Explorer status bar should show more details RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • With Windows 8, Windows Explorer's status bar has taken a major step back. From Windows 95 to Windows XP - Explorer has had this very useful STATUS BAR that displayed very useful information at a glance. 

    In Windows Vista, two features were removed:
     - Total size of ALL files in a folder on the status bar without selecting them all, then excluding folders
     - Tooltip information of single selected file

    Classic Shell fixed that.

    In Windows 7, again three features were removed:
    Free disk space on any volume at the current location
    Computer zone
    Total size of selected files (not total size of all files, but selected files)

    Classic Shell fixed it again.

    In Windows 8, again these features are removed and the only feature left now is total number of items, items selected and size of selected items (but only up to 99 files)

    I was told this info was removed for performance reasons because calculating size is computationally intensive or some bullshit reason like this but that is unacceptable. Having the status bar show this info from Windows 95 to Windows XP didn't make these Windows versions unacceptably slow or unusable, this is a feature power users need all the time. At most, Microsoft should just disable this info by default but not take it out.

    This is the status bar from Windows 7 with Classic Shell installed. (It can fix all of status bar issues on Windows 7/Vista).

    And this is the status bar on Windows 8:

    Plus, in Windows 8, the status bar control is no longer a standard status bar control but uses some private undocumented control (DirectUI stuff). So Classic Shell is no longer able to fix these issues ever. Also, if Classic Shell wants to add its own bar, Explorer provides no notification when the selection changes.

    Even for total size of selected files, Windows 8 Explorer status bar only shows sizes up to 99 files. Select more than 100 files and the status bar doesn't show size any more.

    Why is it that Microsoft continually makes changes to Explorer that make users' life more difficult, remove features and now does not even allow third parties to fix Explorer problems by making use of private controls instead of standard Windows UI controls??

    The very least expectation is an option to turn this on even if Microsoft chooses by default to not show any of the information (just add all the details back to status bar but keep them off by default).

    Every time I need to see free disk space, I don't wish to go to My Computer, nor do I wish to do Ctrl-A, then de-select subfolders, just to simply view size of all files. Ctrl+A to quickly see the size doesn't work as it doesn't show the size even if a single subfolder is selected, so I have to specifically exclude folders from the selection.

    Some examples of users asking about the status bar:

    1. Explorer Status Bar Needs More Info in Win7
    2. File Explorer's Status Bar lost important size/space info from WinXP
    3. How Can I Enable File Features in Explorer Status Bar?
    4. Drive "free space" is missing in Windows Explorer, why?
    5. How to see free disk space in Explorer status bar?
    6. How do I make the status bar in Explorer work properly?
    7. Free space not displayed in Windows Explorer.
    8. Windows Explorer Status bar... missing file status information
    9. "Disk free space" indicator on status bar in Windows Explorer
    10. Free space in status bar not there in Explorer anymore
    11. In Windows XP Pro, there was folder size stated. Is that available in Vista?
    12. Please include Folder Size in Explorer's "Details Pane"

    Changes like these are what kept me on Windows XP for a long time until Classic Shell arrived and now they will keep me on Windows 7. Please fix the status bar and just turn off the info, don't remove it.

    • Changed type Niki Han Monday, May 7, 2012 6:42 AM feedback
    • Moved by David Wolters Tuesday, May 21, 2013 4:05 PM Moving to a more appropriate forum
    Tuesday, March 13, 2012 6:39 PM

All replies

  • What is even worse is that if a certain number of items are selected, you lose the total of the amount selected.

