Improving our file management basics: copy, move, rename, and delete


We wanted to do an early Windows 8 post about one of the most used features, and one we have not improved substantially in a long time. With the increasing amount of local storage measured in terabytes, containing photos (in multiple formats and very large files), music, and video, these common operations are being taxed in new ways. These changes, along with consistent feedback about what we could improve, have inspired us to take a fresh look and redesign these operations. Of course this is just one feature among many, but we wanted to start with something we can all relate to. Alex Simons is a director of program management on our Windows engineering team and authored this post on the redesign of some Windows file management basics. (PS: A lot of folks asked about Building Windows 8 Video #1 — this is the user experience demo, http://win8.ms/uxpreview1.  The numbering seems to be confusing so this will be our last numbered video.)–Steven

Copying, moving, renaming, and deleting are far and away the most heavily used features within Windows Explorer, representing 50% of total command usage (based on Windows 7 telemetry data). For Windows 8, we want to make sure that using these core file management commands, which we collectively refer to as “copy jobs,” is a great experience.

We know from telemetry data (which is based on hundreds of millions of individuals opting in to provide anonymous data about product usage), that although 50% of these jobs take less than 10 seconds to complete, many people are also doing much larger jobs, 20% of which take more than 2 minutes to complete. Prior versions of Windows Explorer can handle these kinds of jobs, but Explorer isn’t optimized for high-volume jobs or for executing multiple copy jobs concurrently.

Usability studies confirm what most of us know—there are some pretty cluttered and confusing parts of the Windows 7 copy experience. This is particularly true when people need to deal with files and folders that have the same file names, in what we call file name collisions. Lastly, our telemetry shows that 5.61% of copy jobs fail to complete for a variety of different reasons ranging from network interruptions to people just canceling the operation.

We clearly have an opportunity to make some improvements in the experience of high-volume copying, in dealing with file name collisions, and in assuring the successful completion of copy jobs.

Many of you reading this blog post come at this from a slightly different perspective. Like me, you might already have a third-party copy management tool that already addresses these high-volume scenarios. Our telemetry data shows that the most popular of these add-ons (such as TeraCopy, FastCopy, and Copy Handler) are running on fewer than .45% of Windows 7 PCs. While that might be a large absolute number given the size of the Windows 7 customer base, it still tells us that most people do not have a great tool for high-volume copy jobs.

We aren’t aiming to match the feature sets of these add-ons. We expect that there will be a vibrant market for third-party add-ons for a long time. Our focus is on improving the experience of the person who is doing high-volume copying with Explorer today, who would like more control, more insight into what’s going on while copying, and a cleaner, more streamlined experience.

In Windows 8, we have three main goals for our improvements to the copy experience:

  • One place to manage all copy jobs: Create one unified experience for managing and monitoring ongoing copy operations.
  • Clear and concise: Remove distractions and give people the key information they need.
  • User in control: Put people in control of their copy operations.

Based on these goals, we made four major improvements to the copy experience. Here is a short video demo of these improvements—but keep reading for a more detailed tour.


If you don’t see a video here or can’t play it, download it here: High quality MP4 | Low quality MP4

First, we’ve consolidated the copy experience. You can now review and control all the Explorer copy jobs currently executing in one combined UI. Windows 8 presents all pending copy jobs in this single dialog, saving you from having to navigate through multiple floating dialogs looking for the one you need.

Figure 1 - Consolidated copy (fewer details view)

Next, we’ve added the ability to pause, resume, and stop each copy operation currently underway. This gives you control over which copy jobs will complete first. You can also click any of the source or destination folders while the copy operation is taking place and open up those folders.

Figure 2 - Pause (fewer details view)

To support this new ability to prioritize and decide, we’ve added a detailed view with a real-time throughput graph. Now each copy job shows the speed of data transfer, the transfer rate trend, and how much data in left to transfer. While this is not designed for benchmarking, in many cases it can provide a quick and easy way to assess what is going on for a particular job.

Here you can see three copy jobs underway:

Figure 3 - Consolidated copy (more details view)

And here you can see how the speed of file transfer increases substantially when two of the copy jobs are paused:

Figure 4 - Pause (more details view)

We’re anticipating that many of you are going to want to know what we’ve done to improve the accuracy of the estimated time remaining for a copy to complete. (This has been the source of some pretty funny jokes over the years).

Estimating the time remaining to complete a copy is nearly impossible to do with any precision because there are many unpredictable and uncontrollable variables involved – for instance, how much network bandwidth will be available for the length of the copy job? Will your anti-virus software spin up and start scanning files? Will another application need to access the hard drive? Will the user start another copy job?

Rather than invest a lot of time coming up with a low confidence estimate that would be only slightly improved over the current one, we focused on presenting the information we were confident about in a useful and compelling way. This makes the most reliable information we have available to you so you can make more informed decisions.

Our last major set of improvements simplify and clean up the experience for resolving file name collisions, which we also refer to as “conflict resolution.” At this point we can admit that the current experience can be rather confusing. People don’t know which files are which, and they find it challenging to find the information they need to make a decision.

Figure 5 - Windows 7 conflict

Windows 7 Conflict Resolution dialog

 

Our new design is much more clear, concise, and efficient, providing a much more visible and actionable approach to conflict resolution. All the files from the source are on the left. All the files in the target location with file name collisions are on the right. The screen layout is easy to understand and shows you the critical information for all the collisions, front and center in one dialog.

Figure 6 - Conflict (more details)
The new Windows 8 Conflict Resolution dialog

If you need to know even more about the conflicting files, you can hover over the thumbnail image to see the file path or  double-click it to open it from here.

Finally, in addition to these big improvements, we’ve also done a thorough scrub and removed many of the confirmation dialogs that you’ve told us are annoying or feel redundant (i.e. “are you sure you want to move this file to the recycle bin?” or “are you sure you want to merge these folders?”) to create a quieter, less distracting experience.

All of this adds up to building a significantly improved copy experience, one that is unified, concise, and clear, and which puts you in control of your experience.

–Alex Simons

Comments (630)

  1. Good stuff says:

    Any Windows user knows that it's the small changes that make a big difference! THANK YOU!

  2. Robbo says:

    Wow! Looks cool. Keep up the good work.

  3. RavG says:

    The explorer UI in graph view has a very flat chrome. Look way better than the legacy Vista chrome.

  4. Robbo says:

    What about that problem where you're copying hundreds of files and there's a problem somewhere and instead of telling you the problem and what you can do to fix it, the whole thing just stops, and you have to manually find the problem, sort it out, and then start the whole copy procedure again. That would be good to be fixed also.

  5. Ben says:

    The yellow "pause" color looks like a slow transfer more than a paused transfer

  6. Rico Alexander says:

    Nice!  I do hope with get a cleaner chrome though, one that matches the Metro solid color look instead the fake glass we're currently seeing.

  7. Luke says:

    These new dialogs look good, I am looking forward to a better experience with file operations 🙂

  8. x9 says:

    The 'Choose Files' dialog is a UX disaster…

  9. @x9 — can you be more constructive or specific?

  10. gawicks says:

    Please Please display all the copy 'error dialogs' after the copying has completed .So I don't have to sit infront of the machine all the time.

  11. RavG says:

    I loooove the centered title bar text.

  12. Sebastian Foss says:

    I really like the new copy dialogs including the detailed transfer speed information etc. Keep up the good work and the innovative enhancements.

  13. ReleaseWin8BeforeIpad3 says:

    Kinda agree with x9… The dialgoue has no indication why it is being presented (unlike the Win 7 version which tells you there is a file with the same name.. nicely put..simple and easy to grasp). "The copied file will have a number added to its name"… SERIOUSLY?!! Thats a disaster of a warning. Just ask a non power user (ask a non geeky wife, kid etc what sense it makes to them) …  Make the UX guys work harder on that dialgoue.. I prefer the current dialogue.. and I am trying hard to think in terms of KISS not as a geek.

  14. Vinicius Fox says:

    It is getting a new level, it's awesome the new Windows 8 and every change too! I Hope to have beta for users soon!

  15. Here-Here for gawicks says:

    @gawicks

    Please Please display all the copy 'error dialogs' after the copying

    has completed .So I don't have to sit infront of the machine all the time.

    Yes!  I second this!  This would be much nicer to have than the moving throughput charts.

  16. Joe says:

    With the conflict files dialog box, what happens if there are a ton of conflicting files? Is there a limit on how many files appear on the dialog box?

  17. Phil B says:

    I think every time I have a file name conflict I always want to replace the existing files with the new one.  The default UX seems to suggest that replacing and keeping the existing files are equally common tasks.  I'm curious if my usage pattern is consistent with the telemetry data.

  18. ReleaseWin8BeforeIpad3 says:

    To add to my previous comment.. I cared enough to ask a couple of folks in the room who are not geeks but use Win 7 almost daily.. a fair bit.

    They did not understand what "a number added to its name" would do and what it exactly meant. Also, had it not been for pictures (so it was word docs or other file types) they would have no clue that the dialgoue is presented because of a name conflict. In their words "i guessed it was files with the same name because the thumbnails loooked the same"

  19. PleaseBeNice says:

    Please make copying LARGE files into and out of zip archives reliable — it doesn't even have to be fast, I just want the MD5 hashes of the large files going into the zip be the same as when I later extract them.  On Windows 7 I have to use a third-party zip tool to make it work right.

  20. AFurtado says:

    What about gray instead of yellow for the paused copy charts?

  21. Jawkins says:

    As the dialog box appears now, there is no one-click option that replicates the existing "Copy, but keep both files" in Windows 7.

    I think a check box for keeping both version of the files in conflict would keep you from taking a step backwards.

    I like seeing these new features as they are being developed! I use TeraCopy and look forward to not having to install it on Windows 8

  22. Hypernova says:

    Could you add an option somewhere to always show "more details" by default?  Or make it an registry entry or something, please?

    I know this will make things a little on the "too complicated" side, but would you consider an option to make it a queue system, i.e. a check box to "Do the action one at a time."  So the user does not have to pause and unpause manually?

  23. schneider says:

    yellow is confusing. it should be grey when its paused to show its not active. yellow is more like yellow, orange, green – the colors indicating the health/speed of something

  24. The concept looks quite good, but what doesn't look good is Aero. It looks dated (it is a Vista interface after all) and I really hope there will be enough courage in MS to replace it with Metro throughout Windows. I think that would make a much larger difference and an incentive for people to upgrade from W7 than these small improvements. Talking about small improvements, the thing that annoys me the most in current Windows Explorer is the need to click into each pane to be able to scroll it. Are there any plans to make panes scrollable on hover on non-touch screen machines?

  25. Garyk says:

    this is nice, i wish i could get rid of full row select. it's really annoying trying to drag files to a folder, when only sub folders are visible, and trying to find white space to drop the files i'm copying so they don't end up in one of the sub folders.

    can't tell you how many times this happens, then i have to open folders or search to find where they went.

    i have a nice powerpoint presentation, if you're interested.

  26. Oleg says:

    Also have to say i agree with @x9. Maybe instead of clicking those checkboxes, for each conflict you can just choose the file you want to keep. The checkboxes are cluttering the interface and need precision when clicking them – so if you have 20 conflicting files you would spend a while clicking them…

  27. Anonymous says:

    How about some more smarts in the conflict resolver?

    No need to display a thumbnail if:

    1) the files have the same name and

    2) they have the same size and

    3) their checksums match (or you could do a byte-by-byte comparison)

    My time is more valuable than my computer's – let it do some crunching beforehand to avoid asking me to decide something obvious.

  28. bmoura says:

    Very nice!  Those are some improvements that many Windows users will be able to benefit from right away.  

  29. Matthew Weihl says:

    I thought there were some flaws in the dialog. The colors seem wrong in my opinion –  a pause should be more of a red (think stop lights). Here's a (very quick!) mockup I made that shows some of the changes that should be made.

    http://yfrog.com/gz7v0qp

  30. Jeff says:

    Holy crap – you're seriously going to stop asking me if I'm sure I want to recycle a file and just move it to the recycle bin! Yes! Finally! That has been the most annoying dialog ever!

  31. Dafin0 says:

    @schneider

    i agree, when watching the video without sound i thought that yellow was saying it was going slow

    of course you would quickly learn this is not the case but to me gray would be a better colour

  32. Resplendent says:

    I agree with Oleg. Perhaps just clicking on the image you want to keep would highlight it (draw a semi-transparent colored fill-rectangle around it), which would also make it much easier to verify which one you wanted while skimming back over the list.

  33. Bas says:

    This is great! I do a lot with USBs and stuff, so I'm going to love this.

  34. Yoshihiro Kawabata says:

    Please friendly to

    1. Touch friendly = easy to operate on Touch Device.

    2. Clowd friendly = async on slow network.

    3. Mobile friendly = pause/resume on wi-fi / 3G network.

    4. Big friendly = easy to use over 10,000 files, over 100GB files.

  35. Y.do says:

    Nice! But I would like to see cleaner chrome as well. Like in the Metro UI. Perhaps a choice between a dark and a light color. At least in the dialog boxes. Keep up the good work  🙂

  36. Y.do says:

    Keep up the good work 🙂

  37. Necroman says:

    I got a question, what about Metro UI? Shouldn't you update your dialogs to match the prepared Metro UI (I really like the style in my HTC HD7 phone)? These updated copy dialogs looks to me like W7 dialogs with little tuning. I would expect something more in these revolutionary Windows 😉

  38. Jijia says:

    I like it!

  39. Can you please make the choose files more detailed?

    Also instead of the checkboxes can't you just select the image instead just like opening a image base link on HTML?

  40. Ian Aldrighetti says:

    Hmm… My comment didn't seem to get through.

    Anyways, I agree that paused operations should be red. Think of it like a traffic light, where green is go, yellow means to only continue if you are in the intersection and red is stop.

    Also, what about a "mass apply" option for conflict resolution? There is no way to say "Replace with {newer, older, smaller, larger}" files. Also, what if there are hundreds of conflicts which need resolution? That will be a huge pain in the rear-end.

    What about ZIP support? While there are options such as WinZip and 7-zip that is still no excuse for Windows Explorer's implementation to be horribly slow. If Explorer is going to support ZIP's natively it should be able to do it quickly. Extracting ZIP's with the built-in extractor is just plain slow.

  41. Jeff Therrien says:

    You should be able to click on the image thumb and/or file icon instead of the checkbox in order to select it. Is this currently how things are? It wasn't shown in the video.

    Or what about ditching the checkboxes and just have an outline or background colour applied to the selected copy?

    Looks like a great improvement from W7. Good work!

  42. David says:

    Your blog hasn't addressed some users concerns regarding copying files to USB sticks with multiple copies in progress at once. Currently (Win7) if you copy say three files to a USB stick the transfer will run at nearly the USB sticks max write speed – or there about. Each file is copied one after the other.

    However, if you copy the same three files at the same time (using three different copy dialogues, starting one copy directly after the first and so on) the total transfer speed is no where near the same — So coping the same three files takes way longer. Windows should handle this situation. Devices that cannot handle multiple concurrent writes should have their copies put into a que rather than attempting all concurrently.

  43. Bob says:

    A useful feature would be for the copying not to choke on a file, but for other files to keep transferring in the background, while a non-obstructive error message pops up telling me that some files need help.

    That way I could transfer copy lots of files, walk away and when I come back the dialog has not choked on file 3 and completely stopped, but rather has copied all the files except the few files needing attention.

  44. Abhishek says:

    File copying mech. is simply borrowed from linux…. :-V

  45. Great job! It looks fantastic!

  46. kaspik says:

    Nice! now implement queue :).. Same as in totalcmd 😉

  47. These changes look well worth having.

    There is an issue I regularly strike, that you mention as a current issue: "…  Explorer isn’t optimized for … executing multiple copy jobs concurrently."

    I often find myself wanting to move or copy several sets of folders simultaneously – for example, I plug my phone in, and want to get the latest photos and latest sound recordings off it. Or move older documents and music and photos from my laptop to archival storage. I currently have to do these copies one set of folders at a time, as doing multiple jobs simultaneously takes many times longer that each one individually. Presumably the copy jobs run in ignorance of each other and cause the drives involved to thrash.

    I'd be curious to say what telemetry tells you, but I suspect there are many people wanting to perform simultaneous copies in this fashion, who currently have the annoying copy, wait, copy, wait, etc experience.

    I see that you've consider this issue as you show us "And here you can see how the speed of file transfer increases substantially when two of the copy jobs are paused:"

    Which is a better user story than we used to have, but still painful, as it involves manual intervention, which if you have several copy jobs you wish to do taking  30 minutes or more each is a nasty user experience.

    I'd ask you to please consider building some form of queueing into the copy system. Especially as you have taken the first step, and already have all currently running file operations centrally managed. Enhancing what's there with intelligence to

    • only allow one operation per device(*),
    • sort the operations so the most efficient operations (or fastest operations?) happen first, whilst allowing as many devices to be working as possible

    • allow the user to drag and drop the operations to override that ordering if they have their own preferences

    wouldn't be trivial, it wouldn't be impossible, and would provide a fantastic user experience for those of us shuffling multiple sets of large files between multiple devices.

    Thanks for your consideration, and the chance to provide feedback like this.

    (*) unless the device doesn't suffer from trashing? I've never come across one, but I don't know that much.

  48. Would like to see a new visual style that is squared off and glass – Metro Glass, can see this in detailed view, please UI team, create a super stylish UI for desktop.

  49. Tom Campbell says:

    Finally! I hope it covers gracefully the case where the target filename is too long. Ideally it would cover this by allowing arbitrarily long filenames.

  50. Agree with @Hypernova, please add a "queuing" system in file operation, as doing multiple file operations with HDD will kill the machine.

  51. Chris says:

    The orb is gone! (at least at the start it was)

  52. Chris says:

    The orb is gone! (at least at the start it was)

  53. Mahasweta Dash says:

    Will be easy to copy multiple movies to my laptop 🙂 Well..but I doubt it will make the system slow down tremendously.

  54. Jeroen Ritmeijer says:

    I am a long time TeraCopy user as the various versions of Windows have never been able to provide a reliable experience for transferring large files over a network, even a fast local network. It is great to see you are addressing some of the shortcomings and I hope it includes the following:

    1. Automatic retry (resume) mechanism
    2. Copy operations are paused by default when another copy operation to that volume is already in progress (your own tests show that this will improve throughput).

    I agree with some of the other comments about the new conflict resolution UI. My first impression is that it is not clear at all. I wouldn't wish that screen on a non power user.

    Keep up the good work though.

  55. JL says:

    You know when you start a big copy job and realize that you are doing it over the wireless.  So you grab a network cable and plug it in.

    Does the file copy know to utilize the faster connection now?  Perhaps after you pause the copy and then resume it?

  56. Daniel D says:

    Will it be possible to pause the copy operation and resume it after reboot/sleep/hibernate? The scenario is following – sometimes I have to copy many/big files, but have no time to wait for completion. I want to be able to shutdown the PC and it will resume the copy after restart. Will be also great to have an option to shutdown the PC after copy operation completes.

  57. Ricardo says:

    None of the interfaces shown seem suitable for touch use. What about that?

  58. I remember the time thing when it comes to copy, i observed the differences in all releases since windows 98 it has been improving and this one seems more compelling to me, Good Work. looks like Windows Team is working very hard to kick all.

  59. krycek(lx) says:

    Please install and try supercopier first (supercopier.sfxteam.org) then make their features basic stuff in Windows 8. Then you could talk about copy management.

  60. Yes, remove the orb please – it is dated, just the flag is right! Remember the correct use of padding or margin on these things, the flag as the same size it is now without the orb is best – I noticed the repositioning of the 'More Details' text to be vertically aligned and have better left margin form the sprite – seems someone is thinking about the details. I agree that errors should be dealt with at the end of a file copy especially on large jobs, I hate coming back to my desk an hour later to find it has stopped at 30% for the sake of a file.

  61. I'd like to echo Jawkins' comment. "Keep both and rename" needs to stay. I organize pictures by folder and don't really care about file names. So, having (1), (2)… appended to the file name is no problem. In fact, it's preferred because it allows me to copy files more quickly.

  62. Enrico says:

    Along with double clicking the thumbnail to preview the file, I suggest that hovering over a thumbnail on the 'Conflict Resolution Dialog' will also give you a larger view of the image.

  63. Cranialsurge says:

    FINALLY focus on some KEY areas here that have in my opinion been ignored for way too long. Pat pat.

  64. Andy says:

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

    Bring back the .GIF animation support in picture viewer of Windows

  65. FremyCompany says:

    What about merging this dialog with the IE Downoad Manager?

    If we think about it, downloading a file is very similar to copy a file over the network. You get the same challenges about limited bandwidth, concurrent downloads,…

  66. Greg Mandel says:

    Would it be too much to ask to have a key combination for 'Invert Selection'?

  67. Helmer says:

    Wauw….this looks very cool! Can't wait for the BETA to arrive!!!

  68. Sometimes trying to delete or modify a file in any other way causes Windows to report that the file cannot be modified due to it being in use and offer to try again.That is a good behavior but naturally, Windows should assume that user's wishes are more important than those of the process that have file in use. I hope that Windows 8 team will address this issue and give user more control over his files and will ensure that file handles will not get corrupted.

  69. Thanks for all the feedback and suggestions. Please keep them coming.  To answer a few questions that people have posed:

    @gawicks – conflicts are all queed to the end of the copy job. So we finish all the copies that don't have name collisions, and then ask you to resolve the remaining conflicts.

    @Hypernova – the "More details" is sticky – once you open it, all your future copy jobs will show more details until you close it.

    From the comments it sounds like my post might be a bit confusing in terms of how often users will see the conflict resolution dialog. If you watch the video, you'll see that when we detect a name collision the first dialog is pretty simple and has only three options (replace, skip or choose). We expect that in the large majority of cases people will just pick replace. It's only if you choose to choose for each file that you get to the resolution dialog.

    Also thanks for the feedback on colors. We're still working on final color schemes.

    Regards,

    Alex

  70. Thank you for investing time and effort in this crucial area. From my point of view there are two thing's that I would further improve: 1) Altthouhg the "conflicting files" dialog looks far more clean than previous ones, I would simply rename the actions that are on the top of the list to "Overwrite files in <location>" and "Keep files in <location>". 2) this one hasn't been mentioned in your blog post, but please make explorer UAC aware! It is really cumbersome to get multiple confirmation dialogs(even when you run as an administrator on a server). Thank you, Christian

  71. Andrew F says:
    • Checkboxes are small. Just click the image. Bigger target.

    • How will this integrate with the tablet / tiles UI shown off at All Things D? The big question on a lot of people's minds is whether it's possible to maintain the touch-friendly (and simple) interface without dropping into a traditional Windows UI.

  72. Spike says:

    Looks good. What about the option from 7 where you could select 'do this for the next n conflicts'?

    For example, if doing a simple backup of 100s of images by copying the content of a directory to another directory in which we have 10 new images.

    Then I do not want to have to check 100s of checkboxes in order to leave existing files 'as is'.

  73. Pranav says:

    A long time wish list as windows user to allow to pause copy paste operations.

    Seems very intresting, do this will get backport to windows 7 using SP2 in near future???

  74. Ashwin Nanjappa says:

    Good improvements. Just one thing though: I am not sure removing the merge warning was a good idea. It is always nice to know when I am merging contents of folders.

  75. @Steven Sinofsky

    Thats cool. Yesterday i thought about that and posted that in the USB3.0 post and now i saw this video and  you already implent such a feauture.

    Great work. and progress.

  76. Ash says:

    It really bugged me when he hit 'more details', then had to drag the window back up to the center of the screen, because the details didn't fit in view.

  77. Tobi says:

    Will it be possible to pause the copy operation and resume it after reboot/sleep/hibernate? The scenario is following – sometimes I have to copy many/big files, but have no time to wait for completion. I want to be able to shutdown the PC and it will resume the copy after restart. Will be also great to have an option to shutdown the PC after copy operation completes.

  78. Hypernova says:

    @AlexSi So if I choose "More Detail" once, and every actions is done.  Then, next time I do another copy/move job (let's say after a restart), the file transfer dialog will appear with More Detail by default?  Or do you mean it's only sticky until the dialog is closed?  If it's the former, then that's great!  If it's the latter, though, then please make an option to make it permanent.  And thanks for you answer.

  79. Michael Milem says:

    Could the guys working on the user interface please remove the focus rectangle dots? It's about the worst thing in WIndow's UI these days. Most UI elements where this is plagued already have a nice blue focus image to tell the user that this control is focused therefor making it redundant. If it needs to be there for other reasons, could you at least update it. Perhaps a solid light blue line. That old black dots thing is just awful, inconsistent, and outdated. It needs to either go or be revised.

  80. Sean says:

    Will you be bringing back the Power Calculator? Have to use compatibility mode to run on Windows 8 now,

  81. O G R E says:

    I'm assuming there's no plans to add any type of CRC validation to the copy process (think TeraCopy with validate turned on)?

  82. Name says:

    @SamStephens I Love You! Read this comment. Please.

    These changes look well worth having.

    There is an issue I regularly strike, that you mention as a current issue: "… Explorer isn’t optimized for … executing multiple copy jobs concurrently."

    I often find myself wanting to move or copy several sets of folders simultaneously – for example, I plug my phone in, and want to get the latest photos and latest sound recordings off it. Or move older documents and music and photos from my laptop to archival storage. I currently have to do these copies one set of folders at a time, as doing multiple jobs simultaneously takes many times longer that each one individually. Presumably the copy jobs run in ignorance of each other and cause the drives involved to thrash.

    I'd be curious to say what telemetry tells you, but I suspect there are many people wanting to perform simultaneous copies in this fashion, who currently have the annoying copy, wait, copy, wait, etc experience.

    I see that you've consider this issue as you show us "And here you can see how the speed of file transfer increases substantially when two of the copy jobs are paused:"

    Which is a better user story than we used to have, but still painful, as it involves manual intervention, which if you have several copy jobs you wish to do taking 30 minutes or more each is a nasty user experience.

    I'd ask you to please consider building some form of queueing into the copy system. Especially as you have taken the first step, and already have all currently running file operations centrally managed. Enhancing what's there with intelligence to

    • only allow one operation per device(*),
    • sort the operations so the most efficient operations (or fastest operations?) happen first, whilst allowing as many devices to be working as possible

    • allow the user to drag and drop the operations to override that ordering if they have their own preferences

    wouldn't be trivial, it wouldn't be impossible, and would provide a fantastic user experience for those of us shuffling multiple sets of large files between multiple devices.

    Thanks for your consideration, and the chance to provide feedback like this.

    (*) unless the device doesn't suffer from trashing? I've never come across one, but I don't know that much.

  83. JoeH says:

    I also vote for gray as the color for the paused file transfer. I think red is too "worrisome" a color to be used for paused transfers.

  84. Etrigan says:

    People complain about the dialog box asking 'are you sure you want to delete this file?'- until they accidentally delete a file, and then they appreciate it. Those 'annoying' dialog boxes have saved my files from accidental deletion more than once. Be careful what you wish for…

  85. Etrigan says:

    People complain about the dialog box asking 'are you sure you want to delete this file?'- until they accidentally delete a file, and then they appreciate it. Those 'annoying' dialog boxes have saved my files from accidental deletion more than once. Be careful what you wish for…

  86. Sarah says:

    Very nice.

    To people – take a look at the video. It answers many of your questions and shows UI that wasn't showcased in the blog post.

  87. Chris says:

    I want to see the full Ribbon!

  88. Looks good. I find the pause feature quit neat. An extension to that would be able auto-resume (or some sort of queuing mechanism). Maybe have an option "Resume after…" then selecting which file to resume after.

  89. CodeLake says:

    Very cool stuff.

    It would be very cool to have advanced renaming functionality which allows users to select multiple files and rename them with a Pattern, RegEx etc…

  90. I really like the unification of windows/dialogue boxes, so as FremyCompany mentions with IE downloads, what about other copy/move processes, can they (and developers in general hook into this?

    I hope so, because this could really eliminate a lot of clutter, and most users (in my experience) are very poor at generalizing concepts if they appear in different contexts. Look at how copy/paste works for pretty much any text editing now, I'd love it if you can make the same conceptual unity work for file operations.  So, if copy/move operations go to one place it would help casual users' conceptual understanding of various tasks.

  91. JDA says:

    It's great to centralise the copy / moves on a single windows but as written above, it must include a queue.

    In fact the default behaviour should be a queue, let me explain my idea. User typically don't want to lunch multiples copy / move at the same time, what they want is lunch multiples actions, go get a coffee and come back to seen all the job finished.

    When you lunch multiples action on the same set of disk it take much more time to finish that if you queue them.

    Windows explorer should work like IE, allow x (let say 2) action on the same physical disk (not partition) at the same time, and after the x is reached queue any job added. of curse the user should be able to force start a job.

  92. Eich says:

    Looks just like copy/paste embeded in KDE since 4.0.

  93. Friend of Max says:

    This may be resolved in Windows 7 – still using XP – but reserving space in the destination dir before copy is started might be an idea. Often I've started a cut/copy of a large amount of files that fails before finishing because I've run out of disk space mid-way. At least roll back the cut/copy!

    Later,

    Ivan

  94. cleverclogs says:

    Yes, I definately think that a queue would be vital, so that multiple copy jobs occur one after the other, to optimise speeds and remove drive thrashing.

    Looking at the UX for choosing which files to overwrite – aiming for a tiny checkbox is not easy, so I trust you'll simply be able to press/click on the whole thumnail/icon area.

  95. Chen says:

    Finally finally finally!

    Good start but can still be much better.

    The "choose files" dialog is a nightmare for any job with more than 3 files.

    1. Checkboxes are small and annoying
    2. No batch-decision (i.e only keep newer files, only keep larger files), check the filezilla conflicting-file-dialog http://www.artfuldancer.com/…/FTP_FileZilla_03upload2.gif it might no be so fancy but the options are really powerful yet easy to understand.

    3. No option for "keep both files but add (1) to the new copy".

    4a. Ability to open each file directly from the dialog to study details of it

    4b. You could even add a button that says "compare in external program" that opens up a diff-tool. I'm not asking for complete source control built into explorer but even non-programmers should really learn about diffing. (even Word has a built in compare-function!).

    To be honest it feels like your bolting on bling bling and simplifications instead of redefining the whole copy-file-paradigm. This could have been done much better. Why should i have to care about confilcts anyway? Just save all versions of the file and create a nice interface for this instead (ehum OSX time machine cough). Seriously, even my mom uses dropbox on a day-to-day basis, people have more than one disk and a usb-stick nowadays. You have to rethink the the whole concept of file management. This is your flagship OS for the future, not some third party explorer-enhancement.

