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When you open an Explorer window, you can focus on a file by starting to type its name. For example, if I have the following list of files, sorted by type:

ABC.ini.bak
DEF.ini.bak
[... few hundred more .ini files ...]
ABC.ini
DEF.ini

I could focus on "ABC.ini.bak" by typing "AB".

However, what if I actually want to select "ABC.ini", and not the ".bak" file?

Because it's sorted by type, I would have to scroll through hundreds of other files before reaching "ABC.ini" itself.

Is there a key which will allow me to jump to the "next match" when typing like this?

So I'd type "AB", it would focus on "ABC.ini.bak", then I'd hit [some key] and it'd focus on "ABC.ini" itself?

  • No such magical key or option AFAIK. – Karan Apr 23 '13 at 0:25
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    using the search feature of Windows 7 would be a much easier option, by searching for ABC* – user13267 Apr 23 '13 at 2:52
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    @user13267: Of course. But that isn't really suitable for day-to-day browsing of files when you just want to open one quickly. – WackGet May 2 '13 at 3:35
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I use the keyboard all the time to select files.

Depending on the names of the hundreds of other files between ABC.ini.bak and ABC.ini, you can do this:

Type ABC... (it selects ABC.ini.bak)... then pause a moment (~ 1 sec), then type ABC again... It should select the next "ABC"-named file... If the next "ABC" named file is ABC.ini, then it'll highlight. (If you've got many other files starting with "ABC", then it'll have to go thru those first).

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  • (I know OP was on Win7). I‘m on Win10 1903 and I could not figure out how the results were sorted when searching by just typing. It is not depending on the column I have currently sorted. Neither is it by filename nor by file type nor by last modified or another date I could pin it to. I know it is not random but to me as a user it feels random. I also get back to a file the explorer already selected before sometimes. This just feels buggy as hell. – bugybunny Sep 26 '19 at 9:23

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