Windows 8: Navigate Folders with a Window's Address Bar - dummies

Windows 8: Navigate Folders with a Window’s Address Bar

By Andy Rathbone

Directly beneath every folder’s title bar lives the Address Bar, shown atop the Documents library here. Internet Explorer veterans will experience déjà vu: The Windows 8 Address Bar is lifted straight from the top of Internet Explorer and glued atop every folder.


The Address Bar’s four main parts, described from left to right in the following list, perform four different duties:

  • Backward and Forward buttons: These two arrows keep track as you forage through your PC’s folders. The Backward button backtracks to the folder you just visited. The Forward button brings you back. (Click the miniscule arrow to the right of the Forward arrow to see a list of places you’ve visited previously; click any entry to zoom right there.)

  • Up Arrow button: Removed from Windows 7, the Up Arrow button triumphantly returns to Windows 8. Click it to move up one folder from your current folder. For example, if you’ve been sorting files in your Documents library’s “Stuff” folder, click the Up arrow to return to your Documents library.

  • Address Bar: Just as the Internet Explorer Address Bar lists a website’s address, the Windows 8 Address Bar displays your current folder’s address — its location inside your PC. For example, the Address Bar shown in the figure shows three words: Libraries, Documents, and Stuff. Those words tell you that you’re looking inside the Stuff folder inside the Documents library of your Libraries.

  • Search box: In another rip-off from Internet Explorer, every Windows 8 folder sports a Search box. Instead of searching the Internet, though, it rummages through your folder’s contents. For example, type the word carrot into a folder’s Search box: Windows 8 digs through that folder’s contents and retrieves every file or folder mentioning carrot.

In the Address Bar, notice the little arrows between the words Libraries, Documents, and Stuff. The arrows offer quick trips to other folders. Click any arrow — the one to the right of the word Documents, for example. A little menu drops down from the arrow, letting you jump to any other folder inside your Documents library.

For more information about Windows 8 and its features, explore Windows 8 For Dummies, available online.