  96. Kefa says:

    This is good… Especially for me because i'm transferring large amount of data from ext hdd to pc and reverse.

    Also, it would be nice if there is auto-rename option, especially for photos.

  97. JoeH says:

    Windows copy / paste does not work well for copying large files over the network. If the copy is interrupted you have to start over. Please fix this.

  98. Ooh says:

    Regarding the color of the paused copies I think red would be a bad choice, because when it would be red I would instantly think there was an error during file copy. The color I would prefer for paused copies would be gray.

    Nevertheless – yay!!! We can pause file copies!!! Good work!

    Besides that I'm totally with @Eric: please fix this annoying behavior of Windows Explorer!

    answers.microsoft.com/…/50a81b05-da98-4d55-821d-55ffbbd0e998

    connect.microsoft.com/…/bug-when-expanding-folders-in-explorer-server-2008-r2-and-windows-7

  99. flo says:

    hey guys great work… but why not queue in the first place instead of making the user pause actions and resme? …or at least give the user an option to auto resume after the first transfer is complete

  100. Rafał says:

    It's really nice that you do something like this, I especially like the idea of having all the copy operations in one window. But, it solves the problem that noone has. Really, copying, moving and deleting are very good already and you shouldn't spend time on fixing them.

    If you want to focus on real issues, look at http://www.windows7taskforce.com and fix all the UI inconsistencies. Get rid of icons from windows 95. Make windows are resizable. It's not the 90's anymore, you know.

    And please, please, create a modern terminal, like there are in linux of mac os x. LCI in windows is ugly, you cannot resize it freely and hasn't change a bit since windows 95. A disgrace.

  101. devxweb says:

    I really like the new copy/move dialog, and you can make it even better if its something like this – "All file management dialogs under one window but each file management dialog having it's own process, so if one dialog gets really jammed then other dialog with isolated processes are not affected". I am not sure if I explained it good but I hope you get my point. Thanks

  102. JoeBlack says:

    Speaking of Windows Explorer, copy, paste, and all that jazz; when will you guys implement "tabs" in Windows Explorer. And when will we have dual (or multiple) panes. Do we have pay money to get basic functionality? Why can't you do things as simple as that? Why?

  103. cranberry says:

    Looks definitely like a big improvement to the Win7 copy dialogs! I would change the window title, however, to indicate more that these are file operations initiated from Windows Explorer. "Actions" is too generic imho.

    Using red as the color for the stopped copy operation is a bad idea in my opinion, as red not only means "STOP" but more often "ERROR". It also attracts attention (this is the idea with the traffic lights) which isn't the goal here. I'd go for gray as some others have suggested. Red could be used to signal an error as it is done in Windows 7.

  104. jack says:

    Admittedly @Rafał I remember http://www.windows7taskforce.com did bring up a lot of UI inconsistencies and silly things that should be resolved, look there and draft a sensible list of out-dated UI elements to be updated for Windows 8.

  105. Very nice work. I don’t like the “If you select both versions, the copied file will have a number added to its name” that sound confusing compared to the old “The file you are coping will be renamed “filename (2).JPG”.

    I understand that Windows will be mainly a mouse-and-keyboard (or pen-based) OS but, as some people says, this windows seems very difficult to use with a touch devices. Have you tried this windows on a pen-and-touch Tablet PC like the Dell Latitude XT2, the HP Elitebook 2740p, the Fujitsu Lifebook T901 or Asus Eee Slate EP121? How do you think that the user experience will be on a Microsoft-style Tablet PC?

  106. Tom Servo says:

    I like what I see with the throughput graphs. I hope that more detailed telemetry dialogs show up elsewhere in the system, where it makes sense. This would make a power user feel like one again.

  107. vladi says:

    :D, You people at Microsoft needed aprox 6 years to implement simple feature, that's available in every Unix box and now you're saying "We invented the wheel"

  108. Gavin Greig says:

    You could use pushbuttons containing the file details and preview, instead of small checkboxes next to them. That would give a larger active area for users to click on; and the default choices (overwrite, I guess) could already be depressed.

    Instead of presenting the file details as what's there at the moment, you could present them as a preview of what the user will get if they press "Continue" now: including the resulting filename.

    If added clarity's needed about files being discarded, then some kind of overlay (a red cross or trash can or something of the sort) could indicate files that are going to be lost. The combination of that and push buttons is starting to sound a bit icky, but I'm sure that a more talented UI designer with longer to spend on it could come up with something along the same lines but better than the picture in my head…

  109. Dear ALL, Dear Windows8 Team,

    Here are some suggestions which could be implemented in order to improve user experience…

    1- Conflict Resolution dialog

    In this window the user can't choose the name of the files… Imagine if 2 pictures (or more) have the same name, but are totally different. You would want to keep both…But it would be very interesting to be able to edit the name of each file directly from the dialog by clicking on it's name (for example) so the user doesn't have to go to the folder and edit the name afterwards …

    After copy, the name would be good and no time lost to go and rename … =)

    2 – Pending copy jobs dialog (Multiple jobs)

    In this window, your implementation requires that the user modifies himself the priority by a click on pause/resume . In this case you assume the user is here but sometimes he has to leave… the process continues but that doesn't necessary mean the user had no priorities… Problem: he wont be able to manage jobs…

    Maybe a solution would be to give each job a priority by beeing able, in this dialog, to drag and drop the jobs on a top position of the list if it needs to be done in a specific order. This feature could be enabled by adding a global pause button that would process each job individually in order after the first in the list is done…

    3 – Copy priority

    The same proposition of priorities could apply in the normal single copy job window :

    In W7 the last file selected, is the active one, so it is the first to apply the action Copy/Move/Delete … etc…

    It would be much more interesting if the files were processed in the order you selected them (the user usually select files in the same order he thinks to it, meaning often by alphabetic or interest/priority order)

    If its a random selection that doesn't change anything…

    Wishing you all good luck ! =) Thanks !

    Benjamin B.

  110. JPL says:

    You are fiddling on the margins.

    The best way to help users manage their files is to revert to a dual pane file manager, oops, sorry, file explorer, to allow easy manipulation of source and destination directory trees.

  111. Norswap says:

    It would be nice to have the option to rename old files as well as new files.

  112. Cyberdyme says:

    Additional ideas, which maybe completely unfeasible and you guys have already brainstormed:

    Could you add a priority level (if you have multiple copy operations, some could take place at higher level then others).

    Also it would be great if you could start continue copy operation when another task is say 50% complete. This could be achieved if the progress bar could be dragged to the right.

    When copying files can there be a transform operation. To copy file from A to B (but on B it is zipped), or jpeg changed to bmp. It should also be possible to copy a zip file and have it uncompress from A to B

  113. Abdullah Saqib says:

    These changes seems little but will have a huge impact in user point of view.

    Well done Microsoft! keep it up.

    bye

  114. xmRipper says:

    argh how ugly centered window titles >_<

  115. Has the 256 character limitation (like in XP) been resolved with regards pathway length being exceeded being  when performing backups?

  116. cyberdyme says:

    Additional ideas, which maybe completely unfeasible and you guys have already brainstormed:

    When copying a directory should be possible to filter the list of files, based on file name, size or file type.

    Could it be possible to hook into this copy operations, so for example have a rule where an email is sent if a file is copied. Or we determine are one naming rules etc

  117. Mike Buzzing says:

    Very positive changes.  I'd like to for the copy job to continue while items that are causing problematic are skipped, i.e. if there is a list of 50 files being copied, and there's a problem with the second file, then the 3rd etc would continue to copy and only those with problems are highlighted and held up.  

    I'd proposed that if there was some sort of flag or attribute set on the file to indicate that the file is due to be copied/moved and what the reason for the lack of the activity was, so that when moving large amounts of files the ones without problems can be actioned, and those that had a problem could be dealt with separately, at source.

  118. raider says:

    Very very nice. Finally a complete copy and move management. I like the unified window for all ongoing transfers and the Pause button. 🙂

    I don't really like the elimination of some dialogs. They could be annoying, but they're also useful. If I move to the Recycle Bin a file I didn't want to move there, why should I go to the Recycle Bin to restore it? Yeah, that was my fault, but if there's a confirmation dialog I could avoid the mistake. Same for folder merge. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    PS: other two things. Please, make the Ribbon Explorer an option. And that Start button visible at the beginning of the video is really ugly, better to stick with the current one.

  119. I think that a few users pointed out that there isn't a "Copy, but keep both files" option from Windows 7. Do I assume then that  when clicking the "Choose" option that ticking files from "Files from…" and "Files already in…" will perform the same action?

    Other than that, think the new copying interface is great so far.

  120. henri says:

    I really like the direction you are taking this but:

    A queuing feature would be very much appreciated! I want to be able to initiate all my copying and have Windows figure out what to queue based on what disks the copying affects, and then don't bother.

    If the same could be done for unzipping that would be great as well.

    If I get these additions, I wouldn't need a 3:rd party tool. 🙂

  121. Hugo Nogueira says:

    One of the most annoying things in Windows 7 Explorer is trying to delete a file and getting a message saying : "Cannot delete file because some application is still using it" (or something along these lines).

    What application? Where? Could you provide in Windows 8 an option to force delete a file?

    Thanks and keep the good work!

  122. Hans says:

    I agree with some of the comments above, Aero looks dated and bulky. If you want to go for dense and concise and add in amazing cool features like that, better get rid of the ones that still make them look and feel old and bulky. Transparancy, multiple levels of shadings, blurs, etc etc. Metro is the way to go, it makes complex tasks LOOK easy too, and that's the way to go.

  123. peter. says:

    I just do not believe this !

    Only sixteen years of developing, and now it is ! Advanced copy progress bar for Window$ !

    Respect, M$ developers !

    Pardon; "developers".

  124. Love the "Choose Files" dialog, but you've only shown it with several screenshots. I can imagine there are users that have a large amount of conflicting names. At such times I really hope there is an op option to filter them by date and maybe have a searchbox.

    Also, what's the default behavior when copying folders that have file name collisions (not files as in the screenshots)? Will they silently merge or will we get a "Choose Folders" dialog? Great work so far!

  125. I agree with Hugo Nogueira.

    There should be at least the info which process is preventing file from being deleted. Better yet, you can automatically close the process and start it again when deleting is done.

    Also I'm wondering what happens when you have many copy/move jobs? The screen height has its limits. Especially when you put in "detailed view" mode. Is there just a vertical scroll bar for this cases?

    I would suggest to distribute copy/move jobs vertically AND horizontally (two columns would be great) when reaching 4,5 vertically positioned jobs, so the need for scroll bar would appear a bit later.

  126. srikanth says:

    ..great inbuilt support ..to replace installed teracopy and etc s/w

    thanks..

  127. Jack the Slayer says:

    Sadly you still haven't solved the most common problem: If something goes wrong while copying a folder (or a bunch of files), half of the files are in the new location, half are in the old location. Please give us transactioned file copy.

  128. KevinUK says:

    If I want to do copy and replace on a single image then the new choose files dialog now requires two mouse clicks instead of one as I first have to check the box, or can I just click the text / thumbnail?

    The choose files dialog makes sense only when you are dealing with more than 1 file.

  129. Gustavo says:

    Good work in file manager!

  130. Sascha says:

    Looks great, finally I can get rid of TeraCopy and all the bugs in it..

    Looking forward to Win8!!

  131. xpclient says:

    Now this is what I call very intuitive design! I highly applaud this redesigned dialog. The improved dialog clearly gives more control to the user on a per-file basis all from a single dialog. I notice you show infotips in the file conflict dialog. That's another nice improvement. I assume checking the topmost checkboxes in both left and right columns selects all the files in the columns below? That hasn't been confirmed by Microsoft.

    Many users are requesting the option to queue file operations. I second this. Can we have a checkbox that says "Queue new file transfers" There should be no default setting for this checkbox. It should remember the LAST USED setting. That is, if it was checked the last time, all new transfers should be queued by default.

    I think the colors are good too. They reflect the colors in the Windows flag. Plus green and red are already being used in the Windows Vista/Windows 7 copy UIs and keeping the previously used colors same as what they mean in earlier OSes is important. Also, I personally think Aero with its 3D and glass looks far better than Metro which is flat and less shading/gradients.

    Some more optimization requests from me:

    1.  Prefer faster connections like Ethernet over Wi-Fi when both are connected. Currently, I have to disconnect my wireless connection to ensure network transfers will be done over ethernet and then reconnect my wi-fi.
    2.  No moving of the copy dialog should be required. It should be positioned correctly after its expands or positioned correctly beforehand so there is room at the bottom when it expands instead of it going below the taskbar and out of the screen.

    3.  The first file name dialog should include 4 options instead of the current 3: Replace all, Skip all, Rename all, or Choose. Rename All as a 1-click option is needed so users don't have to click "Choose", then select both columns, then Continue (4 clicks!)

    4.  How are crashes handled? Is the file copying done in a separate process from Explorer.exe? If Explorer.exe crashes, copying should not terminate.

    5.  For longer file paths which are truncated, the beginning and end of the path should be shown like the breadcrumbs bar does on shorter sized dialogs.

    6.  Have you considered an advanced form of replacing files? Like an option that says: Replace all by ______ (and there is a dropdown with all the metadata properties you get in Explorer (Newer/Older Date modified, date created, smaller/larger size, or larger resolution in case of photos).

    7.  There is already an IFileIsInUse interface since Vista isn't it? (msdn.microsoft.com/…/bb775874(v=vs.85).aspx). Surely that can be used to get the app name or window handle of the app that is keeping a lock on the file?)

    Let me remind the Windows team again that removing features without giving the user an option is a major turn off so I hope that while by default the confirmations are gone for deleting files to the Recycle Bin and to merge folders, there will be an option to show them. Personally, I don't want files being sent to the Recycle Bin because I accidentally hit Delete on the keyboard or folders being merged without confirmation. The option has always existed in Recycle Bin properties: "Display delete confirmation dialog". So I hope it's just unchecked by default but remains instead of being completely gone. Similarly, I want to be shown a dialog in case of folder conflicts. Please do not remove the folder conflict dialog without giving the user an option.

    Lastly, this only improves the experience in the dialog. What is being done to improve the experience in Explorer after copy-paste, delete or rename is done? Currently, all the files are kept continuously sorted and new items appear in their sorted positions. When I rename files one by one in succesion, the files jump all over the place as they get sorted. If I want to monitor a folder for new files getting created or copied, I cannot because the items are continuously kept sorted. This is one of the biggest annoyances of Vista/7. Sorting should behave like a verb, not as a state. If you disagree, give us an option to turn off "Auto refresh/Auto sort" so pasted files or newly created items appear at the end and only get sorted when we click Refresh.

    Please clarify three things: 1. does selecting the top most checkboxes select all files in the columns below? 2. Will the option to show/not show delete confirmation dialog for Recycle Bin and for folder conflicts remain? 3. Will there be an option to turn off Auto refresh/Auto sort so any file modification activity such as copy-paste, creation, rename or deletion does not make items move continually to obey the sort order and they appear at the end and get sorted only when the view is refreshed??

  132. Name says:

    I agree with @Jack the Slayer

    Sadly you still haven't solved the most common problem: If something goes wrong while copying a folder (or a bunch of files), half of the files are in the new location, half are in the old location. Please give us transactioned file copy.

  133. Drowsiness says:

    These are some very welcomed and nice changes, team. Very slick.

    Also, I agree with Jack the Slayer. If you could just improve on that or fix it in some way, I'm sure we'd all appreciate it.

    Now let me in the beta. I've been using MS products since DOS and not once have you let me into the beta. Time to let us veterans in.

  134. Phan Duc Trieu says:

    I thinks move files in Windows is slow than copy then delete file. I just feels its but I hope if this's real, its would better in Windows 8

  135. Ian says:

    Like other people said, if I ask  for more than one copy to be done, please default to some sort of queue rather than running them at the same time, if they use the some disk head.

    If the file in the source and target directory has the same attributes and check sum, don’t ask me if I wish to replace it, just skip it.  (Maybe the file system should store a check sum as an extended attribute to speed this up, just clear the checksum when the file is change and cache it when it is needed)

    Please order the files to be copied based on disk location so there is less disk head movement.   Then if the target and the source is on the same head, read as many files as possible into ram as a batch, then write then out as a batch, so reducing head movement.

    I see no reasons way Explorer often takes longer than using FTP to copy lots of files from a windows server – this should not be the case.  Maybe some system that lets the windows server send the files in the best order for its disk layout would help.

    When the source and target folder is on the same disk, some sort of “virtual” copy could be  used with the blocks getting physically copied if “one end” is changed.   This would be great for when I copy a large folder for safety before changing files, mostly the backup folder is just deleted later and well under 1% of the files in the source folder are changed.

    Full built in support for de-dedicating on the client would be great, however most window users don’t need to have lots of source trees from related branches on their local disk! (Put we are now getting many copies of the same DLL on some machines)  Disk space is becoming an issue once again, as SSD drives (unlike magnetic drives) are limited in size.

    (I hope we will not all be on 100% flash drive by the time Windows 8 ship, I don’t wish to wait that long for Windows 8, not with the great improvements you have already detailed.)

  136. umibozu says:

    Great improvements but, why not implement a list of copy/move/delete that you can pause/resume/modify. I am thinking in the functionality of supercopier2 et al which I find indispensable.

    Also, FastCopy will automatically evaluate source and destinations and when copy jobs they are to conflict in resources they're automatically queued instead of executed in parallel.

    Oh, and copy lists also enable collisions and copy error in an elegant, way (no need to stop the 20k file job mid way because of a collision with a minor file like thumbs.db)

  137. sreesiv says:

    About the copy error logging, I completely agree with the folks who have raised this. Copy/Move/Delete should proceed and should notify the user at the end of the job about the files that misbehaved, and present a clear reason for that. This can be similar to the merge UI / conflict resoultion dialog which pops up at the end of the job, so that user the can review/select the options and retry. May be the user follows the suggestions, closes up an app which has opened up the files, and do a retry. Operation succeeds on some of the files, but still some of the files misbehaves. Again the user will be presented with those files and the reasoning. This way there is a filtering and reduction of the file list in the consolidated dialog at the end of each retry, till the user succeeds in running the job. Imagine the pain of doing this one file at a time as it is now. Addition of this along with the cool stuff already mentioned, will make explorer file management kick ass.

  138. Jonathan says:

    This is excellent stuff, this is exactly the kind of stuff that I needed to improve…I like it a lot!

  139. @Steven Sinofsky

    I like the improvements your team is doing on trying to improve the user experience with Windows Explorer but some of the items people have mentioned above are all functional items that i'm sure can easily be implemented by your team.. The bulk renames, conflicts during copying causing a pending status, etc.  I'm more concerned in general on how you blend the user experience.  The metro UI is trendy and will most definitely attract people to Windows 8 due to its simplicity and wow factor.  However, and I know this will most likely be answered at build, I am concerned on consistency across the UI.  I'm not sure how you blend Aero with Metro and expect a consistent experience.  While the explorer UI is definitely an improvement over builds of the past, I think people are looking for a cleaner, flashier experience.  You can see this trend with Apple and how the brand recognition and UI design has drawn them into in some cases less capable products.  Would your team be interested in posting a UI blog item on the challenges of doing what I mentioned above.

  140. This is just lovely and great. I've been following closely and reading a few comments myself i see that this is from one of the comments i read yesterday. This give me great hope that windows 8 will be even more amazing then windows 7 was. Your reading these comments and taking all of the feedback into consideration and it keeps my faith alive and running for Microsoft. Thank you for caring about your customers and listening to them. Keep doing this and windows 8 will be AMAZING. Just don't rush anything. I love the UI and i like this idea but as with others i agree with there is room for improvement. I like the Ribbon being in Internet explorer just make sure like the Ribbon in Office 2010 it's customizable.

  141. Quppa says:

    It's great to see that this functionality will be included out of the box.

    'Yellow for pause' is an established UI convention in Windows (the same green/yellow/red scheme is used for PROGRESS controls and taskbar progress bars), so when @AlexSi writes that the colour scheme is not finalised, I hope that any potential changes are implemented consistently throughout the platform.

    I have to agree with @Michael Milem that the focus rectangle dots are looking quite dated on a nice UI. I'm not sure what a good alternative would be, however.

    I notice that the minimise/maximise/close buttons have increased in size once again (vertically, at least) – does this mean that they'll be even bigger in Windows 9? 🙂 (Also, what's going on with the reduced-width close button in the final screenshot?) I hope those yellow, shadowless legacy tooltips on those buttons have been fixed in Windows 8…

    Finally, I know that high production values aren't the aim in this blog, but can't you invest in a copy of Window Clippings (or something similar) and give us some prettier screenshots?

  142. My bad i meant i like the Ribbon in windows explorer. That's what i meant my mistake. Anyway just make sure the Ribbon in Windows explorer is customizable.

  143. Aaron says:

    Looks great! Thanks for not overlooking the small bits and pieces.  Windows 8 should obviously have new and shiny functionality, but even if it didn't, at the bare minimum it needs to improve upon existing features in all previous versions of Windows.  This is a great step in that direction!  Thanks for the effort!

  144. david says:

    Excelente buen camino…. ya tienen un comprador

  145. ai says:

    Please add queuing! Allow to queue operation or even add automatic queue/pause to one operation per device.

    Thanks!

  146. Can we get a blog post on what changes you guys have done to the Control Panel? Hopefully it's a lot tidier and cleaner 🙂

  147. I hope this time you will teach Explorer to remember the state of More/Less Details and "Do this for all conflicts" switches. 🙂

    Other than that, TeraCopy and many other utilities mentioned here contain the directions to improve (quequing when working with the same media is the top one), no need in invent anything radical. Heck, even Norton Commander was able to remember "Do this for all conflicts" setting, and it's still not implemented in Windows..

    What I would suggest as a REAL MAJOR improvement is the fully implemented Undo feature, which will undelete files, move everything back and even if you'we overwritten some files – restore those. So if I added 50 files and 3 dirs into a directory that already had another 250 files and 15 dirs and replaced 5 of them, I could go back with just one Ctrl-Z. Your new Job list interface is excellent for that – just keep the log of all actions and display the "Undo" button once the job is completed/paused/interrupted. You already have Shadow Copies and System Restore mechanism – this is just the next level.

    Some other feats:

    • If I used removable drives as source/destination for my job – the undo feature should lett me "Please insert the removable media labeled <VOLUME LABEL>" and give me the options to Cancel or proceed w/o the removable media (i.e. if I moved files from USB stick to HDD, they will be removed from HDD, but not restored on the stick, because I haven't inserted it). As a totally fantastic (and doubtful) experience – cache those files and offer to restore them once the removable media is back. 🙂

    • Advanced user should have control over this feature on a per-drive basis: enable/disable, max. size of files to be cached/shadowed in case of overwriting (I would not want this for 4.5G ISO images) and the size of Undo file cache in either megabytes or days. Global options should include enabling/disabling support for removable drives as well and disabling this feature altogether.

  148. Jay Leno says:

    When I am copying 1GB or more of   p o r n   from 1 folder to another, I want to keep all of the pictures.  Can't it just automatically add a number to them without asking me?

  149. Walter says:

    I really wish there was the option to copy the file from the left and rename the file on the right in addition to the copy the file from the left and rename it. I often find that I am copying a "newer" file into a folder and want it to keep the original name but would like to keep the original one in the folder on the right around as a backup.

    Essentially backup the file in the folder I am copying into by renaming it and then copy in the file being copied with the original name.

  150. Grumpy Wednesday says:

    Any word on whether or not reliability when copying to/from a USB device is improved?  Here's an easy experiment anyone can try:  Install the trial version of World of Warcraft to a local drive.  Use explorer to copy it off to a USB hard drive.  Blow away the install on the local drive and then copy it back.  Everything appears copacetic but the game won't launch as there is silent data corruption.  This has happened for years on big files.  =/  I also see this when dragging DVD .iso files over to USB storage using explorer or using Explorer to copy big files to a SMB share.  As long as you use the copy/xcopy or a third-party tool, it's fine.  However, explorer cannot be trusted to deal properly with multiple gigabytes of data.  I'd hoped that Win7 had fixed this behavior (I observed it first in XP) but it hasn't.

  151. Jan says:

    Two things that you could make better with this.

    1. If you copy for example 5 big folders you would probably like it to copy one after another. Make an option for it. Not only a pause button. Allow it to be more automatic.

    2. If you put straight line through a graph it's avarage. You don't have avarage here. It's not natural to put an instantaneous value like this.

  152. JMS says:

    On my last ms conference visit i asked the speakers about pause/resume button on copy dialog. They said it was stupid and I have not received the prize for the smart questions. But this MS solution contained copy/resume buttons! I should have patented this approach!!!

  153. This is some good stuff guys, keep up the good work. I noticed that the paused files are still showing a download transfer rate, this shouldn't be the case since there is no transfer going on. I know you have promised a UI change so I won't comment on that. For those that keep complaining about the yellow color being used for pause, it clearly says PAUSE so I don't see a problem here. Also in windows Red is usually reserved for errors.

  154. Unrelated question but what have guys got planned in regards to gestures for touchpads? The new UI you showed worked great on touchscreens but the jury is still out on how it will work for the keyboard and mouse, gestures I feel could help blend the two input methods together really nicely.

  155. xpclient says:

    I recommend the Windows team take a look at a lesser known copy addon called PerigeeCopy (jstanley.pingerthinger.com/pscopy.html) that also offers a number of interesting ideas. It's main goal is the same: merge copy/delete operations in a single window/action, one at a time and ensure copy and delete operations are done with less/smarter prompts. The Windows team can put file copying related options in "Folder Options".

  156. gawicks says:

    @AlexSi

    ********One more thing***********

    In the 'Conflict resolution' dialog the files from the Source folder should be auto-checked ; Since this reflects the default behaviour.

    Didn't you guys notice that there is some confusion over what happens to 'Kobenhavns……jpg' in the example (since both checkboxes are unchecked)

    Thanks

  157. Alex S. says:

    Folks, thanks for starting this blog, I admire the initiative to get feedback from community! Here is some feedback regarding file differences during copy process:

    I use Total Commander when I need to copy large amount of files. It has a feature called Synchronize Directories which I think has the best UI for understanding the differences between the files. It also, I think, is the best UI to make a decision on the difference. Please check it out!

  158. thanks for the changes. They look nice, but you should still implement a queue feature.

    And please improve the Deleting performance. This is a nightmare in Windows. For example, check out several branches, tags from a version control and try to delete the folders. During times time the PC is nearly unusable.

  159. Max G. says:

    I would like be able to queue a list of files to copy them to some device. So every fiel will be copied one by one. It will be also intresting to be able to keep adding files while they are being copied

  160. Encrypting File System Copying says:

    The Microsoft tool called ROBOCOPY.EXE has an /EFSRAW switch that I use all the time to copy/backup EFS-encrypted files to another drive without decrypting the files first.  Will the new Win8 copy feature support this by default?  What about EFS copy improvements in general, such as copying over the network when the destination server does not have access to one's EFS private key?  Thank You!

  161. Choose files dialog box looks irritating and confusing. Please don't make it complex for an end-user. It hurts Windows usability.

  162. Mike R says:

    Why checkboxes in the resolution?  Make it more touch-friendly, you have these wonderful big simple action buttons on the dialog previous to the resolution, but then teeny checkboxes.  Make the each picture a toggle button on and off, and shade it.  DO IT!  🙂

    Love this blog.

  163. Obscurus says:

    The conflict resolution dialog should show the resolution of image-files, to make it easier to decide which image I want to keep. For example, the same image as Android wallpaper or desktop wallpaper. Would look the same, when just watching the thumbnails of both files. But with the resolution visible, I could choose that I want to keep the higher resolution.

  164. Joe says:

    Looks sensible.  I hope there's a 'touch first' version of all this with an immersive experience.  I wouldn't want to have to plug a mouse in just to move some files around if I was using a tablet.

    Would also be interested how the selection dialog handles a tree of directories.  The list of files seems like a flat approach.

  165. Alfredo says:

    Nothing that Tera Copy cant do… BOOOORING…!!! i mean… super windows 8 and the only upgrade is managing files??

  166. Yo Momma says:

    I see a new start button in the video…

  167. @RFreijanes says:

    What about interface of Windows Explorer in touch screen devices?

  168. Yo Momma says:

    Actually, maybe the orb is blurred enough so I can't see it… unless the computer we don't get a close look at is different than the 1 we do, & they're both running different Win 8 builds…

  169. Anonymous says:

    Nautilus in GNOME on Linux has been doing this for years – yet another thing Microsoft copies.

  170. First i would recommend you to restyle Pause/Close buttons. Make them bigger, or something. And second reduce height of transfer graphs.

    Also i'm corius about what we see in background on big screen. Taskbar will look like this? From this point what i see is actualy taskbar i imagined windows 8 should have.  Hope we will see soon more…

  171. Mohan Shashank says:

    This is some what different from the normal copy feature and this is more advanced when compared with Tera Copy and this feature made the following additional features.

    1. Copying of dual processes is made easy.
    2. Copying the files made faster

    3. made a new aspect namely select of files while copying.

    This is really a good stuff and made easier way of copying.

    Can anyone please say me how to make it enabled in my PC?

  172. J H says:

    Great, great work. The appearance of a 'Pause' button on the copy dialog is cause for celebration alone. The bandwidth measurements and graphs are the icing on the cake.

    One additional feature I'd like to see with the copy dialog: the ability to queue and prioritize copy jobs. Being able to pause individual jobs is nice but requires manual oversight throughout the overall process if you wish to avoid performance issues from concurrent copy jobs. Being able to queue jobs would allow maximum throughput on high priority items when you know they share a bottleneck with low priority jobs.

    The conflict resolution dialog is also much cleaner and more useful. I particularly like that you say you can open files directly from that dialog.

    One other feature I would love to see here: a way to flag or list particular files within the conflict resolution dialog for further review. When you copy a bunch of files from A to B, you frequently want to overwrite only a portion of the conflicting files in destination folder B (per your example). But after the copy job is complete, you very often want to know which of the files within source folder A were NOT copied, in order to further review or edit them (maybe manually updating their filenames first) before reattempting the copy.

