SharePoint 2010: Windows Explorer View is Gone!

Updated 8/5/10


Not new news, and for some people, “good riddance”, but as I had a question about it this week…


SharePoint 2010 has a replacement for the Windows Explorer View, and the old Upload Multiple (sort of… see “Mileage may vary” below) is also gone.  But drag and drop is not gone. Both options have both been replaced with a new Upload Multiple option that supports drag and drop from Windows Explorer into the browser.

Actually the Explorer View is still there, but you many not want to use it after you have seen the new “multiple upload”.  Here’s the new place to find Open with Explorer:



The Open with Explorer and the new Upload Multiple seems to depend on Office 2010 being installed. (For example, if you have Office 64 bit or Internet Explorer 64 bit, a number of Office integration options will not currently work.)


The new Upload Multiple

From a document library click the Documents tab, click the dropdown arrow next to “Upload Document” then click “Upload Multiple Documents”.  (or click Upload Document, then click Upload Multiple



A dialog box will open with a “drag area”.


Note: Prior to dragging files, the Cancel button cancels the dialog box. After you drop a file, the cancel button is grayed out. Going forward it is used to only cancel an upload in progress.  To close the dialog box you will need to click the “X”.


After displaying the above screen you can open a Windows Explorer and then drag files and folders to the browser. What’s interesting is that does not start the upload. It only displays a list of files and lets you remove any you don’t want to upload.



Then when you click OK it starts the upload with nice progress indicators.




If your library has folders, then the dialog will let you select a folder to upload to:



Microsoft did leave something behind that I did wanted changed… the default checked “Overwrite existing files”.  (Let me translate that as “Overwrite existing files” means “Overwrite files created by coworkers who have invested hours, days, weeks in other documents that just happen to have the same name are your documents and don’t warn me that I’m about to destroy them”.)  To see one way to fix that little problem see: http://techtrainingnotes.blogspot.com/2010/02/sharepoint-prevent-accidental.html


Your mileage my vary…

Or in other words… you may see something other than the above!

(For browser compatibility info see here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc263526.aspx)

When using Firefox you may get this option when trying to get to Upload Multiple Documents:


The link above refers to a “Microsoft Office 2010 Firefox Plug-in", but I’ve not found it yet. All web searches for it return the same Microsoft link, or links with copies of that article. If you know where to find this, post a response to this blog and share!  I’ve heard that FireFox 4 might fix this… (now in beta)


Or from from IE 7… I’m not sure yet if this is because or IE 7 or because the machine it was running on (Vista and Office 2007).  This just happens to be the old 2007 upload multiple!



Can you still get to the Explorer View?

If you have Office or IE 64 bit installed you may not find the new multiple upload, or the link in the ribbon to the Windows Explorer View (image ).  You still may be able to get to the Windows Explorer view of SharePoint… Maybe… Open Windows Explorer from the desktop and enter a server style path to your library. It all depends on your network setup.

URL:  http://intranet/sites/demo/Shared%20Documents/Forms/AllItems.aspx

Path: \\intranet\sites\demo\Shared Documents

Basically, remove the “http:”, change all “/” to “\”, replace all escaped characters with their normal characters (“%20” for example, is a space) and remove references to ASPX pages.

URL:  http:  //intranet/sites/demo/ Shared%20Documents   /Forms/AllItems.aspx

Path:        \\intranet\sites\demo\ Shared Documents






Unknown said...

Nice post. I don't see the option to drag-n-drop on mine, it defaults right to the list of items (I believe it is the browse for items option) and never gives me the option to upload via drag-n-drop. Any thoughts?

Anonymous said...

Believe you need to have Silverlight installed for the drag and drop to work. Otherwise you get the old style multiple upload with a list of filenames.

JC said...

Excellent article! Great help!

Paul said...

I originally thought the drag and drop functionality depended on Silverlight however I have now found that it is the version of stsupd.dll in Office that controls it. If you have Office 07 you don't get the drag and drop but with 10 you do. I got round this because I have Office 2007 installed but then installed SHarePoint Designer 2010 and bingo.

Gaurav said...

You are awesome... neatly, simply explained. Screenshots helps big time :)

Jhe said...

Nice.. Ahmm Im having a hard time access the site Windows Explorer View when my OS is XP but its working properly when my OS is Windows 7.

Error on XP OS is:
no network accepted given the network path

Anonymous said...

Opening Windows Explorer through the path scheme seems to only work if you WebApp sits on port 80.

Anonymous said...

Hi. The path does not work on my windows exploror. Do you know what might be blocking it or if there is any other way to open in windows exploro. I've found that I need it mostly for mass copying to my desktop folders.

Downloading is not an option in SharePoint for me, either, as a side note...

Unknown said...

How do you then drag and drop other documents between SharePoint libraries

Mike Smith said...


You can still open a Windows Explorer view of each library and then drag files between them. Or you could open a Windows Explorer view from the "source" library and use the Multiple Upload option of the "destination" library.


Anonymous said...

Excellent! Converting the URL to UNC path worked for me...

Js said...

We have an issue where, if we access a Sharepoint folder using Windows Explorer, and change the filename, the icon changes to a folder. Pressing F5 to refresh returns it to the appropriate icon (Word, Excel, PDF, etc). This does not occur when the file name is changed using the web interface, in the Edit Properties option. Most of our users access their Sharepoint files using Windows Explorer, not the web interface. Would you know, is there a way to prevent the icon from reverting to a folder icon when the file name is changed? Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for showing that explorer view icon :). It saves so much time

Anonymous said...

You rock! Finally I can view sharepoint from windows explorer...

Note to spammers!

Spammers, don't waste your time... all posts are moderated. If your comment includes unrelated links, is advertising, or just pure spam, it will never be seen.