Features in the Vista Explorer are Somewhat Lost

The question, as asked by live chatter Alix:

I just bought a new laptop that came pre-installed with Vista Business. I upgraded DIRECTLY from 2000, more or less. I have used and still do use it, but I didn’t like it for my personal use. Vista, I am very happy with.

My question is… what happened to the toolbar that was in folder view (and can I get it back)? It’s a tiny think, I know. The toolbar (for clarity) that’s similar to a browser toolbar that had the icons for delete and refresh etc. I know that these options are still available through the ‘Organise’ or through keyboard shortcuts like ‘delete’ and f5′ etc… All Google has come up with (for my search terms anyway) are results on adding toolbars (folders) to the taskbar or desktop.

Thank you (in advance) for any info you can direct my way.

Solution: upgrade back to Windows XP. Microsoft changed the Explorer interface in Vista, and there’s no way around it (other than possibly using third-party Windows Explorer replacements / alternative file manager tools).

And before any of you Windows apologists swing in to “save the day,” Alix is most certainly talking about the Toolbar (which cannot be customized at all). He’s not refering to the Explorer Menu bar, which remains hidden by default (but can be toggled on). There’s a difference.

9 thoughts on “Features in the Vista Explorer are Somewhat Lost”

  1. I really do not like Vistas new explorer interface. While there are some improvements, theres allot of times when I really wish I had that bar back. I wish they would have an option to let it be there.

  2. Hi Chris.

    I’m afraid on this occasion you are wrong. The Windows explorer menu bar (if that’s what Alix is referring to) is still there. You can access it be pressing the ALT key when inside Windows explorer. You can also enable it permanently by going into Control Panel > Folder Options > View [Tab] and checking the box next to the “Always Show Menus” option.


  3. Wow, I never noticed it was gone in the first place.
    I like the new look more, though. I’ll have to remember the ALT key thing, just in case.

  4. … though the recommendation to revert to Windows XP seems a bit drastic. I’d recommend just learning the shortcuts – you’ll end up saving time anyway and you won’t be left in the dust when everything inevitably moves to Vista.

  5. I am not sure why Chris had the response that he did as you can see from the previous respones and also from the below link which is from another writer on his very own website this feature is easily fixable.


    I wonder is it possible that the rather straight forward and possibly harsh answer of just reverting back to Windows XP is a personal preference of Chris’s and not necessarily a good answer. Possibly the best answer might be get Ubuntu.


    Redneck Techy

  6. The most annoying things about Vista Explorer are:

    It does not remember its window settings when you lanuch it, it always launches as a small window in the top left quadrant of the screen, no matter how you arrange it when you exit it.

    It automatically sorts filenames in the right window, especially after you rename something, or extract a compressed file, or whatever. XP used to append new files at the bottom and you could easily find it that way. Vista is incredibly annoying.

    I can’t get a Delete button on the toolbar. WHY?!?

  7. The best part is probably that the “Lock the Toolbars” option remained (right click), but there’s no toolbar to lock… How good is that joke.

  8. Uhhh guys, they’re talking about toolbars not the fricking menu items. Also there is a way to make all folders default to “All Items” instead of one of the crappy media specific views. Just enter this into your registry:

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareClassesLocal SettingsSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsShellBagsAllFoldersShell]

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