    I'll be honest: I'm not sure how best to handle that. Perhaps an option for an 'Advanced' conflict resolution dialog which has additional 'Flag for review' checkboxes beside each conflicting file, and a 'Next' button that takes you an additional step of the dialog which then allows you to perform additional functions on those flagged files (for example, copying them to an alternative folder so you have them all in one place for review, without having to manually go back and filter them out of the source folder.) Probably not the cleanest suggestion but, while the new dialog is nice for simplifying resolution of basic filename conflicts, that's usually not the end of the process for anyone engaged in serious, large-scale copy jobs.

    Still, I love the progress so far!

  173. Anonymous says:

    @Alex

    Why not make a text box where you can fill in a different name as an extra option when a name conflict is found?

    Also: when dragging a bunch of files onto a folder, can it be possible to open the folder when you are hovering it for enough time?

    Can it be possible to shorten the amount of clicks/actions to rename a file?

  174. jahxp says:

    You have to change the UI, it doesnt fit with the Metro UI. Its inconssistent

  175. sirthomas says:

    I love what is being worked on – look forward to the changes.

    I do agree with comments that the "resolve files" dialog is a UX disaster.  I tend to agree with Phil B who writes that the typical use-case is to keep the files with the action associated, and that this dialog presents both cases with equal weight, and equal awkwardness of selection.  Figure out from your telemetry the 80/20 typical use-cases, and design around it.

    Take a look at the typical usage arcs presented in Microsoft's layout guidelines here:  msdn.microsoft.com/…/aa511279.aspx

    • smooth curves (1-2-4), avoid zig-zag windows, etc.

    I would also suggest that the conflict-resolution not interrupt the overall process, and instead be reserved for the end of the action, in order to facilitate unattended scenarios.

  176. USB 3.0 – it's cool, but what about Thunderbolt in a new OS?

  177. The logic of selecting neither version of a conflicting file seems flawed.  If I don't check either the new or the old one, in answer to the question "Which files do you want to keep?", then that seems to imply that they both will be deleted — which is obviously not the case.

  178. Very many professional users using all over the world TotalCommander (http://www.ghisler.com/index.htm) on Windows. But I'm very happy about this improvements within W8! Keep the good work!

  179. 6205 says:

    UI of that copy progress dialog is lame. Look at KDE 4 copy dialog or graphs in resource monitor…

    You need to redone every single part of msstyle to get rid of the old parts of the final theme.

    Same applies for imageres.dll

  180. r00m says:

    IMO, "Windows 7 Conflict Resolution dialog" looks way better than the proposed solution.

  181. Aethec says:

    We should be able to click the graph to show a "maximal speed" bar, and move it to the desired speed. This means you can give a certain operation priority without having to be there when it finishes (if you paused other operations, they won't continue…)

    (I didn't read all 180 comments, no idea if this was already suggested)

  182. Nathan says:

    I have two requests:

    #1

    If I go to delete, rename, copy or move a file or folder, Windows Explorer should immediately cancel all background information-gathering operations that are causing locks on the affected files or folders. It is extremely frustrating the number of times I've tried to delete folders with videos and other media only to tell me that the "file is in use", when in fact it is Windows Explorer holding stuff in memory so it can read file dates and create thumbnail previews.

    #2

    You need to find a faster way to sort the contents of a large folder. For example, I have an images folder with about a thousand images. I have it defaulted to sort by file date, but every time I open the folder I have to wait upwards of 10-20 seconds while it reads all the file dates so it can sort them correctly. Previous versions of Windows never had to spend lots of time reading file dates every time I entered a folder, so it puzzles me why Windows 7 suddenly needs to do this in a clearly less-efficient manner.

  183. Shubhan Chemburkar says:

    Good to see that basic functions in Windows 8 are getting a revamp. Nice Job!

  184. @AlexSi – You should update the main blog post showing the dialog that occurs before the Conflict Resolution dialog is shown, a lot of people haven't watched the video or found your post in the sea of comments and are assuming that the dialog is what is always shown when a conflict arises.

  185. jimsing59 says:

    This is very good, Much better Windows Explorer UI.

  186. piaqt says:

    Now add this functionality to WP7.

    @6205 re imageres.dll It's one of the easiest files to hack. Try http://www.bome.com/Restorator

  187. ak6989 says:

    I wish there was an ADD also, where only the files that are not on the receiving side are added.

  188. ceoYahoo says:

    It is nice, I would like to push the point that there should be options for the following

    • continue all non conflicting copy operations ( that is except for this particular file/folder all other non conflicting operations should continue.
    • the copy dialog boxes should be at the very begining or at the very end. (Look @ windows installation, you gather all info then start)

    • it will be great if the recycle bin had an option to go hierarchical rather than showing 100000 items all at same level.. and we need to do sort by folder.

    *tera copy nails the copy procedure. But it is annoying when i need to do a move. WIndows explorer is faster than teracopy

    • Also make it sit in the system tray.

    Looking forward for the Windows explorer bolg listing enhancement.

    tabbed browsing/ ribbon / hope of eliminate right click and easy way to compare files

  189. KR_Paul says:

    I welcome the improvements outlined in this blog post and demonstrated in the related video. On a related topic, I sincerely hope that Microsoft and the Windows development teams are seriously researching and implementing modern features and functionality in the NTFS file system (or a replacement ‘default’ Windows file system). As a long-time proponent of Windows, I would like to have an answer for the features and functionality of the ZFS file system.

    While Windows Vista and Windows 7 have made important incremental improvements to NTFS, I believe the original design decisions and features are showing their age. Given its age, it is a testament to the fundamental design decisions that NTFS has adapted so effectively thus far. However, much research and innovation in the file system space has lead to NTFS falling seriously behind the advanced features offered by more modern file systems.

    Please share with us how Microsoft and the Windows teams are addressing this for Windows 8 and future Windows operating systems.

  190. vmgunz says:

    The yellow color for pause screen looks like warning color, like something is not right or copying slow. User understands green is OK, yellow is warning, red is NOT OK. So, I think it's better to use grey color instead for pause. Just my 2c.

    Anyway, it's a nice and pleasant improvement. Keep it coming.. 🙂

  191. groumph says:

    I hope the command line commands will still be present !

  192. Badger says:

    If you wanted to leave the Yellow color, I'd put a big "Paused" on the yellow graph… not just above it.  Though I'd prefer a Grey graph.

  193. Eric Malamisura says:

    I went ahead and created a mockup of changes I think would make the File Dialog better, color groupings.  As well the name of the file is on both sides, if you click it you can rename it, and some arrows.

    i51.tinypic.com/333v1og.jpg

  194. @JL said…

    "You know when you start a big copy job and realize that you are doing it over the wireless.  So you grab a  network cable and plug it in.  Does the file copy know to utilize the faster connection now? "

    Nope, it doesn't work like that.  If you start a file copy on one connection it will continue on that connection until completed.  If you started a really big file copy operation on wireless and want to switch to wired you should cancel it, connect the net cable and then restart the file copy job.

  195. Joe the Plumber says:

    I can see IT Pros loving features such as throughput graph. But what about average computer users? Does this feature help Windows compete against iOS? I don't think so.

  196. NiCa60 says:

    I do agree with (and I vote for):

    1. Queue whenever needed to optimize performances
    2. Auto-magically switch to faster channels (i.e. when a copy started on WiFi and then ethernet cable is available during copy)

    3. Color on paused copy should be gray (on the copy info details dialog)

    4. Be smart and filter out the "fake conflicts", i.e. identical (CRC or byte per byte) file on source and destination

    5. If you really want to improve the whole "file copy experience" you'd need to implement file versioning (as easy to use and understand as "previous versions of this file" method attached to file istances (for the UX, see my note on UI at the end of the comment). That way, many things can be easer:

    4.1 As I can always go back to previous versions on a file by file basis, most of the time I'll never need to opt for the detailed conflict resolution dialog and I'll choose the replace option in the first simpler dialog, because in fact I'm also choosing to take both of them without "old fashioned" filenames with trailing numeration like "myfile (1)".

    1. While I do agree with Chen, upon wich I've based my consideration #4 about file versioning, I still think the detailed conflict resolution dialog is a great idea, with the improvements suggested by many others:

    5.1 Use some sort of highlight on file icons instead of check boxes

    5.2 On top you can use icons of "pile of file" to substitute checkbox and represent two quick selection action: "replace all" and "maintain all originals" (no need for the third option "take both of them", as explained on #4.1)

    1. In the "consolidated copy" dialog I suggest to inherit the UX of DAW programs, where many audio tracks can be played altogether: each track can be muted but also can be set as "solo". In the same way, if you add the ability to set a "copy me first" status to a single file transfer (that save the status of the others file transfer, then pauses all other transfers until the single file transfer has ended or aborted, then restore the status of the others file transfer), on my opinion you could cover most of the users needs.
  197. if you eventually add the queue functionality to the "consolidated copy" dialog, add the "power user" ability to move items inside the queue.

  198. Finally, a general consideration, not only related to this post :

    When you first developed a O.S. for mobiles, you ported the UX and UI of windows PC to Windows Mobile, and we all know the story.

    When you developed the Windows Phone 7 (and I'm an happy user and app developer of it) you taked a very important decision: different devices (PC and phone, in that case) need different UX and UI, so you moved away from Windows Mobile and invented Metro.

    Now that you're building Windows 8, please don't do the same (reversed) error of Windows Mobile: DO NOT METROize the Windows 8 ! Although I do Metro un Win Phone 7 (and Mango is really great, by the way) I think the most challenging task un building Win 8 is to be wise and accept that there must be different flavors of Win 8, depending on the device. Same UX, different UI this is my bet.

    Being the ones that develop the next Windows, knowing how much this will impact on the lives of more than a billion people, this must a very exciting experience, and I must admit that I really like to be part of it even in a very microscopic way, like posting my comments on it.

    Really thanks to enable us to cooperate with you.

  • Josh says:

    "Any Windows user knows that it's the small changes that make a big difference! THANK YOU!"

    Indeed, just the inclusion of "New Folder" in the explorer chrome in 7 made me incredibly happy.  I am a huge organization nerd when it comes to my folder structure, so it is actually a fairly used feature for me.

    In terms of file management, what would be super awesome is transparent version management, so that I can copy over files but still check previous versions should I have messed something up.  That would be beautiful (and HDD manufacturers would love you for consuming more space, even if some of the consumers might complain)

  • Danny says:

    kudos on the continued push for simplicity. I know that much of the new interface has yet to be discussed. I just hope that file management and other basic tasks won't require a constant 'jarring' switch between the new Metro interface, and the old Windows style desktop view. I understand this change will have to happen for many backwards compatibility reasons, but file management shouldn't be one of them.Looking forward to seeing how everything meshes together come September!

  • Janson Ragon says:

    @Dennis MSFT Surely it would be expected that if connection is lost/interrupted the file copy operation would pause and then resume on the replacement connection?  Certainly this is the behaviour I would expect, especially in scenarios where I may be connected via Wifi in patchy areas, 3g, etc.  Its not uncommon for notebooks to disable the WIFI interface when an Ethernet cable is plugged in, creating a similar scenario.

  • Nicolas says:

    Any improvements to the file system and NTFS? This is really needed.

  • Allen Sanders says:

    @Jeff: You can disable the delete confirmation dialog right now by opening properties on the recycle bin.

    @Etrigan: If you don't have a confirmation dialog, you can always undo it. That works for move and delete already.

    On a side note, if you hold shift while deleting a file, it removes it permanently rather than moving it to the recycle bin.

    As for color for a paused action, I vote for either a gray as people have suggested, a subdued version of the active action color, or a light blue color that looks like ice.

    I am excited to see some tidbits of what you guys have been working on and am impressed so far. I can't wait until Build to see a full unveil. W8 FTW!!

  • Will Rogers says:

    In the "Choose Files" dialog, checkboxes are too hard to target with a mouse or a finger. Make each file selectable by clicking on its thumbnail, and highlight it to show it's selected. Much quicker and more intuitive.

  • Daniel R. H. says:

    Guys I love this! Especially the pause button

  • Lars says:

    Wow, nice!! Pretty impressive and yes, often it's the small things that make a difference.

  • Aaryn E says:

    "Could you add an option somewhere to always show "more details" by default?  Or make it an registry entry or something, please?

    I know this will make things a little on the "too complicated" side, but would you consider an option to make it a queue system, i.e. a check box to "Do the action one at a time."  So the user does not have to pause and unpause manually?"  

    I agree with this request 100%  So do my fellow I.T. professionals.  So we have 400% agreement.  Pretty Please.

  • Todd says:

    Side by side comparisons for filename conflicts are great but resolving it is almost always based only on which is BIGGER or NEWER.  The proposed UI presents this but I have to parse the information, line by line.  I would love to see icons or words beside the thumbnails to show which is larger, which is newer.

  • Marc Lognoul says:

    Really good work! What about:

    A message warning the user about locked files prior it starts copying/moving rather than during the copy and whenever possible, show the process responsible for the lock

    An IT Pro advanced option allowing to chose to copy DACL/SACL/Advanced Attributes/etc… Sometimes you feel like you do not want to use Robocopy/play with registry.

    An indication (icon?)  about the nature of the source/destination media: local volumes, internal/external device, CD, network place…

    I can live with the current progress color scheme but I would prefer: Green = OK, Yellow = Slow, red = slow/hung, grey = paused

    Small question: Taking into account protocols’ constraints, will all of this be available for RDP file operation or WebDAV redirector/WebClient?

  • xpclient says:

    Todd makes a very important point. See the XP (classicshell.sourceforge.net/…/after.png) or Vista (classicshell.sourceforge.net/…/before.png) dialogs: It shows (Newer) or (Larger) so the user does not have to figure that out himself. Please take care to not drop that useful information the new file conflict dialog!!

  • Molt says:

    USELESS 0.0

    Make Windows run properly.

  • I haven't read all the comments yet so don't if someone already said it, please forgive otherwise…

    While I don't really see much of a problem with the transfer colors (green ongoing, yellow paused) I do see a problem having the same button for both operations, the ongoing/active copy job should display a pause button ( [II] ) as it does now but the paused one should display a start button ( [>] ) otherwise the meaning of the displayed button is misleading. Everyone use different means to understand what he/she sees (for many is whatever the text says, for others is visual clues, like a button)

    Other thing (and I know this have been mentioned but let me second it): the text explaining what's gonna be done if conflictive files are keeped. While I do like the copy resolution dialog I think there should a clearer message like the previous dialog: "Copy, but keep both files – The file you're copying will be renamed File_Name (2).ext". That's much much clear that saying "a number is going to be added to its name" . I know I know, "I" understand (being tech-savvy-like person) what it means a number added to its name, you could even not write that and I would presume that would be the action to be taken, and yes, today many understand more OS concepts without being savvy but there will be the ones (like some comment I read here) that won't understand what a "number added to its name" is gonna mean.

    Finally, the thumbnails for the conflict dialog, while not all that bad, I think that's going to create the opposite effect of helping users to do the copy jobs faster/efficiently, it has the potential to be distracting (Imaging the user pausing just to see the image "hmmm are really the same? hmmm it looks like it, oh no, wait, it seems that the one on the right has a little white point the other doesn't, hmmm what should I do, hmm….")

  • Love every bit of new file management implementations. Keep up the good work. Go Windows, Go Microsoft!

  • xpclient says:

    Will the prompts which we get currently for system files or read-only files remain? Again, there can be an option about it in Folder Options.

  • Alex says:

    I really like this idea (I quite often have these problems). But just one tiny thing- could you change the conflict dialog to not use checkboxes? I find them annoying, small and fiddly to click; and this will make resolution longer. The big buttons in the Windows 7 dialog are really good for this.

  • Pincopallino says:

    Why are we allowed to keep both files changing the filename of the file being copied and not changing the file name of the file that's already there? In 90% of my experience I'm copying a new file in a folder that already has an old version, so it would be much better to alter the name of the existent file, IMO.

  • Simplify color scheme says:

    I think the color scheme should be simplified:

    1) Green – normal transfer speed

    2) Yellow – <30% average transfer speed

    3) Red – <10% average transfer speed

    4) Grey – Paused

  • Jeremy says:

    Hiding the 'Maximise' button (rather then greying it out) when it's not usable would be a nice touch on all dialogue boxes. Thanks for all the great work on Windows in general too! 🙂

  • LOL, I guess I should have waited to ask the question I did on the last blog post, because this answered a lot!

    As far as pausing transfers, is there a way to make them automatically resume when the previous one is done?  Like, queuing file transfers, so they all move at a fast speed and you don't have to manually unpause each?

  • Great job on File Copy! and Awesome comments from Todd, Marc, Will, Vladimir, x9.

    There are a few things that I believe should be incorporated in the Windows UI, borrowing from web:

    1. Windows should be able to show no dialogue for copying/moving file. It should work seamless. the color progress bar on explorer icon in the Task bar that shows copying is in progress. Especially if you're moving to tile based interface for the tablets. Dialog Boxes in general belong to the past: the area of windowed Windows!

    2. Dring a file copy Windows might encounters a few file conflicts. It stops file copy and waits for user input for 3 files out of thousands. Windows could use the time while user decides to copy the rest of files that have no conflict. This is very irritating when you start copying and leave the PC hoping for the copy to be finished when you're back and you find it stuck on the 5th file out of 2000 files waiting for your input.

  • @Jack the Slayer says:

    The problem with transactioned copy is: what if you are recovering files from media which can be read with great difficulty or which will be unavailable later (like a network location or domain)? In that case, I would want what was already copied to remain instead of starting all over again.

  • Terrence says:

    The new features look great.  But, please fix tihs issue first before any new features are worked on.

    connect.microsoft.com/…/bug-when-expanding-folders-in-explorer-server-2008-r2-and-windows-7

  • Windwalker says:

    Love these videos! Hope there is a new one everyday!

  • Valerie says:

    I hope you've also sped up the process of copying from a CD/DVD. That has always been a horribly slow process – much slower than it should be even considering that the drives are slower than hard drives.

    Also, I agree with Robbo 23 Aug 2011 8:57 PM – "What about that problem where you're copying hundreds of files and there's a problem somewhere and instead of telling you the problem and what you can do to fix it, the whole thing just stops, and you have to manually find the problem, sort it out, and then start the whole copy procedure again. That would be good to be fixed also."

        Trying to avoid that problem is why I installed Teracopy. It helps but even it can run into issues. It woiuld be nice to have them fixed. I seem to have a particularly bad time copying fonts.

  • WWW says:

    Please add the number to each comment for easy searching!

  • AndyCadley says:

    It's a start, but it still needs work. It's not at all clear, for example, what happens if I don't check either version of a file. The wording of "Which file do you want to keep?" seems awkward too, I'm making a copy so I obviously want the originals left intact. I know that's not really what the dialog is asking me, because it's really only talking about the destination, but that's a lot less clear than it was in the Windows 7 version.

    And I'd definitely add a "me too" to all the comments pointing out that little checkboxes seem awkward and rather dated. Let me just click on the ones I want to keep and then highlight them, it's more in keeping with the metro effect and should be a bit more 'touch friendly' as well.

  • AndyCadley says:

    It's a start, but it still needs work. It's not at all clear, for example, what happens if I don't check either version of a file. The wording of "Which file do you want to keep?" seems awkward too, I'm making a copy so I obviously want the originals left intact. I know that's not really what the dialog is asking me, because it's really only talking about the destination, but that's a lot less clear than it was in the Windows 7 version.

    And I'd definitely add a "me too" to all the comments pointing out that little checkboxes seem awkward and rather dated. Let me just click on the ones I want to keep and then highlight them, it's more in keeping with the metro effect and should be a bit more 'touch friendly' as well.

  • AndyCadley says:

    It's a start, but it still needs work. It's not at all clear, for example, what happens if I don't check either version of a file. The wording of "Which file do you want to keep?" seems awkward too, I'm making a copy so I obviously want the originals left intact. I know that's not really what the dialog is asking me, because it's really only talking about the destination, but that's a lot less clear than it was in the Windows 7 version.

    And I'd definitely add a "me too" to all the comments pointing out that little checkboxes seem awkward and rather dated. Let me just click on the ones I want to keep and then highlight them, it's more in keeping with the metro effect and should be a bit more 'touch friendly' as well.

  • Nicolas Pagès says:

    These improvements, while slightly are overdue.. ;), are just great. As have been mentioned throughout these comments, I would feel even more excited if there was, for example an option to choose all most recent files (and other similar options). I actually expect Windows 8 to be and to look just great in every single aspect, and I hope Microsoft does just that.

  • Matt says:

    Great idea and well implemented!  I do hope the graph of the transfer speed get's a UI overhaul – bring those smug mac user's down a notch.

  • xpclient says:

    Also don't forget keyboard usability of the "Choose Files" dialog. Considering tab key or arrow keys based navigation, the bottom buttons and top most checkboxes which are for the entire column should be together instead of separating them by the filename conflict list.

  • Mike says:

    The conflict resolution dialog needs a bit of work. The horizontal lines separating the files make it difficult to see that the labels at the top are column labels and not simply another row. In other words, it's not clear that the data are separated into columns — the horizontal lines are counter to the way you're trying to organize and display the data as columns.

  • Wade says:

    Looks great!

    Another agree on:

    Robbo 23 Aug 2011 8:57 PM – "What about that problem where you're copying hundreds of files and there's a problem somewhere and instead of telling you the problem and what you can do to fix it, the whole thing just stops, and you have to manually find the problem, sort it out, and then start the whole copy procedure again. That would be good to be fixed also."

    I've always been amazed this hasn't been fixed yet. Even just the option to ignore the problem file(s) and keep going would have saved me a lot of time over the years. It just dies with everything half copied.

  • Michael Van Goethem says:

    It would be GREAT if we could upvote and downvote comments! It would reduce double comments and would set priorities.

  • GT says:

    Wow, 20 years later, it could not have been a moment too late 🙂

  • GT says:

    Wow, 20 years later, it could not have been a moment too late 🙂

  • Some controls like pause, cancel button.. etc should be made a bit larger for touch or tablet devices..

    I think the "choose file" part should have a scroll bar at the bottom-left corner to enlarge thumbnail just in case… The check box is great for non-touch PC… however if it's a tablet… it's pretty small and annoying to tap on—>the team can give user ability to tap the rectangular zone around the thumbnail (just like selecting files in Windows Explorer)  to select the particular file… re tap them to unselect…  By the way, the team also need to consider "drag select" to select multiple files instead clicking each check box in case there are too many files you want to choose….

  • Rob says:

    Is the number preceding the "MB/s" units in those graphs really a power-of-ten based MB/s number, or is it a power-of-two based number that should be accompanied by "MiB/s" units?

    Apple OS X switched to real decimal numbers a while ago, so their "MB" numbers are correct.  Microsoft should do the same.

  • CopyStillSlowerThanMacs says:

    Would be nice if the file system copy process is faster. On a Mac, I can copy and move files much much faster than on windows.

  • avi says:

    Nice stuff ms could  u add option to run the ction whjle idle 🙂

  • Andrew says:

    Another request for a queue system if either the source or destination file shares a physical drive. Nothing more annoying than needing to copy multiple files in different location on one drive,, and watching the entire process take 5 times as long just because its trying to do them all at the same time. Thanks!

  • Andrew says:

    Another request for a queue system if either the source or destination file shares a physical drive. Nothing more annoying than needing to copy multiple files in different location on one drive,, and watching the entire process take 5 times as long just because its trying to do them all at the same time. Thanks!

  • ice2morrow says:

    Does anyone know a little more about the UI with a mouse? I was watching the first video (linked earlier in the article) which I had never seen and as much as it looks beautiful and amazing I have to wonder how 'fluid' and 'simple' these things will be without a touch screen. Unless this is only meant for tablets and not regular desktop pcs because who really has touch capability on their primary pcs?

  • Windows Explorer Improvement says:

    What would the chances of a multi-pane windows explorer feature so a person can look at the contents of two or more folder simultaneously in one windows explorer instance? Or, add tabs to windows explorer for multiple folder viewing. That would be helpful and useful! Either would be very useful, but the first one would be most helpful!

  • Brad Laue says:

    My compliments on this blog, it's great to see Windows 8 take shape and also great to know the team(s) are taking input from users seriously. Don't let the Linux/Mac trolls get you down, this is great stuff.

    Glad to see this improvement in the UI – having a single dialog box containing the progress of all filesystem operations is logical and elegant. Question: The included video shows the classic desktop. Two questions:

    1) In what context will the classic desktop be visible in Windows 8? Can I make it my default appearance if I'm using a desktop computer (or even a tablet if I choose to)?

    2) Do you have a UI for filesystem operations on the tablet oriented view of things?

    Keep up the good work!

  • Eduardo Valencia says:

    Dear microsoft

    We need a new filesystem in Windows 8, improving a new and mor emodern filesystem can stop the OS file fragmeentation or at least reduce it to very low levels.

    This is great news BTW ,and i am waiting news regarding the optimization of a new filesystem

  • JoeUnplugged says:

    These are indeed some nice improvements – I especially like the consolidated copy window.

    You have so many great comments already, so I'll keep mine short. It basically comes down to "Keep It Simple Silly". For instance, the Choose Files window could be made much easier. The "If you select both versions, the copied file will have a number added to its name" is more complicated than it needs to be. Please see this mock up: http://t.co/HAVj6bW . Notice that the user doens't have to think (for example, to "keep both" is just a check box and Windows automatically renames it).

    Even better would be automated versioning – if the file is duplicate, just version it; don't even ask.

    Overall, great stuff. Thanks for sharing this with us and taking input. I'm super excited about Windows 8!!

  • Santosh says:

    Awesome Really i liked it!!!

  • hdw says:

    Wouldnt Leaving both checkboxes unchecked (as in the video) lead to some confusion ?

  • PasserBy says:

    I know that when you are working and putting a lot of thought into your movements with mouse it is hard to hit small checkboxes. So I would suggest making it possible for the user to click on the image/text to select the needed copy, and don't forget about shift in case I have a dozen files and need lets say preserve the first 7 and replace the next 5 so I would prefer to click on the first then shift click on the last bunch of 7, then do the same with the other 5 or something like that. At least it will speed up the process of selecting between required files.

  • PasserBy says:

    Just thought of an another thing that would make my life a bit easier: make a light highlight for newer files. Seeing dates as strings is nice, yet you have to think and translate those dates yet if there is even a light hint for the newer file then it will make decisions faster as you will not have to interpret dates, just use visual ques that are easier to process.

    And not to forget that files that are the same (ie dates and sizes are equal) then probably put them at the end of the list and gray them out probably to just show that it doesn't really matter which one.

    In short: add visual ques so that you need less brainpower to process a long list of files.

  • Mary Branscombe says:

    the problem with the conflict resolution dialog for me is that it doesn't have clear outcomes the way the current single stage dialog does – I have to internalise that the left and right columns are source and target and then it makes sense to pick one file or the other, bolding shows me that a date is important and I can read them to say 'that's newer' but it's just not that clear. I'd like to see clearer, more actionable labels like LARGER, NEWER on the different files. You can't have single, large action buttons for multiple choice, but I think there could be a way to make the outcomes more obvious without me peering and counting on my fingers. And suppose there are 50 conflict files where only 2 have any difference in file size or modification date – is there an option to just see the files that don't detect as being the same?

  • sbuck333 says:

    very cool! this looks like a great improvement that many people will appreciate.

  • David says:

    Please fix the bug in Windows Explorer in Windows 7 which forces you to click on the files on the right pane before you can scroll down. Intuitively, one should only need to hover the mouse over the right pane to scroll up/down. But somehow it was implemented in such a way that if the left pane is active, when scrolling using a mouse wheel, regardless of the location of the mouse cursor, the left pane will be scrolled up/down.

  • Shplendid says:

    RE UX disaster:

    OK the files display is ok. left and right hand side, great. But it means I will be forced to use the damn mouse to confirm a file copy, just like Win 7.

    Why oh why cant you give us a keyboard shortcut to confirm file copies – I'm a developer so constantly copying new versions of code into directories. having to use the mouse or multiple keystrokes is a PITA.

  • Michael G says:

    I've waited long enough I think my post actually didn't go through, so I'll try again:

    Please consider using a checksum/file size/date algorithm to determine if the files are actually identical. If they are, I can't think of any situation where the source file can't simply be deleted (in the case of a move operation) or the file skipped (in the case of a copy operation), without any prompt whatsoever- the whole point of the command was to get "this" file into "that" directory, and since it already is, problem solved!

    Even if this has to be turned on as an option or registry key, it would save a lot of time and grief.

    Thanks so much for this blog- it's amazing to feel like you're listening, and that your users can help Windows 8 be even better!

  • Michael G says:

    What I forgot to underscore in my previous comment was that skipping a prompt for identical files means that the only things in the conflict dialog box are actual conflicts…a much shorter list, and one people will get used to the idea that they actually need to pay attention to.

  • Cantoris says:

    This is very impressive indeed.

    Two quick thoughts:

    • ability to click on the file thumbnail as well as just the checkbox in the conflict resolution screen – esp for touch users

    • if the target drive has an issue (eg full of accidentally unplugged), perhaps this could be treated like an interrupted IE download – ie resumable (eg space freed up or device reconnected).  Perhaps it could turn its progress bar red when poorly to complete a traffic light theme!

  • Lars Kemmann says:

    Looks great!

    How does this interact with the 'Launch folder windows in a separate process' setting?

  • @Andrew F and others — lots to talk about as we get into touch interface affordances and the user experience in general.  one thing to keep in mind is that the touch target and the visualization of the target are separate things.  so you can have a "hit test" region that is large/forgiving so you don't have to use up a lot of pixels for the UI — that is closer to metro styling 🙂  But as you have seen in video #1, we also have a great touch experience to talk about.  Just trying to cover a bunch of bases so hang in there.  

  • Robert W. says:

    I'm glad you've redesigned the UI for resolving conflicts during file copying. I always found the Windows 7 Conflict Resolution dialog more confusing than the Windows XP Confirm File Replace dialog.

    Please don't neglect the keyboard interface for this UI. In Windows XP you could simply use Alt+A to choose "Yes to All" in the Confirm File Replace dialog. In Windows 7 this became Alt+D to select "Do this for all conflicts", followed by tabbing to the "Copy and Replace" button and pressing space to select. In Windows 8 the Replace or Skip Files dialog should support Alt+mnemonic for each of the 3 main options. Unfortunately the Choose Files dialog is probably too complicated to have a decent keyboard interface.

  • Tihiy says:

    Great read. Copy dialog seems much better, file conflict dialog – not sure… Can selected items be more noticeable than just tiny check boxes?

    Also, window frames and ribbon tabs seem ugly so far. I hope ribbon ui will be enhanced with new ideas for Explorer.

