How to Quickly Locate a Program’s EXE file on Windows 10

How to Quickly Locate a Program’s EXE file on Windows 10

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How to Quickly Locate a Program’s EXE file on Windows 10: If you’re doing advanced troubleshooting or configuration of a Windows 10 application and need to locate the program’s EXE file in File Explorer, there’s a quick way to do it if you have access to a shortcut. Here’s how.

First, locate a shortcut that points to the application whose EXE you need to find, because you will need to open its properties window. If the shortcut is on your desktop, right-click it and select “Properties.”

In Windows 10, right-click a desktop shortcut and select "Properties."

If the shortcut is pinned to your taskbar, right-click it, then right-click its name again in the menu that pops up just above it. In the menu that appears, click “Properties.”

In Windows 10, right-click the taskbar icon then right-click the shortcut and select "Properties."

If the shortcut is in your “Start” menu, you have more hoops to jump through (and this method only works with traditional Windows Desktop Apps and not UWP apps). Right-click the “Start” menu shortcut for the application, and select More > Open file location.

Finding an application's shortcut location using the Start Menu in Windows 10

This will open a File Explorer window that points to the actual application shortcut file. Right click on that shortcut, and select “Properties.”

No matter how you located the shortcut, a properties window will appear. Make sure you’re on the “Shortcut” tab, then click “Open File Location.”

To find an application's EXE file, right-click a shortcut and click "Open File Location" in the Properties window on Windows 10.

You’ll be taken directly to the EXE’s location in File Explorer.

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Locating an application's EXE file in File Explorer on Windows 10.

What you do next depends on what you’re trying to achieve. Just be careful in there—modifying or moving a program’s files can make it not work properly.

If You Can’t Find a Shortcut to Use

If a shortcut to the program whose EXE you want to find isn’t easily available, you can browse  C:\Program Files or C:\Program Files (x86) on your machine to find the application’s main program folder. Look for a folder with a name similar to the publisher of the program, or the name of the application itself. Open it, and you might find the EXE you’re looking for inside. Good luck!

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Lucila is a freelance writer and lifelong learner with an ongoing curiosity to study new things. She enjoys checking out the latest grammar books and writing about video games more than anything else. If she's not running through Colorado’s breathtaking landscape, she's indoors hidden away in her cozy game room trolling noobs and leveling up an RPG character. She is a Final Fantasy IX apologist (although she loves them all… except XV), coffee aficionado, and a bit of a health nut. Lucila graduated from Western Kentucky University with a B.A. in English Literature with a minor in Creative Writing.

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