    Select 80 items:

    Select 100 items:


    Wednesday, March 14, 2012 1:22 AM
  • They say they do this for performance. So ridiculous. My dual/quad/hex core PC is now not capable of calculating sizes of more than 99 files without getting slow.
    • Edited by xpclient Wednesday, May 23, 2012 4:52 AM
    Tuesday, May 22, 2012 1:08 PM
  • Sometimes MS gives ridiculously unbelievable explanations. For Windows Phone 7.5 not able to sync emails on WiFi while locked, they said it is by design to preserve battery. So unless you unlock and manually sync, it won't get your new emails. Which totally defies the very purpose of specifying sync intervals. However, it syncs under lock if it is on your service provider's data network (2g/3g/4g which in fact consumes more power).  May be they want you to consume more data and increase your monthly data usage.
    Wednesday, August 15, 2012 6:24 AM
  • Additionally, it no longer displays the file name at the bottom. In details mode, with long filenames this made life so simple, and has been there since at least Windows 95. Brutal decision.
    Monday, August 20, 2012 3:47 AM
  • I only have one question / reply to this....

    HOW COULD THIS BE POSSIBLE?  It is a rudimentary every day used feature that we have all used since 1995....

    This one in particular boggles the imagination....

    Is there a way to run a Windows 95 Explorer in Windows 8????  :-) 

    Thursday, October 18, 2012 2:09 PM
  • It must be because computers are getting less powerful all the time, and disks are getting slower.  ;-)

    In all seriousness it didn't take me more than a few minutes back when I first ran the Windows 8 DP to realize Microsoft had decidedly turned away from serious computing.  Only serious computer users would need those things.  They're frivolous for anyone who is just using their system for entertainment.

    These moves not only represent a reduction of functionality, but a spiteful reduction in the ability for 3rd party developers like Ivo to augment existing functionality.  Microsoft doesn't want us finding utility on the desktop any longer.

    Sometimes I dream that Windows 8 flops like a dead fish and all the bums at the top running things get busted and thrown out.  But then I wake up and realize smart people who really need computers aren't the majority...  Sigh.



    Detailed how-to in my eBooks:  

    Configure The Windows 7 "To Work" Options
    Configure The Windows 8 "To Work" Options

    Friday, October 26, 2012 2:50 AM
  • I completely agree with original poster who clearly outlined the history of the problem. Windows 8 > View > Details pane is no substitute, even if it wasn't so visually intrusive.

    I know it's unlikely, but if anyone ever hears of a way to include the simple and indispensable info in the Status Bar that served us well since Windows 9x, please post here and update this thread.

    And if I may just say, why do we continuously have discussions with them on why removed features were needed and were useful? Every time they bait us into trying to prove the obvious to them, we should push for a new policy with Microsoft developers which says that they can set anything they ultimately decide to be default in Windows, they can remove whichever feature they want... just as long as there is an option (just an option) - no matter how deeply hidden and complicated to get to - which would allow us to re-enable features which they, in their wisdom, removed from Windows.

    It should be repeatedly said to them that there is a reason they should allow Customization: As soon as there is a viable alternative which offers us Customization – we will switch to it, just like we switched away from Internet Explorer when Firefox allowed for Customizations which Internet Explorer did not. Sure there were other reasons, but Customization is the one they often overlook when they have meetings on how to keep/increase Microsoft customer base.

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013 6:40 PM
  • Well, good news. If you try Classic Shell 3.9.5 (or later), it now has the status bar features of Classic Explorer fully operational on Windows 8!! The developer found a way out despite Microsoft's evil attempts to ruin Windows further.

    Tuesday, September 17, 2013 6:35 AM
  • Yes - I noticed the improved status area in Windows 8.  ClassicShell is great!

    I can't help but think people like Ivo are hated by Microsoft because they are continuing to make the desktop more usable all the while Microsoft tries to actively "wean" us all from it (without an alternative).

    I don't have the Windows 8.1 RTM yet, just the Enterprise Preview.  Do you know whether Ivo has looked into restoring the ability to use the standard List Control to Windows 8.1?  I find tools like Windows Options X no longer work to do that there, so one can no longer do things like disable full row selection or have the dates, etc. look more readable.



