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How to Improve File Explorer Performance When Opening Large Folders

Have you ever noticed that File Explorer slows down to a crawl when opening large folders? For example, if you are opening a folder with a few thousand files in it, File Explorer slows down significantly. This is because File Explorer is trying to auto-discover the file type of each file as they are loading if they are not already known or determined. This specific issue has been haunting users since Windows 7 days.

To fix this problem and make File Explorer load files faster, you need to disable file type parsing. To do this, you must modify the registry. In this article, we’ll show you how to do that. Let’s get started.

Note: The steps below will work in Windows 11, 10, 8.1, 8, and 7.

Improve File Explorer When Opening Large Folders

1. First, press the Windows key + R to open the Run dialog.

2. In the Run dialog, enter regedit and click OK to open the Windows Registry Editor.

regedit run command to open registry editor

3. Once it opens, navigate to the below folder in the Registry Editor.

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Shell\Bags\AllFolders\Shell

4. Right-click on the Shell folder and select New > String Value. This creates a new empty view.

right-click on the shell folder and select new and then string value

5. Set the new value’s name as FolderType.

6. Right-click on the FolderType value and select Modify.

right-click on the value and select modify

7. Enter NotSpecified in the Value Data field and click OK.

Type NotSpecified in the value data field and click ok

8. Once you made these changes, close the Registry Editor window and then restart your computer.

After restarting, File Explorer will not try to determine the file types on the file making it much faster and more responsive when dealing with large folders.

And there you have it! It’s that simple to speed up the File Explorer and improve its performance when dealing with large folders on Windows.

Credits: This tip was first published by @timonsku on X (Twitter)

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