When viewing a list of files in Windows 7 Explorer, how do I sort by "order in the directory"? One might also call this the order the files were copied into the folder, or perhaps the "no sort" order.

(I am curious because my car audio player plays files off a USB drive in this "unsorted" order.)

  • you just need to use a FAT sorting tool instead of messing with sorting in explorer, since there's no way to sort it that way. Or if you want to get the real order, use dir command
    – phuclv
    Aug 13 '18 at 16:30

You can try option like "Date Created" if you want to check them in order you copied the directory. For this right click in the explorer and now choose "Sort by>More.." now a popup will appear and then find the option by scroll down.

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Now mark the option you want to add in the right click menu and click OK. Now you can see that option in right click context menu under sub-menu of "Sort by".

  • this is close but not correct, because the position of the file can be changed when moving or defragging
    – phuclv
    Aug 13 '18 at 16:29

If you copied a file into a directory, the "date accessed" and "date created" reflect when the copy occurred. You can simply add those columns to the file explorer and sort by them.

If you simply moved (dragged and dropped) the files to their location, there is no column to indicate when that occurred.

  • USB devices usually use FAT32 as file system and AFAIR "date accessed" is an NTFS only property. And file creation date of a copied file still remains the same.
    – Robert
    Nov 19 '12 at 15:39

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