Microsoft has been making tweaks and improvements to File Explorer for several years, starting in Windows 10 and extending into Windows 11. The company has brought useful features such as previews and tabs to the file hub of the OS. However, another significant upgrade is on the horizon, with Microsoft planning to revamp File Explorer.
In the recent Windows 11 Dev channel build 22272, a new feature known as “Gallery” was found. It is essentially a reworking of the “Picture” section of File Explorer.
Elsewhere, the recommendations addition that I reported on this week is also included. It is unclear what this feature will be. It could either be a folder recommendation component or a way for Microsoft to advertise other services within File Explorer.
On Twitter, Windows enthusiast FireCube points to other new features that will be making their way to Windows 11 File Explorer. Those tools include:
- Related Files
- Conversations [sic]
- Sharing status
All these features are in Windows 11 Dev channel build 22272. However, they have been force disabled, which means Microsoft does not want users playing with them just yet. Enabling them will break File Explorer, so you should not use a third-party tool to enable them.
WIP Microsoft Gallery View control for File Explorer. Colored blocks seem to be placeholders for images and I assume this will go to the new Gallery section in File Explorer. (UI reconstructed)#FluentDesign #Windows11 pic.twitter.com/2msdYzVqPu
— FireCube (@FireCubeStudios) January 9, 2023
It is worth noting that FireCube did enable them and published images for the new features (in the images above). Of course, these are very early previews and a lot of development will go into them between now and a full launch on Windows 11.
Tip of the day: File History is a Windows back up feature that saves each version of files in the Documents, Pictures, Videos, Desktop, and Offline OneDrive folders. Though its name implies a primary focus on version control, you can actually use it as a fully-fledged backup tool for your important documents.