How to Search and Find Documents in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users how to search and find files and folders, including documents in Windows 11.

Windows 11 has a built in search feature that allows you to search for documents from a particular folder or the entire PC. It also can search the web for keywords if you use the quick search on the Taskbar. Over time, there will be documents you’ll create, save and at times, have to search for few that are missing or not readily available.

When you need to search for files, folders and other documents, there’s place to go to do that, then the steps below will show you how to do it. You can search in Windows 11 from the taskbar to find help, apps, files, settings—you name it, and on the web.

The new Windows 11, when released to the general public will come with many new features and enhancements that will work great for some while adding some learning challenges for others. Some things and settings have changed so much that folks will have to learn new ways to work with and manage Windows 11.

One legacy feature that is still available in Windows 11 is the ability to search using its built-in search feature. Windows search isn’t new and has since been part of the Windows family starting with Windows XP.

To get started finding files, folder and documents in Windows 11, follow the steps below:

How to search for documents in Windows 11

The quickest way to search for files, folders and documents in Windows 11 is from the search box on the Taskbar. To get search results from your PC and the web, on the taskbar, tap or click Search icon , and type what you’re looking for in the search box.

windows 11 search from taskbar

Type the name of a document (or a keyword from it) into the search box on the taskbar. You’ll see results for documents across your PC and OneDrive under Best match.

windows 11 search for document from taskbar

How to search in Windows 11 from File Explorer

You can also narrow your search from File Explorer. When you search in File Explorer you search results are confirm to the PC and not the web and/or other locations.

Open File Explorer from the taskbar or right-click on the Start  menu, and choose File Explorer, then select a location from the left pane to search or browse.

For example, select This PC to look in all devices and drives on your computer, or select Documents to look only for files stored there.

windows 11 search in file

The search methods above will return files and documents saved on your hard drives that match or has any of the keywords you typed.

This should do it.


This post showed you how to search for files and documents when using Windows 11. If you find any error above, please use the form below to report.

1 Comment

  1. I am looking for documents that I have saved on this computer. For some reason Windows 11 was downloaded without my knowledge or request. The documents that I have saved are EXTREMELY important to me. PLEASE explain (in plain English) how I go about getting to my saved folders. I am not tech-know savy and this situation is EXTREMELY frustrating.

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