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  1. #1
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    Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    How can I set Windows Explorer to open with the "folder" explorer toolbar open (i.e. looking like Windows Explorer in 95, 98 and Me) as default? There are keyboard shortcuts to other left-hand options, but none to this particularly important one (to me). I managed to set is as default in 98SE, but can't find the way to do it here (or the exact procedure I followed back then).

    Also, I've set Explorer to show the address (which I assumed would include the file path for local files). All I get is a block in the toolbar section that says "Address" in Spanish, which is pretty useless to me. I used to find it helpful to be able to select the complete path in Explorer and copy it for other purposes. How do I get back there?

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    Chances are you already have a shortcut to Windows Explorer in Start | All Programs | Accessories. You can copy it from there to the desktop, or to the Quick Launch toolbar, or wherever you would like it.

    If you can't find it there: create a shortcut with target %SystemRoot%explorer.exe and set the start location to the folder you want to see when you open the shortcut (I have it set to My Documents by entering %HOMEDRIVE%%HOMEPATH% in the start location.)

    Perhaps the Adress toolbar does not have enough room to display the address. Right click the toolbar area. If Lock Toolbars is checked, click that option to unlock the toolbars. Then try dragging the Address toolbar to another location, for instance to a new row. Then lock the toolbars.

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    Hi, MFF ~

    Please see this post or the thread in its entirety.

  4. #4
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    Great thread, Bruce. Thanks.

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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    Thanks, Hans. That's perfect for my frequently used shortcuts.

    Now for a way to make "Explore" the default action for any folder... Woody certainly had instructions about that in one of his books, but which one, and will it still work for XP?

  6. #6
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    Hi, MFF ~

    Do you mean 'My Documents' & 'My Computer' rather than 'Windows Explorer'?

    'Windows Explorer' already does open w/ folder view whereas the former two open with the left side task pane. You desire 'My Documents' & 'My Computer' to open in folder view as Explorer does, right?

  7. #7
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    I want any folder opened from any shortcut to open with the folder view. I've already changed the shortcut to My Docs in my QuickLaunch bar - would love to find a better icon, but no matter - but I don't want to have to edit every folder shortcut I produce on the fly.

    AFAIK - but I may have got it wrong - "Windows Explorer" is both a name for the folder view and the name of the program itself, which is the same one in every instance, whether it's opened from "My PC", "My Documents", Control Panel or whatever, with the folder pane, the Find pane or any other pain :-)

  8. #8
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    I may be completely off base, but I believe what you are talking about is changing the default verb for "Folders" from "Open" to "Explore" -- in MicroSpeak. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    The "open" verb opens a "Windows Explorer" window without the "vertical Explorer bar" -- this would be equivalent to typing "explorer.exe path to folder" in the "Run" box. The "explore" verb opens a "Windows Explorer" window WITH the "vertical Explorer bar" -- equivalent to typing "explorer.exe /e, path to folder" in the "Run" box. (Don't skip the comma when you try that). Follow me so far? <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    Next, you have to decide whether you are talking about "File Folders" (aka "Directories") or ALL Folder-like "objects". For example, My Computer and My Documents are "Folders" but are NOT "File Folders". The "File Folders" class is a sub-set of the Folder objects. Still with me?

    Let's assume you want to set the Default Shell Command for all Folders to "Explore" instead of "Open". (This is actually easier and causes less confusion). Open regedit and drill down to HKCRFoldersshell. You should find several sub-keys under shell -- two of which will be "open" and "explore". If the (Default) value for the "Shell" key itself is not defined (blank or whatnot), then the default action will be "open". To make "explore" the default action, simply modify the (Default) value for shell to be "explore".

    Close regedit and you are done. This should get you the vertical Explorer bar -- and hopefully the Explorer tool bar as well...

    If you change your mind -- or if this does not do what you wanted -- simply go back into the HKCRFolder key and set the Shell (Default) key to "open" (or put it back how it was before you changed it). Since "open" is the default (Default) shell command, setting it to "open" should suffice.

  9. #9
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    Thanks, R2 - that was exactly what I needed, though I did it with some trepidation, only after trying "the easy way" (just adding an extra "explorar" option in the Folder options menu) and then being forced to restore the system - thank goodness I'd had the sense to do that before. Whew! I guess that just confirms that setting a restore point does effectively back up the Registry.

    I only made the change for File Folders, though I may subsequently extend that to all folder objects. I like consistency in a computer.

    My question is, when is Woody going to write another "Annoyances" book? I have found the others much less useful than Word 97 Annoyances (okay, I really didn't need WL Teaches Office 97, but I bought it for the friends I'm always helping out).

  10. #10
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: Windows Explorer as default (XP Home SR-1, Spanish)

    <IMG SRC=http://www.krymow.com/images/welldone2.gif>Great find, R2!

    For others desiring the left-hand explorer view as default rather than the task pane, in a nutshell:<UL><LI>'Start' > 'Run...' > enter regedit > 'OK'<LI>Navigate to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT Folder shell<LI>In the right-hand pane, right-click on '(Default)' > select 'Modify'<LI>Under 'Value data:' enter explore > 'OK'<LI>Exit Registry Editor[/list]If for any reason you want it back to the task pane view, simply right-click & delete the '(Default)' key - it will automatically change back! <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

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