A modern file explorer is now available, but it's not from Microsoft

Files Modern Explorer Lede 4
Files Modern Explorer Lede 4 (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

Files, a third-party file explorer, is now available through the Microsoft Store. The app aims to deliver a file explorer experience that's more in line with modern devices and Windows 10. It features a tabbed layout, Fluent Design, and several features for everyday use. The app is available for free through the Microsoft Store.

Yair Aichenbaum, the developer behind Files, announced the availability of the app earlier today. Files has been available for some time in preview form but is now generally available with version 1.0.

Here's everything that's new with v1.0 of the app, as found in its GitHub release notes:

  • Enabled search inside of hidden directories
  • Added an option to search unindexed items
  • Drive Widget details are now hidden when they are not available
  • Allow different layout modes and sort directions for individual directories
  • Implemented a dual pane feature

This app is a modern take on the Windows file explorer. You can navigate to file locations with a mouse and keyboard or touch, and the app looks more natural on Windows 10 than the default File Explorer. Aichenbaum admits the app isn't a full replacement for the native Windows 10 File Explorer, but some people might be able to swap over. I use it for certain tasks on my PC and use it more when I'm on a tablet due to its touch-friendly interface.

I first took a look at Files when it was in preview last summer. I've used it on and off since then. I've known the developer for quite some time and speak with him regularly about Files. In fact, I suggested one of its features that's now within the app, the ability to drag and hold an item over a tab or folder to then open that location. The feature allows you to place files into a specific location within a folder with touch.

Files Onedrive Controls

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

One of my favorite features in Files is its ability to handle OneDrive files. Like with the native File Explorer, you can select which OneDrive files are stored locally or free up space by having them only appear on the cloud. This wasn't supported when I first took a look, and it's a must-have feature for me.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com.