  • MD says:

    The conflict resolution box is even more confusing now.

  • Greg V says:

    Lets see if this goes through if I post it from Internet Explorer 🙂

    It would be very useful if when you cancelled a file copy or move, it prompts you if you want to undo what was already done.  For example, "Move cancelled.  Would you like to put the files that were already moved back in their original location?" or "Copy cancelled.  Would you like to remove the files that were already copied?"

    I work in IT and periodically someone will tell me they're missing the contents of a folder starting with S-Z.  What happened is someone accidentally moved the parent folder on the shared drive, it pops up the progress dialog, they see their mistake and press Cancel.  However, they don't realize they have to move everything that was already copied back.  This happens more than you would think.

    The only tricky part is what to do with overwritten files.  If you have a shadow copy then you can just restore them silently.  If you don't, well you already generated a list of conflicts beforehand in order to pop up the new dialog.  If there's anything in that list that was overwritten you can add a note saying those particular files can't be restored and exclude them from the cleanup.  By excluding them it means the worst case scenario of a copy+undo is a file overwritten with a different version and not that file being deleted completely.

  • Valkyrie-MT says:

    I say try to make it such that the operations can be reversed and whenever there is a conflict, assume the most common response (probably overwrite) and save the questions (overwrite or not) for the end, then if the user decides not to overwrite, just undo that operation.  Also, if the file you would overwrite is identical, you don't need to ask me, just overwrite (or just delete the original) because there is no data loss at all here.  In fact, I would like to see a file system where duplicated files are actually just pointers to files and a diff file is generated when one file is modified.  That way, I can have copies of files where-ever I want and it won't use an more space.  Then, files become more of an organization technique…

  • Veer Maharaj says:

    EXCELLENT, now add in an option to have copy/move options proceed either concurrently or sequentially and it will be near damn PERFECT!

  • jdrch says:

    First of all, thanks for the improvements, they look great. However, am I the only one who doesn't have a problem with the current conflict resolution dialog? It makes perfect sense to me. Also, what happens in the Windows 8 dialog when there is a large number of conflicts?

    A really nice native feature to have is the ability to scan a folder for files containing the same content (i.e. find duplicates) AND also integrate this into the conflict resolution dialog. Since duplicate checking requires hashing that may be time consuming, this would be best implemented as an option.

    Good work guys 🙂

  • Kenshin1870 says:

    We want new interface, you people promise this windows is gonna be a "REVOLUTION" i see just see a few changes. I hope that you people kept your word.

  • Really interesting follow your work here with Windows 8 guys!

    Thanks for having the opportunity sir in send a comment on your post in the subject 'Copy' 'Paste' etc.

    In make it simple there are one close related feature for the discussed task in this thread that need more space for improvements and further developing in specifically remember more former copied items.

    I have been going through earlier comments until wrote mine and couldn't find more than 3 touching the CLIPBOARD MANAGER which followed us quite some time though the versions of Windows operating systems.

    Would be by heaven sent see this manager become a bit more improved than it is for the moment as we have to trust third-party applications taking care of the task in cache and keep a database of saved transfers of files and content of text while working with for instance stuff we do everyday writing or together with the Explorer file-manager. It would make things much easier if Windows had this ability already there built inside.

    Finally, congratulations for the well done job here on your blog and good luck all teams !

  • Several of you have made some great comments about potential usability issues in the new copy experience, and in some cases you’ve suggested changes that we actually tried and tested with users in our usability labs.

    Here’s a bit of background on what we saw in our studies (I’m one of the User Experience Researchers on the Windows 8 team).

    @Sandeep Polisetty was concerned about the complexity of the detailed “choose files” dialog for less experienced users. As others have commented already we have a much improved initial dialog (only shown in the video) that provides three simple options that will apply to all files that have a conflict – “Replace”, “Skip”, and “Choose”. In usability studies we’ve found that less experienced users do really well with this. We’ve also found a lot of enthusiast users really like the efficiency of replacing or skipping all files with a single click, but also having the control of the “choose files” option when they really need it.

    @Oleg and others suggested removing the checkboxes and letting users just click directly on the files they want to keep. This is actually very close to one of our initial designs but we found this performed very poorly when we tested it in the lab with users. The checkboxes immediately cleared up the confusion users felt. Checkboxes were much more effective in conveying what the user needs to do, and the current state of the selection they’ve chosen. @Mike R also points out the checkboxes are small targets. We’ve done some work to let you click anywhere on a file’s icon in this dialog to select the corresponding checkbox.

    @Todd suggested we explicitly show which files are bigger and newer in the Choose Files dialog with icons or words. We tested versions of this interface where we explicitly showed what was “newer” and “larger”, but in our usability studies we found users had a strong tendency to ignore the label and look for the comfort of concrete dates and sizes. We were a little disappointed that users weren’t happy with the design that emphasized “newer” and “larger” since like you we knew that this was the one piece of information that you really need. Manually comparing dates and sizes can be time consuming and error prone. However, if you look closely you’ll notice we now use bold text to draw attention to the newer time and larger file size, and we’ve been pleasantly surprised by how many users quickly notice and appreciate the bold identification.

    @Gawicks suggested we select all ot the items in one of the columns by default to reduce potential confusion – “Didn't you guys notice that there is some confusion over what happens to 'Kobenhavns……jpg' in the example (since both checkboxes are unchecked)”. Yes, we thought a lot about this potential confusion, but in usability studies we found:

    – Most users assumed selecting no checkbox will just leave the files as they are on the disk and they felt most comfortable only selecting the few files they actually wanted to overwrite and leaving the rest blank.

    – Users who were unsure would select the relevant checkbox anyway and naturally remove the potential ambiguity (Note: you can select an entire column with one click from the checkbox at the top).

    – Selecting one of the checkboxes by default added a step to the common case where you want to select the other version instead.

    There were a lot of comments about the color choice for the paused state. As @Quppa pointed out, we chose yellow to be consistent with the established convention in Windows of using yellow for a temporary halted state. Red can look too cautionary and grey looked close to the empty bar or a disabled state.

    Thanks everyone and keep the great feedback coming.

    Matt

  • grumpy says:

    99.9% of the time, the user wants to overwrite files when there's a conflict.

    When you don't want that, it's probably because you want to cancel the copy altogether.

    And nearly all the conflicts users get are between identical files.

    So does Explorer really need to ask me what to do on *every* conflict, *as soon* as it occurs?

    If the file is small and can be reasonably checke for equality, or there has been time to perform the check (say, because you're waiting for the user to answer another dialog), *just scan the file and skip it if the source and destination are identical*.

    And if the files are genuinely different, or if it's impractical to check that they're identical (perhaps because of file size), *don't block the entire copying operation*. Ask me, and keep copying in the background. And if more conflicts are found before I've answered the first one, coalesce them into one. Merge the newly found conflict information into the dialog that's already being shown.

    I don't want to have to hand-hold Explorer. I don't want to be "put in control". I want Explorer to be smart enough that I can just set it on autopilot. Tell it to copy those 17,000 files, get a cup of tea, and come back 5 minutes later and perhaps tell it what to do with all the conflicts it has found. (Even that could be avoided if the "copy" dialog had a simple checkbox for "overwrite conflicting files", which I could select *before* a conflict is found.

    Oh, and please tell me what the heck is going on with the statusbar at the bottom of the Explorer Window.

    It used to be single-row height, and contain all sorts of useful information, like "combined size of the selected files", and "free disk space in this location". Now, it's grown to double height, *and contains virtually no information*. "20 items", or "6 items selected", or a filename and last-modified time.

    What the heck? You needed twice the screen space just in order to remove all the useful information, replacing it with duplicate information that is listed clearly in the main part of the window?

    Oh, and how about teaching Explorer that we're no longer living in DOS. Files can have names starting with a dot.

  • omar says:

    Rob, I think where you say "Apple OS X switched to real decimal numbers a while ago, so their "MB" numbers are correct.  Microsoft should do the same."

    Isn't that what "copy jobs" means?

  • Mr.Steven , so in WIndows 8 we cant use the old Staratmenu style like in WIndows 7 ? , and also is it true if the Windows 8 System Requirements will have the same as Windows 7 does ?

    Pls reply Mr.Steven pls

  • mobiletonster says:

    Overlooked in all the musings about the file system improvements is the fact that we will still have access to the file system….HOORAY.  One of the things I absolutely hate about my iPad is the sandboxing of applications and files.  Moving files between applications is an atrocity on the iPad/iPhone, Android and even to a certain extent, WinPhone 7 products.  I miss having access to my file system.  If I want to copy a video to my phone or tablet, I don't want iTunes or Zune to tell me I can't, or that I need to convert it….stop with all that.  I hope Windows 8 will solve these headaches for smaller form factor devices.

  • Charleston Sityar says:

    That's cool!

  • Great Work B8 Team! Keep up the good work. This was actually one of the things I wished would change about Windows and now… U guys too much jare! 😉

  • Mr.Steven , so in WIndows 8 we cant use the old Staratmenu style like in WIndows 7 ? , and also is it true if the Windows 8 System Requirements will have the same as Windows 7 does ?

    Pls reply Mr.Steven pls

  • @Matt

    You've made some great points and I'm glad to see that you guys are already taking on board the feedback. I think peoples main gripes with the checkbox was that that was all they could click to select a file, this is what was done in the video but hearing that we instead select the thumbnail is nice, good for both touch and those that hate having to put their mouse pointer into a tiny box.

    I do however disagree with the color choice, yellow maybe the default in Windows but not only is it jarringly bright and out of place with its surrounding controls but to me it doesn't say "halt", it's admittedly a small thing but we're crazy like that. Btw I notice that the graph yellow is a lot darker than the progress bar yellow, how about making that slightly darker system wide to appease everyone?

    Btw I love how much discussion is generated over a simple file copy dialog, something we won't even see much of if your estimates about USB3 adoption hold true.

    I can't begin to imagine what kind of reaction will take place when you show off the bigger changes you've made to Windows 8 (if .NET really is killed then I hope Microsoft have safety bunker on standby for you guys). :p

  • Chen says:

    @Dennis Flanagan – MSFT

    > >"You know when you start a big copy job and realize that you are doing it over the wireless.  

    > > So you grab a  network cable and plug it in.  Does the file copy know to utilize the faster connection now? "

    > Nope, it doesn't work like that.  

    > If you start a file copy on one connection it will continue on that connection until completed.

    > If you started a really big file copy operation on wireless and want to switch to wired

    > you should cancel it, connect the net cable and then restart the file copy job.

    BEEP! Wrong answer. You don't tell your users what they shall do, you listen, take note of their problems and try to find a solution.

    Most serious file transfering programs can manage this (µTorrent and filezilla to name two), why can't explorer?!

    With µTorrent i can even reboot my computer, unplug my battery, move the disk to another computer, reinstall windows and then just open up the transfer again and it will continue where i left it. THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX PEOPLE, explorer doesn't have to work exactly the same way it has done since window 95 with new bling bling on top.

  • aldie_lab says:

    I don't understand what one is supposed to DO with the information presented in the graph. It really just seems like a pretty picture to look at while the real work of copying continues at whatever pace it wants to. Or do you imagine that the user is going to try to understand the peaks and valleys? Perhaps launch PerfMon retrospectively to determine what processes were executing at the time?

    Agree with @Robert W. about keyboard support. I'm trying to imagine what a screen reader is going to do with these dialogs. The use of columns (like in the new Choose Files) is often a nightmare to navigate via speech. [My blind wife is paying me to make accessibility comments on these blog posts.]

  • Joe says:

    Please please please for the file compare. Can you do hash comparison (like MD5 or SHA1) to find out if the file is an exact duplicate or not. Currently I have to use a separate program to find out if they are exact copies or not.

    Like in the video when you were copying the 4 images. The 3rd one you didn't copy because they "looked" the same. But are they? You are not sure. A hash comparison would really help to be totally sure. You can at least make it an option/button like "verify if same" or something  (because hashing could be intensive for large GB sized files)

  • Linux Head says:

    Following from Grumpy Wednesday's post, are you going to fix the 256 character limitation in paths for xcopy? With long file names having been in use since Windows 95, it is incredible that xcopy still has this limitation.

  • Grimm says:

    just one word for ya "CUSTOMIZATION" and lots of it really we need more options to customize our desktop and windows.

  • LongARM says:

    Wow. Good I see this is cool. Not a big change but it is important for me. And the theme good too. Like Metro-clear but it is so much better. It is now better than windows 7. I'm happy for this. But if this is the idea could you make that we can "combine" the copy files like in internet explorer 9 the webpages? That could be better. But it is good too just it was a tip.

  • In my opinion, the orb removal on taskbar is really nice. I will expect some nicer, more creative animation when hovering, clicking instead of just fade in and fade out in windows 7. However be sure to design the new flag as significant and unique as the team can… not to make user confused the flag icon is just another pinned application on the taskbar!!!!

    Overall, great progress keep it up Microsoft!!!!!!

  • LongARM says:

    And indeed. That could be good if we can select an option that allows that the dialog always show the "more details". Please take in it more new features like this and new task manager/PDF reader these are super. Just I said: do not make Metro UI just a theme that like for it, but this theme good up to now.

  • David Hicks [MSFT] says:

    @Chen, @Janson1 and others:  

    There were a couple of questions about interrupted file copies when a network connection is lost.  In Windows 8 Explorer will in fact pick up and continue a copy job when the network connection changes.  The copy job will pause and wait for some time before delivering an error that the copy was interrupted.  If it finds a new connection, such as when moving from a Wired to Wireless connection it will seamlessly resume.  This works when your Windows 8 computer goes into standby mode as well, such as when you close your notebook lid and are on the move.  Open the lid again, and your copy resumes (on wireless or wired) where it left off.

  • Nice evolution of the file-copy UI/UX.

    I do think that it would be very interesting to put the color choices — particularly the yellow-for-paused — in front of a bunch of real users of various sorts, vs. other possible color choices — such as grey-for-disabled — and see what sort of responses and behaviors you get.

    If yellow is Windows' standard color for paused, then it makes sense from that perspective.  But having used Windows myself for some time now, I don't have any feel for yellow as being the "paused" color.  (And such may be irrelevant to Mac/Linux users you may be trying to lure to Windows.)  The yellow color used on the speed-charts depicted above that looks more like a slow-progress warning color to me.  Graying the section out as disabled would make sense personally to me, as gray usually indicates (to me) a disabled/suspended state, which is effectively what a file-copy pause is.  (Or even maybe just a gray-dulled shade of the active green color, indicating that this file-copy is still healthy, just paused.)

    Understanding that this is all subjective, etc., etc., etc.  But real-user studies, if not already done, could be very useful here if it does turn out that the color-choice significantly affects many users' first-impression understandings of what those colors mean.  ("Oh, that's paused," as opposed to "uh-oh, something's really slowing down this copy.")

    IAC, not something I'll freak out over, but something IMO to consider.  🙂

    Thanks!

  • LongARM says:

    Daniel D's comment is true. That is nice if we can resume copy after restart or sleep mode, or shut down.

  • @mobiletonster,

    Great point about preserving file-system access.  Agreed.

  • Peter says:

    Please make Windows hash files and give us a CRC, MD5, SHA1 etc.  I very frequently have to recopy large files.

  • Neowolf says:

    Just as already some people mention. A queuing functionality as Total commander would be a really nice improvement.

    Nice job so far!

  • Nicolas says:

    Both changes are great, but i would improve the names collision resolver, instead of clicking on the chebkbox, i would allow the user to click in the image, or some like the w7 names collision resolver that allows you to click that giant button that contains all the info.

    Saludos!

  • Tulio Adriano says:

    That's a very nice upgrade to the Windows Explorer interface. I hope windows can also integrate some new functionality into windows explorer such as mounting image files (e.g. ISO) files directly as drives or at least providing the ability to browse its contents. Those things are usually native on other operating systems and they make the life a whole lot easier.

  • James says:

    Liking the look of the improvements, nice to see something so fundemental but oftern overlooked is getting some attention.  As others have said though, it would be great to have a queue system implemented.

    E.g. when using an external hard drive, in this case Drive Letter E:

    When a number of copy or move operations are initiated to E:, the throughput will slow to an unbearable amount due to the IOs.  It would be much better having each operation added to a queue and then to exectute the queue one at a time, it makes for a much better user experience as estimated times can be more effectively calculated.

  • Fred says:

    I'd love to see a few features that weren't mentioned: something like windirstat that allows me to better manage the files on my hard drive, the ability to find files that are duplicates of each other (same hash), and the ability to resume a large file copy/move if it failed mid-way through.

  • Zalmo says:

    While it's nice to be able to observe the process what are you actually doing to speed it up.  As an example, I do a lot of photo editing.  When I've culled my photos for deletion using ACDSee and hit the delete key the files are deleted much, much faster than when I use Windows Explorer to delete them.  Why?

  • Kurosaki says:

    I am now waiting till 2012 to buy a new laptop with Windows 8. I think that It will be the best Windows ever.

  • NtpL says:

    First of all, I'm glad that you guys are addressing this basic yet frustrating issue. Kudos to you!

    Now, one of my biggest complaints with "copy jobs" is that if I am copying hundreds of files and one of them fails for some reason ("it's in use by another process" or "can't find the file anymore!" etc.) I have to go back, figure out what got copied and what hasn't yet, then sort it out, and re-do the operation starting from where Windows left off. And, this gets even better if multiple nested folders are involved.

    Anyhow, you said " Lastly, our telemetry shows that 5.61% of copy jobs fail to complete for a variety of different reasons ranging from network interruptions to people just canceling the operation." So, apparently, you are aware of the issue.

    Are you planning to address this? If so, how? Are you going to skip the problematic files, or are you going to just pause if there is an error and wait for us to decide if we want to resolve it or skip it?

  • Dan Swain says:

    The single feature I'd love above all others is a tabbed Windows Explorer!

    Other things:

    Improved Bulk Renaming – Something like a rename to pattern feature

    For a normal delete, remove the "Are you sure" prompt, just highlight the undo button, (keep prompt for permanent delete)

    More status info about file sizes, I like to at a glance know how much space I've got on C: or how big a folder is when I click on it. Or prehaps more importants a "It ain't gonna fit" popup BEFORE it starts copying to my memory stick.

    Looks good though.

  • HandNF says:

    All of @Dan Swain's suggestions sound really great. Bulk renaming is something that'd be great to implement, and a file size error before copying would be great instead of failing partway through.

  • AHS0 says:

    @Dan Swain on 24 Aug 2011 1:27 PM

    If you read http://www.thewindowsclub.com/windows-8-features-including-usb-30-support-cleaned-copy-experiences

    then you see your idea is already applied! That’s awesome!

    Quote from link above:

    “6) Several dialog boxes have also been removed. Like, Are you sure you want to move this file to the recycle bin? or Are you sure you want to merge these folders, as these are actually quite redundant.”

  • Kevin I says:

    I like the grouping of the copying, but the queueing, which others noticed is really something key.  I can think of the way Garmin does it as something that would be interesting..

    Copy from A to B .. it starts…

    Copy from A to B (something else).. popup saying there is already something copying, add to the end of the queue or copy immediately (which would inevitably pause the other copies, and move this one to the front of the queue to resume the others when the first is done).  

    That alone would let me get the scenario of copying, without lots of simultaneous copies (which if aborted, causes lots of 'unfinished' copies), and lets me reprioritize something I'm just now copying because i want it done right away.  

    Maybe an advanced button would just have a button to "Copy all at same time" to make them all work like yours, but for the casual user, I'd rather things copy over one at a time (at the fastest speed) then have lots of things half-copied in progress.

  • @Zalmo – I agree, for some reason when using third party applications to delete files it's almost instant, the same file in explorer and it takes that little bit longer. A fix, or explanation of why this occurs would be nice.

  • Here are my opinions (most are copied from other commenters):

    1) Agree with @Hypernova, please add a "queuing" system in file operation, as doing multiple file operations with HDD will kill the machine.

    2) Finally! I hope it covers gracefully the case where the target filename is too long. Ideally it would cover this by allowing arbitrarily long filenames.

    3) Also, what about a "mass apply" option for conflict resolution? There is no way to say "Replace with {newer, older, smaller, larger}" files. Also, what if there are hundreds of conflicts which need resolution? That will be a huge pain in the rear-end.

    4) You know when you start a big copy job and realize that you are doing it over the wireless.  So you grab a network cable and plug it in.

    Does the file copy know to utilize the faster connection now?  Perhaps after you pause the copy and then resume it?

    5) What about merging this dialog with the IE Downoad Manager?

    If we think about it, downloading a file is very similar to copy a file over the network. You get the same challenges about limited bandwidth, concurrent downloads,…

    7) Let us use the scroll wheel without clicking into a pane in Explorer and Control Panel!

    8) One of the most annoying things in Windows 7 Explorer is trying to delete a file and getting a message saying : "Cannot delete file because some application is still using it" (or something along these lines).

    9) What application? Where? Could you provide in Windows 8 an option to force delete a file?

    10) If something goes wrong while copying a folder (or a bunch of files), half of the files are in the new location, half are in the old location. Please give us transactioned file copy.

    11) How are crashes handled? Is the file copying done in a separate process from Explorer.exe? If Explorer.exe crashes, copying should not terminate.

    12) What I would suggest as a REAL MAJOR improvement is the fully implemented Undo feature, which will undelete files, move everything back and even if you'we overwritten some files – restore those.

    13) when dragging a bunch of files onto a folder, can it be possible to open the folder when you are hovering it for enough time?

    14) Can this dialog be extended with FTP and other operations (e.g. by third parties)?

    15) Please create a better preview experience for files, better yet, copy the preview capabilities of OS X Finder! Just using the space bar to get a preview which can use the whole size of the screen is much more effective than the damn clunky preview pane found in Explorer where you need to remember a 2 key shortcut to open or close it. Besides in Explorer it always takes away valuable screen real estate that I need to browse through files!

    16) And while we are talking about the preview experience, please finally preview common designer files like PSD, PDF, PS, AI, and common programmer files like PHP, CSS, HTML, JS, and also fully include them in the windows search index (full text, not only filename) and backup process!  It is so cumbersome if you have to find out that you are missing files after you restored a backup. Please make Windows more appealing to professional users (like OS X does), not only to those that are only dealing with family pictures and Word documents…

  • AHS0 says:

    @Dan Swain

    By the way, all you need to be able to see the new Office like buttons like Undo, Redo is that click on the title bar of Windows Media Player or just open the video with VLC Player. WMP crops top and bottom on the video a bit. lol

  • Queue – while it would be nice to have a queue, I don't think that it would get used often enough to make it a priority.

    Paused color – gray would be a better choice in my opinion because it seems to signify 'inactive' in many other programs, and having similar conventions among programs could really help the user experience of computers as a whole.

    Filename conflicts – some have said that the multiple filename conflict resolution box (labeled "Choose Files" in this blog post) isn't clear.  I do not completely agree with that opinion.  You could make things a bit more obvious by including something like "There is already a file with the same name in this location.", which you have on the single filename conflict box.  As for the controls in the multiple files box, I think that they seem very efficient.  I would rather that the checkboxes for the entire folder be changed to a button for each folder that changed between "Select All" and "Select None", or some variation of that.

  • If this is the future style Windows 8 – I like it!!!  http://i.imgur.com/4U7uR.jpg (posted by @josefajardo)

  • AHS0 says:

    I agree with Good stuff’s comment: “Any Windows user knows that it's the small changes that make a big difference! THANK YOU!”

    It reminded me of a small feature I discovered a while back.

    I have discovered pretty little nice features when using Alt+Tab, and posted about them on this forum.thewindowsclub.com/…/32124-did-you-know-windows.html

    Its small feature, but it counts. Just press Ctrl and then Alt+Tab and you see the difference. It locks the Alt+Tab Window and it’s pretty useful, when you want to concentrate about which window to switch on. (Windows 8 idea: It would be awesome in Windows 8 we be able to have more functions when in Alt+Tab mode. Functions like Close the program, Maximize, Minimize, like that. I know we can do these from Taskbar, but it would be just great we do these in Alt+Tab mode as well.)

    I also noticed pressing Ctrl and then Win key+Tab it locks it, and then you can use left/right arrow keys to navigate through windows and just with a mouse click  or Enter key, on any window, you can bring that window on front as well. Note that without pressing the Ctrl key, you can’t use the left/right arrow keys. However, in just pressing Alt+Tab you can use left/right arrow keys pretty well!

    I read it later in Wikipedia too:

    “Using Windows 7 the additional key combination Alt-Ctrl-Tab brings up the switcher dialog and it remains on screen after all the keys have been released. A user can move through the dialog in any direction using the arrow keys, or Tab through in a linear manner, wrapping at the end of the list back to the begnining. In this mode, the Enter key or a mouse click selects the desired window which gains the focus and the dialog is dismissed; Escape dismisses with no change of focus.”

  • Please stylize all the windows controls (and wpf, silverlight) in the metro style.

  • @folks worried about comment filtering — only a very small number of comments (<10) have been rejected as SPAM or offensive by the automated filter (no human interaction).  In looking at them, they are indeed worth filtering.  Just letting you know that there's no person in the middle of any comments being published and so far the automated system is working as expected.

  • dixus says:

    whether such an algorithm is implemented by copying:

    when conflict arises when copying

    conflict file is placed in the queue, and copying files, not conflict continues

    ???

  • I agree with @GRiNSER on points 15 and 16, previewing files and searching within those files needs to be significantly improved, especially now that the tablet UI is getting access to the file system.

  • kingbird says:

    After using lightroom and picasa for several years. I don't want to deal with copy, replace any more. Having a library and virtual copies will solve my problems with photos. I will try to get rid of file system and use library for my photos, video, music in the future. What about system files? why should I, a user deal with system files.

    I also like the new comparison windows for replacing. How about music, video, system files? I don't think having all of them listed, showing only a icon will help me a lot.

    I don't think I will use this feature a lot. But it's nice to have it.

  • @Hypernova: Yes, the setting is sticky across sessions. So it will be like that the next time you start a new job unless you change it.

  • How about when the files happen to be 100% identical and just named the same?   Can it not be smart enough to skip the copy operation and not give me a conflict resolution dialog?

  • Sebastian says:

    What will happen if i pause a copy task and remove the usb drive? when i plug in the usb drive again, will the copy task continue? or is all gone? would be great to know

  • Bonjour à tous et merci pour cette initiative permettant de s'exprimer sur les fonctionnalités à venir de W8.

    J'ai lu pas mal de réponses et sugestions grâce à l'outil de traduction proposé et me propose de vous faire part de mes petites remarques.

    Tout d'abord, un commentaire précise qu'il ne juge pas utile de mettre un message d'alerte pour un fichier strictement identique. je cite :

    "No need to display a thumbnail if:

    1) the files have the same name and

    2) they have the same size and

    3) their checksums match (or you could do a byte-by-byte comparison)"

    Je partage cet avis.

    Par contre, je verrai bien une 4ème option de copy : RENOMMER TOUS les fichiers avec une racine suivie d'un numéro de série auto ("Rename all with : _____ and a sérial number") qui peut être le N° de série de la date-heure-minute-seconde ou une série d'entier (nnn_001 ; nnn_002, nnn_003…).

    Je peux ainsi créer facilement des dossiers d'images pré-numérotées pour des applications spécifiques

    Une 5éme option ? Comme l'explorateur n'est pas l'outil le plus adapté et pour faire cette manipulation, je passe par MS Office Picture Manager pour redimensionner/réduire le poid de toutes les images copiées. Toutefois, il est probable que si cette option était disponnible directement depuis l'interface de copie de l'explorateur, elle serait sans doute appréciée 😉

    Je suis bien conscient que toutes ces options risques d'alourdir l'interface utilisateur principal, aussi peut-être qu'il serait plus judicieux de les proposer dans des options de copie supplémentaires.

    Pour l'interface utilisateur, c'est vrai que les cases a cocher sont un peu… vieillotes… et que je préférerai un clic sur la miniature 😉 mais c'est plus de l'emballage que de la fonctionnalité pure 😉

    @+ peper-eliot

    peper-eliot.blogspot.com

    ======> traduction automatique http://www.microsofttranslator.com

    Hello and thank you for this initiative to speak about the upcoming features of W8.

    I have read a lot of answers and suggestions of translation tool proposed and propose to share with you my small remarks.

    First, a comment States that it considers not useful to an alert for an identical file message. I quote:

    "No need to display a thumbnail if:"

    (1) the files have the same name and

    (2) they have the same size and

    "(3) their checksums match (or you could do a byte-by-byte comparison)"

    I share this view.

    However, I see well a 4th option of copy: rename all files with an followed by a number of series auto root ("Rename all with: _ and a successional number") which can be date-hour-minute-second serial number or a set of integer (nnn_001; nnn_002, nnn_003…).

    I can thus easily create folders of images pré-numérotées for specific applications

    A 5th option? As the Explorer is not the most suitable tool and to make this manipulation, I pass by MS Office Picture Manager to resize and reduce the weight of all the copied images. However, it is likely that if this option was available directly from the copy of the Explorer interface, it would be probably appreciated;

    I am well aware that all these options risk burdening the main user interface, also may be that it would be better to propose them in additional copy options.

    For the user interface, it's true that a check boxes are a little… vieillotes… and I prefer a click on the thumbnail, but it's more packaging than of pure functionality;

    @+ peper-eliot

    peper-eliot.blogspot.com

  • ZipZapRap says:

    I'm not sure why my comment never appeared. There was nothing rude about it. I'll post it again:

    Great work guys, it looks good. My only question/concern revolves around this in a touch environment. It was mentioned earlier that a user can click anywhere in the conflic dialog box to select a checkbox. Great. But what about the first instance of moving the folder in the Explorer bar across to the right? Selecting the folder with your finger is going to need a lot of precision. Has there been any thought to making this a better experience under touch?

  • Alex says:

    make the checkboxes as default in explorer. i know a lot who dont use it, because they dont know that this excist, but it makes a lot more easyier.

  • 1984 says:

    Three changes I wish to see on win8

    1: I want to be able to change the background folder color from white in windows explorer to whatever color I want. Right now I have to use classic mode to be able to it. The white is too bright.

    2: tweak UI again would be great.

    3: sort by size, date, name and type should be there by default.

  • 1984 says:

    Another thing. When it comes to file transfer make it possible to always show details.

  • First of all, I love the effort put into consolidating something that seems simple/small but is a part of every PC users' daily life. This type of attention to detail gets me excited for Windows 8 more and more.

