The 6 new features in Microsoft Universal File Explorer that pros need to know

With Windows 10 version 1809, File Explorer includes a different UI and better menu supports.

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With the preview rollout of Windows 10 version 1809, Microsoft quietly updated its universal File Explorer with new features and changes for the first time, as reported by Windows Central. Several of the changes could make the file management tool more useful across devices for business users.

Microsoft first rolled out the universal File Explorer tool with Windows 10 Mobile in 2015, eventually bringing it to Xbox and HoloLens as well. However, the tool is not intended for desktop use: It was built for versions of Windows 10 where the legacy File Explorer did not exist, and on devices where the user was likely not doing a lot of file management, Windows Central noted.

SEE: Mobile device computing policy (Tech Pro Research)

However, with version 1809, Microsoft has added the following changes in the app that could be useful for business users, Windows Central found:

  1. Drag and drop support
  2. Better right-click menu support
  3. Improved copy and paste system that is similar to the legacy File Explorer
  4. New cut option
  5. Ability to set images as wallpaper directly from the app
  6. UI buttons at the top instead of bottom of the app

Earlier in August, Microsoft announced that it would roll out a dark theme for the universal File Explorer in the next version of Windows 10 as well, which was a top request from users, our sister site ZDNet reported.

These changes are notable because Microsoft had never updated the universal File Explorer app before, Windows Central noted. According to the site's report, Microsoft is planning to use the universal File Explorer on Windows Core OS devices, including the Surface Hub 2, HoloLens 2, Andromeda, and PCs with Polaris.

It's likely that we'll see more updates to universal File Explorer with the upcoming Windows 10 updates.

The big takeaways for tech leaders:

  • With the rollout of the preview of Windows 10 version 1809, Microsoft has updated its universal File Explorer with new features and changes for the first time.
  • Changes to the universal File Explorer include drag and drop support, better right-click menu support, and an improved copy and paste system.

Also see

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Image: CNET

By Alison DeNisco Rayome

Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.