    Detailed how-to in my eBooks:  

    Configure The Windows 7 "To Work" Options
    Configure The Windows 8 "To Work" Options

    Tuesday, September 17, 2013 1:31 PM
  • Well, good news. If you try Classic Shell 3.9.5 (or later), it now has the status bar features of Classic Explorer fully operational on Windows 8!! The developer found a way out despite Microsoft's evil attempts to ruin Windows further.

    I love classic shell. I just wish it weren't necessary. :( I remember we hassled Sinofsky about this on the Building Windows 8 blog. Of course, in his blinded arrogance, he didn't heed our request.

    • Edited by etacarinae1 Friday, October 11, 2013 1:47 AM
    Friday, October 11, 2013 1:47 AM
  • The title of this thread should really be:  Let users customize the information that appears in the status bar.

    Having just upgraded to desktop Windows 10 from Windows 7, the inability to choose what information appears in the status bar is infuriating.  I write software and therefore live and breathe on creation dates, last modified timestamps, and file sizes.  Waiting 1-2 seconds for a tooltip to appear to show me limited information is ridiculous.  I now have to either view properties on each file, switch back to Windows 95-esque file listings (details view), or drop to the command-line.  None of those options are acceptable.  Let users customize how the status bar works in Windows Explorer.  If there's a performance problem then that decision is on the user for choosing to enable whatever option they enabled.

    Remember:  One size does not fit all.  Power users and software developers need detailed information about files but don't really want that information in the old-school list format.  Frankly, I've always wanted an interpreted programming/scripting language that I can adjust in real-time to control the information that displays in Windows Explorer to adjust every aspect of Explorer to my needs.  In my world, the file system is still absolute king.  As just one minor example of things I need, I need to see NTFS Alternate Data Stream information.  That non-feature of NTFS has an impact on how my code operates and causes me no end of grief in some cases.  Very few users need that information...but I do.  The ability to script Explorer would allow me to have my NTFS Alternate Data Stream information while other users could have their simplified interfaces and be oblivious to even the existence of NTFS.  The ability to script Explorer would let everyone have their custom status bar, title bar, and other bits of UI exactly the way they like it and adjust things by changing a few bits of code that they write/maintain.

    Tuesday, September 8, 2015 2:12 PM
  • Having just upgraded to desktop Windows 10 from Windows 7 ... infuriating.

    As a bird of a feather, my sympathies.  I decided to hold back and only run Win 10 on a VM. 

    Not that I haven't configured Win 10 into a nice system - hell, I've even made it look good on the desktop but now besides it not really providing anything that's better than its predecessors, we're also faced with "continuous updates".  Does anyone really think that the OS being stable for only a period of months is going to be a good thing?

    Apparently providing choice is considered tantamount to allowing users to get themselves into trouble by today's Microsoft.  The trouble is that they made the "power user" behavior we relied upon now impossible to achieve.

    Your old Win 7 license is still good if you should decide to resurrect your old system.


    Detailed how-to in my eBooks:  

    Configure The Windows 7 "To Work" Options
    Configure The Windows 8 "To Work" Options

    Wednesday, September 9, 2015 4:34 AM
  • Just had to update from Win 7 to Win 10 on work and its a mess in terms of productivity...

    In Windows 7, you could display the details pane (in the bottom) and a file preview (on the right-hand side), which was great to quickly go through images and also see which resolution they had (see https://techrena.net/enable-details-pane-windows-7-explorer/ ). Very important as I often work with graphics, i.e. for presentations or reports and sometimes have the same image in different resolutions/file sizes.

    Now it's either possible by hovering the image and waiting for the tooltip (which is much slower than quickly navigation with the keyboard arrows and lokk at the detail bar) or by the details pane.

    Although the details pane is very nice in Windows 7, it just shows a tiny preview. It would be great to show both preview and details pane on the right side (e.g. preview on top right, details on bottom right) and individually change the size of the preview height...

    Thursday, October 17, 2019 1:26 PM