    From what I can see so far it looks like the team is on the right track, but as numerous comments have agreed a few tweaks here and there can improve some of the minor details. (Speaking of minor details, I assume the highlighted folder names in the dialog boxes act as links to their respective folders, if so nice touch!). I am also in the group that prefers the pause color should not be yellow; and instead should be either grey or some other neutral color like the highlight blue color; red is a poor choice as it signifies 'warning'.

    Overall the improvements look great but these preview videos give rise to concerns that the OS might be lacking in the incredible importance of coherence in the UI. (Let me preface this by stating that I understand that these are prerelease versions of the OS; that the UI might be incomplete, or purposefully not shown in final form until wanting to do so; also that the design team might be completely aware of the concerns raised here; etc. The issue is, without actually being on that design team working with them for the past few years, these posts and videos are all we have to go on for the moment and thus observations made from them are all we have to create feedback on; so these concerns come from those observations.)

    From what we have seen from the first “Building Windows 8” video and the subsequent videos/posts on this blog, there seems to be two distinct UI’s. One is the beautiful Metro start menu UI, as well as the new immersive apps.  The other UI is what is best described as the legacy UI, or the old desktop UI. While the legacy UI has to exist in order to maintain legacy support, as well as keep a more standard interface for desktop usage, its UI doesn’t seem to compliment the Metro UI as it is shown currently. This lack of coherence and cohesiveness between the two UI’s could very well negate any advantages the beautiful and fluid Metro UI brings to the OS, as well as negate the advantages of having a full desktop OS for tablets.

    Besides the obvious jarring effect between the styles of the two UI’s, it is the actual interaction of the user with these different approaches that seems most confusing. When looking at these previews I am reminded of two separate but related instances involving Microsoft; one is Steven and Julie demoing Windows 8 at D9 and the other is the transition from Windows Mobile 6 to Windows Mobile 6.5.

    Steven and Julie’s demonstration repeatedly mentioned that Windows 8 had been designed with a “touch first” interface in mind; that while a keyboard or mouse could be used in lieu of a touch screen, the UI elements were all designed with being touch friendly first. These examples of the “legacy desktop UI” in these blog posts do not seem to support that mentality of “touch first” and if they are considered for touch they seem more like an afterthought, or “touch after” to coin a phrase. If this is in fact how users are expected to interact with the UI through touch, then that is a huge problem. The elements previewed here are by no means touch friendly and echo the problems that Windows has had as a touch device for the past decade. The hit targets (such as check boxes, etc.) are far too small for touch, and as a Windows Phone 7 developer I know that teams at Microsoft have studied the correct tolerances for this, and I would be incredibly surprised that this could be considered acceptable as a touch interface from anyone on those teams. The Metro start menu on the other hand exemplifies this “touch first” design and is well suited for the task of a tablet/touch UI. The issue arises if at any time…. EVER (please forgive my use of capitals) the user of a touch interface is forced to use this legacy UI to complete any task without explicit desire to.

    The clearest and most recent example of this is with the transition from Windows Mobile 6 to 6.5, where while much of the UI was redesigned with a more finger friendly focus, certain setting menus defaulted back to the old UI with terrible results. This type of occurrence is simply unacceptable. If at any time a Windows 8 tablet user is forced to interact with this less than touch friendly UI, then all the effort put into the new Metro UI is basically negated. Why would a customer choose to use an OS that has muddled and mixed UIs over one that has a unified UI over every single inch? Does having multiple UI’s help consolidate and simplify the UX? Or does create a confusing environment where a user has to learn to interact in different way depending on what part of the OS they are in?

    Ultimately there are two basic concepts that could alleviate the concerns of these different UI’s: One is to ensure that both share that true “touch first” mentality so that the transition between the two isn’t as jarring so that they complement each other when moving back and forth between each UI. Basically this means making the legacy UI far more Metro like (similar to http://www.metrotwit.com/  or this concept http://yfrog.com/klgqg4j ) so it feels far more coherent as a whole OS and feels as an extension of the Metro start menu instead of a separate entity entirely. This unity of the UI is one of the reasons why Windows Phone 7 is so wonderful. The other concept is to ensure that EVERY (again please excuse the caps) action that is possible in the legacy UI is replicated in the Metro start UI, so that if the user never wants to see the legacy desktop, they never have to. Basically this would create silos with different uses and experiences while maintaining unity in each separate silo. But if at any point, for any menu or possible pop up, a touch user is pulled into the less then touch experience, then the effect has failed, and the advantages negated.

    Simply put, the user experience has to be seamless. Any attempt that is less than seamless will pale in comparison to another system that succeeds at it, regardless of which one does more stuff.

    From a user perspective and as someone who develops for WP7, I see the universal adoption of Metro throughout Microsoft as a wonderful decision, but I am concerned that from what we have seen here it will be a broken and half realized move with Windows 8. The versatility of Metro as well as its core principles lends itself to be the best UI I’ve ever seen (it just feels right and everything else feels wrong/outdated), as well makes it the perfect candidate for a seamless Windows 8 everywhere/every device campaign, but I caution that without those core principles upheld Metro isn’t really Metro; it’s just Segoe fonts with a flat UI and circled icons.

    (Again, I want to reiterate that our perspective from reading this blog is like peeking through a fence and only seeing a glimpse of a part from a far larger whole, and thus our observations are incomplete at best. So it may very well be true that the design team has a far grander plan in the works, but from the limited observations we do have concerns do exist and I would far rather come off as redundant than to miss out on an opportunity for input.)

    If Metro truly is the way forward (and I agree it is), then I truly hope these core principles are followed and upheld, not just in front Metro start menu but the OS entirely:

    Metro Design Language:

    Clean, Light, Open, Fast Feels Fast and Responsive

    – Focus on Primary Tasks

    – Do a Lot with Very Little

    – Fierce Reduction of Unnecessary Elements

    – Delightful Use of Whitespace

    – Full Bleed Canvas

    Celebrate Typography Type is Beautiful, Not Just Legible

    -Clear, Straightforward Information Design

    -Uncompromising Sensitivity to Weight, Balance and Scale

    Alive in Motion Feels Responsive and Alive

    – Creates a System

    – Gives Context to Improve Usability

    – Transition Between UI is as Important as the Design of the UI

    – Adds Dimension and Depth

    Content, Not Chrome Delight through Content Instead of Decoration

    – Reduce Visuals that are Not Content

    – Content is the UI

    – Direct interaction with the Content

    Authentically Digital Design for the Form Factor

    – Don’t Try to be What It’s NOT

    – Be Direct

    Whenever I see a new post on Windows 8, I look at what’s shown and I think back to these core principles and then I think each example in the context of using it entirely with touch; what would my experience be like? So far except for the first video released when Windows 8 was initially demoed I am not confident that my experience would be a great one, or even a good one. These improvements are definitely welcome, but they do not instill the excitement of seeing the new Metro UI in the start menu. These examples seem to be very desktop orientated and almost universally I could see them greatly improved if the Metro principles were applied (more?) closely. I understand there has be some variance from the touch centric experience with Windows Phone, but even as a 3rd party has shown with MetroTwit, the Metro UI works beautifully even in a non-touch environment, and I wonder why we don’t see more of it in these Windows 8 previews.

    Hopefully these concerns are truly redundant and the design team is already deep into perfectly this seamless experience between these different UI’s, but if not I hope that it’s not too late for someone to take this in for consideration.

    hmm over 1500 words…. I guess I'm following in Steven's foot steps 😉

  • Yo Momma says:

    @1984 #1's already possible with some tweaking.

  • Jackson says:

    I like most of what I see. I have shown the video and screenshots of the copy stuff to various friends and family. The feedback I am hearing is that the advanced conflict resolution screen might be too confusing for most people. My mom certainly wouldn't have a clue what the screen means, though hopefully she wouldn't click on the advanced options button in the first place.

    If you could spend more time on the conflict resolution screen, I think you could improve it. Right now it looks kind of cluttered and even I had to think a minute before I realized that the source and destination folders were organized into two columns, left and right. It might help to use some UI tricks to further separate the two columns.

    I love that this blog gets updated frequently. I don't think I could have survived the long wait until Build without having this blog to look forward to. I come home from work every day and this is the first thing I check, with great anticipation that I will find a new post.

  • CRCs Please says:

    Another vote for using CRCs in duplicate checks and moving, which could just be called "verify" for users.

    An ideal file move from one device to another would verify (or at least OFFER to verify) the moved contents before deleting the original.  Even with Teracopy, this requires an additional step of deleting the original after testing a file copy.

    Thanks for listening.

  • Joseph Parsons says:

    …I use Linux. I love Linux.

    …That said, this beats Linux 200%. Neither Nautilus nor Dolphin offer anything like this. Then again, neither does Windows yet 😛

  • Roger M says:

    +1 for tab support! Right now the first thing I do when booting is fire up four instances of Explorer and lay them out across my two monitors. Would be much better if I could see multiple panes/tabs in a single instance.

    I also want a link to the Desktop pinned somewhere on the screen so that I never have to scroll to get it in view.

  • Hypernova says:

    @AlexSi Awesome!  And thanks for your answer.

    My 2 cents:  everyone, they stated clearly that their intention is not ot replace 3rd party tool such as Teracopy.  Even the queuing system which I suggested myself is, I think, a little too much in the "too complicated feature" side.  CRC, for example, would be nice to have in Properties Dialog, but I think presenting/using it here would be too complicated for a basic file management.

  • Vasu Jain says:

    Its fantastic.. i hope there are significant improvements in the Windows explorer as well. I would love to see the tabbed explorer windows.

    Still this looks very promising. I am so excited to catch this all action live at Anaheim at Build Windows. Would be a great experience. @Sinfosky

  • Jim says:

    Network file sharing:

    I've had this scenario pop up several times, so I'll mention it:

    I connected my laptop to wifi on my local network, and started a file copy from the laptop (e.g. \LAPTOPcUsersfile) to the desktop. Unfortunately I realize that the copy is going to take a long time, so I decided to plug my laptop onto my 1 Gbps ethernet instead to speed up the transfer.

    Is there any way to

    1) Use both the wifi AND the ethernet to do the transfer in a bridged manner,

    2) Resume the transfer over ethernet automatically, or

    3) Give me a way to pause and quickly resume transfer over the ethernet instead.

    Are any of these things possible?

  • Alex says:

    All this stuff is rellay nice, but I'm not ready to pay again something around $600 for new copy dialog, especially when I bought already Windows 7 with my brand new laptop this summer. I hope, there will be some migration/update program, like we can see it in case of Apple's Mac OS. Let's say, you pay $100 and get Win8 instead of your Win7…

    Thanks.

  • FireRx says:

    Very Nice work guys, looking forward to testing this out. Also what are the tranfer speeds like between like 2 hdd or more?

  • Leumas says:

    Nautilus from Gnome do the same thing, but FOR FREE.

    Shame on you…

  • @BucksterMcgee – I agree but you're right that we only know what they have told us so far (and a few leaks here and there) but if they do indeed go "half n half" like what happened with the jump from Windows Mobile 6.1 to 6.5 than I too worry that the success of Windows 8 on tablets will remain lukewarm.

    In case the team think otherwise this is how it should work, if I go out and buy a tablet running Windows 8 than I want the new, immersive UI. At NO POINT should any action jump back to the old desktop view unless I explicitly press the Desktop tile or open a non-immersive app. In addition all mobile tasks should be featured in the immersive control panel so that they can be easily toggled.

    To be honest I don't fully understand the direction you guys are going with Windows 8, you say immersive apps work with a mouse and keyboard as well but I ask myself (and you) why would I use an immersive app over the traditonal desktop app when on a desktop or laptop? (of course it makes total sense on a tablet). I mean why would I use immersive IE10 on a laptop when the desktop version will work 10x better? I watched the D9 conference many times along with the Computex demo and still don't get the relationship between the Metro Start UI and the traditional desktop that hides behind it (the huge difference between the two UI's means that there can be no parity in the minds of the users that they are the same thing – hence all the people calling the new UI a "layer" rather than an extension of the desktop UI.

    A clarification would help so I propose to Steven (or Julie) that they pen a blog post highlighting the differences between the two as well as the use cases for each, it'll help greatly in getting your vision out there I feel.

  • Conrado Vardanega says:

    I would be nice to see fixed a lot of features, especially visual defects of current Windows 7. They're mostly reported and scored at http://www.windows7taskforce.com and it would be still better to get them fixed on the current Windows version, not the next one. But, if its not possible, leave to fix them on the next version.

  • Falte says:

    Nice job guys!

  • Neal Miller says:

    It would be great to see an improvement in the NTFS file system such that performance does not degrade when large number of files (say over 1000) start populating any given folder. Please add this to your list of future enhancements.

  • Andy, Scotland says:

    Hi, I am really excited about Windows 8, keep up the good work!

  • tip says:

    here are some improvements that are essential!

    1.sort folders by SIZE!!!!!!!! i can't stress this enough!!

    2. make it easier to change skins on windows! make the taskbar THINNER! more customization options for powerusers!

    3. support for more filesystems (such as ext2, ext3, and so on….)

    4. A better filesystem for SSDs!

    5. REMOVE the startorb!

    …more will come…

  • Julian says:

    Great improvements guys, really glad to hear that the copy jobs will complete with warnings presented at the end.

    As these comments suggest I still think there's some tweaking to do on the dialog UI side of things but you're heading in the right direciton.

    I'd also like to see Microsoft introduce Tab support in Windows Explorer. It would be an invaluable addition. Personally, I always find myself having multiple explorer windows open and this one feature alone would make things simpler and more efficient.

  • The Gnome says:

    As a windows XP user, why can't I see the video? Pathetic.

  • Emannxx says:

    Finnaly! A good and useful transfer manager!

    It would also be great if we could "re-transfer" the stuff, in case of failure. For example, you're sending files to an hard drive and stops responding – there could be another button like the "refresh" button from web browsers to start sending the files, again.

  • Peter says:

    I also had a comment mysteriously not appear and I have trouble believing it was considered offensive or spam.  Other people have expressed every view I have though so it does not matter.

    Great blog, eagerly awaiting next post.

    Edit: Had to post this twice..

  • This looks very good.  I would like to see a "TurboCopy"  app that could be used on very large files (maybe XCopy on steroids 🙂

  • gary knott says:

    Dear Alex,  I like your "conflict resolution".   But the biggest problem

    I have with files on windows is the way windows tools "lie" about my file names!

    [If the file is named mlab.exe – I want to see the .exe!   And little pictures whose

    meanings are known only to the prgrammer are useless.]  

  • Aaron says:

    A general request for the blog – could you make it so MSFT replies have a different background than normal replies so that we can quickly scan hundreds of comments to find the replies?   That would be much nicer than having to parse the same critiques worded 30 different ways before finding the first response.

  • I aggre Conrado Vardanega.

    This is a must! http://www.windows7taskforce.com

    Separately these are small changes but if most of them would be fixed it will make a huge difference.

  • Alexx says:

    My comment from yesterday never appeared here. Trying again:

    Lots of good suggestions in the comments.

    – Create ONE color palette for all types of color codes in the GUI and use the colors consistently.  In Win7 HD space bar uses two colors already. I have nothing against the yellow color for paused transfers as long it is used consistently throughout the GUI where similar colored interaction is needed.

    – Select thumbnail/icon instead of checkboxes when choosing which files to keep. Checkboxes are not so touch/mouse friendly.

    – Copying queue. Ability to set number of simultaneous copying jobs.

    – The copying window and IE download manager can have similar GUI.

    OR

    – Downloading/uploading is copying too so why not have one unified interface for both local copying and downloads, independent of whether a IE/explorer window is open or not. Cloud services can probably benefit from this.

    And please….

    Can you ask the blog devs to implement the "Like"-button for the comments? It will make easier for you guys to see the best suggestions/requests. And there will be less entries for the same requests/suggestions/feature.

  • Peter Cooper says:

    Looks great.  Can't wait to use it.

    For the usage scenario in the video, have you considered having an option to enqueue the second copy so that the user doesn't need to manually continue it after the pause?

  • Richard says:

    Thanks for the continued W8 information stream; as you can tell, there are a lot of people waiting for this data.

    What I found particularly telling in this post was the lack of any mention of underlying file system changes to support new copy semantics.  What can we expect to see changed in the NTFS or FAT32 file systems, or in Explorer's support for file systems mounted on SSDs that come and go as jump drives are hot-docked?

  • Pemi says:

    The new Conflict resolution screen is so confusing ,, i didn't get it what will happen when u choose to keep source files !!!!!!!!!

  • Pemi says:

    The new Conflict resolution screen is so confusing ,, i didn't get it what will happen when u choose to keep source files !!!!!!!!!

  • Lance says:

    I do like the yellow for paused, but that's just me. Ideally the colors should be customizable via the UI.  

    I’d like to:

    – Resume a copy that fails.  If I copy to a network folder and the server drops I'd like to be able to resume the transfer where it stopped.

    – Be able to queue the files should be an option in the dialog (and re-order) once a second item is added a checkbox should allow me to copy sequentially.

    – Use copy to work as an rsync tool as well.  I shouldn't need a "powertoy" to keep files in sync (the powertoy BTW is bad).

    In addition to copy:

    – WebDAV via SSL needs to be added as well. I shouldn't need Netdrive to save remote files because windows implementation of WebDAV doesn't support encryption.

    – SSH should be supported I shouldn’t need a3rd party app to connect to a remote UNIX box or create an SSH tunnel.

  • Ashish says:

    First of all, a great attempt to solve a common problem and driver better usability into Windows8. The major issue I run into while copying several large files is that you cannot queue the files to be copied. The process is network bound. It would have been good to allow for queuing of the files to be copied.

    Thanks!

  • Karan J says:

    Great features – just a couple of suggestions:

    1) The graph scaling should be the same across all displayed graphs – just using the above example, the 10MB/s at-a-glance looks slower than the 8MB/s.

    2) maybe allow use of sparklines in the "compressed" bar?

  • Visigoth says:

    I love it! Just a feature request/suggestion though:

    – please put a check box that can be marked with "Always show advanced details" or something to that effect.

    Thanks fellas, and keep up the good work!

  • Vivek says:

    How the resolve feature is going to work with text files? I don't see myself copying edited pictures often.

  • Benks says:

    Buy a mac and use a real operating system, leaves this garbage for dead!

  • RétroX says:

    That's a nice graph.  It'll certainly give me something pretty to look at while files are operated upon more slowly due to the overhead.

  • Mark Hicks says:

    Some of these features are already present in Directory Opus, which is choice file manager

  • Maruthi says:

    How do you deal with a situation where you are copying 100s of files ? While making a choise for each file is welcome, there should be a way to apply a batch logic that is available today.

  • Jeff says:

    Would really like to see some file management tools to visually represent files or folder – like a peek view for folders and I like this visually http://www.windows7taskforce.com/…/54

  • Kyle says:

    My previous comment appears to have been eaten so I'm trying again and taking the opportunity to update my suggestion for the conflict resolution:

    CONFLICT DIALOG

    "There are files in the destination folder with the same names as the ones you are copying.

    What do you want to do?

    1) Keep all those files

    2) Replace all those files

    3) Copy and automatically rename the files

    4) Choose which to keep and which to replace"

    If option 4 is chosen, display the following dialog:

    FILE SELECTION DIALOG

    "What should be done with the selected files?"

    <combo box 1>

    "What should be done with the others?"

    <combo box 2>

    <List of files with checkboxes next to them>

    Options for combo boxes:

    1) Keep them

    2) Replace them

    3) Copy and automatically rename them

    4) Handle each case individually

    Combo box 1 could default to Keep

    Combo box 2 could default to Replace

    INDIVIDUAL CASE DIALOG

    for each conflict display two large previews side by side. For text files have a kind of diff, but only display the first difference.Have options to Keep, Replace and Rename. For the rename option you could also allow the user to specify the new name (but provide a default)

  • Chris McGrath says:

    To all those who say "There's no keep both files option in the conflict dialog!". Will there's a tickbox next to each, so obviously you tick both! In fact if you read  the dialog up the top it says, "If you select both versions, the copied file will have a number added to its name"

    Pause should be grey. Red is just stupid.

    One annoyance I have with the current dlg is when you select a folder and copy it, the source folder is given as it's parent. This gives the impression that you are copying everything in the parent.

  • mvadu says:

    Really nice work guys. Love it.

    I have a question on the thumbnails for images showsn in this conflict screen. Does it read the image and create a thumbnail or just uses thumbnail from cache or from image EXIF?

    Some image editors do not re-create the thumbnails in the jpeg EXIF section. Instead original thumbnail is left as it is. so if I crop an image and try to copy it to original folder, the thumnail (if read from cache or from Exif)may not show the difference unless it reads JPEG data and show it to user.

  • Chris McGrath says:

    Also the columns are the wrong way around.

    You're viewing them from a source -> destination view. That's wrong.

    Instead the columns should be

    "Original" -> "Proposed Change"

    That's how you think about it when you are making this decision -> "What was it before? What is it after?"

    I would use this terminology as the main header for the columns with the actual folder underneath.

    To me this is the BIGGEST mistake in the proposed dialogs.

  • Mario Rojas @ Logicalis says:

    Hello Windows 8 Team!

    I agree with the people that comment that the Conflict Resolution dialog is could be improved. My suggestion is to reduce the amount of information that is delivered through text, and add some kind of big, visual icon.

    If I am going to overwrite a picture, then a big red icon, from the left, source picture, to the right, destination, to-be-overwritten picture would help lots. Or a yellow icon that show the picture is going to be "cloned". I have met so many people that just don't read dialogs, they just press random buttons to make it go away. A big, visual, way of showing the option is needed, because, let me stress it, people DO NOT and they WILL NOT read the dialog.

  • Johan says:

    Hi,

    First of all, thanks for the improvements. I noticed there are also a lot of valuable enterprise-style suggestions made in this forum (such as skipping the 256 chars limit while copying between servers and restarting the copy) that I also would like to have implemented.

    I have a suggestion for a new feature with the copy-speed-graph in Figure 3. With this graph you can see what copy is completely using the available WAN connectivity and pause it. Instead of only providing a pause button I would like to suggest a throttle feature. Make it possible to define a bandwidth limit for a certain (long running) copy task. Now we have to resort to the user-un-friendly tool Robocopy on the command prompt and work with the IPG parameter to try to limit the bandwidth. Robocopy must be incorporated in batch-files for the end-users to use. Please remember that while most offices have 100Mb or 1Gb networks, small branch offices often are connected to the main offices with 1Mb internet VPNs. Windows should register the recently used and maximum available bandwidth between several often used network points (PCs, servers and sites) to suggest acceptable values. ICT-departments can than issue a written policy or GPO of not using more than for example 50% of the available bandwidth.

    And now for something completely different. Well actually,… please read on. I would like to suggest a total new feature: a copy service. How many times do you need to copy complete folders from one server to another? Copy files between servers from Country_A to Country_B? Wouldn’t it be nice if one could start such a (never ending) copy task without a Remote Desktop Connection from any workstation (in Country_C perhaps) and the files directly go between the servers from Country_A to Country_B without passing the network accesspoint of Country_C twice…? Imagine that this copy service would also compress the files while being copied.

    Kind regards,

    Johan

    A contact form can be found at : http://www.vansoest.it

  • @Johan,

     First off: I'm not on the filesystem or copy engine team, but I've been doing Windows development for along time.  

    About your "completely different' idea.  We actually built such a feature into the Lan Manager 1.0 product back in the late 1980s.  The user experience was provided by the "NET COPY" command and we provided an API (NetFileCopy) to actually perform the operation.  I'm not sure why it was eventually removed, but it's no longer in the system.

  • Frotty says:

    Make it stable, fast and look at the W7Taskforce reports.

    Another Thing I need is the ability to drag&drop the windows in the taskbar preview.

  • xpclient says:

    I think you should edit the main post to add comments from [MSFT] employees so people stop asking for features that are already implemented but you didn't write about them/clarify them earlier. And a follow up post on the changes that you are and aren't going to make based on feedback from comments, please?

  • xpclient says:

    I think you should edit the main post to add comments from [MSFT] employees so people stop asking for features that are already implemented but you didn't write about them/clarify them earlier. And a follow up post on the changes that you are and aren't going to make based on feedback from comments, please?

  • Musafir_86 says:

    Hello,

    -I have a suggestion related to free space check: could you implement so that every copy/move job will check for free space available on destination/target – by taking into account of other pending/in-progress copy/move job(s) too?

    -Example scenario:

    I'm copying a folder "A" with size of 1GB onto a drive that have 1.5GB of free space ("copy job #1"). While the copy job #1 still in progress, I begin copying another folder "B" (size: 700MB) onto the same drive ("copy job #2"). The copy would start because there's sufficient space currently available – let's say 1.1GB – as they do in Vista/7. However, soon one of the job would be interrupted because of insufficient space (or maybe both – depending on transfer speed and how many MB left to copy).

    -Question: could you make Explorer check other pending "copy jobs" whether it/they are targeting the same destination and then calculate the final free space? Maybe you could do "space reservation" as others suggested, like by putting dummy files or some other methods. But the dummy files must be easily recognizable by user – and maybe CHKDSK too – (e.g. "Copy Operation Reservation File – Safe to Delete") so that a 'borked' copy operation wouldn't left the drive full of useless bits.

    Thanks.

  • Howdy folks,

    Me again.

    First, thanks again to everyone for the feedback and suggestions. It was a super fun day here in Redmond as the team poured through them. We spent a bunch of time in the hallway outside my office today discussing many of them in depth.

    However as you might quess, there are WAY more comments than we were expecting and we're challenged to keep up! You'll see more responses from us over the next few hours as we catch up.

    One thing that is really clear is that the file conflict dialog has generated a ton of interest and discussion so we're figuring out how we can share more of the design work and usability testing that went into it. Stay tuned for that.

    Thank you again and best regards,

    Alex

  • Jordi Mola [MSFT] says:

    Hi, I’m the Lead Developer for the new Windows 8 copy experience. Thanks a ton for all the feedback and comments. It’s really exciting to see people so interested.

    I’ve got a bunch of questions I’d like to ask and some clarifications I can help with:

    @Win8Rawr – Can you help me understand more specifics of what additional detail you’d like to see on the detailed conflict resolution dialogue?

    @Jeff Therrien, @Andrew F, @cleverclogs, @Chen (and others) – Users can select/deselect the checkbox by clicking the checkbox, the thumbnail, or the size/date text; users can double-click the thumbnail to open the file; and users can right-click to get at file properties / etc.

    @Chen, @Andrew.28 – Keep both is still available in the detailed dialogue by checking both boxes for a single file. This can be done for all conflicts by using the master checkboxes at the top of the dialogue. Based on feedback here and elsewhere, we will see if this needs to be easier to discover.

    @Joe – The functional experience is optimized for reviewing less than a few thousand items. However, we know there are users whose needs exceed this, and the technical limit is in the several million items. To make sure that we do not consume too many machine resources the dialog only keeps a handful of items in memory, mainly the visible ones as well as couple of page/up down of results to make it responsive.

    @Anonymous: In usability studies, we saw that most users just want to compare dates and sizes.  When those values match, they want to be able to directly access the file to examine it. We focused our work on meeting these needs in the simplest/cleanest way we could. Hash tables, CRC’s, etc would have added another set of complex concepts that we felt would strongly detract from this simple/clean approach.

  • Hi.

    This looks very nice, copying takes up a long time, and there is right now a mess if you start multiplay copying.

    However one small feature that is missing (using 3 party software) is COPY FILENAMES, it`s easy whit a small software to add it, but wolud be a small but Appreciate standard possibility

    Doc

  • Jhabril Harris says:

    Dear Microsoft,

        This has nothing to do with the topic of this post, but I would like to talk about issues regarding the Windows Snap feature. As I've been reading other Windows 8 forums, I've noticed that many have been complaining about the 16:9 issue. Understandingly, Windows Snap should only be available for widescreens, but it doesn't need to specifically be 16:9 . Many believe that 16:10 deserves a chance for this new feature.

        Although this is a problem stated by many, believe that the statement could have been misinterpeted. Perhaps, as I thought I might have heard, that Windows Snap is available to any resolution above the standard 1365×768 resolution. Most WXGA+ 16:10 monitors are above that resolution (1440×900), so if that's the case, then their shouldn't be MUCH of a problem. If not, then you may want to take consideration into this. Thank you for your time.

    P.S.-If this not the right time to post a comment like this, then I can wait until the moment comes.

  • Johannes says:

    I wonder if you will unify the IE download bar with this as well?

  • Wow! It’s really exiting to see all the energy people are putting into suggestions and feedback. I’m the Program Manager for the Windows 8 Copy Experience and wanted to answer some questions people raised in their comments:

    @Code Layer – Yes, we have a user adjustable window height, and a scroll bar is available when necessary.

    @Hypernova, @SamStephens, @Hendrik Christian (and others) – As we approached the unified copy experience we knew that we had to weigh possible new concepts with the potential for distraction, and we also had to weigh what other applications may wish to do with the API. As such, we prioritized simplicity, user confidence, and ease of 3rd party app consumption over a number of advanced concepts.

    @Bob, @ghibbins, @Mike Buzzing, @Hugo Noguiera, @Code Layer, @umibozu, @sreesiv (and others) – We don't want users to have to deal with interruptions any more than you do. And transient file handles preventing a copy job is definitely a nuisance. When there's a problem with a file in a copy job, we place that file in an error queue and go on to the next file. When we've done as much as we can and all that is left are files in the error queue, we retry each file in the error queue one more time without prompting the user. After that, we start asking the user for direction with the errors. By following this model, we've found a significant reduction in the number of transient file handles hit 'early' in a copy job requiring user intervention. There are a few cases where we ask the user for direction before we begin the operation (permanent delete, UAC/elevation), and we do that as soon as we can.

    @Etrigan – We've changed the default setting for prompting users when files are sent to the recycle bin to "off" for fresh Win8 installs. In addition, we made sure that this setting:

    * can be turned on if a user prefers recycle warnings

    * has its state retained on upgrade

    * can be set via group policy

    * does not block prompting on permanent deletes

    Additionally, @Nick Vanheer, we automatically merge folders for users.

    @Robert W- The keyboard accelerators were not shown in the demo or in the screenshots above as the "alt" key had not been pressed. We have and will continue to make the entire experience navigable via the keyboard.

  • What we have seen so far is the copy/paste/cut/rename in traditional UI… As D9 conference, Microsoft showed some demo of Metro UI of Windows 8 and I also noticed there are also file system like photo and other media in that interface too. My question is how can the copy/paste/cut/rename experience be like in that Metro UI?

