Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Possible Duplicate:
How would I replace default Windows Explorer with an alternative one, say Q-Dir?

I want to change the default file manager from Windows Explorer to Explorer XP. Is this possible? If the answer is "yes", how can I do this?

share|improve this question

marked as duplicate by nhinkle, KronoS, studiohack Feb 15 '11 at 5:55

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

What don't you like about W7 file manager? – Moab Feb 14 '11 at 22:34

Er, if you're asking about ExplorerXP then yes, it works fine. If you're are asking about Windows Explorer, from XP's version then Phoshi is correct. I guess to make it the default manager is to change the shell from explorer to explorerxp ?

share|improve this answer
Hang on, he meant ExplorerXP? Well I'm wrong, then! – Phoshi Nov 15 '09 at 15:56
Well he says "Default File Manager From Windows Explorer to Explorer XP" so I'm assuming he wants ExplorerXP. Either ways, he stands to gain. – Sathya Nov 15 '09 at 16:38
I'm not really "in" the whole Explorer replacement scene, so had forgotten about ExplorerXP's existence. Sorry, ExplorerXp guys! :( – Phoshi Nov 15 '09 at 20:10


The XP version of explorer won't run on 7, but why would you want it to?
If you have problems with the 7 one, it'd be much easier to either work around, or fix them, than use XP's file manager. If you really hate the new one, though, there are alternatives, such as Total Commander.

Edit:If you meant ExplorerXP, as detailed in Sathya's answer, then Yes, yes you can.

share|improve this answer
Thanks!........................... – Shail Nov 15 '09 at 14:24
Note that explorer.exe manages also the Desktop. If you replaced it with another file manager, you loose the Desktop, unless the replacement also manages one on its own. – Snark Nov 15 '09 at 17:53
Nah, you can use a replacement file manager without changing the shell, and vice versa. Takes a bit of trickery, but it's more than possible. – Phoshi Nov 15 '09 at 20:10

You can change the entire shell, there are a few custom shells for windows. A good windows shell is the Cairo Shell. These replace the entire windows shell and give you an entire new user interface.

Cairo Shell:

This doesn't change your operating system, but it does make it look entirely different. Cairo Shell is comparable to Gnome or KDE on linux distributions.

share|improve this answer
CairoShell it's far from being ready and what i've seen so far didn't leave much of an impression. – Molly7244 Nov 15 '09 at 17:19
True thing. I think it would be a great replacement in windows xp, but windows 7 had this dockbar which I find alot handier. That's one thing I miss in ubuntu; DockbarX isn't close to the windows 7 taskbar. – Jeffrey Vandenborne Nov 15 '09 at 18:51
I like Emerge Desktop, for the sheer simplicity and modularity. Cairo left me a bit disappointed, especially seeing as I've been waiting for the public alpha for, what? A year now? More? – Phoshi Nov 15 '09 at 20:11

Give Q-Dir a try, it can be configured as a single pane file manager if you wish.


Frequently asked questions about Q-Dir

share|improve this answer

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .