Microsoft has started rolling out a highly anticipated new feature for Windows 11 that should simplify file and folder navigation.
In the latest preview version of Windows 11 (25136) – now available to members of the early access program – Microsoft has introduced a new tab system in File Explorer, similar to those found in web browsers.
Instead of opening an additional instance of File Explorer to look for a new file location, users can now simply open a new tab, which will look neatly inside the same window.
Windows 11 File Explorer Guides
The new look of File Explorer has been first announced in Aprilduring an event focused on hybrid work innovations for Windows 11.
The goal is simple: reduce desktop clutter and make it easier to work in multiple file locations at the same time, reducing the number of windows open simultaneously.
The announcement was well received by Windows fans, who have been asking for the feature for years; practically since it was introduced to macOS in 2013. Until now, users have depended on third party solutions to enjoy Windows 11 functionality, but no more.
The new tab system isn’t the only change coming to File Explorer, however. As described in a new blog post (opens in new tab)Microsoft has also overhauled the side panel, bringing cloud storage service OneDrive forward.
“File Explorer is introducing an updated layout of the left navigation pane, which will make it easier to navigate to the folders that matter to you,” Microsoft explained. “The updated organization gives you easy access to your pinned and frequently used folders (quick access) and your OneDrive cloud profiles added to Windows.”
Also, classic folders like Documents, Images, Downloads, etc. hard drives and external storage exclusively.
It is still unclear when the new version of File Explorer will reach a full public version, but users can at least take solace in the fact that testing has already begun in earnest.