  • Erich says:

    Please look into the file copy overwrite interface and folder merge interface inconsistencies

  • Charly says:

    Really, that's great. continue like that. WIndows 7 was good, and these things make Windows 8 so much better !

  • Johannes says:

    You guys really need to get rid of the 256 char limit as well!

  • Sebastian says:

    @Johannes

    and of the 16Bit support and 32Bit Version as well, so it would be more secure. !6Bit application could run in Virtaul Machine.

  • trukhinyuri says:

    Checkbox looks out of date. hard to get into it with the mouse. (GOMS, Jef Raskin)

  • Sebastian says:

    @ Johannes

    and they should get rid of the 16Bit support in 32Bit Version as well, so it would be more secure. 16Bit application could run in Virtaul Machine.

  • I don't want to repeat all the comments about the security of 'Move' transactions, or the need to incorporate the attributes of robocopy (shadow copy) and Richcopy (threads) in the base copy/move function as these have been better made by others. I would however like to make a plea that whatever it is that slows down large NAS transfers  (probably acls or file locks) is addressed as Windows from Vista onwards is nowhere near as responsive as XP. Please also bear in mind that the majority of NAS boxes are Linux powered.

    One new area I'd like to see handled is file indexing. The current method is primitive. Surely it would be possible to handle index and hash creation/destruction during the creation (copy/replace) or destruction (move). The addition of any other index parameters could then be done more efficiently later.

    As someone who makes great use of virtual guests, anything which makes i/o more efficient would be welcomed.

  • Keyboard Girl says:

    Re Jon Class MSFT saying:

    "@Robert W- The keyboard accelerators were not shown in the demo or in the screenshots above as the "alt" key had not been pressed. We have and will continue to make the entire experience navigable via the keyboard."

    Windows 7's experience is "navigable" using the keyboard – just not very well.  Can we please get the Alt+A = "Overwrite everything and stop bothering me with popups" experience back?  I really can't imagine a reason why I'd want to individually choose to keep/not keep files in a bulk file copy.  It will be overwrite all or cancel 99.999% of the time.

  • Alan G says:

    What telemetry won't tell you is the times people want to UPDATE a folder: copy a bunch of files into another folder and keep incoming files if they are newer (or brand new), but not if they are older than copies already in the target folder.

    This seems such a common scenario I've never understood why it required a power user utility to accomplish.

  • Wyatt (who is late to the discussion) says:

    I'd like to echo the request to support the "resume from failure" use case. If I'm on a network, or copying from an external device, or even if my battery just gets yanked, it's an insanely useful feature to be able to come back and pick up where I left off. Robocopy can already do this, and I'd bet it was part of the inspiration for improving these core utils, so hopefully that's part of the package.

    On the off chance I have someone's attention (haha!) – two other relatively small, mundane things that need to be made DCR's:

    1) Notepad needs to have failure recovery and a shred of respect for modern editing UX (things like ctrl+backspace should not delete whole lines)

    2) Paint should be reverted to its pre-7 state. Particularly because image rotation/scaling is broken now. To repro, make a rectangular selection, and rotate it. Notice how the result is weirdly cropped and altered your image?

    From a higher point of view, Paint was long cited as "the one thing windows does right". Its upgrade to use the Ribbon UI (which I take no issue with!) really messed it up. Paint's feature set was if anything reduced, it gained bugs, and the use of the Ribbon really feels forced.

    Yep, these three issues have been my sole complaints about Windows for years – copy/paste, notepad losing valuable unsaved data, and most recently, paint being cruddified. Please fix, amazing Windows team!

  • Although they look minor, these are the kind of improvements that really help streamline the UI and speed up daily tasks in Windows. The ability to see data rate graphs is a welcome feature for me, and consolidating multiple copy dialogs into a single one will really help lose some of the clutter in Windows 7. Like many others that have commented here though, I really want to see the outdated Aero theme discarded in favour of a Metro-style theme. Not only would that help encourage less tech-savvy customers to upgrade (having a more visually appealing and simpler-looking UI) but it would maintain consistency between other Microsoft products like WP. Can you already say whether using Metro in Windows 8 has been considered or is planned?

    Great job so far guys, keep it up!

  • Jakob Engell says:

    Now you just need to make it que up several copy jobs from the same source or to the same source.

    starting two seperate copies from the same source or to the same destinations, creates havoc makin the disk run very slow!

    que up the copies so everything wil go much faster, and you dont have to sit around and wait bvefore you can start the next copy job

    its just a friendly hint.. you can have it for free

  • Mehran says:

    Wow ! That was great. But for GOD !!!! remove the check-boxes in replacement action 😐

  • Hypernova says:

    @Jon I understand where you're coming from.  As you can see, I agree that queuing system is dangerously closed to be on the "too complicated" side.  However, I still think that even general users will be appreciated a very basic version of it.  No priority list (i.e. move up/down).  No extra option of how many concurrent job the user want to run at a time.  Nothing fancy, but something like a single check box "Do one action at a time" and show a lable to user that the jobs are pending.  A similar screen is WP7 update screen.  Granted, those are not exactly user-initiated queuing, but I think it could work here as well.

    How far have you try to push the queuing system?  Did you guys try that on usability testing yet?

  • etacarinae says:

    I'm going against the consonance and disagree with the implementation of Metro UI in Windows Explorer. The current iteration you guys have developed is brilliant, and Aero is still fantastic.

    Metro UI is a step backward and too minimalistic for many's (including my own) taste.

    @Steven Sinofsky

    1) Thank you, thank you, thank you for re-intergrating the up button.

    2) Thank you, for integrating the ribbon in such a way it allows us to have the file menu back.

    3) Thank you, for re-integrating the current folder path in the window title.

    4) Excellent work with the file-copy. I think the UI is excellent. One nay-sayer who can't explain his criticism other than he doesn't like it is nothing but a troll.

    However, If I may request:

    1) We would still like to see the total size of the current folder/drive we're viewing in the status bar. Currently with Windows 7, and with your current Windows 8 development shell, it only lists the size of files you've selected within the status bar – as visible in the blog demonstration video. Classic Shell implements this much warranted feature.

    2) Another excellent feature Classic Shell adds is the option to have sort columns always visible at the top of the right hand folder pane. This should also be reflected in the  "Save As" window, but unfortunately Classic Shell is not able to implement the feature there.

    3) An icon overlay for shared folders. Once again, Classic Shell implements this.

    social.technet.microsoft.com/…/a343b94a-d864-4607-a2c1-a5a06c2a79c6

    Keep up all the excellent work, guys! You're doing amazing stuff. We the users thank you.

  • Ben says:

    It's been suggested above but the reiterate – One copy per device and automatically *queue* operations on this basis. I've walked into my sister performing 30 odd copy operations on the same device. Would have taken a million years to finish but for a smarter OS it would be a non-issue! 🙂

  • Frank says:

    What about adding an option to copy ACL's so that you don't have to revert back to robocopy?

  • Olivier Pons says:

    I was just wondering how you could talk about "incredible news" whereas it has already been there for years for Macintosh, and more years for Debian / Nautilust Desktop. Talking about something new which is by far not new to the competition is like taking the Windows customer for a ride.

  • Brian Brooks says:

    Still no facility to set copy behaviour on a per-file basis for multi-file copies?  I often find myself copying one directory onto another. If a file already exists, it asks you if you want to over-write or to cancel.  If you cancel, it cancels the whole copy.  What is needed is the option to not copy this one file, but continue with the others.

  • Timshel says:

    Nice improvement.

    Would be nice to have the list of the files being copied.

    Being able to append a new job to an already running would be great to.

    You should take more inspiration from SuperCopier.

  • Sumit Kumar says:

    The "choose files"  feature can be very annoying if we are copying hudreds of files and we have to choose for each and every file. There must be some better way.

  • MrNorth says:

    A suggestion for the delete operation is that it actually deletes it, not just remove the file pointer. That would stop having people with sensitive data the need to get a 3rd party tool on their context menu to actually delete something. A proper delete should not leave any trace of the file on the disk. Or at least an option in the settings for "safe deletion" since there maybe some non power users that want their files to be recovered if they delete by accident.

    And please remove the annoying "caucllating time remaining" message that occur whenever I copy something big over the network, just start the copy! All that stuff could come second when the actual operation has started.

    /H

  • johnny says:

    How about an option to move a file or folder by drag'n drop from one HDD to another without copying it , just move it .

  • I agree with Oleg. It'd be better to choose the files to keep and use a different indication of files already chosen than check boxes. Steven, what happens if there more than just 3 files with identical name, like 10, 20, 100? How will the dialog change?

  • malih says:

    a good idea to improve on this area, i've been waiting for this since Vista, but the graphs certainly is not all that useful for end user… think about it, they're only useful for up to 20% of users at most who analyse their transfer speed.

    I think what people would find useful is download manager like queue list and the dialogue is separated per physical disk – it would help prolong (mechanical) hard disk life.

    take a good look at 3rd party file copy utility, particularly SuperCopier and most Download managers, and maybe implement this feature into IE download manager.

  • @Johannes Duschl

    And how would you imagine that scenario?

    Keep up the good work guys!

  • Well, they are really nice improvements for the user experience, but actually I can't understand a real reason why to put the performances graphs on the details section…

    I mean, the "casual" user probably doesn't care so much about an in-depth view of the used bandwidth during the paste operation… he may not even know what those green and yellow lines means! 😉

    In the other hand, as an "experienced" user I never had the need to have a detailed vision of what's happening on the transfert speed, I don't even consider it as a tool for detecting potential malfunctions…

    Summing up, I think that detailed informations and graphs are a good idea, but maybe it's too "geeky" for 99% of users.

  • Michael says:

    Make the the pick a file like in the new ui. you select a file and the file gets an check mark.

    So you dont need the checkboxes and to choose more files would be easier.

  • Woah, that's a lot of comments! ^^ (But why do I have the feeling, half the people here are still complaining about things, that got resolved with Vista?)

    I'm also curious how this will work with the Metro-style. Also the "normal" applications that could be seen in video #1, where suddenly a taskbar randomly appeared. I hope, this was a "early preview version" effect? Can we get a preview sometime of how the Metro design and native/normal/old applications work together?

    Additionally several people were complaining about how hard the checkbox is to hit with a finger, and you should be able to hit the whole box representing the file. While I'm pretty sure, that this is possible already anyways, I agree that this possibility should be made clear to the user in some way.

  • Oh, another thing just came to my mind: When speaking of file operations, will there be a solution of some kind to do a more sophisticated batch rename of several files?

    For example if I copy a bunch of "DSC0123….jpg" from my camera, I'd like to easily rename them to something like "Italy 2011", and then select a subset of those images and rename them to "Italy 2011 – Rome", with a consistent, increasing number. (And by "consistent", I don't mean that the first file will keep that name, while the 2nd file will be named "something (2)"…)

  • "Finally, in addition to these big improvements, we’ve also done a thorough scrub and removed many of the confirmation dialogs that you’ve told us are annoying or feel redundant (i.e. “are you sure you want to move this file to the recycle bin?” or “are you sure you want to merge these folders?”) to create a quieter, less distracting experience."

    ABSOLUTELY NO!!!!! WTH, such a bad move!! all the time when im multi-tasking and switching between five different things, I move something somewhere or delete something accidently that I did not want to do, but thanks to the confirm dialog box all is well…. what a STUPID ass idea!!

    Its just like when I go to close a window but at the last minute I realise i did not want to close that window IE or whatever, I just hold down the mouse click before iv'e released (which would close the window) and ove it away and all is well once more…

  • Oh, another thing just came to my mind: When speaking of file operations, will there be a solution of some kind to do a more sophisticated batch rename of several files?

    For example if I copy a bunch of "DSC0123….jpg" from my camera, I'd like to easily rename them to something like "Italy 2011", and then select a subset of those images and rename them to "Italy 2011 – Rome", with a consistent, increasing number. (And by "consistent", I don't mean that the first file will keep that name, while the 2nd file will be named "something (2)"…)

    Absolutely Raffo, I have had the same exact thought before…

  • Windwalker says:

    @fletchy88 Please go and read what they wrote above. They said out of the box these options would be disabled but you can turn on the confirmations.

  • Derick says:

    I agree with Walter,

    I've needed the same many times: "Essentially backup the file in the folder I am copying into by renaming it and then copy in the file being copied with the original name"

  • @Ryth-12: maybe one could select each pic by simply clicking on it or its description, which would select this picture. The whole box including preview thumbnail, name and further description could be drawn differently, e.g. being promoted by a border or a certain shading, while the other area (the picture to be overwritten) is drawn slightly more transparently.

    Given, there are many name collisions: I was asking if there is threshold before falling back to the win7 style of this dialog, as it is asking for every individual collision.

  • Alireza Noori says:

    First of all, AWESOME  job, the new additions are very good.

    I'm a developer and I thought a lot about this. I hope you read this and think about it. In my opinion these are very important so PLEASE take a minute to read this and if you do, please let me know what you think.

    The new additions look cool but they lack a few tweaks. These are what Windows lacked over the years and had me use 3rd party software like Teracopy (although it lacks some of these too):

    -Note: Throughout this feedback I use capital letters like 'A' and 'B' for hard drives or other sources.

    I shouldn't try to manage all of my copies. The copy jobs should have a little AI implemented in them. There are times that users want to exchange a lot of files and cannot sit in front of their PC and manage their copies.

    1- If you have 2 copy jobs from A to A or A to B the jobs should be in a QUEUE and they shouldn't run simultenously. This would boost up the copy process. (this is available in Teracopy).

    2- If you have one copy job from A to A or A to B and another one from C to D or C to C, they SHOULD run simultenously because there's no conflict and no seek time problem.

    3- The resolution dialog should have a "Details" button that will show more info about the conflict.

    4- The resolution dialog should appear BEFORE or AFTER the copy process not DURING the job. Again, I shouldn't sit in front of my PC for every job.

    Best regards.

  • The detailed information on the copy dialog reminds me of the download screen in Steam — a view that I use quite a bit to understand how the transfer is going on large downloads.  I think this will be really helpful.

    As others have posted, I'm curious what happens in the Choose Files dialog when we're dealing with something other than pictures or when the number of files grows large.  If the basic functionality stays the same, I could imagine this becoming a very unwieldy dialog.

  • hillsurfer says:

    The change looks good so far, but when copying multiple image files (sometimes hundreds), I've come to rely on SyncToy to do the job of deciding for me. It would be nice to have a function built in to (or in addition to) copy/move that works similar to the way Echo does in that application (simplified, without echoing deletions), by automatically replacing older files with newer ones without stopping to ask after the process has started. That way one could start the process and walk away without coming back to find only a handful of files have been copied, and a dialog asking to continue. Some of us know what we want to do from the start. In the meantime, I'll keep using SyncToy as long as it still functions.

  • L. Brown says:

    Looks good! Just three wishes:

    1 – Always show the time remaining (not just in detailed view)

    2 – For multiple jobs, a time estimation for all jobs would be nice

    3 – A compare button to show if files are equal in the "Choose" dialog would be really great!

  • Jason says:

    Finally!!

  • Jeff Walker says:

    I suggest you change the Speed value to 0.0 MB/s for paused transfers. This will help those who are a little color blind and provide more accurate information.

  • When you try to open an unknown file the default selection option is to search the web for a software able to open it and below that it's what the users want: open this file with…

    I think that open file with.. should be selected by default since it's what people do most of the time.

    Ps: I'm loving the improvements! 😀

  • Andrew says:

    Argh, so annoying to see that "more details"/"fewer details" control on the bottom of the panel – means you have to scroll all the way to the bottom just to collapse the detailed view… Painful!

  • Alex Hutton says:

    These UI elements look nice, but to be honest I don't care about any of this. All I want is for copies and file moves to happen in the background quietly without inhibiting other work that I am doing while it copies. Too often big large copies with lots of files bring the UI to a crushing halt. Thats when copies make me sad.

  • Alex Hutton says:

    These UI elements look nice, but to be honest I don't care about any of this. All I want is for copies and file moves to happen in the background quietly without inhibiting other work that I am doing while it copies. Too often big large copies with lots of files bring the UI to a crushing halt. Thats when copies make me sad.

  • The fact that the shortcoming is recognized is enough for me. I'm sure I'll be happy with the next generation of basic tools. #1 priority: Don't kill the performance of the machine simply for basic file management tasks. The current IT worker is more like the blue collar factory worker of yesterday. (routine processes and handling of virtual rather than physical assets) Proper file management (at least for me and my peeps) is a big part of our responsibility these days.

  • Andrew Pepper says:

    One of the more annoying things with the current copy is that if you're copying a folder with many files, you don't get told about a collision until Windows comes to copy the file – so if you've gone off for a cup of coffee and come back, you meet the messagebox asking if you want to replace/ignore the file. What would be better is to check for collisions before starting the copy and asking what to do at that point rather than at some arbitrary point in the future.

  • @AndrewPepper: Good point. Possible collisions should be detected and reported immediately.

  • Salvador romero says:

    <<We aren’t aiming to match the feature sets of these add-ons>>

    And why not? If these tools exits is because you don't make a proper tool, that's all. A file explorer is basic in any desktop environment. We don't want to install tons of ugly application that will slow down the system just to do the basic!

    Come on, boys, we already pay a lot for your Windows! Make it worth!

    Keep on with the nice job!

  • Rahul Ranjit says:

    Nice! I remember explaining docking excel sheets to my Uncle and I think he purchased a copy of Win 7 just for that. These small differentiators make a big impact! Awesome work guys!

  • Like a lot of others have said queue should be a major priority. This is a major cause of user experience disappointment. Non technical users do not understand that parallel transfers from or to the same device severely impacts performance, sometimes with an order of magnitude decrease.

  • John Ross says:

    Also, If I cancel the replace of one file in the middle the whole operation stops. What about an option to continue copying just skip this one file.

  • Mark says:

    I agree with previous posts that the paused transfer looks like a slow transfer. Perhaps if when paused, you remove the throughput info and put a large pause icon in the center, similar to how many of the internet videos have it now.

  • Dominic says:

    Thank you! The file management in Windows was becoming archaic. Really nice to see this is something you are seriously looking at. Teracopy and likes shouldn't need to exist. It is definitely the small things like this that make the biggest differences.

  • Mark says:

    Also, what if at the beginning of a data copy,  conflict options could be selected (1- tell me during the copy/move, 2- tell me at the end, 3- overwrite any conflicts, 4-skip any conflicts), so when conflicting are detected, they are skipped, so that the rest of the data could be transferred and at the end, you'll get a conflict list box containing all the conflicts.

  • Nice experience. I proposed a similar thing for KDE long ago (lists.kde.org), I wish I would have imlemented it back then

  • WPF says:

    Any news about the important stuff: .NET Framework, WPF, Silverlight?

  • Delenn says:

    Looks nice. What I want is the ability to choose whether it asks confirmation messages? I want to choose layouts for individual directories that are remembered. Give me choices, and allow me to decide how I want to use the file explorer.Thanks for listening

  • Delenn says:

    Another customisation – allow me to choose whether move or copy is the default operation. I virtually never want to copy something.

  • Joe says:

    Don't pause the whole copy to ask me a question — nothing is worse than copying a few hundred gigabytes to an external drive, walking away for the night, and coming back in the morning just to have a "are you sure you want to copy thumbs.db"??  

    Additionally – let me resize the dialog box!  Just the filename doesn't always tell me what's going on… I want to be able to see the entire path… and many times can't because the dialog box size is inexplicably not resizable.

    Setting  a 'priority' rather than just a 'pause' would make it nice for 'walk-away' copying too…

  • prunoki says:

    No way I am going to give up my Total Commander.

  • Hughes says:

    This looks nice!  As far as file copy/paste operations go, one big thing I can think of that would improve the situation a lot is if drag/drop always did the same thing rather than sometimes moving and sometimes copying.

    I never know what the rules are for when it moves and when it copies.  Thus I always either use CTRL+C/CTRL+V or else I right-click and drag which pops up a menu on drop.  It would be nice if I could left-click and drag sometimes, but since I never know whether it will copy or move, I can never use the "easy" option.  Please fix this and make left-click drag/drop always do the same operation (probably copy would be the right choice but I'm not sure).

  • Dranzer V says:

    he new interface for copying is real cool and all, but Windows 98 Me had the same classic styled UI, Xp had the cool Royale interface which everyone digged. And Windows Vista came with Aero and that was simply awesome. I was hoping windows 8 would have a new interface too. =/

  • Peter says:

    For huge file copy operations, I almost always dive for rsync.

    Requests for Windows file copy:

    1.  Have some sort of "resume" operation.  If it fails, let me try again, instead of bailing on me

    2. For conflict resolution, checksum both files first.  If the filename's the same, and the checksum's the same, then don't waste my time.

  • Joe says:

    @Jordi Mola

    I have to disagree that hash tables/CRCs would add more complexity. Such a feature would be helpful for many users. Please understand that there many different "levels" of users. While your usability studies, might be focused on the lower tier "grandma" users, there are people who use Windows more than that and some for their job (like me).

    Like if you feel hashes add "complexity" to the dialog box then why add the graph feature? It just fancy UI that "clutters" the space. With USB3 and faster hard drives (SSDs) eventually normal users would only see this dialog box in a few seconds and not even be able see the graph (as they have to click to see more details). However, I do support having the graph feature. It helpful for us "power users" that transfer large files, lots of files, transfer files through a network, etc…

    You can also just make this like an option/setting, you can turn on/off. So by default, have it off and power users like us, can turn it on through the Folder Settings or something.

  • Automatically pause subsequent copy jobs as they are added, resume the next job in the queue when the one in progress finishes by default.

    Trying to copy multiple files simultaneously makes everything seem extremely slow. A Queued system would go a long way in making the activity efficient and straightforward for users, and the option to resume queued task would preserve that flexibility.

  • Phil says:

    Wow… now we don't have multiple dialog box, but just a main central one… well, just like OS X 3 years ago!

    Well done Microsoft, well copied… LOL

  • bren x10 says:

    I see I'm not the only one who thinks grey would make a better transfer color. My initial thoughts reflect what most of the others said; yellow makes me think slow transfer speeds, while grey is inactive or paused.

  • Real-time real world scenario: Using Windows XP, I copied a large folder (6Gb) containing hundreds of subdirectories onto a network drive. For whatever reason, I received errors of insufficient disk space here and there and about 10% of the files were not copied.

    Trying to resolve this issue, the only recourse I have is to re-copy the whole directory and hope this time everything is copied correctly. I get warnings asking me if I want to replace a folder or not copy it at all, but there never seems to be an option allowing me to just append files that aren't there.

    I've experienced this scenario countless times, has this been addressed?

  • Ed says:

    How about making those bars a bit more meaningful. The bars should go by the amount of KB copied/moved and not by the time.

  • Dated Check Box? I think the problem is not the existence of it since it's still being used in a lot of software /web sites even in other operating systems… But the thing I want to point out is some visual experiences.

    I remember back to Vista launch, Microsoft said Vista is a revolution since Win95 (just like Win8). Although it was not very successful but I have to agree it's a revolution because all things changed from appearance to functionality. Forget about Vista's performance and compatibility issues at that time, the first positive thing went straight to my mind about Vista is its new look (Aero Glassy theme with all re-skinned visual style elements) After that is Windows 7 which has no significant visual change except new taskbar.

    Finally, we get into Windows 8- another revolution. So, what's revolution-the Metro UI replacing traditional start menu and showing chromeless application. But I don't think when Windows 8 is released, the average users would treat this new metro start screen as thay usually do with the old house. New games and softwares will continue using traditional UI as mainstream. And then, when I open my PC to use MS Office, Photoshop, playing games, chatting with friends I still need to turn old traditional UI back. So, most of the time we still go for old UI not the new one. I didn't mean to remove new UI but if Windows teams want another and bigger revolution therefore the traditional UI needs to get a big change as well (like from XP to Vista). Not just change visual style for old start orb on taskbar or Max/Min/Close button or make windows from round to square but some key elements-what we usually use like button, scroll bar, tab, tooltip, and of course the check box. I have been using Windows since it was Windows 95, and I know how experience changed through time, but with the traditional mainstream UI there is somehow between Vista, 7, 8  no big surprise in using it because they almost look the same.

    First example- the button/scroll bar/tab which have gray-aqua glass looking style (aqua glass style is hot back to 2006) but when I click or scroll it, this style gives me some uncomfortable feel like something heavily pull me back, slow my work progress or sometime sense of unresponsive. Sometime around last year, I used a third party software that could make UI look different. I still tried to use aqua glass but whiter, purer and wearing gradient feel on it. This style is the evolution from aqua-glass style of 2006 that made the feeling that I had before go away. It's new, fast, smooth, and elegant.

    Second Example: as I said in previous comment, removing the orb from the flag on start menu is admiring because the orb reminds us the painful days of Vista and since windows 7 official logo-the orb is no longer on it–> there are no reason for its existence in Windows 7/8 start menu. In addition to this wonderful step, I hope the team would put more cares in animation stage (hover/press/leave) of the new flag because when I use Windows 7 start orb the animations are just fade in and out nothing creative and It also gives me the feel that pointing  to it is just randomly clicking some graphic elements that have no function at all. Furthermore, as I click the orb the light that shines from the orb at hover stage just get a little dimmer which doesn't gave me the absolute sense that I'm really pressing start menu. Last one, since it's becoming a flag start menu it has some identity issues with its neighbor- the pinned applications. If I remember clearly there are so many apps that have windows flag icon on it so it would be nice if the team make the flag of start menu significant different from them so the user especially first time-PC user won't get confused just in case two flags there…

    I hope this suggestion would help Microsoft and the team make Windows 8 feel better!!!

    Thank you

  • Miranda says:

    I thought about this and now I am a little disappointed. Here's what I'd like to see.

    First, the 'choose files' screen. Those tiny checkboxes are very old-fashioned. What I would like to see is (in horizontal orientation and listed for each file) the three Windows 7 style buttons: 'copy and replace', 'don't copy' and 'rename'. Then when you click either of those, the three buttons gray out and start/queue the required operations for that file immediately (perhaps with an option to recall the operation and choose another action). This way there is no lost time while clicking all the buttons as there is no 'continue' button, (just a 'finish' button to close after it's done). At the same time it's clear, powerful, modern, simple and not too far different from Windows 7 or Vista.

    Second, the consolidated copy screen: it's nice, but there really needs to be a queueing system, which is really easy to do I think. And it would be perfect if there would be intelligent queue management, like queuing everything that is copied to the same slow disk/ network destination, but continuing operations to another one concurrently.

  • Morten says:

    Pausing a file copy to put priority on another one?!? Seriously? How shitty is that. Gime me a queuing option instead!

    For a truely efficient file handling app, take a look at Ghisler's TotalCommander. The fine grained control of copy, replace, queuing, conflict resolution etc are unparalelled, and it does it without making it confusing.

  • Viggo says:

    These are great technical improvements but I think the UX still caters to IT geeks.  

    To be successful in this environment you need to make sure both grandpa and his 5yr old grandchild can get to the same answer when they sit in front of any form factor.  MAKE IT SIMPLE.  I dont need to be in control of everything… "only the stuff that makes me look good and cool" (Not sure how that applies to copying files…).  I am sorry to say that this is what sells in a consumer driven market.  

    You are off to a great start please dont go back to old habits.  You get only one shot at this.  I love you guys and dont want to see you fall flat on your face!

  • cranberry says:

    I am not sure what many of you intend to accomplish with file copying, but I can't remember not a single time that I wanted to name a new file "file (1).exe" when there is an older version of the file. In 90% of all cases I want to replace an existing file, in the other 10% I want to backup the old one as "file.exe.old" or ".bak", and save the new at its place.

    How much sense does it make to have two or more files in one folder, named "file.exe" and "file (1).exe"? If I wanted to have two versions of the same file I'd give them myself a name that is more descriptive, i.e. "file_new.exe" or "file_resized.bmp".

    Therefore I suggest removing this automatic numbering altogether and make it possible to simply rename the source or target file in the dialog. Then, if I want to make a backup before replacing, I append ".bak" to the target file's name. If I want to keep both files I comfortably rename the source.

  • VIP (Very Important Post) says:

    VIP (Very Important Post)

    @ I agree with Andrew Pepper.

    One of the more annoying things with the current copy is that if you're copying a folder with many files, you don't get told about a collision until Windows comes to copy the file – so if you've gone off for a cup of coffee and come back, you meet the messagebox asking if you want to replace/ignore the file. What would be better is to check for collisions before starting the copy and asking what to do at that point rather than at some arbitrary point in the future.

  • @VIP says:

    @VIP

    The team already answered you question (see above) . The conflict resolution dialog will appear only after the copy process has finished.

  • Jason says:

    If I move the copy dialogue into a corner, all file-related dialogues should then appear in that corner. Please put the option to not overwrite, and to rename them back in. It won't be overwhelming, it will be practical.

  • @@VIP says:

    It is wrong. That's just my opinion.

  • A bit unrelated, but you could take a look at this: img11.imageshack.us/…/win8concept.png

  • droplet says:

    Can't understand why some people here are in so desperate need of a queueing mechanism. Is copying files the only thing they do on their PC? :O I vote for automatic queing, that is if two copy operations have the same source and destination device, queue the second copy operation (show it as "queued" with the ability for the user to force the start with a click on the pause/continue button). I am against extra controls, however, that clutter the UI with options that 0.5% of all users will ever need.

  • yehuda says:

    In the video you mention users can pause one job to help speed up another. I don't see this as an ideal scenario. Even if you don't opt for a fully fledged queue as others have requested, how about something in between: a "speed this up" button which would intelligently pause interfering jobs behind the scenes until the prioritized job is done. This has many advantages over expecting the user to use pause. (To avoid cluttering the UI you can have the button pop up only when two jobs, or two interfering jobs, are going on.)

    Also: how about integrating the "safely remove hardware" command into the new copy center?

    Filename collisions have always been an easy way to lose valuable data by accident due to bad judgement. I think the overwrite command should move the old file to the recycle bin or some other temp queue.

  • "…Some controls like pause, cancel button.. etc should be made a bit larger for touch or tablet devices..

    I think the "choose file" part should have a scroll bar at the bottom-left corner to enlarge thumbnail just in case… The check box is great for non-touch PC… however if it's a tablet… it's pretty small and annoying to tap on—>the team can give user ability to tap the rectangular zone around the thumbnail (just like selecting files in Windows Explorer)  to select the particular file… re tap them to unselect…  By the way, the team also need to consider "drag select" to select multiple files instead clicking each check box in case there are too many files you want to choose….

