Missing documents and photos apps from Windows 11 after unlinking One Drive

Mina 5 Reputation points

I just got a new computer (Windows 11). After deciding I wanted to save my files on my PC only, I unlinked One Drive, only to have both the Documents and Photos apps entirely disappear from my computer. If it were just pictures and paperwork files missing, no problem--I could copy whatever I need from my USB to this new computer. But I mean the apps themselves are gone. Did stopping One Drive cause this and do I need to reinstall the apps now?

A Microsoft file hosting and synchronization service.
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Windows 11
Windows 11
A Microsoft operating system designed for productivity, creativity, and ease of use.
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  1. Emily Hua-MSFT 27,521 Reputation points

    Hi @Mina

    Welcome to Q&A forum ~

    Documents and Pictures folders are belong to Windows Known Folders. These folders generally will not be removed from your computer after you unlink OneDrive account.

    I suggest you search "Registry" in Windows Search box, then open Registry Editor.

    • Locate to Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders.
    • Check whether there are registry keys of Personal (Documents folder) and My Pictures (Pictures folder). Capture11
    • If not, I suggest you create a new Windows administrator account and use this new user account.
    • If yes, it's recommended to check the values of them. Please ensure they are started with %USERPROFILE% like the image above.

    For more, you may also refer to my reply in another thread 'I uninstalled OneDrive but my files are still redirected to it?'.

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    2 people found this answer helpful.