We have a SharePoint 2010 Documents library with many folders and files. Is there a way to have a "view" of this library that displays the items similar to Windows Explorer? In other words, we'd like to see the hierarchy when we click to open a folder -- to see the files within it and its folder name. Thank you.


1 Answer 1


There is an option in the ribbon "Open with Explorer" . This effectively opens the document library in your windows explorer and on the right side of the explorer view you can get to see the hierarchy of the folders and files of the document library.

All you need is update the client browser(IE) with the correct active-x control version that is needed for explorer view and rest is exactly like as if you were browsing a windows directory.

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    There are a lot of problems associated with Explorer View so its use should be discouraged whenever possible.
    – Dave Wise
    Dec 3, 2013 at 19:47
  • Thanks Dave for sharing the input. I was not aware of this. Could you share some known issues
    – ArkoD
    Dec 4, 2013 at 7:51
  • Thanks, Arko D and Dave. Anyone know of a web part that will allow a hierarchical view of the files and folders? It doesn't have to be anything fancy.
    – Alex C
    Dec 4, 2013 at 12:41
  • Arko - the first limitation is whenever there is more than 5,000 items in a folder (usually the root) as this hits the List View Threshold and Explorer View offers no way to use the usual handlers for this. The second is actually a limitation in Windows where if a WebDAV packet returns more than a certain amount of data (like if there were a lot of long file names), it truncates it. In this case, it truncates an XML chunk rendering it useless and showing the user a vague and utterly unrelated message about insufficient permissions. Explorer View also uses potentially different authentication
    – Dave Wise
    Dec 4, 2013 at 16:05
  • Valid points. Such issues are so likely to occur that I will rethink before loosing suggesting clients to use it especially when repository is large and complex. Thanks Dave once again (+1) for this input.
    – ArkoD
    Dec 4, 2013 at 21:53

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