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Modern file explorer 'Files' receives update to version 2.3 on Windows 11

Files app for Windows
(Image credit: Files Community)

What you need to know

  • Third-party file explorer Files has received an update to version 2.3.
  • The update adds a compact spacing feature, a new bulk actions experience, and a double-click gesture to navigate through a directory.
  • The app also has a redesigned tab control experience and the option to display tags on the sidebar.

Files is a popular third-party file explorer for Windows 11. It delivers a modern experience that's optimized for touch or a mouse and keyboard. Today, the app received an upgrade to version 2.3, which adds a new bulk action experience and a compact spacing feature.

As the name suggests, compact spacing allows people to view more content on a screen at once by resizing elements of the app. 

Following the update, Files has a redesigned conflicts dialog that allows users to apply the same action to all conflicts. Previously, clicking a dropdown box for each item was required. This interface is also more versatile than the similar feature in the built-in File Explorer for Windows 11.

Files app bulk actions Windows 11

New bulk actions feature in Files (Image credit: Files Community)

Here are all of the other changes that come with Files v2.3:

  • Improved the reliability and speed of drag and drop
  • Added a pull to refresh gesture
  • Removed the minimize and maximize buttons from the properties window
  • Added an animation when clicking on the setting and search buttons
  • Added an option to always show icons instead of thumbnails
  • Improved the spacing in the pathbar
  • Added a chevron to the pathbar to better indicate that there is a flyout menu
  • Reduced the spacing between widgets on the home page
  • Double clicking the grid splitter will now reset panes in the dual pane layout to the default width
  • More file types are now displayed in the “new” item context menu
  • Double clicking in a blank space will now go up one directory in the file tree
  • Adding a tag to a file no longer changes the date modified property
  • Added a shortcut to open folders in the default terminal ctrl + shift + '
  • Added a shortcut to play and pause media in the preview pane ctrl + space
  • Reduced the height of items in the sidebar to allow more items to be displayed at once
  • Invalid favorites and network shares are no longer removed the sidebar
  • Added a context menu to hide sections when right clicking on the sidebar
  • Added support for renaming items in the conflicts dialog
  • Network shares will automatically refresh when their content changes
  • Auto select first item in user list for permissions
  • Auto select the primary button in the empty recycle bin dialog
  • Deleting an item will automatically move the focus to the next item in the list
  • Resizing the window no longer changes the width of columns in the details layout
  • Added examples to the date format setting
  • Improved behavior when trying to name an item with invalid characters
  • Added a notification when copying or moving an item fails
  • Added the archive name to the extract archive dialog
  • Added support for adding tags to items in the search results page
  • Show which process is locking a file

Version 2.3 of Files became avaialble today, July 6, 2022.

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Files - Free

This modern file explorer has an interface that's optimized for touch or a mouse and keyboard. It has a tabbed interface, a sleek design, and recently received an update.

Sean Endicott
Sean Endicott

Sean Endicott is the news writer for Windows Central. If it runs Windows, is made by Microsoft, or has anything to do with either, he's on it. Sean's been with Windows Central since 2017 and is also our resident app expert. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at