I do know about the existence of alternative shells such as SharpE, Emerge Desktop, Ashton Shell, BB4Win, etc... I've looked into a few of those popular/famous ones, but they all seem to be very desktop-centric. That is, they transform how your desktop, task bar and start menu looks. But what I am really interested in is changing the actual "explorer" part of Explorer in Windows 7. That is, this:
Those shells I named don't seem to do anything about that. (Or did I miss something??) Once I start opening folders, I'll still have to deal with the above-pictured Windows Explorer. Classic Shell is along the lines of what I'm looking for: it adds useful copy/paste, etc. icons, can remove the breadcrumbs, and even changes dialog boxes when overwriting files. That's good but not enough. Does anyone know of more powerful alternatives?
I've been suggested to try things like Total Commander. From what I understand, though, the problem with that is that I would specifically have to open that program in order to use it. That's not the same as shell replacement because if I were to open a folder on my desktop, I would still bring up Windows Explorer. Right? Ideally, I wish to be able to use my computer in the same way as the default way, but so that every time I browse folders and files, some alternative interface is what I deal with. Does anyone know of an alternative shell that provides that, better than Classic Shell does?
EDIT: I forgot to mention, I also get bugged by some small details of dialog box behavior in Windows 7. For example, if I am opening a file, I have to first click inside the file selection window before I can start scrolling using the mouse scroll wheel. It's one extra click but it's annoying. It doesn't make sense! And Windows XP didn't have this issue. Would any alternative shell also "fix" that??