Where is the sound folder in Windows 7? (System sounds "Media" folder location)
By default, Windows 7 uses a sound for some of your computer's activities, called "system sounds" - when Windows starts, for example, it makes a sound, and the same holds true when you plug or unplug new hardware, receive a new email, lock your PC, etc. But where is the system sound folder that contains all these sound files? This tutorial answers the question about this system folder location, and clarifies some confusion about the role of the sound folder, or "Media" folder, as it is actually called.
Locate the system sounds folder in Windows 7
Here are easy steps to follow to open the sound folder in Windows Explorer:
- Click on the start menu to enter a "path" (the location of the sound folder)
- In the search field, type "C:\windows\media", and hit Enter: this is the path (location) of Windows 7's sound folder, and hitting Enter will open it in Windows Explorer.
- You can now see all the default and custom sounds (files and folders) that Windows 7 uses for even audio feedback; (note that this is the same directory you see when you customize Windows sounds, and click "Browse" to choose a sound file for an event).
- To preview any of these system sounds, just double-click on any of the sound files: most of them are "
WAV" files, but you'll also find some "
MID" audio files. Windows 7 will open the file in your default audio player for these two sound file types (which should be Windows Media Player, unless another program has been installed and set as default player instead).
Adding custom sound files to the Media folder
Note that while the system sounds are located in a special, operating system folder (the Media folder), you can still add your own sound files to the folder's content, and use them as Windows event sounds - just keep in mind that Windows 7 will only let you pick
WAV files as system sounds. (You can do an online search to find
WAV converters, if needed.)
Tip: Now that you know exactly where the Windows sounds folder is located, here is a quicker way to open your Media folder in the future: hold down the Windows logo key and press "R" to open the "Run" dialog. Then, type "media" inside the text field, and hit Enter: Windows 7 will directly open the sound folder in Windows Explorer!
Note of caution with system folders (like the Media sound folder)
The location of the sound folder is the same for all users, which implies two things: first, all user profiles use the same group of sound files; second, if you move or delete a sound file, it will be unavailable to all Windows users sharing your computer.up ↑