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You can now use this gorgeous file explorer on Windows on ARM devices

Files 2.
Files 2. (Image credit: Yair Aichenbaum)

What you need to know

  • A third-party file explorer named Files recently received an update to version 2.1.
  • The update adds native support for ARM64 devices and includes several other improvements and changes.
  • Files features a tabbed interface and is designed to look native on Windows 11.

Files, a third-party file explorer for Windows 11 and Windows 10, recently received an update to version 2.1. The update to version 2.1 isn't quite as large as the jump to version 2.0 that launched alongside Windows 11, but it does include some significant changes and improvements. The app has a redesigned settings dialog and properties window that better align with Microsoft's latest OS. Files also now natively supports ARM64 devices, such as the Surface Pro X.

Here's everything that's new with Files in version 2.1:

  • Redesigned the settings dialog
  • Redesigned the properties window
  • Added a hotkey for playing audio and video in the preview pane
  • Added a toolbar button to empty recycle bin
  • Set window title to be the same as the selected tab name
  • Added compatibility options to the properties dialog
  • Added Native ARM64 Support
  • Improved keyboard navigation in the column layout
  • Improved keyboard navigation in the details layout
  • Added support for symbolic file links
  • Added keyboard shortcut (Ctrl+H) to show/hide hidden files
  • Removed delay when loading sidebar items and other services on startup
  • Show network shortcuts on the sidebar
  • Added clear all button to ongoing tasks flyout
  • Mousewheel click opens a new tab at selected path
  • Added experimental option to show folder sizes
  • Added support for collapsing widgets on the homepage
  • Added subtle listview animation
  • Added option to open Files on Windows Startup
  • Added support for Next Cloud
  • Added support for Yandex.Disk
  • Open recycle bin & this pc shortcuts in Files when it's set as the default file manager

An experimental feature in Files allows you to set the app as your default file manager. The option is still being worked on but is "stable enough for regular use" according to the app's developer. If you're already using Files as your default file manager, you should switch the option off and then back on to improve the feature's stability.

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While Files is built for Windows PCs, developer Gustave Monce managed to get it to run on a Lumia 950.

The update is already live in the Microsoft Store. You can also download files through GitHub.

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 (opens in new tab).

9 Comments
  • This File Explorer has a great feature that Windows Explorer is still missing even in Windows 11 - tabs
  • I'd love to see a poll to see the ratio of people letting third-party apps handle their files. What permissions do these apps not need?
  • It's a UWP app. They don't get low-level access like Win32.
  • UWP apps can have Win32 component in its package, so basically they can do everything for a long time. This app does have a Win32 component.
  • Send it to Duo, Microsoft.. I can't stand the stock file explorer.
  • "The update is already live in the Microsoft Store." The System Requirement page still says 32-Bit or 64-Bit, but a check of Task Manager confirms it's ARM64.
  • There's a bug. Turn on Dark Mode and it breaks the File Properties window; the whole thing goes totally white except for the close button.
  • Why is this a third-party program and not core thing?
  • Just for the record this feature was available in old versions and had to be abandon because Microsoft has introduced the bug in Microsoft.UI.Xaml package. This bug is still fixed only in beta, but as Microsoft doesn't bother to fix this in the official releases for almost half a year developers got tired of waiting and used the beta version in this release (or they have compiled some custom package which is unlikely and even then it can't be considered as official and secure solution)...