    …"

    So , i think this is good for PC…BUT NOT FOR TOUCH DEVICES…

    IF Windows 8 should be  A REVOLUTION, MICROSOFT (and Touch devices are the future), the should start NOW…

    The changes are very good, but this is not a revolution like Windows 95..IT is a small upates and looking nice adaptations..IT is the OLD and good Windows 7…But we all know that its not enough…

    True or not?

  • Rafael Lopez says:

    I hope a dialog box/confirmation comes up when you do shift+delete (permanent delete rather than move to recycle bin)

  • Tom says:

    In my opinion Conflict Resolution dialog is a monster dialog

    I would consider always copying files and managing versions of files as part of the file system

    Maybe using COM structured storage to save every version of a file

    I don’t remember ever selecting to preserve and older file

    And I always wasting too much time to understand what action should I take

  • domenicoav says:

    Lool , 465 Reply 😀

  • John Deurbrouck says:

    In a copy conflict, right now you get notified even if the two files are named the same, and both attributes and file contents are identical. In this case, there should be no notification.

  • B. Good says:

    (Brief repost as I don't see my comment)

    Remote Differential Compression such that copying a huge PST to a flash drive, for example, will copy only the 10 KB of "delta" rather than the 4 GB that is unchanged.  (Yes, this is an under-the-hood request.)

    "Resume" feature if a single large file is interrupted for any reason, midway through.  I really hate starting again at 0 when 2.9 GB of 3.1 GB was already copied!

  • zzz says:

    The new conflict resolution dialog has big BIG issues:

    No full path of each file.  (it's super common for me that both src/dst folders have same name but different parent or source media)

    Unclear how this dialog scales with hundreds of conflicts in say 10000 file operation on high latency source/dst. When is it presented etc.

  • Marty says:

    Reading through the comments, another user above named "Nathan" seems to have described my complaints much more clearly: blogs.msdn.com/…/improving-our-file-management-basics-copy-move-rename-and-delete.aspx

    Please consider fixing those issues – they are my two biggest complaints with Windows 7's current file management functions as well.

    Thanks for all the hard work, and for keeping a dialog going with this blog! It's great to be able to read about upcoming features!

  • At first, I was very sorry for my English (more for the program translator) I copy the post in the Russian part of the blog, for those who understand Russian well, maybe there it will make more sense, and understand what I mean.

    It all looks good, but when you think about the usefulness of all this, everything seems truly bizarre.

    If we assume that all this could be really useful, really is not very large audience, but most do not have problems with copying, then the question arises: Why do heavier and needed no elaborate process of copying graphic interpretations?

    I can not argue with the beauty and functionality of a video demonstration of the material, but there is one big and very big BUT – the man, an ordinary user is not interested in watching the races Horizons charts when it copies the data and wants to do it as fast as possible (this is not the stock Exchange XD). All of this animation in the background is absolutely unnecessary. The animation itself takes system resources to process the graphic component of banal copying the file instead to redirect resources to the actual copying, or performing other tasks.

    About the process of replacing the files match, there must be well thought possible algorithms of the default settings. For example by default may be 3 buttons:

    1 button – change for the better (the replacement file will be produced at the rate of the file size, date, editing, etc.)

    2 button – update – up will be at the rate of change in the date of the last editing

    3 button – the user's choice, that is, an option that has been demonstrated in the video.

  • But to make the first three options as an intuitive, using icons, symbols and other things, the pop-up prompts, and a schematic arrange them in a box set up.

    The most important thing that needs to be done so that if a person has no time or need to check each file (there may be hundreds or thousands) but he is confident that more new documents is more important, the big picture will be beautiful, that's what he wants to keep, it is presses a button -1, and produces copy and replacement in 1 click with the best numerical performance.

    If a person knows that the files should be replaced only those that have changed, or if this is the photo that is user edited in a graphics editor and then saved in its folder, then so be replacing the file with the last date of amendment, for those users option – 2 button and it upgrades the data folder in one click.

    And those who have the time, desire, physical ability to maximally adjust the copy settings – select button 3, and will work with the presented method of replacing files.

    And a little more psychology – when people, in my humble opinion, makes the backup process, and everything goes quickly and smoothly, without unnecessary information, the person produces exactly the operation that he wanted to make – he has a sense of satisfaction (albeit very small). When a person makes up files, and the window pops up an alert box that says a lot of different information, the text is replete with explanations, is highlighting the file size, and others, a person experiences stress micro, and is included in the hard work to identify the arisen situation, some Such messages can be frightening, (no joke).

    Of course, he will spend a few minutes to figure out what was wrong, yet choose an option and so on, but time is already spent, eye strain from reading unnecessary explanatory information in most cases, already received. Pleasures less.

    P.S. Thank you guys for your job!

  • Jason says:

    Hallelujah! Operating systems have been allowing pause/resume, etc for several decades, so it's nice to see Windows Explorer finally catching up with the basic essentials. This stuff looks great – I might even consider upgrading to Win8 now.

    I'm so pleased that you've resolved the worst UI horrors in the entirety of Win7, but what about these:

    Start a big copy, and go to lunch – when you get back you can be sure that it'll have been sitting waiting for an answer to a stupid question ("do you want to copy the file you asked me to copy?") on the second file of 5000. I hope it will now continue to copy as much as it can and leave the conflicts for the user to resolve when they are available. (The video is low res and won't unmute, so I can't tell if this is already fixed)

    Or select a complex set of files from a folder (say, all the pictures with your dog in), start a copy and have a simple (correctable) problem (e.g. permissions, lack of space on destination volume, or temporary network glitch) cause a copy failure. On XP/V/W7 the copy aborts and usually the selection is lost, so once you've resolved the issue you have to laboriously reselect the files and restart the entire copy, even if the failure was 99% of the way through the job, just to be sure that you get everything you wanted copied. I hope one day we'll be able to just click "Retry" to have another go at any failed files without having to copy everything from scratch.

    When you drag a file between two folders, it is moved (and you have to hold down ctrl to make it copy it). But when you drag it between two other folders it is copied (and you have to hold down shift to make it move it). So we end up always holding down modifier keys to ensure we get sane behaviour regardless of whether the destination is on the same volume. Why not be consistent and always copy files for a drag and move them for a shift-drag?

    And a "copy if newer" option so you can just update a folder by dropping everything into it, and having Windows only bother to copy new or updated files, instead of trying to copy and overwrite everything. Sure i can drop to the commandline and robocopy, but I shouldn't have to!

  • Michael says:

    Hi,

    Looks like an awesome change! Thanks so much for implementing it! 🙂

    Can you also make a setting so that we can default file copy/move dialogs to auto-show the "More Details"….. every single time i have to click it just to see some standard info.

    Cheers!

  • Earlier I made a comment about how Windows treats file copy when you start a copy on WiFi then plug in a network cable.  I want to post a clarification that is more accurate.  In Windows 8, if you are using a wireless network to copy from a PC or server running an earlier version of Windows and then plug in a wired connection, the copy job will continue using the wireless network. However if you are copying between two Windows 8 machines (server to PC or PC to PC) the updated SMB  stack will automatically switch to the faster connection.  

  • Gilles says:

    In working to improve copy-paste, i would argue that the windows team fails to realise that  the entire file/directory management system is increasingly irrelevant with the way people use their computers/tablets/phones together. Take pictures for instance. I believe that the best way to manage pictures is to keep them within the library of a dedicated software (picasa, iphoto on mac..). From  within the app, you can intuitively organise pictures, sync them with your devices, email them, post them on facebook etc. .(on a mac , the user never has to use the file directory to manage his/her pictures).  There is of course nothing wrong with improving the copy-paste experience within windows explorer, but if windows 8 truly wants to be a next generation OS,  its developers need to draw the attention away from the explorer  and focus instead on a better synching/sharing experience.

  • John says:

    I think the people are confused of the video renaming because the first video is not listed in your blog.

  • Manu says:

    Wow. Mac OSX had this for as long as I can remember.

  • Hussam says:

    This is more related to the UI than the file management experience. I have found the border width for the windows (i.e. the /chrome/)  to be rather thick in Windows Vista and Windows 7. I always have to go in and modify the settings to reduce the size of the windows' side borders from 4 pixels each to 1, as well as reducing the size of the top title bar for every computer that i touch.

    I would highly suggest making the default setting such that the windows' chrome is not too thick. It was fun at first with the aero experience, but at first it starts looking annoying since it takes precious screen estate specially on low-res laptop displays.

  • Bill Dunn says:

    Ok this good thanks, I like this constant what we are doing thinking format.

    Can I suggest some other improvements:

    1. When the copy of multiple files gets blocked up because a file is in use, don't blow the copy of all of the other files (the same goes for deletes BTW) finish up and then tell me you couldn't deal with that file.

    2. Give me a I don't care its in use, break the file lock and just god damn do it button.

    3. Isn;t about time that ROBOCOPY functionality just got built right into explorer.  Same two points above apply here as well make it so if a file is in use and it need to updated or deleted in a /Purge /MIR situation that the file lock jsut gets broken and the process moves on.

  • Bman says:

    Working in an environment where 90% of my job is moving files, I also have some concerns/suggestions for Windows 8 (even though we use Windows 2008R2 primarily – I know the a server release will eventually be based on Win8).

    1.  When copying thousands of files from one directory to another on the network, does the naming collision dialog have to display every file in the list?  We have a hard enough time getting directory listings without waiting for a dialog to confirm overwrites first.

    2.  Is the pause feature for file transfers something that will be made available to developers through the .NET Framework?

    3.  Please, could you allow for the next SMB to support multiple socket connections for high-latency, high-bandwidth connections?  Right now SMB will create only one socket connection when moving files over a network.  Our production environment has many VPNs that could in fact have a very high-latency which would impede the ability for a queue of files to push through while waiting for ACKs to return.  However, if we were able to open multiple connections to the destination, we could shove more data onto the pipe instead of wasting that bandwith waiting.  Of course this could be a .NET Framework extension or just added to the existing SMB layer for intelligent latency management.

  • Kyle R says:

    I'm really excited to see some changes to this daily activity. I would like to echo many of the suggestions here. The amount of comments already is amazing, and my comments grew considerably as I read the 370+ here already. I really hope the team takes the discussion here to heart.

     – Here's a long shot. Rather than a separate dialog window, let’s get these operations moved into a growl style notification area, along with IE downloads, im's, emails, etc. I would think this type of common OS provided notification/queue system would work much better than all these separate dialogs and would probably lend itself well to a metro/touch interface.

     – Seems like queuing has been mentioned by about half the comments on here. I know the word is scary for normal folks but if the OS just did it (especially if removed from the center of the screen into a standard notification area as noted in my first comment) they would get the best possible copy speeds without having to manage anything. Regular folks shouldn't have to suffer slow transfers because they are unaware of the devices I/O limits, save them from themselves. Drag and drop re-order would be a nice touch for power users without confusing the normals.

     @David Hicks: Great news that explorer will pause an interrupted transfer, and survive suspend/resume. Even better news that it will move to a better connection when available. You do however mention that it will pause for 'some time' before delivering an error. I'm left wondering if the 'error' it delivers is fatal, or if the user will still have the option to resume after they fix the connectivity error.

     – Grey, or a faded version of an active transfer would be more appropriate for paused transfers.

     – I'd like to see the checkboxes removed on the conflict dialog, at least for the individual files. A touch or click on image/file should be all that’s required to 'pick' it. And perhaps once selected it could immediately be removed from the list to make space for additional conflicts. Also, especially for images, make the preview much larger. No reason not to use the screen space available. A simpler Win7 style approach of a pair at a time may still be the better option. I know this was usability tested, but I have to wonder if this is just wired into people from decades of using windows and not really the right way.

      @Eric Malamisura (i51.tinypic.com/333v1og.jpg)  Interesting idea, maybe touch/click to change the direction of the arrow to indicate which file to keep.

     – A hashing of duplicate files to indicate an EXACT match would be EXCELLENT! I often run into this with images and modified metadata. The assurance that a hashed comparison provides would be welcomed. Even if this was a hidden advanced option I would love it.

     – Having all the errors resolved at the completion of the copy is welcome news.

     – Native support for handling other compression formats, rar, 7zip etc.

     – Hopefully some speed improvements, HTTP and FTP seem to be able to transfer files much quicker than the current SMB/CIFS implementation, especially over lower quality networks.

     – Centered title bar looks odd, am I on a mac now?

     – On the topic of copying OSX, give us the 'spacebar' preview. Photocopier comments aside, it's really a killer feature for sorting through files. The 'preview' pane in explorer just wastes space 99% of the time and is usually too small to truly preview the file anyway. Just about all other file operations on OSX are terrible, but this is a bright spot for sure.

     – I'm enjoying the videos, but would like to hear more details about why design decisions were made. "Our testing showed" etc.

     @Aaron: Agree that MSFT replies should be much more obvious; the responses have great information in them and get lost with this many people commenting.

    No doubt it's hard work to design for a billion people. Tough enough doing it for two kids. Hang in therre team 8.

  • Minh Nguyen says:

    As others have mentioned in the blog, it seems that these dialogs don't lend themselves to touch based interactions. Is there a plan to address this?

  • Thomas says:

    In case when there is not only filename collision, but the file is actually identical (the same size and content) the system should just do not display any dialogs and carry on. This is quite common thing when you copy photos.

  • Cube says:

    I hate you cant rename a bunch of files at once and have them automatic be numbered.

    I get tons of files from the internet/Disc/  that have I want to name in order  but have the same common names like.

    Maya and 3d studio max lizard Texture.      But they was named by somebody else stuff like 993994875lizard     So I want them to be

    "Maya and 3d studio max lizard Texture 1"

    Maya and 3d studio max lizard Texture 2"

    and so on and so on but I have to go through and rename them all at once by hand  this way and it's annoying and takes up tons of my time,

    I would like to be able to automatic pick a bunch of files out of the folder have them be renamed and numbered   or numbered with dates   or make a folder and when I drag and Drop the file it is auto renamed into a preset format I have picked.

    Like lets say there is a  Place in the folder where i can set all this up a head of time or it lets me pick between preset file names and auto numbers

    I can just click rename all files like this one or something like that.

    And if that is already in windows XP or windows 7  I still have not found it anywhere and it is not easy to find or use because I looked.

  • Cube says:

    Oh and  for the files I already have tons of unsorted  files on my hard drive I want to find and rename and the bigger   hard disk get the harder it is to do this.

    It's hard to find dupilcate files in other folders  it's hard to rename tons of files at once then sort them  and It is driving me insane the reason I got  tons of files I don't know where they are is because I do a lot of 3d work  and I takes tons of my time to sort them   so some times I get lazy and just say whatever and throw them on the harddisk anyway  ANYthing the computer can do to help me sort this faster automatic with less typing would help save tons of time.

  • Cube says:

    Oh and  for the files I already have tons of unsorted  files on my hard drive I want to find and rename and the bigger   hard disk get the harder it is to do this.

    It's hard to find dupilcate files in other folders  it's hard to rename tons of files at once then sort them  and It is driving me insane the reason I got  tons of files I don't know where they are is because I do a lot of 3d work  and I takes tons of my time to sort them   so some times I get lazy and just say whatever and throw them on the harddisk anyway  ANYthing the computer can do to help me sort this faster automatic with less typing would help save tons of time.

  • MarkAd says:

    The XKCD joke actually makes a good point, which is that it would be good if the file copy dialog let you know that things have suddenly slowed down, and maybe even why (network saturation, hard disk being used to do other tasks). Could do it just through a red status message or something.

  • Denis says:

    It would be VERY handy if I transfer files to my Desktop and Windows will automatically send to their respective folders. For example, I stick to transfer to a photo, text and music for the Desktop, and the photo will automatically go to the Pictures folder, Documents folder for the text and music to the Music folder!

    Like a Synchronization with PC

    Suggestion of Brazil.

  • DarkUltra says:

    Yes yellow as pause is best I think, like ready set go red-yellow-green lights. Grey looks like finished/error.

    So you arrange your files with navigation pane and drag-and-drop. Isn't it faster and better overview to arrange files with multiple explorer windows like this:

    jooh.no/…/Windows_7_multiple_small_explorer_windows_file_management.png

    That's why I like to be able to go up or breadcrumb all the way to the desktop so I can quickly access my computer and other things without the Navigation pane.

    A bit off topic; I very often miss the feature that Explorer always shows the size of all files in current directory, or the selected file in the details pane. It is the most important information to me, but in Vista and 7 it rarely shows. Explorer rather shows things like name, date taken, rating and tags of a selected file (image). I have to click "Show more details…" and then it takes a lot of time to calculate the total size the selected files.

    jooh.no/…/Windows_7_explorer_windows_file_sizes.png

    PS. I keep getting error "*Please enter a comment" when I try to post with Opera 11.50. Trying again with IE9

  • Tag says:

    I couldn't agree more with those that suggested to have the ability to reorder each copy and be able to make them copy sequentially. That IMO would make this feature HUGE. Otherwise us 'power users' will end up looking for a 3rd party product to do this. I hope you're listening MS, simple things like this in an OS add up and make the entire OS better.

  • Pedro says:

    Its nice to see that microsoft its correcting past errors and improving user experience. How about copy speed???

  • Please remove the rectangle dot of focus border in Picture #2 and #3 at pause button (not only button but sometime the other element get that border when focused). I can say it never been changed or removed for more than for 4 releases of Windows and of course it doesn't look nice. It reminds me some old classic shell style. I think the design team is creative and artistic enough to think about it. It's just a small thing but it can tell how much effort that Microsoft tries to put on developing and enhancing every single detail of a new OS.

  • Next Bluetooth says:

    Will there be an air-drop-like file transfer in windows 8?

  • Shen says:

    Awesome Improvements, glad to see Microsoft see what's lacking in there system and implementing new/improved functions for the users.

    Way to go, User Friendly

  • N. Sun says:

    Looks pretty good.

  • N. Sun says:

    Looks pretty good.

  • stheller says:

    There's a bug in Windows 7 in which a controlled reboot during the copying of a large file leaves you with a file that is the right size and has the right date but has only the first part of the file contents correct. Everything that hadn't been copied by the time of the reboot is zeroed out in the destination file.

    This is a change from XP, in which the copy process was interrupted by the shutdown and cleaned up the partial file.

    Is this bug fixed in Windows 8?

  • Jeremy says:

    I think the changes are great. However, they don't <i> look </i> great. With Windows 8 being so heavily tied into the whole "metro" thing, which I love, I really wish it would carry over more to the desktop elements such as the close/expand/minimize buttons and arrows. Maybe this is just an early build and we have yet to see the actual new UI/UX, but if Windows 8 looks like Windows 7, I am going to be disappointed. The first thing I did was theme Windows 7 (http://goo.gl/z8FWK); I want to not have to theme my OS.

  • @Jon Class [MSFT] : Thanks for responding Jon. However I'm not sure I'd call queueing an advanced concept. To meet your stated goals of simplicity and user confidence, queueing is a better story than what is shown in the blog, where multiple copies involving the same devices will do the wrong thing (device contention) without the user manually intervening by pausing jobs. In fact, the non-queueing behaviour forces users to deal with advanced concepts – that their hardware can't do more than one thing at once efficiently.

    Queueing simplifies the user experience by insulating them from having to understand when copies will cause device contention – they can simply perform all copies they want and Windows deals with it. Which also boosts user confidence – with a queue they know they can simply ask for what they want up front (perform a set of copies), and trust Windows will do it as efficiently as possible.

    I can't comment on "ease of 3rd party app consumption" without knowing more specifics, other than to say that surely if 3rd party apps are going to be requesting copies too, surely the need to manage those copies so they complete as efficiently as possible is even more important.

    If adding the ability to manipulate the queue adds too much user facing complexity or internal complexity, then provide queueing that is totally managed by Windows itself, and let people who more flexibility use third party copy managers. But I think you're missing an opportunity if you don't respond to multiple copies causing device contention in some automated fashion.

    Thanks again.

  • xpclient says:

    @Dennis Flanagan [MSFT],

    Thanks for clearing that bit about how Windows handles WiFi vs the faster ethernet interface. However, many users have legacy SMBv1 environments on their networks so they do not benefit from this feature. It should switch to the faster interface even on legacy networks. I am sure making it do that is not impossible. I guess it determines which route or connection to use depending on the lowest metric? If the gateway is the same for both WiFi and Ethernet interfaces, if not for paused copies, any new copies started should at least use the faster connection even on SMBv1 networks.

  • Bryan says:

    Those are some epic interfaces!

    A request: on the file copy resolution dialog, can you say "a number will be added to the file on the right" rather than just "a number will be added to the copy"?

    It doesn't specify which file is the copy, and therefore it's impossible to tell which file will have a number added to it's name. I assume the file on the right is the copy, so maybe you could just say "a number will be added to the name of the file on the right."

  • yo hablo español, pero tratare de decir lo que hace falta en el manejo de la copia de archivos.

    I think, what missing something here.

    maybe add an option to put a file transfer in the background.

    because we do not always want to spend all fast. maybe we have to copy 500 GB or 1TB of information in this regard would not be so important to the speed, but the system remains the most stable to use as like not doing anything.

    Throw in an optional background to the transfer, that would help us a lot.

    THANK YOU …

  • Philipp Negele says:

    It would be great to understand how such dialogues can be manipulated using touch (your fingers), rather than a mouse. I see the small red cross at the top again, which is sometimes hard to press using touch.

  • domenicoav says:

    Sorry for my Lenguage, im Italian, (use Bing translate pls)

    Mancano 18 giorni a Build e devo dire che ho l'amaro in bocca.

    I developers ( pagano profumatamente)  che parteciperanno a Build, riceveranno un Tablet "prototipo" con un ARM Quad COre by Nvidia nome in codice Nvidia Kal-El .

    Attualmente non esiste alcun prodotto COMMERCIALE in vendita con tale CPu , quindi anche volendo spendere qualcosa in più non sarà possibile prendere in alcun modo questo tablet.

    Da quando ha cominciato a dilagare la mania dei tablet, ho resistito a qualsiasi impatto contro la concorrenza perché sapevo che stava arrivando un prodotto notevole che donota un decisivo e deciso cambiod i tendenza , quindi piuttosto che favorire il vento di follia fatto di marketing e finti Geek, ho cominciato a conservare i soldi http://twitpic.com/59mucd e adesso il salvadanaio è in fase GOLD http://lockerz.com/s/132946684 , ed avendo conservato queste monente con tanto sudore, non posso sbagliare acquisto .

    Quindi sapere di non trovare niente prima della RTM di Windows 8, mi lascia perplesso e soprattutto demotivato.

    NVndia Quad Tech preview

    http://www.youtube.com/watch

  • FearofWeapson says:

    In the copy progress dialogue I would like to be able to right click on one copy task and select – pause all bar this one or even cancel all bar this one.

    I should then be able to right click a paused copy and select resume this one or resume all.

    This is similar to tab control behaviour in IE

  • Mario says:

    Please, please, please, add a checkbox for "Replace all files" – that's the option most users will make use of.

    It's some heavy pain to wait for the copy-process that will ask me what to do with filename-conflictions – e.g. 10 minutes after starting a copy-job. I don't want to start the job and wait in front of the screen!! What we need is to start a copy-job and explicitly tell it (right from the start) to "Replace all files", whatever conflict it finds or not.

    Also it would be nice to decide whether multiple copy- or move-jobs will start concurrently or consecutively. Because running multiple copy-jobs concurrently would result in a longer time than running them consecutively (because the hdd would have to work harder and make more access all around the disk).

  • Small comment on pause button:

    – All Windows apps (including zune, media player) have a Pause button. when pressed/clicked, they change to a play/resume button. The same principal should be followed in file copy as well.

    also, the blog heading mentions about rename & delete operations as well. no information on those in this blog post?

    One more UI suggestion: SQL Server Management Studio started to feature a common UI element in all dialoge boxes. A top bar. This allows SQL users to essentially Script the UI Action being performed. User may save the script or schedule it for later execution.  I believe, we should also encourage simmilar option in windows.

    An option to script the current file operation as a Powershell (or any other) script.  

    Amit

  • Dmitry Kirsanov says:

    Looks really impressive. I wonder what changes will be introduced to .NET framework in order to add file copy to the queue. Also, what if file copying will be initiated from the batch file? Or is it "just" a Windows Explorer feature, not Windows core functionality? Even then – great job!

  • xpclient says:

    Also how about the option to "Skip" a particular file while it is being copied/moved and start moving/copying the next file? (not to be confused with skipping it because of a conflict). That is a quite simple feature.

  • Great.

    But may be you should change Window Explorer at all.

    I can't use it for file operation. I think all people use Total Commander or Far. So that mean that windows explorer is not so good as it can be.

    Also there is very useful function in Total Commander is File Syncronization.

    For example I have larg folder with 5 gb of size and I change – copy or add some files. So I can syn this folder with backup device and only changes will be saved.

    It so easy to do – to compare files not for content but for date and size. Make some options :

    – Sync by size and date changes ( fast )

    – Sync by content ( slowly)

  • Looks great,

    I like this change in Windows 8.

    Keep up the good work!

  • Vladimir says:

    Great job Windows 8 team! One more suggestion from me: please do it possible to open two explorer windows in one click for common operations people do everyday: copy and move. Or explorer can simply provide functionality for extending current "source" window with second "destination" panel. Thanks!

  • Desinderlase says:

    Please please please, fix UI for new copy resolution window. There is no need to have small check-box next to the image. It's doesn't have good alignment and people expect to be able to click on the image alone to select it. Small rectangle (checkbox) is not needed, just gray out the option that is not picked. This way, the UI can be much cleaner.

    At least put links to original files, so that users can further investigate which file to take (preview of the image is sometimes not enough).

  • JS says:

    I think that people should realize that Windows 8 is pretty much feature complete at this stage and the only changes that MSFT might make based on these comments are tweaks or small changes.

  • Danny says:

    I just want to say Kudos to the Windows 8 team for responding to comments and providing some great updates to our questions and comments. Some of the feature clarifications posted have been great! It's great to know you guys are listening after some stories in the press a while back that stated the opposite =).

    My biggest hope is that all this will ultimately be a seamless user experience when released. No half implemented (think office 2007 ribbon interface, or old style settings Windows Mobile 6.5) Tablet users have to be able to do everything (except perhaps use actual legacy apps) with only touch. No file operation or settings change in Windows should ever require a mouse or keyboard.

    As someone who is more than ready to dump the start button with its jungle of out of control icons, I'm hoping I'm never forced to go back to the old UI unless I want to (or I run a legacy app). One thing I do hope is that the taskbar progress indicator functionality will carry over to the new Metro UI. Perhaps the tiles will change based on percentage completed? Can't wait to find out how all this will work!

  • Chris says:

    If there is a copy conflict I don't see any reason why the copy job can't continue with items that aren't in conflict instead of pausing the copy completely waiting for me to answer.

  • Ryan says:

    Just want to say Microsoft Rocks!!

    Just a cool feature could you allow multiple uninstall program management. IE allow selecting multiple programs to uninstall in Program and Features, i think it would be a nice feature.

  • Maiwand says:

    There is nothing more annoying when leaving the computer to copy a few thousand file and coming back 10 mins later to see it stopped on number 57 because of a conflict!!

    Why not make it copy everything it can and only ask about the conflict at the end?

  • xpclient says:

    Oh and another issue: As KB310316 mentions, prior to Vista, permissions used to be preserved when copying or moving items using Explorer on the same volume or even across volumes if certain registry keys were set. But in Vista and later, neither the ForceCopyAclwithFile nor the MoveSecurityAttributes keys have any effect. So essentially, copying permissions using Explorer is broken since Vista and users are forced to use the complex robocopy syntax. This is a must-fix this for Windows 8 so the shell respects both values and copies permissions too.

  • @Maiwand says:

    Control must be done early so the copy can be terminated without further delay.

    You can still do the copy and run from the control of conflict but the control must be at the start of the copy. So I know that everything works and I'll have no surprises at the end of the copy.

    VIP (Very Important Post)

  • VIP (Very Important Post) says:

    I click copy and I am prompted to resolve conflicts and can choose to start copying files that do not conflict. No waiting and if there are conflicts in the few moments I know. Simple, Fast and Clean as Windows.

  • sa_scg says:

    The new features look great with excellent functionality, but I'm very disappointed with the lack of addressing my number 1 copy process failure issue:

    While copying a large group of files, any file that is in use or for some unknown reason is deemed 'not able to be copied'  causes the entire process to halt.  When this happens, you don't have any clues as to where the failure happened or what else wasn't copied.  Seems like you could code in a 'ok, continue' dialogue, or even better, just give a report at the end of the process that alerts the user that files x, y, z could not be copied.

    sa_scg

  • jawz101 says:

    Features that'd be great to incorporate.  if some of these are already done behind the scense- I don't know:

    multi threaded copying

    CRC or some other hash checking option

    pause/resume

    delta differencing for minimal bandwidth usage

  • Duelund says:

    Deleting a large set of files is also a big pain today.

  • To summarize/quote Microsoft's comments so far says:

    Because some people have not read all of the 500+ comments and are asking for the same features repeatedly which MSFT have already clarified in the comments thus far (not in the main article):

    * Conflicts are all now queued to the end of the copy job. So we finish all the copies that don't have name collisions, and then ask you to resolve the remaining conflicts.

    * More details" is sticky – once you open it, all your future copy jobs will show more details until you close it.

    * There is an initial dialog (if you watch the video) that provides three simple options that will apply to all files that have a conflict – “Replace”, “Skip”, and “Choose.

    * We’ve done some work to let you click anywhere on a file’s icon in this dialog to select the corresponding checkbox. Users can select/deselect the checkbox by clicking the checkbox, the thumbnail, or the size/date text; users can double-click the thumbnail to open the file; and users can right-click to get at file properties / etc.

    * We now use bold text to draw attention to the newer time and larger file size.

    * Yellow to be consistent with the established convention in Windows of using yellow for a temporary halted state

    * Keep both is still available in the detailed dialogue by checking both boxes for a single file. This can be done for all conflicts by using the master checkboxes at the top of the dialogue.

    * We have a user adjustable window height, and a scroll bar is available when necessary.

    * When there's a problem with a file in a copy job, we place that file in an error queue and go on to the next file. When we've done as much as we can and all that is left are files in the error queue, we retry each file in the error queue one more time without prompting the user. After that, we start asking the user for direction with the errors. There are a few cases where we ask the user for direction before we begin the operation (permanent delete, UAC/elevation), and we do that as soon as we can.

