Windows Explorer is good but that’s it, we can’t comment much more about its user friendliness or the features that could help an end user save much more time and could have also saved me the time in writing down this article. Below is a list of some of the best folder and file management software that could serve as a very good replacement for windows explorer.

If you are very reluctant in using other software’s, do not worry I don’t recommend something that is harmful to your system. The file management software listed here are tested by myself and then only recommended.

Q- Dir File Management Software

  • Q-Dir comes in both installable and portable versions.
  • Since you are just planning to try it out, I recommend that you just download the portable version (779 KB) and extract the zip file contents.
  • Run the Q-Dir.exe to get started, you will be presented with a license agreement just click ok.
  • Whenever you close the Q-Dir and re-open it, the same folder where you were is presented to you. Q-Dir saves you the hassle of again navigating back to the folder which you were viewing earlier.
  • By default you get four panes view of folder explorer that allows you to easily move files just by dragging and dropping files from one pane to another. No longer you have to do good old ALT + TAB :-)
  • You can also bookmark a particular view (use bookmarks menu) just like you bookmark a website and quickly bring back that same view of folders.
  • You can also book mark a specific folder using the Quick-link feature.

Q Dir Add Quick Link Feature

  • You have some default programs mapped that could be executed from Q-Dir, if you would like to add more programs you can very well do so. Just go to Extras menu -> …more options, click Programs tab and locate the executable of the program that you would like to add.

Multi Commander

  • Multi Commander also comes in both installable and portable versions (8.16 MB).
  • Download the portable version and extract the file contents and run the MultiCommander.exe.

About Multi Commander

  • The dual layout panel is simple and neat. You can access the Panel 1 using ALT + F1 and Panel 2 using ALT + F2 shortcut keys. The layout panels also can help you to view the folders in tree structure, just using the shortcut key ALT + NUM + *
  • You can also have just one panel if you want or switch to vertical layout if you are dizzy by looking from left panel to right panel.
  • The button panel you see at the bottom can be used to invoke external programs or some functions with Multi Commander, use the Button Editor in the Configuration Menu to change the way some of the existing buttons work. You can toggle the button panel using the shortcut key CTRL + B
  • The Tools menu has some pretty good stuff, say for example you can actually strip EXIF Meta data from pictures, and rename all files to either Upper or Lowercase, and much more other helpful functionalities.
  • The search functionality available in Extensions menu-> File Search is not that good (i am addicted to Everything and Agent Ransack) and when I tested it did miss some important search results.

Folders Popup

  • Folders Popup comes in both installable and portable versions.
  • Download the portable version (1.16 MB) and extract the contents.
  • Run either FoldersPopup-5_1_2-64-bit.exe or FoldersPopup-5_1_2-32-bit.exe depending on your system, you can find it using this tool too.
  • Once you run the executable it will be minimized to the notification tray.
  • To use Folders Popup just use the shortcut key windows key + A or middle mouse button. It doesn’t provide you any interface to browse files and folders. Folders Popup is just used to quickly launch your favorite folders easily.

Folders Popup File Management Software

  • You can also group a set of folders and open them easily using the Group of Folders feature. A very simple but powerful tool that is very handy once you get used to it.

7-zip File Manager

  • Are you already using 7-zip then do you know that there is a file manager that comes with it?

7 Zip File Management Software

  • 7-zip file manager has two panels, comes with pretty basic stuff like add folder to favorites, folders history, select files of specific type in a folder which is sufficient for most of the end users.
Well these are some of the best file management tools that I am aware of and been using it for a while, so do try them out and spread the word if you are benefited.