Solved Why is a folder name different to its name in the file path?

June 21, 2015 at 01:03:11
Specs: Windows 7 SP1, C2D E6300 / 3072 MB
I'm having a surprising amount of difficulty searching for an answer to this seemingly simple question. Perhaps it's due to my lack of knowledge with regards to the correct terminology, so forgive me if this is the wrong section. I came across an article on MSDN titled "Naming Files, Paths, and Namespaces", which whilst edifying, did not answer answer my question (unless I'm just failing to make the right connections).


- "My Documents" is a symbolic link/reparse point to any folder you specify. When using File Explorer to browse the directory in which the folder is contained, the folder is still shown as "My Documents" regardless of the actual folder name.

- "iCloud Drive" is actually "iCloudDrive".

- Within iCloudDrive, "Pages" is actually "com~apple~Pages".

A follow up question: how can a user create their own "special" folder names?

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June 21, 2015 at 04:15:34
✔ Best Answer
The word for it is called folder name SHORTENED IN file path and is due to file path length restrictions in Windows. It originated in the early days of DOS. Without it you will be troubleshooting...

Windows File Paths Longer Than 255 Characters

P.S. Happy Father's Day to all the Dads.


message edited by XpUser

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June 21, 2015 at 09:45:05
The other thing that comes into the equation is that Windows often shows you what it thinks would be most useful, rather then real locations. If you use a Live Linux CD and look at your Windows drive (which shows the structure "as is") there are quite a few surprises. Temporary Internet Files, the recycle bin, and Downloaded Program Files are three that come to mind. They look like a different world.

Always pop back and let us know the outcome - thanks

message edited by Derek

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June 21, 2015 at 13:44:41
I can understand the necessity of shortened names in file paths, but having "Pages" as the folder name in File Explorer and "com~apple~Pages" as the actual (longer) name in the file path is... odd, and I don't understand why or how that is the case. I don't think DOS paths explain this behaviour.

What is Windows doing? Clearly programmers are able to implement this in their applications, as Apple have done so.

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June 21, 2015 at 22:33:14
If you browse "libraries" The categories shown are collections of folders you can specify. Click right on the eg. "Pictures" and it will show/modify what folders are included.

Is that what you are looking for?

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