    * The setting for delete confirmation is not removed. We've changed the default setting for prompting users when files are sent to the recycle bin to "off" for fresh Win8 installs.

    * We have and will continue to make the entire experience navigable via the keyboard.

    * In Windows 8, if you are using a wireless network to copy from a PC or server running an earlier version of Windows and then plug in a wired connection, the copy job will continue using the wireless network. However if you are copying between two Windows 8 machines (server to PC or PC to PC) the updated SMB  stack will automatically switch to the faster connection.

    So please stop asking for the exact same features.

  • Ako says:

    If you have two copies running, and you pause one, when the one running finishes, will there be an option to allow the paused one to start up again by itself?

  • Read all of the 527 comments says:

    People often ask the same features because they hope that there is someone who listens.

    Perhaps because their opinion even if equal to that of others and also their opinion.

    Sorry.

  • Lucius says:

    When copying or moving a file that is locked a file-in-use error dialog pops up. What is very irritating about the error message is that it does not reveal the process that is locking the file.  The user has no other choice than closing one app after another and retrying, or starting process explorer and hunting down the process.

    Please update the error dialog and add the process name that is holding on to the file. Thank you.

  • My internal conflict says:

    If conflict checking is at the end of the copy I do not know if it will be necessary to resolve a conflict and I stay in the loop waiting for a request to hypothetical conflict. This worsens my work and my life.

  • Hey folks, we are definitely following along with all the requests for features and have learned a ton from the feedback and suggestions already.  We're reading each one and they all definitely impact our plans/thinking.

    We've pulled together a bunch of interesting stuff to share very soon on the conflict resolution dialog so keep your eyes on this space!

  • Zaman from Iran says:

    Maybe it's not a good idea to remove the confirmation dialogue. It doesn't make a big difference as far as the time's concerned.

    Other changes are excellent, esecially the possibility to pause and resume a copying task, and the new "choose file" box.

  • Octagon says:

    What if I am moving files and have file name conflicts? There is another decision to be made – leave or delete the source file. What if I am creating links? How can I filter, say, 340 files out of 2456 conflicts and apply one decision to them all? How can I remove files I already decided what to do with from view? How to undo my decision?

    The changes are good, good for the gradually established  low Windows level. BTW, it is known for decades that the RIGHT way to do file management is a two panel interface.

    Recurring: can this blog engine be made Opera friendly? Posting from Opera results in a "please add the text" error.

  • GRATE WORK! But their is one thing i would change. When you pause a transfer perhaps it should gray out rather than go yellow. Like Ben said way up top, It look's like a slow transfer warning, especially since yellow is used for alerts in windows. E.g.  The task bar flashes yellow for notifications, and UAC warnings have a yellow theme.

    Other than that i love the direction that you guys are heading in. Keep up the good work.

  • Chris says:

    Is is possible that for copy jobs with lots of files, if I'm on wireless and then I plug in a wired connection my copy could attempt to move to a multi-threaded approach whereby the files are sent over both connections simultaneously? Often the network is the slow part and a server may have a 1 gb connection and my computer may have a 54 mb wireless and a 100 mb wired connection. Additionally, if one connection is dropped, the copy will just continue on the other connection.

  • Great work guys!  

    A lot of people have said they don't like yellow for the pause color. I would suggest you use the color to give meaning to the transfer rate (red for slow transfers, yellow for medium speed, green for cruisin') and then use an opacity mask or shader for the pause.

    Also, in addition to the small pause button, it would be nice if I could pause any of the transfers by clicking on its respective graph. When you do this, a mask pops up with a large pause button displayed. Which you can click on to resume the process.

    With the resolve collision dialog, which I'm looking forward to be able to use, it would be nice if I could choose to have it automatically add the number like you've done or let me rename a file in the dialog. For the auto-rename I might do it a little differently. I would have a button that said "Auto Rename" that would automatically rename the files from one source if you clicked it above, or for an individual file if you clicked it below. Then I could go through and clarify names if I wanted or keep the auto-rename.

    And thanks for improving from auto-renaming by adding "copy of" to the lead of a file name, that's always annoying cause it messes with my alphabeticness and thus my sense of calm.

  • Great work guys!  

    A lot of people have said they don't like yellow for the pause color. I would suggest you use the color to give meaning to the transfer rate (red for slow transfers, yellow for medium speed, green for cruisin') and then use an opacity mask or shader for the pause.

    Also, in addition to the small pause button, it would be nice if I could pause any of the transfers by clicking on its respective graph. When you do this, a mask pops up with a large pause button displayed. Which you can click on to resume the process.

    With the resolve collision dialog, which I'm looking forward to be able to use, it would be nice if I could choose to have it automatically add the number like you've done or let me rename a file in the dialog. For the auto-rename I might do it a little differently. I would have a button that said "Auto Rename" that would automatically rename the files from one source if you clicked it above, or for an individual file if you clicked it below. Then I could go through and clarify names if I wanted or keep the auto-rename.

    And thanks for improving from auto-renaming by adding "copy of" to the lead of a file name, that's always annoying cause it messes with my alphabeticness and thus my sense of calm.

  • etacarinae says:

    DarkUltra 25 Aug 2011 3:29 PM #

    blogs.msdn.com/…/improving-our-file-management-basics-copy-move-rename-and-delete.aspx

    To address your OT remark about file details:

    Installing classic shell (classicshell.sourceforge.net) gives you this information back, as I explained in my previous post (blogs.msdn.com/…/improving-our-file-management-basics-copy-move-rename-and-delete.aspx) but I have requested this feature be returned and hope the MSFT team include this at least as an option in the new Windows Explorer.

  • It's great to see improvements in this area, but it's not nearly ambitious enough for a new version of Windows.

    Personally, I'd like all errors, conflicts and manual inputs to disappear altogether.

    For instance, I'd like to set once for all the default behavior for name conflicts.

    I would also like the copy task to survive any kind of incident: network disruptions, power shutdown, BSODs, …

    There will still be a few errors left, but the vast majority should disappear with smarter copy tasks that resume automatically on reboot and login.

    The name conflict handling is still rather poor, you should add more naming schemes.

    For instance, I do not want ever the most recent file or the file from the source folder to be renamed "x (2)."

    Instead, I would prefer to have the most recent file (regardless if it's on the source or target folder) to keep its working name at all times, just like happens when you edit a Word document and the previous one gets renamed as ".bak." So a naming scheme where the older files get renamed as "(-2)" or "(previous 2)" would be better. Plus, I don't know about other users, but when you routinely copy hundreds or thousands of files, you don't have time to resolve such conflicts, be it at the start or at the end of the copy task. Usually you want to keep all versions to be safe. And if the file's last modified date is different but the file's content is strictly identical, it should not even be copied or generate a name conflict.

    The Pause button would probably be useless if the copy task could adapt to CPU usage or SATA/USB bandwidth constraints, but I like it. Add a Rollback button as well and it will be perfect: Investigating and resuming a failed copy or move operation frequently takes longer than the actual copy itself unless you use robocopy.

    Definitely queue automatically by default simultaneous copy tasks that involve the same drive.

    These should also survive a computer reboot or other incidents.

  • By the way, I am not able to publish any comment from Firefox 6 when I am logged in the MSDN blog page.

    There is no error whatsoever. Works fine from IE 9.

    It would also be great if the comments were numbered.

  • Aedorlen says:

    A checkbox to choose to keep the more recents and/or the biggest would be great !

    e.g. : Choose "more recents first" and, if even there is conflicting files again, choose the biggest.

  • jcimarron says:

    Not all Window Explorer but part Internet Explorer.  In IE I would like to see a right click on Favorite|Copy Link option.  Now you have to right click|Properties|Control+C (to copy the URL line).

  • Anon says:

    For deleting files many users I know empty the Recycle Bin after they delete something because of a mistaken belief that files in the recycle bin take up their disk space. To aleviate these fears and modernize the Bin, make it delete files automatically for example every 7 days. I think the Recycle Bin needs some rethinking. I know users who permantly delete files bypassing the Recycle Bin because they do not want the files to be around for ever in the Bin, or because of the space considerations I mentioned above. Its all in their minds of course but psychology of the user is that like that. You should come up with something more clever to counter these fears.

  • Anon says:

    For deleting files many users I know empty the Recycle Bin after they delete something because of a mistaken belief that files in the recycle bin take up their disk space. To aleviate these fears and modernize the Bin, make it delete files automatically for example every 7 days. I think the Recycle Bin needs some rethinking. I know users who permantly delete files bypassing the Recycle Bin because they do not want the files to be around for ever in the Bin, or because of the space considerations I mentioned above. Its all in their minds of course but psychology of the user is that like that. You should come up with something more clever to counter these fears.

  • Dean says:

    Thanks for at least looking into making the basics better (the things us techies use all the time). Please speed up file copies across the board.  It's well documented and discussed that Windows 7 for some reason has horrible transfer rates between 2 PCs on the same simple network (1 router 2 PCs).  I develop software daily using Microsoft technologies, and it just baffles me why even small file copies are so terribly slow.  (And yes, I've disabled differential compression).

  • James Whale says:

    Apologies if this has already been mentioned – I haven't had time to read all of the comments.

    In Windows XP, you could select multiple files and the status bar at the bottom of the Explorer window would automatically show you the combined file size. Since Vista/7, the user has had to click a "Show more details" link, which I find unnecessary and irritating – it's one of those extra steps that goes against the ethos of making things simpler.

    *Please* could you change this back in W8 so that selecting multiple files in Explorer shows the combined file size straight away.

  • @James Whale

    this is fixed in Windows 8. Look at the last videos and look at the statusbar 😉

  • Simon Stobbart says:

    Is it possible to reclaim a users home folder as just that; a folder for just a users files docs pictures etc as imo it's turned into a bit of a dumping ground for every program and app that gets installed now, filling up with  junk that I'd never want to back up anyway. Keep up the good work

  • Joe Berry says:

    Currently some third party utilities have the majority of the changes available and have had for years.  I guess it is good that they will now be native in the OS, but certainly not leading edge stuff.

  • etacarinae says:

    @ Andre.Ziegler

    This is only somewhat fixed.  Read my post further up for clarification. It lists only the "number of items" and "selected total file size" but not the "size of disk space remaining", as was previously avaliable in XP and avaliable if one installs Classic Shell.

    blogs.msdn.com/…/improving-our-file-management-basics-copy-move-rename-and-delete.aspx

  • Balaji says:

    It is a good improvement. But we need the ability to add or remove the files in the 'copy jobs' list while transfer is going on.. It would really save money and time.

  • exoteric says:

    This looks really nice, however what about the basic problem of initiating many tasks where due to IO latency issues, the total completion time is higher than if you were to wait for each operation to complete before initiating the next. There should be some kind of job queue option. It's a no-brainer and Windows has never had it.

  • Amir says:

    Suggestion: having control over speed of copy operation (like by assigning priority to copy jobs) could be useful. Sometimes you want something to be copied in the background but it has not high priority and you don't want your hard disk be fully dedicated to it so that it is so slow you cannot do your other works at the same time.

  • Dean says:

    "Finally, in addition to these big improvements, we’ve also done a thorough scrub and removed many of the confirmation dialogs that you’ve told us are annoying or feel redundant (i.e. “are you sure you want to move this file to the recycle bin?” or “are you sure you want to merge these folders?”) to create a quieter, less distracting experience"

    I would leave the ones that can make or break you, like (Are you sure you want to merge these folders?) alone. Having that extra safety net can save your job some day. Plus it could stop a user from doing a stupid user trick. At least make it an option. If you make it an option you can break the different warnings into Group Policy for selection.

  • Amir says:

    I'd like to suggest that in those dialogue boxes, clicking on the thumbnail would check or uncheck the selection and the user is not forced to pin point the mouse cursor precisely on that small check box beside.

    Also if the whole thumbnail is a click target, a visual cue indicating so such as a light change of its background color or similar cues would be necessary

  • Providing pause buttons in copy dialog is a first, great step, but we should not stop here.

    The next requested step to complete this feature:

    1. automatic detection if an existing copy task is slowed down when a new copy task is added; if yes: automatically wait for the current copy task to complete before the new copy task starts (can be overridden again by the user by clicking the pause/play button)

    2. pause button may be understood in 2 ways: either as "pause as long as the user manually continues the task again" or as "pause until there is no other copy task and then automatically continue". Both meanings are sensefull and should be supported

  • Good. This gives you a lot more control.

  • Mathieu F says:

    Yes, I like the new W7 file copy features. But please, what is the command shortcut for "New Folder"? This is REALLY needed and I cannot find it documented. I organize files in folders and using the multiple mouse clicks (right click > New > Folder) to create a new folder is a PAIN. So while this may be out-of-scope for this article, I hope your telemetry shows that people need this feature to help with file copy and organization.

  • Jakob Sternberg says:

    What about search feature.. the current one, (since vista)..is not very good.

    I'd like the old i REALLY miss the old Search Companion

    Also, what happened to SendTo Menu..you can no longer have a hierarchical structure.. WHY?

    social.msdn.microsoft.com/…/952116de-07b6-493f-a1fc-643cf8ede2e7

  • Jakob Sternberg says:

    Oh another thing concerning handling/viewing files…

    ONE thing that OSX really suprised me with..was the ability to hover the mouse over a folder containing alot of pictures. Now, if you scroll with mousewheel while hovering..the thumb changes. This way you can quickly browse through the images in that folder, without even opening it. very smart i must admit.

  • rrm says:

    Does the copy of files start immediately or first when all files to copy/move are counted? In vista it  takes a lot of time counting the number of files to copy when there is more than 100.000 before the  the actual file copy starts.

  • AHS0 says:

    Dear Steven,

    I just posted my comments on 'Welcome to Building Windows 8' since it was off topic. It didn't appear there yet, maybe it awaits moderation?

    Quote below from http://www.killertechtips.com/…/teracopy-tips

    “3. Shutdown When Copying Is Over

    There’s an option in the Teracopy window that automatically shuts down your PC when copying is complete. It’s often overlooked, but it’s pretty helpful when you start copying a large number of files at midnight, leaving your computer on.”

  • MD5, CRC, and SHA1 thing should be offered in all versions of Windows 8 but for Basic and Home Premium user edition-this feature may be disabled by default to keep it clean and enabled by default for advanced user edition like Sever, Professional, Ultimate, or Enterprise.  

    How these things work within the dialog that the post mentioned above? It's the team's business:)))

  • Ian says:

    Suggestions:

    I think paused operations should Be Grey/Gray

    I think  Operations with Normal Speed  should be Green

    I think slow operations should  be Orange

    I think operations with critical errors  should be Red

    I think  operations with OK errors should be Yellow

    Windows should use a Yellow box with exclamatory point  as Attention

    The should us Red X with Circle for Error

    and Green check mark for OK

    :}

  • Paulo Santos says:

    +1 for implementing a queue mechanism like SamStephens mentioned.

    That is really needed and the reason I always install teracopy.

  • Roberto Reto says:

    What if your copying lots of files and there's lots of collisions (because they have the same name, etc), you get  the this huge windows telling you wich one to choose? I believe there's lots of work being done here, so congratulations 🙂

  • What's the use of this forum if different opinions and reports are filtered out? I submitted on Mon 29 Aug 2011 16:43 GMT a message carefully written, clear, short, yet precise, it was not posted. Its only "flaw" was to plead AND to show another solution, better in my opinion and probably in most others'.

    Versailles, Tue 30 Aug 2011 07:41:10 +0200

  • As a related subject of the conflict resolution, looking at the image thumbnails makes me think about the problem of Windows 7 users to find a utility capable of displaying image thumbnails for less "popular" graphic file formats like PDF, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, etc.

    I'm a designer and those really help, especially when you're browsing an old folder of thing you've worked on a year or more before.

    Is there a chance that we see a native support for those in Windows 8?

    (I should remember to thank you guys from trying to make Windows 8 different and better;

    I've been waiting for that since Windows 98).

  • Arne S says:

    As many people before me: I very much appreciate what you have done, especially the more detailed Detail-pane is great.

    However, the thing that always upset me was the missing ability to queue copying tasks. Trying to copy two files to a harddrive at once is just stupid.

    Thank you for all the changes you presented so far! Windows 8 is going to be great 🙂

  • sekhar padikkal says:

    Do windows verify the integrity of the copied files/moved files with crc or md5 or sha or something?

  • AHS0 says:

    Small changes that make a BIG difference

    I agree with Good stuff’s comment in earlier repyl: “Any Windows user knows that it's the small changes that make a big difference! THANK YOU!”

    As Paul of WinSuperSite writes on 'Microsoft Highlights New File Management Functionality in Windows 8' :

    “This seems like a small thing, I know. But I like what  I see here, and I guess this falls under the category of Microsoft reexamining every little piece of the system.”

    So we really hope that they don’t mess up all the progress they’ve made with Win7 :

    Welcome to Building Windows 8 – Building Windows 8 – Site Home – MSDN Blogs

    JDG

    20 Aug 2011 4:05 PM

    As both an avid video game player and a software developer, I have to say I think the preview video for Windows 8 looks like an absolutely horrendous idea. It looks great for a phone, or tablet, and remarkably similar to how Windows Phone acts, however for a desktop environment, it totally breaks the familiarity and swiftness of a mouse and cursor. Click dragging is not an enjoyable experience.

    AHS0

    @JDG  agree with you. I like to refer to this quote from Maximum PC article:

    'The Future of Windows: What We Want from Win 8'

    "Not surprisingly, when we asked our panel of independent hardware vendors what they wanted in Windows 8, we received a wide range of responses. Most of them took the time to laud Windows 7 for being stable and fast. One of our panel members, Kelt Reeves, owner of Falcon Northwest, told us his company is still riding high on Windows 7 sales, so much so that his only hope for Windows 8, “Is that they don’t mess up all the progress they’ve made with Win7!"

    Introducing the team – Building Windows 8 – Site Home – MSDN Blogs

    Xpclient: "Broadly speaking, I would like to give one piece of advice to the Windows teams (although I am sure they know better than me): just let Windows 8 do *everything* did Windows 7 did and more. Take special care to not cause major feature regressions and existing features breaking or done away with. That will keep everyone upgrading happy."

    forum.thewindowsclub.com/…/31443-what-do-you-want-see-windows-8-a-7.html

    Quote from link above:

    “Stop trying to make it a mobile OS and keep it a computer OS. If I want a mobile OS, there is windows phone already. i guess they do this to please the tablet users, but they're not the primary user base, so I think it should be a separate product and not the same one, in that case.”

  • Jan Krems says:

    Just a quick suggestion: It seems like one of the dialogs asks "Which file would you like?" and the old and the new one are exactly identical. Isn't there a way to make a fast size/hash-compare to see if you really have to bother the user for that specific file? Seems like a small change with big effect. 🙂

  • Halokoma says:

    Please enable my windows 8 videos. I'm from youtube (profile named "halokoma") and you disabled my videos. It's not good for me because copyright-things in youtube. I asked you (MS) on your youtube channel but you didn't respond. If other windows 8 videos enabled, please enable mines too.

    Reasons: There are very much leaked windows 8 build on youtube with links. There I saw some in enabled videos they showed download links, and activation crack or activation illegal programs. Mine never showed these and I covered all build information numbers in my one video. Please see my videos and enable them (or only that one where I covered the build numbers) because Youtube says you can enable them (modify copyright-things) after disable. Other videos show them, one of mine not. And I never respond for those who wanted download win8 from torrents and asked me.

    Please respond me, greetings Halokoma.

    Other: I happy for windows 8, I see this is good for Pcs too. I thought it is only good for tablets, but keep this nice work. Could you make more picture-options on Ribbon UI?

    And please integrate photo viewer with windows live photo gallery like in longhorn. And I liked in Longhorn that it's explorer showed pictures in big when I take the cursor over a picture.

  • Luiz Henrique says:

    won't windows 8 have a tab system for windows explorer? It's a very simple and usefull change

  • Thanks again for all of the time you've spent reading the post, comments, and discussing this with us.

    @groumph – "I hope the command line commands will still be present !" – Yes, copy is still supported on the command line. Additionally, app developers can present the new experience to their customers through the API.

    @xpclient – "Will the prompts which we get currently for system files or read-only files remain? " – Yes, prompts for system files, read only files, and UAC/elevation will remain.

    @Simplify color scheme – We did consider a number of color-based visual cues for representing throughput on the 'more details' graph. However, changing the graph color to signify transfer rate risked causing confusion when users moved between more / less details. It's not unreasonable to imagine a situation where the 'less details' progress bar was green while the 'more details' graph was red. As such, we opted for color uniformity between the two concepts (progress bar and progress graph).

    @Obscurus – In the conflict resolution dialogue, as in Explorer, sometimes thumbnails will look the same.  Assuming the higher resolution image has an equivalent image quality, the higher resolution image would have a larger file size. Additionally, users can view additional metadata about any file in that dialogue via right-clicking the thumbnail and selecting "properties".

    @Lars Kemmann – In regards to the state of the "Launch folder windows in a separate process" checkbox, the user experience is effectively the same either way. The user will see one UI for all copy jobs started from Explorer.  

    @The Gnome – You should be able to view the video using your favorite MP4 player and this link: media.ch9.ms/…/B8BFileManagement_high_ch9.mp4

    @mvadu – The conflict resolution dialogue generates thumbnails using the same behavior as Explorer. So, on loading the conflict resolution dialogue, it will show the same thumbnail as Explorer.

    @Keyboard Girl – To elaborate on the topic of keyboard use:  we are working to ensure that both keyboard navigation (arrows, tab) and keyboard accelerators (alt+<key>) work well. Additionally, we are working to ensure that controls are accessible to utilities for the visually impaired.

    @Jeff Walker, @Mark (and others) – Yes, the progress chart waterline will be removed when operations are paused.

    @arrow22 – When you re-copy a partially copied folder, the re-copy job will only move over what's missing. Then, for the files which made it over during the initial copy job you would see the 3-button conflict resolution experience (replace / skip / detailed selection). In the scenario you've described, you'd probably want to select "skip".

    Thanks again, folks!

    -Jon

  • sekhar padikkal says:

    Please add an option of file verification with crc or something???

  • Alex Yaroshevich says:

    I hope to see that UI in Windows 7. Or something like that.

  • Derek says:

    Not sure if this is the best place for this comment, but as it involves File Management so I'll give it a go.  Is there any plan to change the naming/sorting scheme when using the "Move, but keep both files" option?  For example: a folder contains "test.txt" and you attempt to move another "test.txt" into the folder.  Currently you'll get:

    test (2).txt

    test.txt

    In my opinion this is incorrect. Windows should either place the newly numbered "test (2).txt" beneath the other since it's technically the second in the series, or, Windows should automatically rename the original file "test (1).txt" which would allow it to sort appropriately.

    a:

    test.txt

    test (2).txt

    b:

    test (1).txt

    test (2).txt

    Thanks for considering!

  • Greg says:

    Several commenters have mentioned the idea of queuing multiple copies so they complete sequentially.  I like the idea as well.  One thing I do regularly is copy large files from one machine to different folders on a remote machine.  Since my wireless is relatively slow, this takes some time and one feature I've wanted is this auto-queue.  But I wouldn't make it the default behavior.

    instead I'd say, let me click a button that says pause and another pause with auto-resume.

  • I've really enjoyed the ease of drag and drop features and I wonder if there are more opportunities to copy and move files that way from programs and browsers.

  • I'll still be using Teracopy unless you add automatic pausing of actions to/from the same source/target.

  • Frankofgdc says:

    @Here-Here for gawicks

    >> Please Please display all the copy 'error dialogs' after the copying

    >> has completed .So I don't have to sit infront of the machine all the time.

    >Yes!  I second this!  This would be much nicer to have than the moving throughput charts.

    Yes, I agree!!

  • Mike says:

    This looks great, but one thing that would make Windows 8 even better are the tabs in Windows Explorer, they are simple to use, fast, and you don't have to go to your taskbar every time when you want to switch to another Windows Explorer window.

    Plus, auto-hide tabs in Windows Explorer would be a blast, it would be both slick and fast at the same time.

  • jack roberts says:

    Another reason to continue to not use explorer at all. I have been using total commander for over 10 years, which has all the features you are going on about 10 years.

    Of all the things that i think explorer could have done with, since windows xp. A god damn ugly ribbon toolbar was most definitely not on the list.

    Explorer sucks, there are so many things you could change, it does not even remember your last location or open on a specified location, which is the most basic of features. Explorer in windows xp was better than windows 7 in my opinion. I see no benefit from windows 7 explorer of windows xp. Only things that i notice that is a good addition was the Extra large icons view option. But the rest of the "new" features are pathetic.

    Well back to windows 7.1 sorry windows 8. I hope the Metro UI can be disabled completely without affecting other features that might be good, as it is just another useless UI layer addon on top of windows.

    Don't get me started on the useless annoying windows 7 taskbar, thank god for windows 7 taskbar tweaker or i would have gone insane by now.

    How about you implement some features that should have been added 10 years ago ?

    -file type associations (was broken in windows 7)

    -explorer features that would seem obvious to anyone who uses a computer. (not listed here)

    -always on top per window property

    -full window transparency

    -multiple desktops

    -Remove the extra useless networking UI layer (the one with pointless pictures)

    -account privilege escalation prompts for every command that requires escalation.

    -Fix the printers and devices by putting printers back in to its own control panel item and remove all the useless pictures and allow for multiple printers to be deleted (like in xp) Remove the pointless right click properties page on printers. As now right clicking on a printer and going to properties brings up a useless device information page, but when you are in the printer queue (now renamed to see whats printing ) and go to file properties it brings up the correct window. UI inconsistency. Properties on one context menu brings up something different than another one.

    I could go on and on, but i feel that it would be a waste of my time.

  • Evalong says:

    @Frankofgdc

    You mean "display all the copy 'error dialogs' BEFORE the copying has started", right?

    It would also be nice to have a pause and speed-control built in to the copying process.

  • Hans-Gerd Theunissen says:

    Another splendid improvement in usability would be an interruptable worker-thread for the Explorer filling the Listview-part. It's driving me mad when I click the wrong directory in the Treeview (slow network, DVD or something) and have to wait until Explorer has finished reading then complete directory content. Why doesn't the Explorer cancel this action at the moment, when I click another item in the Treeview?

  • jawz101 says:

    in regards to file verification options I'd use CRC as a default with more thorough ones as optional.

    – use a premise that someone could be moving 1 million 50KB text files from one computer to another- spanning multiple directories, sub directories, or even all in one directory.  How do you adapt the copy/move operations to adjust to these parameters?

    -having file verification technologies built into Windows may improve antivirus vendor's products if they can use built-in file verification hooks.

  • Pavel Veretennikov says:

    Feature request:

    (1) select mutliple files in Windows Explorer, and copy to clipboard

    (2) when pasting into text field (e.g. Notepad) — paste them as list of file names

  • Graham Thomas says:

    Although I do use copy cut paste type copyjobs…  I have totally depended on SyncToy since its release to synchronise, copy and rename / restructure folder trees of files from one device to another (e.g. hard drive to USB stick) but also to do the same across the network between desktop and laptop, etc.

  • Clemens says:

    Hello.

    I want to add a point that nobody else seems to have mentioned, but which affects large volume operations a lot:

    The cost of getting the number of files and the cost of calculating the amount of data.

    Because of the factors that make estimating the time required for the operation so unreliable, it should be considered whether calculating the number of files/amount of data should still be done ahead of time. If done ahead of time, it can happen that the actual copying of files starts several minutes after the user started the copy operation.

    I would suggest to do these calculations as low priority operations alongside the actual copy process instead to avoid impacting the time required for the complete operation. (As some have already mentioned, copying files, unzipping archives, etc. is or feels several times faster on Mac OS X or Linux, so adding to the general cost of file operations on Windows is not what you want to do.)

    Avoiding these calculations ahead of time rules out some of the suggested features, like reserving space ahead of time. (But all such features that I have seen listed above seem too specialized to implement them in Windows Explorer anyway.)

    PS: The large number of comments make it very hard to get an overview over this.

    Perhaps Steven et al. could create a follow-up blog article where you clearly list each suggested feature (or type of feature) as…

    – Being considered.

    – Being off-topic on the topic of the file operations considered. (Perhaps these should be roughly sorted into areas of concern so that the respective MSFT dev teams can pick them up easily, for example the complaints/suggestions about CIFS or NTFS performance.)

    – Not being considered (because they seem too involved, tricky/complicated, etc., probably have a short explanation of why they are not considered).

    And the link to that article should probably be edited/put into this blog entry (where everyone can see it more quickly than hidden somewhere in the comments).

    Kind regards

    Clemens Anhuth

  • Sal says:

    RE: Copying Open/Protected File — broken UI *and* must restart ENTIRE copy process.

    When i try to Copy/Move a file that can not be moved (because it is open or protected or somesuch — this happens often when I copy my entire User folder)… the copy process could be going on for an hour and then when it runs into the file that is open/protected, i tells me such and then stops the entire process…. Then i have to figure out what to do with that open/protected file, and then restart the ENTIRE copy process all over again.  This must be fixed, it's been a problem in every version of Windows i've ever used.

  • Big Mark says:

    Nice, now please fix search on network drives via Windows Explorer, indexing fails on our network, adding a "Search Server" doesn't work for me either, results come across as web results not a list of files and folders.

    Fixing search on network drives would make Win8 an easy sell here at my job.

  • Sirish Dangol says:

    I like this features. It's sophisticated yet easy and simple. I think this makes copying/moving much faster with ease. The one most I like is the ability to pause and prioritize the process whilst multiple copying/moving. And, another features I like to see probably in very near future is the ability to prioritize the copying/moving files according to their size, date and file types, which I think would make the process even easier and ergonomic.

    Keep it up.

    – Sirish Dangol

    Kathmandu, Nepal.

  • Sirish Dangol says:

    I like this features. It's sophisticated yet easy and simple. I think this makes copying/moving much faster with ease. The one most I like is the ability to pause and prioritize the process whilst multiple copying/moving. And, another features I like to see probably in very near future is the ability to prioritize the copying/moving files according to their size, date and file types, which I think would make the process even easier and ergonomic.

    Keep it up.

    – Sirish Dangol

    Kathmandu, Nepal.

  • Gautam Jain says:

    Nice improvements. Pause/Resume & Duplicate file options. Something like Copywhiz tool for Windows XP./Vista/7 – http://www.conceptworld.com/Copywhiz

  • Random Anon says:

    I like this new file operation mechanism. It actually helps. 🙂

    I just want to mention a far-out suggestion: Decrease the font size of the titlebar text to 9 pt. It's better for me.