFolderOptions value (if found) from the above location or just change its value to 0

      Exit the Registry Editor.

      See if that works – If not download and run this Registry FIX

      Let me know if it worked 🙂

  4. Wow, now I’m really admn baffled… It says that the registry has been disabled by my administrator… I thought I was the administrator since, like, I created all the accounts in my computer… But then again, I did have a major virus attack last year and [i thought i] got my computer completely fixed but I guess not. This thing started a few months back. Otherwise, my computer is still working fine. I guess I’ll have to be xtra careful with the enxt one…

  5. MY problem is…..i did system recovery 2 days ago(I have Packerd Bell Pentium 4, bought about 5 yrs ago)…..but nth seems right. the problem i am having is i cannot install none of the programs which i had before…not even iTunes, Winndows Live Messenger….it just shows that there is an error in my “Documents and Setting”…
    I can’t figure it out…help me plz..

    1. @Binashkari:

      Is there any particular error you get? can you provide any error messages that you get?

      It sounds to me like your users directory got messed up (i think) – try creating a new user on your system and than try logging in with that to see if that helps or not.

  6. My folder options was somehow removed from tools… I followed all the instructions and changed the folder option’s value to 0. But its still not there.. What do I do next?

    1. @Lorenzo:
      That’s weird.. it should it have worked.

      Are you able to access gpedit.msc by opening it from the RUN or Command Prompt?

      When you were following the above instructions did you receive any sorts of errors? if yes please let me know.

      Also, which windows are you having problem with XP (just making sure)?

      Did you try restarting your PC after trying the above methods?

      Can you try deleting the key NoFolderOptions instead of just changing its value.

      If nothing else helps, you should try out the Registry FIX i posted in one of the above Comments.

    1. @Maxie:

      Are you sure that you’re trying this on Windows XP?

      If you are, what happens after you try the first method? no results? or you can’t access the gpedit.msc? if you were able to to change the value using the first method in gpedit.msc, can you try restarting your pc and see if that helps – sometimes that works.

      For the registry fix, you say you can’t find the NoFolderOptions key at that location? if you don’t see the key at that location try adding it yourself the registry editor allows you take create your own keys, do that assign the value said in the above post.

      Make sure to restart after you try either methods.
      Thanks for posting 🙂

  7. thank u jiiiiiiiiiiiiii .
    I was in much trouble from long time but u have helped me “alot of thanks”

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