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How To: Enable Windows folder shortcuts in ArcGIS Pro


The Windows folder shortcuts are helpful in navigating directly to a folder instead of navigating to the original folder location for organizations with large datasets. Slightly different from ArcMap, enabling folder shortcuts in ArcGIS Pro requires creating a symbolic link to the desired directory.


To enable folder shortcuts in ArcGIS Pro, create a symbolic link to the directory as described in the steps below.

  1. Open Windows Command Prompt, and select Run as administrator.
Windows Command Prompt
  1. Type mklink at the command prompt.
Mklink command
  1. Run the following command to create a symbolic link between the desired directories:
mklink /D <Folder Location 1> <Folder Location 2>
Folder Location 1 is the location of the folder shortcut while Folder Location 2 is the original folder where the data is stored. In this example, it is the envs folder.
Enclose the folder name in double quotes (" ") if the folder name contains spaces. For example, "C/DESKTOP/ANNO TEST 123".
Code for creating the soft link

Once the command runs successfully, a message is displayed indicating the symbolic link is created.

The message is displayed indicating the creation of the soft link
To verify folder shortcuts are viewable in ArcGIS Pro, open a new project in ArcGIS Pro, and connect to the folder in the Catalog pane, or use the Add Data option to add the folder.

The image below shows the folder shortcut of the Example3 folder in ArcGIS Pro.

Folder shortcuts in ArcGIS Pro

Related Information

Last Published: 4/22/2020

Article ID: 000022743

Software: ArcGIS Pro 2.5, 2.4.3, 2.4.2, 2.4.1, 2.4, 2.3.3, 2.3.2, 2.3.1, 2.3, 2.2.4, 2.2.3, 2.2.2, 2.2.1, 2.2