Xbox One to lose its File Explorer due to 'limited usage'

Xbox One S
Xbox One S (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • The File Explorer app will be removed from the Xbox One.
  • The Xbox Insider team says that the removal is due to "limited usage."
  • People will have to use alternative ways to access local files.

The File Explorer will be removed from the Xbox One in the near future (via OnMSFT). The app is already removed for Xbox Insiders, and is on the way out for general users. The Xbox Insider team stated on Twitter that the File Explorer has been removed "due to limited usage."

The announcement was immediately met with backlash from several users. Many complain that the File Explorer was useful for uploading custom wallpapers and gamerpics, though it's worth noting that there are other ways to do this that Microsoft recommends. People also pointed out that they use it for local files like movies and music.

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Related: How to add a custom background to your Xbox One dashboard

The Xbox Insider team responded with a thread that includes directions to upload custom wallpapers and gamerpics from OneDrive or a USB device. You can also change your wallpaper using the Dropbox app for Xbox One (opens in new tab) or the free Media Player (opens in new tab).

Xbox (opens in new tab)


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 (opens in new tab).

  • Hopefully it'll return once the new UWP File Explorer is released with Windows 10X.
  • I've used it, but can't say I'll miss it. As pointed out, there is always (seems to be) another way to do whatever thing you are using File Explorer to do.
  • The thing is this makes the xbox one series more useful than the sloppy navigation found on the PS4. Another example why using telemetry for design based decisions is a bad idea. My guess is due to constrained resources by the penny pinchers the devs are having to prioritise code in order to minimise the coding the hours with each dev, test and re-iterate cycle due to lack of programmatic testers and a dedicated testing team. Microsoft seriously needs to re-hire the QA (quality assurance - testers / programatic) division.
  • How do you watch movies of external hard drives without file Explorer?
  • Use the media player app?
  • I use OneDrive. Works well enough.
  • XB1 had a file explorer?